With a whole slew of games on tap night, the NCAAF season kicks off for real on Thursday evening Following a little tease of a pair of matches last Saturday. That will be followed by a second set of games on Friday, a packed Saturday, also games on Sunday and Monday .
College Football is back, and our evenings are going to be filled up with football so far as the eye could see. That means we’ve got a huge amount of games however the focus could narrow down and zero in on the very appealing matchups from a handicapping and viewing view.
For Thursday, the final game of the day to kickoff checks off both of those boxes. The Utah Utes, the team in the country according to the preseason AP Top 25 poll, will soon be on the path. The Utes are to win against the Pac-12 this season, and they are considered a darkhorse to watch as a result for a CFP berth.
This game also makes for an opening week test. The Cougars are pushovers, and this is a competition which has seen many competitive matches in the last several years. Let’s take a look at this competition in detail, starting with the way the college football.
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Utah opened up with two wins, but followed that up with back-to-back losses to Pac-12 competitions Washington and Washington State. This was followed by a four-game winning streak, a span which included a street win. They closed out the season with three straight wins to shoot the Pac-12 South division.
It turned out to be a fantastic beginning to the year for the Cougars. They pulled a large street mad over Wisconsin off at the time and started up at 3-1. From there, the group would hit a rough patch and fall four of its next five. They managed to bounce back for two wins to deliver the record to 6-5.
Utah would be matched up with Washington once again to decide on the Pac-12. The match turned with the action being controlled by the Huskies and walking off the area having a 10-3 triumph. The Utes were encouraged to the San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl, where They’d fall to Northwestern.
To Utah, BYU led for the final game of the season to perform the Utes. Utah was preferred by 10.5 points in match time, however, it was to be tighter compared using the Cougars falling by a score of 35-27. BYU was paired up closing out on a high note having a 49-18 success.
These clubs weren’t far apart at all. Utah had a sizable edge in the ground game and also together with run protection, in pressuring sign callers as 26, and they did a much better job. The Utes were lucky on the turnover battle this past year.
Utah’s 28.1 points per game ranked 76th in the country, while BYU’s 27.2 checked in at 79th. The guards were close as well with the Utes allowing 18.5 points per contest, 16th in the country, versus 21.7 for the Cougars, that ranked 28th.
Kyle Whittingham yields to lead Utah. The defensive coordinator is set up, but the group has hired a new OC in Andy Ludwig. He’s got a great amount of talent to work with on this side of the chunk, such as RB Zach Moss. After missing the end of last season to 15, tyler Huntley is back at QB. As for the defense, it is a mix of fresh faces and gift.
Kalani Sitake is back annually four as head mentor of BYU, and the parts of the training team stay in place. Sophomore Zach Wilson returns to line up behind center. You will find questions to answer elsewhere on crime, although he will be working with the experienced lineup. The defense can be a mixture of childhood and returnees .
Nicknamed the Holy War, this rivalry traces its origins all of the way back to 1896. There were 99 meetings in total, with Utah holding a string edge of 61-34-4. The Utes are dominating this competition in the past couple of decades.
They have won the last eight encounters over BYU. Going back to 2000, the border is 13-5 in favor of Utah. Seven of those eight games have been decided by eight points or not. The lone exception was a blowout triumph back in 2011. Three of the team’s eight victories on the series have come by three points or not.
For the last ten meetings, Utah is against the spread. They have just covered in one of the 3 wins.
Both of these teams’ previous six meetings have been decided by eight points or more. We should be in for another game on Thursday with Utah. This season could improve, but the Utes have a chance in also a Pac-12 crown along with double-digit wins.
We like Utah to pull away in the end, although we anticipate BYU to make them work for this. We’ll take the Utes minus these points.
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