The 10th ranked Florida St. will welcome a lamb to the slaughter in Texas St. but after perusing the bloated odds is there any edge to grabbing all those points or do we back FSU in our NCAAF picks?
Who are the Bobcats?
The Texas State Bobcats reside in the Sun Belt Conference far away from the white hot spotlight that shines on college football luminaries like Florida State. Last season the Bobcats registered a 7-5 straight up record but an outstanding 9-3 ATS mark which closed with a dominating 54-31 victory over Georgia State and yet another ATS winner as 14-point road chalk.
Tyler Jones will be one of nine returning offensive starters to the program and that experience alone could lead them to a post season berth if they build upon the success they had from last season. Jones is a highly mobile back who can throw on the run or tuck the ball underneath and find an edge on the outside. The Bobcats averaged 238.5 yards per game last season and this year they will have two primary weapons in the backfield in Chris Nutall and Robert Lowe.
C.J. Best is a converted slot receiver and the key to success against a powerhouse like FSU will be their ability to execute their up-tempo offense and keep the chains moving while the clock is ticking. They cannot afford to go three-and-out and manage to hang tough. The 'Cats use the option on occasion and that could be employed throughout the game to keep the Seminoles on their heels.
Does Texas State Have a Chance?
The simple answer to that question is they have a chance to stay within the number but winning is virtually out of the question. Yet we have seen small schools upset the Goliaths before but Texas State will be lucky to contain the high octane offense of FSU and we don't see this offense matching them score for score. But that doesn't mean they can't compete. The college football odds have dropped precipitously in this one as they opened at Florida State -37 and if you peruse SBR odds you will see that virtually all of the majors are hanging FSU-29 as of this writing.
Although the Bobcats have a decent offense they struggled on defense last season due to injuries. Defensive coordinator John Thompson employs a 4-2-5 defense with David Mims II as the field marshal in the secondary while the linebacking corps is thin with David Mayo no longer in the mix. Texas State is 6-0 ATS in their last six road games and 6-1 against the spread in their last 7 non-conference games. Florida State is 0-4 ATS in their last four home games. FSU is also 0-4 against the spread in their last four games in September.
College Football Picks
The first game of the season is always a crapshoot no matter what sport you're betting but it's particularly daunting when you are trying to analyze a college football contest that features brand new starters, transfers and new schemes. Toss in a Sun Belt Conference team that nobody, but those fans of the SBC, really follow or know much about. The key to this game I believe is the efficacy of Texas State's offense and the experience they bring with this system. Nine starters is a bunch and this was a decent team last season, albeit in a minor conference. I feel they will be better this year and the Seminoles are starting over without their All-Everything quarterback Jameis Winston.
College Football Picks: Play Texas State +29 at GTBets.