College Football Season Predictions and Week 1 Predictions

College Predictions week 1

It’s finally time for the best time of the year – football season. Last season, I was able to give my thoughts and predictions on-air during the Midnight Meltdown, but of course that no longer exists, so now I’ve come back to the old blog to tell you what will happen over the course of the season.

If you want more, I’m sure I’ll be rambling about things on Twitter, which is where I spend most of my time on the internet now-a-days (other than Reddit, of course). If you’re a college football fan, you need to make r/CFB a part of your life.

This season is going to be fun, and it all gets underway tomorrow night as North Carolina takes on South Carolina, at 6 pm EST, followed by the game I’m looking forward to, Ole Miss at Vanderbilt. I think this first game between Ole Miss and Vandy is going to spell out the entire season for each team, win or lose.

Before we get to Week 1 Predictions, here are some season predictions. We’ll see how well these hold up, or if they are destroyed after Saturday.

BCS Title Game – Alabama beats Ohio State to three-peat

I think this is pretty much a consensus vote here. Do I think Ohio State deserves to be in the title game? Absolutely not. Their schedule is weak, and I think the Oregon/Stanford winner should be the Tide’s opponent, but I think they will both end up with one loss and that will put OSU in as undefeated.

Heisman Winner – Braxton Miller

Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t think he is the best player going into this season, and hell, I don’t even think he’s good enough to make it to New York. That doesn’t mean he won’t actually win though. As much as I want AJ McCarron to be there, he’ll have to have an all-star year…again. Jadeveon Clowney should win in my opinion, but will be hurt as a defensive player in many voter’s eyes, and Manziel has too much surrounding him to win again, although I think he’ll be close. If I was voting now, the players in NYC are (in no order) – AJ McCarron, Jadeveon Clowney, Teddy Bridgewater, Marcus Mariota.

SEC Champion – Alabama defeats South Carolina

The South Carolina/Georgia game will be outstanding, but I see SC with the win there, and the SEC East title. But beating Alabama? No thanks.

Pac-12 Champion – Oregon defeats UCLA

It’s obvious that the Oregon/Stanford winner will be here, and I think that will be Oregon. In the South, it doesn’t really matter who wins because they will get thumped, but I’m going with UCLA over USC as they continue to improve.

Big 10 Champion – Ohio State over Nebraska

I’m not sold that Nebraska can win the Legends division with back to back games against Northwester and Michigan, but I think OSU beats Michigan in the final game to add another loss to their conference column, therefore putting Nebraska in over the Wolverines.

ACC Champion – Florida State over Virginia Tech

I honestly don’t know who to pick from the Coastal division. I’ll see Virginia Tech in Atlanta this weekend and try and get a read on them, but it’s kind of a crap shoot if you ask me. From the Atlantic division, it all comes down to Florida State vs. Clemson, which I think Florida State can pull off. I believe in Jameis Winston to carry on what EJ Manuel had last year. I do like Clemson as a team though, and I think both FSU and Clemson will have great seasons.

Big 12 Champion – Oklahoma

It will come down to the Red River Rivalry, and I think Oklahoma will walk away the winner there. OU has won the last 3 in a row, and I think the trend continues. I’m still not ready to believe Texas is back in top form yet.

AAC (Big East) Champion – Louisville

Louisville gets another year in the former Big East to flex its muscles before it goes to the ACC. This is the easiest pick in the book.

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Now to week one predictions. Here are five games to look out for this weekend and the lines to go along with them. I am picking straight up, but will put if I think they will cover or not. The lines are courtesy of Caesars/Harrah’s on Wednesday morning. At the bottom is my upset special where I pick one team who is an underdog in Vegas, and pick them to win.

Guide:

Bold = Straight Up Winner
Italic = Line Winner

Ole Miss (-3.5) Vanderbilt

Go with Ole Miss on this one to win straight up and cover. While I do think Vandy will have another good year, Ole Miss just has way more talent than they used to, and if Hugh Freeze is half the coach he seems to be, he will be able to have a great season, and a great next couple of years with this past year’s recruiting class.

#1 Alabama (-20) Virginia Tech

The hype behind Alabama almost hurts them in the sportsbook. However, with the way they usually come out to start the season, I expect them to not only win, but cover. I wouldn’t expect them to always cover this big of a line, but I’ll take it this week.

#12 LSU (-4.5) #20 TCU

LSU is going to be a good team once again, and while I like TCU to do well this year and finish at least top 4 in the Big 12, I think this one is going to be a loss and LSU will come out on fire. I take LSU to win and cover.

#5 Georgia (-1.5) #8 Clemson

Not much of a line here, and this will definitely be the best game to watch all weekend. Georgia has a lot to replace on defense, but they still have one key part of this team left – Aaron Murray. I take him and the Dawgs to win, but not by much. I do expect maybe a FG difference, so you have to take the line here too.

#13 Oklahoma State (-12.5) Mississippi State

The Bulldogs aren’t going to be able to get off to a 7-0 start like last year because they won’t even get off to a 1-0 start. You have to take Oklahoma State here, but I’m going to go with the Bulldogs on the line. I’ll give Dan Mullen the benefit of the doubt and say they will be fired up to play in Houston against a big team like OSU.

Upset Special

Washington (-4) #19 Boise State

Is this a serious line? I can’t believe they have Boise down that much to Washington. How is it that everyone thinks Boise is top 25 material, yet the line shows they’d be an underdog even at home? Give me Boise on this one.

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Jon Lunceford is a sports media broadcaster and digital professional. Jon is a graduate of the University of Alabama school of journalism, and played football at Birmingham-Southern College. He has also won two AHSAA Football State Championships while at Homewood High School and was a two-time World Cyber Games Team USA representative. He currently hosts Primetime on WJOX 94.5 and runs the high school athletics site JoxPreps.