The Ole Miss Rebels have never lost a football game in August, which provides them a major edge against the Boise State Broncos at the Georgia Dome Thursday night.
A new era begins
Bryan Harsin was hired as head coach of Boise State on Dec. 11, 2013, as he gets set to replace Chris Petersen, who is now the front man at the University of Washington in the Pac-12 Conference.
For the first time since 2008, the Broncos open the season unranked in both the Associated Press and Coaches Poll, which is important to consider when looking over the college football odds page, especially since the program has put together 16 consecutive winning seasons.
Harsin was a backup quarterback at Boise State from 1995-99 before becoming a graduate assistant and assistant coach with the squad until moving onto Texas as a co-offensive coordinator in 2011-12. He had just finished his first year as a head coach at Arkansas State before getting the call to return to his hometown.
Ole Miss has put together a 88-26-5 straight-up record in season openers, which can’t be ignored when making your NCAA football picks, considering the team has won all seven games its played in the month of August.
The Rebels return 57 lettermen and 16 starters from last year’s squad that went 8-5 and won the Music City Bowl.
At No. 18 in the AP poll, the school has its highest preseason ranking since it was 8th in 2009.
Taking on the best
The Broncos are 9-4 SU against schools from conference that comprise the Power 5 since the start of the 2006 campaign, while they’ve gone 11-20 all-time in such contests overall.
It’s important to point out that Boise State has fallen in defeat in four of its five opportunities against Southeastern Conference opponents, with the one victory coming against Georgia in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game on Sept. 3, 2011.
Rebels quarterback Bo Wallace is the SEC’s top returning passer from last year, as the senior threw for 3,346 yards and 18 touchdowns with 10 interceptions.
Last year’s squad set school records for total offense, pass completions and pass attempts, as it welcomes back 67.5 percent of its rushing production, 91.4 percent of passing and 48.7 percent of receiving.
I’m going to recommend that readers back the Rebels as one of their Week 1 college football picks, as they’ve gone 3-1 ATS as favorites of 3.5 to 10 points since 2012.
College Football Pick: Ole Miss Rebels -10