Texas vs. Notre Dame College Football Picks: Longhorns to Cover +10.5 Against Fighting Irish

Joe Gavazzi

Saturday, September 5, 2015 7:43 PM UTC

Saturday, Sep. 5, 2015 7:43 PM UTC

We look at the Texas Longhorns as the College Football Big Dog of the week when they visit the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Our analysis will result in an outstanding opportunity for you to cash in.

Texas vs. Notre Dame (-10.5) - 7:30 ET NBC TV
The Texas Longhorns travel to South Bend, Indiana to meet the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in an opening week, Saturday night, marquee matchup. The game will be televised by NBC starting at 7:30 ET.

It is no surprise that there is a lot of preseason hoopla surrounding the Notre Dame program. For, the Irish fell flat on their face down the stretch last season, when a lack of experience and injuries deflated their 2014 season. After a 6-0 SU start, Notre Dame would finish 2-5 SU ATS for a highly-disappointing 8-5 SU season. Today, they take the field for 6th year HC Brian Kelly with 17 RS. They do have some good feelings, knowing they won their Bowl game against LSU (31-28). As much as the Irish seemed to be improved, there are danger signs in their defensive makeup. In the previous 3 seasons, this team has gone from 12 to 9 to 8 wins, in no small part because of their decreasing defensive performance that went from allowing 13 PPG and 306 YPG in 2012 to 29 PPG and 404 YPG in 2014. With projected starting QB Golson transferring to Florida St., leaving former QB Zaire to guide the attack, there may not be as much offensive transition as was expected. Then, there is the matter of the fact that Notre Dame, being among the highest profile schools in the country, is consistently overrated. That is especially true when installed as the favorite at home, where they are on a 19-33 ATS slide as home chalk against the college football odds, including 5-10 ATS in the previous 3 years.

There is plenty to like about the Texas Longhorns as they enter the 2nd year of the HC Charlie Strong regime. A 6-7 SU season is unacceptable in Austin. It culminated with a pair of losses to end the season by counts of 48-10 to TCU and 31-7 to Arkansas.  Yes, the Longhorns have plenty to prove!  Strong proved his defensive pedigree by improving the Longhorns defensive allowance from 407 to 348 YPG.  And that was with 9 games against the high-scoring Big 12. Now, he must focus on the offensive side of the ball, where 8 RS, including all 5 linemen (though, 2 rookies may start) will pave the way. QB Heard is the starter in waiting with a highly decorated high school career behind them. But, incumbent QB Swoopes may get the starting nod, based on his greater experience. 

I’m expecting a defensive struggle in South Bend tonight with the underrated, underdog Longhorns taking this game to the final whistle against the always overrated Fighting Irish.

College Football Pick: Texas +10.5 at 5Dimes  

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