College Football Odds - Nothing Close To Hail Mary Win This Time For Colorado At Michigan

Michigan player

Matthew Jordan

Friday, September 16, 2016 9:54 PM GMT

Has any team looked more impressive through two weeks of the new season than Michigan? Perhaps not, but UM finally plays a Power 5 team on Saturday as it hosts Colorado. The Wolverines are -20 on Heritage NCAA odds with a total of 57.5.

Buffaloes Might Be A Mirage
Look, I'm not saying things are going to be close to the same this week, but I feel compelled to reference a Sept. 24, 1994, game between Colorado and Michigan in Ann Arbor. Both teams were 2-0 then with Michigan a Top-5 team. What happened? Only arguably the greatest ending in NCAA history, when Kordell Stewart hit Michael Westbrook on a 64-yard tipped Hail Mary as time expired for a Buffs 27-26 shocking win. I still remember the call of ABC's Keith Jackson that day. I recommend you to YouTube that play. Colorado went 11-1 that year and finished third in the country. CU hasn't won that many games since. The Buffaloes will wear the same uniform combination as that day.

Current Colorado coach Mike MacIntyre entered this season with a 10-27 record and squarely on the hot seat as the Buffs became one of the creampuffs of the Pac-12. And maybe they still are, but CU is at least off to a 2-0 start. But it has been a less-than-impressive schedule: a 44-7 win over rebuilding Colorado State and last week a 56-7 rout of FCS school Idaho State. Senior quarterback Sefo Liufau is off to a good start, completing 74.5 percent of his passes for 522 yards, three touchdowns, and no picks. He also has rushed 20 times for 120 yards and a TD. It's the first time since 2002 that Colorado has had at least 500 yards of offense in its first two games of the season. But Liufau and Co. are going to see a whole different level of defense in Michigan. Liufau wasn't even a sure thing to be ready to start this season off a Lisfranc injury that cut short his 2015 campaign.

I'm not too excited about CU's 2-0 start because it also began 2013 with the same record under MacIntyre with wins over Colorado State and an FCS team. That team finished 4-8.

Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh doesn't release a depth chart because, well, he's Jim Harbaugh. So this week, CU released a mock one full of famous fictional names (think Austin Powers, Elmer Fudd, Butch Cassidy, Willy Wonka, Vito Corleone, etc). Google that thing, it's absolutely hilarious.

Colorado has lost 22 straight games overall vs. ranked teams and is 0-11 in them under MacIntyre. The Buffs are 2-0 ATS on college football odds and 1-1 O/U.

 

Wolverines Haven't Played Anyone
No. 4 Michigan has played just as easy a schedule as Colorado has and really could be punished down the line for such a weak non-conference schedule -- this is the first season the Big Ten has gone to nine conference games. UM opened with a 63-3 blowout of Hawaii, which was coming off a trip to Australia. Last week, Michigan had no trouble in a 51-14 rout of Central Florida, which was winless in 2015.

So take these Michigan statistics with a grain of salt. The last time UM had back-to-back 50-point games was in 1992. The 114 points scored are the fourth-most in school history through two games. Wilton Speight won a close quarterback battle in fall camp and has been tremendous. He has completed 70 percent of his passes for 457 yards, seven touchdowns, and one  pick. He was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week on Monday. Jake Butt is one of the country's best tight ends and has three TD grabs.

The Wolverines are third nationally and first in third down defense (12 percent conversion rate). That group was one of the nation's best last year, too, and lost coordinator D.J. Durkin to Maryland. So Harbaugh simply replaced him with Don Brown, who coordinated the nation's No. 1 defense last year at Boston College.

There is one key injury to note for Michigan and that's to All-American cornerback Jourdain Lewis, a future NFL player. He hasn't played the first two games because of some mysterious injuries (Harbaugh never tells) and is questionable for Saturday. Lewis set the school record for pass breakups last season.

Michigan is 3-1 all-time against Colorado and this will be the first time the schools play since CU joined the Pac-12. The Wolverines are 2-0 ATS on college football picks this season and 2-0 O/U.

 

Final Analysis
Give the points, before it climbs over three touchdowns, and go 'under' the total. Colorado has covered just 11 of its past 35 road games. Michigan is 5-2 ATS in its past seven at home. The 'under' is 5-1 in CU's past six. The 'under' is 10-4 in UM's past 14 non-conference games. 

 

Free College Football Pick: Under 55½ -105
Best Line Offered: at Heritage where you can get a bonus of 50% Cash!

[/]{"component":"oddswidget", "eventId":3028594, "sportsbooksIds":[169,238,93,1096,92], "LineTypeId":3, "PeriodTypeId":1 }[/]