College Football is back. Tailgating is back. Pretending your favorite team who isn’t Bama, UGA, Ohio State or Clemson is gonna win the natty is back. And most importantly, spending 12 hours on your couch watching 18-22 year olds toss the pigskin around is absolutely back. We are fully loaded for another big money CFB season and look forward to giving our readers as many winners as possible, week after week. Changing pace from last year we will move away from our ‘best of the best’ picks section and simply provide a handful of picks each with a corresponding write up. We’ll keep track of these all season long and encourage you to yell at us in the comment section if you think we’re wrong. Now, without further ado, let’s punish some bookies.
DPJ’s Best Bets – Week 1
Central Michigan @ Oklahoma State – Thursday, 9/1 (7:00 PM EST)
Pick: Total Points Over 58.5 (-110) (1 unit)
I’m expecting some fireworks on our first night of CFB week 1 as the Chippewas head south to Stillwater to take on the Cowboys on Thursday night. OK State’s defense was incredible last year, but DC Jim Knowles left for Ohio State in the offseason and I anticipate at least some reversion and struggle for the Cowboys defense early on. Central Michigan is gunning for a MAC championship this year and while I don’t think they will get a W on the road to start the season I think they’ll put up a fight on offense and keep this one close. The Chippewas return the nation’s leading rusher from last year in Lew Nichols III and I don’t expect him to slow down in ‘22, and he was especially good down the stretch in ‘21. The Cowboys shouldn’t be struggling to score against an under matched CMU defense so I think we’ll see TDs scored early and often. Score Prediction: OSU 38 – CMU 24
BYU @ USF – Saturday, 9/3 (4:00 PM EST)
Pick: Total Points Over 57.5 (-110) (1 unit)
The Mormons take a trip to South Florida for a matchup with a new-look USF team. While there should not be concerns about the good-boys of BYU spending time in the Tampa strip clubs, I think that a significant number of variables on both sidelines could lead to a hefty point total. ESPN’s Bill Connelly’s annual returning production rankings have BYU and USF ranked first and second in the country, respectively. Meaning both squads have a ton of new faces across the board getting snaps. USF has two new coordinators, beefed up their coaching staff and made several personnel moves in the transfer portal. BYU in particular has a lot of fresh blood on defense. With that in mind, I could see this one turning into a shootout, although largely dominated by the Cougars. Score Prediction: BYU 35 – USF 24
Utah State @ Alabama – Saturday, 9/3 (7:30 PM EST)
Pick: Utah State +42 (-110) (1 unit)
Most small-brained sports bloggers and gambling degenerates are probably ready to back on the brinks truck for some big Alabama bets in 2022. Me? Simply not the case. Alabama is a worthy number 1 (or 2) ranked team, and will almost certainly be in the playoff and most likely win the natty when all is said and done. But against these Aggies in week 1, 42 points is simply too rich for my blood. Utah State was frisky last year, going 11-1 and beating two Pac-12 teams (which sounds cool but really isn’t). 12 starters return for the Aggies including QB Logan Bonner who set five single season school records in the passing game. Their defense plays hard as hell and they can produce turnovers. With that being said, the Crimson Tide will most likely have them in hell all game but I’m wagering the Aggies will hang around just long enough to keep this within seven touchdowns. The final score simply matters a lot more to Utah State than it does to Alabama, and I think they’ll play hard until the final whistle. Score Prediction: Alabama 49 – Utah State 14.
Q’s Best Bets – Week 1
Georgia Tech vs Clemson – Monday, 9/5 (8:00 PM EST)
Pick: Georgia Tech Total Points Under 14.5 (-115) (1 unit)
The boys are back and I’m all in on this Tigers defense. This defensive line is by far the best in the country and Georgia Tech just installed a new offensive system within the past year after running the triple option forever… there will be carnage. Bryan Bresee and Myles Murphy are freaks of nature and Tyler Davis/Xavier Thomas bring a solid veteran presence. Given Clemson’s recent struggles on offense, it feels safer to short Georgia Tech’s offense against this powerhouse defense than betting against the spread. Outside of their upset of an overrated UNC team last year, Georgia Tech only put up a total of 8 points against the other three ranked opponents they faced combined. Expect Clemson’s defense to make a statement this weekend. Score Prediction: Clemson 35 – Georgia Tech 6.
Notre Dame @ Ohio State/Oregon vs Georgia
Pick: 7 Point Teaser: Ohio State -7, Oregon +24.5 (-130) (1 unit)
I couldn’t resist the old teaser bug heading into week 1. Notre Dame enters 2022 with a new head coach and Ohio State should have one of the best offenses in the country this season (if not the best). Ohio State literally has three potential Heisman candidates coming into the year… and all of them at different positions. CJ Stroud will most likely take another step forward this season and he’ll have both Treyveon Henderson (RB) and Jaxon Smith-Njigba (WR) at his disposal. Both are weapons who can score on any given play. Given the uncertainty of the Notre Dame rebuild, it feels like a blowout at the Horseshoe is inevitable. Score Prediction: Ohio State 42 – Notre Dame 24.
Oregon is getting seriously slept on heading into their Saturday matchup against the defending national champs. Do I think Oregon could win this game? Wouldn’t quite go that far. Do I think they keep it closer than 3 scores? Absolutely. Consider these factors… 1) Georgia could definitely fall victim to a national championship slump first game back after their first true triumph over Alabama in years 2) Georgia lost its defensive coordinator after the national championship… to Oregon… as their new head coach (clearly knows the Georgia defense inside out) 3) Bo Nix (love him or hate him) has tons of experience playing against SEC teams. Mario Cristobal may have left town but he definitely left some talent behind on both sides of the ball. Don’t be surprised to see Oregon hang around longer than expected this weekend against a Georgia team coming off the greatest victory of their lives. Score Prediction: Georgia 35 – Oregon 17.
Boise State @ Oregon State – Saturday, 9/3 (10:30 PM EST)
Pick: Boise State Moneyline (+130) (0.5 units)
I’m honestly not sure why Boise State isn’t favored in this game other than the fact that it’s an away game for them. Oregon State’s defense is atrocious against the pass and Boise State’s QB Hank Bachmeier is an underrated gunslinger. Boise State’s defense started to come on down the stretch last season and they have enough returning starters to keep that train rolling this year. Bronco nation seems to have a ton of faith in their senior QB and I see him making an early statement this weekend against a porous Oregon State pass rush. Given the preferable odds Vegas is gifting us for this matchup and the fact that we’re backing an away underdog here, no reason to throw more than half a unit on the Broncos to win outright. Score Prediction: Boise State 30 – Oregon State 27.
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