On CFB Week 1 OOC

College football’s opening week stretches over the next five days. Although a few teams face conference competition to open the college football season, most start with an out-of-conference (OOC) opponent. Despite 21.7% of BCS team’s OOC are against nonD1 teams and only 35.3% of BCS’s team’s OOC pair BCS teams against each other (source), and 69% of BCS teams OOC are at home (source), there are some interesting OOC matchups in Week 1. Here are ten OOC games that pique my interest.

  • Alabama v. Va. Tech (Atlanta)
  • BYU v. Oklahoma (Arlington)
  • Central Michigan @ Arizona
  • Georgia @ Oklahoma State
  • Maryland @ Cal
  • Mississippi @ Memphis
  • Missouri v. Illinois (St. Louis)
  • Navy @ Ohio State
  • Oregon @ Boise St.
  • South Carolina @ NC State

As a MAC grad I wonder how many games MAC teams will win this weekend? Which team will have the biggest win?

  • Akron @ Penn State
  • North Texas @ Ball State
  • Troy @ Bowling Green
  • Buffalo @ UTEP
  • Central Michigan @ Arizona
  • Army @ Eastern Michigan
  • Coastal Carolina @ Kent State
  • Miami v. Kentucky (Cincinnati)
  • Northern Illinois @ Wisconsin
  • UConn @ Ohio U
  • Villanova @ Temple
  • Toledo @ Purdue
  • Western Michigan @ Michigan

22 thoughts on “On CFB Week 1 OOC

  1. I have heard a few people suggest Central Michigan to upset Arizona on Saturday. The Wildcats are breaking in a new QB and their starting tight end will miss the game and possiblly the season. While Central Michigan has gotten their tail kicks by the big boys(Clemson, Kansas, Georgia, just to name a few) BUT they have held their own against average to medium talent teams which is what Arizona is. I like their chances in Tuscon on Saturday.

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    • Walter,
      CMU also has a tendency to start slow, but I hope they can carry the MAC torch this weekend. Their QB is a 4-year starter and is talented.
      Thanks for visiting and the comment … hope you return again.

      Like

  2. ahhh! i again do not have any knowledge about this one. ouch! i might study sports by the time i am not so busy anymore so i can leave healthier comments here. i am an embarrassment. huhuhu.

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    • Hi Maxi,
      As you’ve learned, I bounce around with many topics. College football is big in the US and the season starts this weekend. The MAC is a small conference among the powerhouses, and I graduate from one of them (Bowling Green) many years ago. Living in Cincinnati, I also follow the University of Cincinnati where I’m a season ticket holder for football. UC plays a league game on Monday at Rutgers. Just wanted to give you some background.
      Thanks for stopping by.

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  3. A lot of what has to do with Central Michigan’s tendency to start off slow is that in the past few seasons they have started with these giants like Clemson and Kansas in 2007 or Georgia in 2008 that they can’t physically handle. If you look at their track record against average to medium talent teams- Missouri, Purdue, Minnesota, and a few others, its actually not that bad. Arizona last year despite defeating BYU in a bowl game is an inconsistent football team even when they had their star QB Willie Tuitama but now he is gone. I wouldn’t bet my house on it but I think the Chippewas have legitmate shot on Saturday.

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    • Walter,
      Well said. As we know, good MAC teams can make some noise. I still relish the day of not that many years ago when the MAC had several big wins on the same day.
      Thanks again.

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    • 3rd Stone,
      You’ll take a win any way you can get it! lol …. I spent 3 weeks on campus back in the early 90s, so I know of the bronze statue of Testudo … plus we had Boomer here in Cincy!
      Good luck to your team this weekend.

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  4. ALABAMA v. Va. Tech (Atlanta)
    BYU v. Oklahoma (Arlington)
    Central Michigan @ ARIZONA
    Georgia @ OKLAHOMA STATE
    Maryland @ CALIFORNIA
    MISSISSIPPI @ Memphis
    MISSOURI v. Illinois (St. Louis)
    Navy @ OHIO STATE
    OREGON @ Boise St.
    South Carolina @ NC STATE

    Akron @ PENN STATE
    North Texas @ BALL STATE
    TROY @ Bowling Green
    Buffalo @ UTEP
    Central Michigan @ ARIZONA
    ARMY @ Eastern Michigan
    Coastal Carolina @ KENT STATE
    MIAMI v. Kentucky (Cincinnati)
    Northern Illinois @ WISCONSIN
    UCONN @ Ohio U
    Villanova @ TEMPLE
    TOLEDO @ Purdue
    WESTERN MICHIGAN @ Michigan

    I took BYU over Oklahoma…… but only on this posting 😉 The Sooners are overlooking this team.

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    • Jacob,
      Wow … you are being bold to put all the predictions here … but I appreciate them. Thanks for the trust.

      Also bold on the 6-6 for the MAC … plus good wins by Toledo, Miami, and Western Michigan. I’ll be keeping close eye on Western and Central with the best chances at a good win. Sadly, I see my Falcons on the short end of their home opener.

      I appreciate you thoughts here … thanks.

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  5. Jacob, step away from the ledge and just play it safe and pick the Sooners. BYU needs to keep it close to both keep Max Hall’s dark horse candidancy(spelling?) for the Heisman and the Cougars BCS hopes alive. I think a well fought game with the Sooners and a possible win against FSU in game 2 could give Hall’s Heisman campaign some credibility- obviously an upset of the Sooners would be preferred. With the loss of All-American tight end Jermaine Gresham, it might give the Cougar defense a better chance but the biggest problem for BYU is facing that giant monster of a defense that Oklahoma has. The Sooners defensive line arguably the best in the nation and rest of the defense isn’t that bad either.

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  6. I am not from Utah or a BYU fan or anything. I just hope this kid, Max Hall, gets a fair shake for the Heisman. Great QB. He has got a great future in the NFL.

    How bout Boise State’s Kellen Moore(QB)? He looked pretty good in the first half-started off 9-10( I think he finished 17-25 for 165 yards). He calmed down in the second half but I thought he was fairly impressive.

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  7. Hingsight is always 20/20 but next year at the beginning of the season it seems in the 1st 3 or 4 weeks of the season that we might all be better off picking the team with the superior talent and completely ignoring the point spread until maybe week 5 or 6. In other words picking the team you think will win straight up.

    Based on this season and last, all teams particurarly the bigger programs take a few weeks to work out all their bad kinks in their offensive/defense systems before they really started moving.

    I went back and looked at my picks from the 1st week and I think I went 8-7 against the spread but I believe of the 15 games I picked the teams I picked to win won 13 or 14 out of 15 times straight up. In all of those 15 games I think BYU upsetting Oklahoma was the only surprise.

    I will also say that this season has not been as clear cut on which teams are the best or which teams you can expect to cover every week like the 2008 season. Last season you could count on Florida, Oklahoma, Texas, USC, Penn State to cover everyweek. Georgia Tech was easy last year to pick and they are pretty reliable this season.

    Most reliable teams to pick this year- Boise State, Georgia Tech, Oklahoma State, and maybe few others. Those are the ones that I can think without looking. Other than that this year is a real crap shoot which I guess has made it interesting to watch.

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    • Cousin Walter,
      Interesting stuff .. but as I always say – the key is who played and who one – and yes, this year has it share of surprises.

      I will disagree on the importance of covering the spread. The spread has NOTHING to do with who wins or loses … and EVERYTHING to do with attempting to get equal money on both sides of the bet. Although an interesting analysis, it doesn’t beat the actual W-L.

      Thanks for visiting and sharing your thoughts.

      Like

  8. You pointed out

    “and EVERYTHING to do with attempting to get equal money on both sides of the bet”.

    and how do you think they go about accomplishing that?

    They have to make the line realistic enough for tons of people to be willing to take a chance and put some money down on both sides. How else would you trick someone on each side equally into putting money down? Besides the money is not made on the line, its made on the vig that they charge you every time you make a bet.

    Las Vegas Sports Consultants- the group who sets all the lines- had this study at the beginning of last season and it said that over the past 5 years in college football home favorites that were favored by 7 points or more- won straight up between 80% of the time. I am willing to bet that stat doesn’t change too much.

    All I am saying is that you show me a team that routinely does not cover the spread(particularly in college football) and I will show you a team that is fixing to get upset.

    Also, A team that routinely covers the spread- THERE IS ALWAYS A REASON. Kind of like Boise State who seems to cover every single week. WHY? Their schedule is a complete joke. It doesn’t mean they are a bad team but Why wouldn’t they cover? If you notice they are in the top rankings in many team offensive and defensive categories. See for yourself. Alot of their opponents with the exception of Oregon ARE NOT.

    http://www.cfbstats.com/2009/national/index.html
    http://www.broncosports.com/SportSelect.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=9900&KEY=&SPID=4061&SPSID=48555

    Basically all you are asking is not why they are covering the spread but MORE IMPORTANTLY why are they winning like this or why are they losing like this? You watch enough games and crunch enough numbers, the reasons come out clear as day.

    Penn State for instance, started with 4 patsies where they were favored by 28-30 points and they missed on all 4. That being said they still won somewhat convincingly but anytime a big team who is favored by alot and misses you have to naturally asks “Now why did that happen?” Why couldn’t Penn Sate close the deal. You know, what happen in the 10 minutes left against Temple when they were up 31-7 holding possession of the ball for the majority of the time that prevented them from scoring another TD was it because they were just running out the clock or was that they just couldn’t score? After missing the spread against 4 patsies, they were upset at home by Iowa where the Iowa defense seem to dominate them in the 4th quarter. I was surprised by not really that surprised.

    Iowa

    Iowa had to come from behind against an underdog Indiana to finally pull away 42-24. Earlier they were favored by 21 against Arkansas State and barely won 24-21. The past weekend Iowa gets upset by Northwestern. With no surprise, Ohio State is being picked by everybody to beat them this weekend.

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    • Walter,
      Let’s agree to disagree. The last I checked standings and games are determined by points with the team with the most points winning. And thanks for confirming that the line is what I said it was. And more importantly, thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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  9. You missed what I said.

    Originally what I said is that the very beginning of the season IF YOU ARE PICKING GAMES you should just pick winners and losers and ignore picking who will cover or not cover the point spread because teams usually come out of the gate slow and sloppy which means they are more unlikely to cover unusually large spreads.

    Example- LSU escaped Washington with a 31-23 victory in week 1. This does not mean Washington is in LSU’s neighborhood nor does it mean that Arkansas State is anywhere in Iowa’s neighborhood. It means Arkansas State and Washington got lucky.

    My point about waiting on picking against the spread till week 5 or 6 is because Teams become more established by the sixth week of the season and it is easier to predict what they are going to do based on stats which until week 5 or 6 don’t have much meaning.

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