The 2012 NCAA Football season opens tonight with a slew of intriguing games, including the #9 South Carolina Gamecocks visiting the Vanderbilt Commodores at 7pm. Meaningfull football is back, baby!!! Time for our first gambling tip and prediction of the season:
LINE: South Carolina (-7) @ Vanderbilt
The Gamecocks get All-American running back Marcus Lattimore back from a knee injury, which cost him the final 6 games of the 2011 season, and he should return with a vengeance. Also returning is quarterback Conner Shaw, and as you know, always bet on teams with returning, experienced quarterbacks early. Each team returns 18 total starters. Also back is impressive sophomore defensive end Jaedeveon Clowney, who was once the nation’s top recruit, and bookend Devon Taylor.
Those two will make things very uncomfortable for Vanderbilt’s starting quarterback Jordan Rodgers, who is the younger brother of the Green Bay Packers Aaron Rodgers, the 2011 NFL MVP.
Pick: South Carolina covers easily. 27-13 Gamecocks.
LINE: BYU (-12) vs Washington State
We know Washington State is going to throw the ball a lot under new head coach Mike Leach, and junior wide receiver Marquess Wilson (6’4 185lbs) is one of the best receivers in the country. Last season Wilson caught 82 passes for 1388 yards and 12 touchdowns, and he should explode onto the national scene in a Mike Leach offense. I like WSU to win this game outright, but will take the points.
PICK: Washington State wins outright, WSU 35-23.