Opening Lines for Week 1 Are Already Out
5Dimes released its opening lines for Week 1 of the 2014 season on Thursday morning, and half of the matchups include teams without a named starting quarterback. Yep, we've hit the awkward part of the offseason.
However, there’s not much to argue.
Penn State is a one-point favorite over Central Florida in Dublin – which is a pretty big indicator that 5Dimes thinks the Knights will win – but I like the Nittany Lions’ chances to capture revenge against UCF in James Franklin’s first year.
Ohio State’s (-15.5) line seems a bit too gracious since the game is played against an extremely physical and disciplined Navy crew on the road, but the Buckeyes haven’t lost an opener since 1999 and are outscoring opponents by 35.8 points in the first game over the last four seasons. Still, the Midshipmen gave them a scare in the 2009 opener, as OSU won 31-27.
Poor, poor West Virginia. The Mountaineers (+23.5) are huge underdogs to Nick Saban’s Alabama Crimson Tide – and I think 5Dimes is just being nice here. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a 45-6 outcome.
Defending national champion Florida State (-13.5) is a heavy favorite over Oklahoma State, and if the Seminoles are reloaded as advertised, this one could be over by halftime.
Finally, although the LSU Tigers (-3) haven’t named a starting quarterback and have question marks within the receiving corps, they remain the favorite to beat Wisconsin in Houston. I expect this number to increase as the Badgers have similar issues to take care of with less talent.
Here are the lines:
Wake Forest (-7.5) at UL Monroe
Mississippi (-8.5) vs Boise State (Atlanta)
Texas A&M vs South Carolina (-9)
Temple at Vanderbilt (-21)
BYU (-14) AT Connecticut
UTSA at Houston (-9.5)
UNLV at Arizona (-25.5)
Colorado State (pick ‘em) at Colorado (Denver)
Bowling Green (-6.5) vs. Western Kentucky
Penn State (-1) vs. Central Florida (Dublin)
Ohio State (-15.5) at Navy
Rice at Notre Dame (-21)
West Virginia at Alabama (-23.5)
Washington (-21.5) at Hawaii
Oklahoma State at Florida State (-13.5)
LSU (-3) vs. Wisconsin (Houston)
Utah State vs Tennessee (-6.5)
Miami at Louisville (-3.5)
*Neutral-site locations are in parenthesis
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