Home Team Boise State to Cover vs. Colorado State NCAA Football

Darin Zank

Thursday, September 4, 2014 4:10 PM UTC

Thursday, Sep. 4, 2014 4:10 PM UTC

Boise State opened this season with a sloppy loss to Ole Miss, while Colorado State picked up a nice win and cover against rival Colorado. The Broncos and Rams now begin Mountain West play when they meet on the Smurf Turf up in Boise Saturday night (10:15 pm ET, ESPN2).

The Betting Lines
As of mid-week most college football odds were chalking Boise State at -10.5, with the total offered at 58. The Broncos could also be gotten at around -410 on the college football betting money line, with Colorado State getting upwards of +350 to win this game outright.

The Situation
Boise State began the post-Coach Petersen era with a 35-13 loss to Ole Miss in Atlanta last Thursday. But that game was a little closer than that score might indicate. The Broncos only trailed 7-6 heading into the fourth quarter, but gave up four scores and failed to cover the spread as 10-point dogs.

Boise State out-rushed the Rebs 135-71 and held the ball for 36 minutes, but Broncos QB Grant Hedrick threw four interceptions.

That game just stayed 'under' its total of 52.

Boise State returned 15 starters this season from a team that went 8-5 last year. Seven starters returned on offense, including senior QB Hedrick, 1,400-yard rusher Jay Ajayi and thousand-yard WR Matt Miller, but just two along the offensive line. And eight starters are back on defense, including the entire back seven.

Colorado State opened this season with a 31-17 victory over Colorado in Denver last Friday. CSU trailed 10-0 early and 17-7 midway through the third quarter, but scored three touchdowns in the next 12 minutes to take the lead and, eventually, the outright win as three-point dogs.

The Rams out-rushed the Buffaloes 266-134.

Colorado State only returned 12 starters this year, five less than last year. Five starters are back on offense, including senior QB Garrett Grayson and last year's top two receivers, but they lost RB Kapri Bibbs, who ran for 1,700 yards and 31 touchdowns last season, and four along the offensive line. And seven starters are back on defense, including six of the back seven.


Rams-Broncos Recent History
Boise State has beaten Colorado State each of the last three seasons, but CSU has gotten a little closer the last two times out. Back in 2011 the Broncos (at -32) pounded the Rams 63-13; in '12 Boise State (-14) beat Colorado State 42-14; and last year BSU (-7) won 42-30.

The Rams led last year's game 10-0 early and 17-14 halfway through the second quarter, but the Broncos scored the next 28 points to take control. CSU then scored the last two touchdowns of the game to bring the score back toward respectable, but Boise State still covered the spread as seven-point favorites on the road.

That game played 'over' its total when the Broncos scored two minutes into the fourth quarter.

Colorado State actually out-rushed Boise State that day 229-132, out-gained the Broncos 626-437 and held the ball for 40 minutes.


Rams-Broncos Betting Trends
Colorado State is 10-3 ATS over its last 13 games, and 5-1 ATS in its last six road games.

The 'overs' are 3-0 the last three games in this series.

College Football Pick: The Rams won and covered last week, while the Broncos lost and missed. But we'll play the 'reversal of fortune' theory with this one and take Boise State, minus the points, for our free college football pick.

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