Huskies Will Run (and Pass) by Overmatched Rutgers in Season Opener

washington rutgers

Doug Upstone

Wednesday, August 30, 2017 3:29 PM GMT

Wednesday, Aug. 30, 2017 3:29 PM GMT

Washington and Rutgers went at it last year in Seattle -- it wasn't close -- and switch coasts to come all the way to Piscataway, N.J. to open the 2017 season. This is a Friday night affair and will be broadcast on Fox Sports 1 at 8 p.m. ET.

In terms of national championship talk, there has been four teams hogging all the interweb headlines and one of has not been the No. 8 Washington Huskies, who are the defending Pac-12 champions and made the College Football Playoff a year ago. The Huskies did lose four defensive starters to the NFL Draft, but the school's most prolific offense returns largely intact. 

Rutgers is in for another long season, and facing one the best teams in the country is not going to help the Scarlet Knights to get off to a fast start. A look at the college football odds has Washington slipping to -27 from -31 and the total also tumbling from 58.5 to 52.

 

Washington Wins and Covers By ...

Coach Chris Petersen playing the "respect" card for motivation. Even I have to agree Washington is being largely dismissed nationally and in the Pac-12, with all the talk about USC and Stanford being prominent again and QB Jake Browning being mentioned after Sam Darnold and Josh Rosen. If anything, the Huskies might be more explosive offensively, and while the Washington secondary has to be retooled its front seven can overwhelm Rutgers, which might be the reason why the total has sunk so far, as those making college football picks wonder if the Knights can score beyond 10 points.

 

Rutgers Covers By ... 

Hoping Washington is bored having traveled all this way to mop up a weak team. Rutgers was last in all of college football in total offense and next to last in scoring (15.7 PPG) last year, thus the only place to go is up. Louisville transfer grad Kyle Bolin will an upgrade at quarterback, and coach Chris Ash has addressed play-makers issues as the Scarlet Knights will look to get the pigskin to Janarion Grant among others. Let's not kid ourselves, this is still a terrible defense and where one can look for improvement is in the secondary.

 

What To Watch For & Outcome

From a wagering perspective, I call these "want to" games. If Washington wants to, it covers the spread. The talent difference certainly warranted the opening 31-point spread, yet many wonder, including yours truly, about if the Huskies will just go through the motions. I will give the nod to Washington to cover the -27. But keep your eyes open for a second half bet if Petersen's team is ahead at the half by 11 or fewer; with an anticipated line of -15, that could be the strongest action after he lights into them about giving more effort.

Free NCAAF Pick: Washington -27Best Line Offered: BetOnline

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