CG Technologies released their season win totals for the 2017-18 college football season and we know you're itching to bet on your favorite program or fade your most hated rival, just like we are. So we've reached out to our Covers Experts to help you out with your season win total bets, asking them what their favorite Under plays are for the upcoming season.
AAA Sports: Clemson Tigers (9.0)
The national champs no doubt got some recruiting help from their title-game victory, but the losses are so significant that it will take a while to fill in all the blank spaces. QB DeShaun Watson, wideout Mike Williams and running back Wayne Gallman will all be in the NFL this season, but almost as big a loss will be defensive tackle Carlos Watkins (12 sacks, 40 pressures last season).
Most of the offensive line and as many as seven defensive starters will return, but with work to do on offense, there will be much more stress on the defensive side of the ball, and getting to 10 wins might be unrealistic.
Power Sports: Colorado Buffaloes (7.5)
On the opposite side of the Pac 12 South ledger, look for Colorado to regress this year. The Buffs are off a stunning 10-win campaign, but won just four games the year prior. They also lost QB Sefo Liufau. They are on the low end of returning starters among Pac-12 teams (12), They have five conference road games. They were 3-1 straight up in games decided by seven points or less last season.
Zack Cimini: Duke Blue Devils (5.5)
Out in the ACC I'll side with Duke going under the win total. This program has flirted with turn arounds in past years but has taken a few steps back. This was noticeable last season and I expect it further in an ACC conference that continues to be devalued. It is not a top heavy league like many assume which will hurt a poor roster of the Blue Devils.
Marc Lawrence: LSU Tigers (9.0)
Here’s a bar bet we’ll bet you’ll win every time this year: The Tigers were ranked dead last in 4th down conversion percentage in 2016. It’s numbers like those that ran Les Miles out of town. What backfired last season was a master plan that called for an experienced squad of underclassmen who made 41.9 percent of all starts last season. Amid rumors of insubordination, they opened the 2016 campaign at 2-2 last year, and with it Miles was shown the door.
Fixer Ed Orgeron steps in as the full-time coach but has a long way to go to mirror Miles’ numbers. There will come a time when he’ll need to win games against quality conference teams, or else. Given Orgeron’s 2-18 SU career mark as a head coach against winning SEC foes, look for the pressure to be intense in Baton Rouge this season.
Steve Merril: Clemson Tigers (9.0)
The Tigers have become a very public team after back-to-back national title game appearances. However, this year's squad will be weaker, especially with the loss of QB Deshaun Watson who accounted for 5,222 yards of offense last season with 50 touchdowns (rushing + passing).
This year's schedule includes a tough home game versus Florida State, with difficult road trips to both Louisville and Virginia Tech. Clemson also has an early season non-conference battle with Auburn on September 9th.
Larry Ness: Colorado Buffaloes (7.5)
The Buffaloes were giddy last season, breaking a run of 10 years without a winning record and advancing all the way to the Pac-12 title game. Now it’s back to reality in Boulder, where coach Mike MacIntyre must rebuild almost the entire defense while hoping a ball-control offense limits turnovers.
Steven Montez will take over as the No. 1 quarterback, and while last year’s sample size was small, Montez had some major accuracy issues that must be cleaned up. One good thing – Colorado opens the season with one neutral site game (Colorado State) and three home games (Texas State, Northern Colorado and Washington) before finally hitting the road on the final day of September (UCLA). But it still looks very difficult for the Buffaloes to get to 8 victories this time around.
Will Rogers: Penn State Nittany Lions (9.5)
The Nittany Lions, not Ohio State nor Michihgan, won the Big 10 East last year and represented the conference in the Rose Bowl. Don't look for a repeat. They pulled three upsets last year in making a big jump up the standings. This is a team that will open ranked in the Top 10, but not finish there.
Brandon Shively: Texas Tech Red Raiders (6.0)
Texas Tech lost Patrick Mahomes after he set all kinds of records for them last season. That's a tough loss for a team that never plays any defense. Every year, Texas Tech says they are going to improve on the defensive side, and it never happens.
The Red Raiders don't have the skill position players they have had on offense the last few years. I think it will be hard for them to put up the video game numbers offensively this year. Will they still score quite a few points. Of course. Will their opposition score more? Most of the time. Texas Tech plays both Arizona State and Houston in the non-conference schedule, so there aren't many easy wins here. I like the under.