College Football Picks: BYU vs. Connecticut

David Lawrence

Tuesday, July 15, 2014 2:58 PM GMT

Tuesday, Jul. 15, 2014 2:58 PM GMT

The Brigham Young Cougars showed flashes of potential last season, but they would play a poor game every now and then, bringing them short of where they wanted to go. The Connecticut Huskies simply struggled throughout their season and enter the 2014 season with the hope that they can make a new start of things. Two teams come at this game from different positions.

BYU Cougers @ Connecticut Huskies
Friday, August 29th – 7:00 PM ET
NCAA Football Odds: BYU -13

 

The Cougars can win because…
They have the much better team. BYU, when at its best, can be a devastatingly good team. The Cougars crushed Texas last year and ran all over the Longhorns, setting the stage for longtime Texas coach Mack Brown to be fired. The Cougars have a quarterback, Taysom Hill, who is extremely experienced and can beat teams with both his arm and his legs. Hill is a solid dual-threat quarterback who can keep a good defense off balance. He is not always consistent as a passer, but he remains unpredictable, and he makes the Cougars’ offense hard to game plan against if you’re a defensive coordinator. In addition to BYU’s double-threat on offense, the Cougars also have a coach, Bronco Mendenhall, who focuses on defense, given his history as a defensive coach and coordinator. BYU has sent defensive ends and linebackers to the upper tiers of the NFL draft in recent seasons, with players such as Kyle Van Noy and Ezekiel “Ziggy” Ansah leading the way. BYU is likely to have too much strength up front for Connecticut. This is a general advantage the Cougars will have in the first place. In addition, though, Connecticut isn’t very skilled in addition to being physically inferior, so keep that in mind for college football picks this season. Teams can often make up for a size disadvantage due to a better scheme and creative uses of talent, but the Huskies just don’t have that much talent. They’re not going to have the resources needed to stay close in this game. They’ll have to get turnovers from BYU’s offense.

 

The Huskies can win because…
Before making your sports picks on this game, remember that the Huskies are playing at home against a team that stumbled in its road opener a year ago. It was one of the craziest results of the 2013 college football season. BYU controlled the flow of play on the road at Virginia against the Cavaliers, influencing their NCAAF odds. The Cougars outgained the Cavaliers and moved the ball more consistently. Yet, BYU committed untimely mistakes in a game that was interrupted by a weather delay, a storm that became too severe for the game to continue without interruption. A wet ball, a muddy field, and other things that lead to sloppy ball handling helped Virginia to get a few game-changing plays. BYU was not able to avoid mistakes in difficult conditions. That’s the very scenario which can enable Connecticut, a team that relies on defense, to win the debut of new head coach Bob Diaco, who replaces Paul Pasqualoni this season.

 

Outlook & NCAA Basketball Betting Prediction
If the weather is bad during the first week of the 2014 college football season, Connecticut will have a chance for the same reasons Virginia was able to beat BYU a year ago. However, if the weather is at all calm and settled, BYU should trounce the Huskies. 

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NCAA Football Picks: BYU -13

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