NCAA College Football Week 1 Picks - Early Games

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NCAA College Football Week 1 Early Games

All times Eastern

Click here for late games.

Thursday, September 3

8:00 pm Central Arkansas at UAB (-21 1/2, 49 1/2) - Less than a week ago (Aug. 30) Lujuan Winningham caught a 10-yard touchdown pass from Breylin Smith with 34 seconds left to lift Central Arkansas to a 24-17 victory over Austin Peay in college football's first game during the COVID-19 pandemic.

First, the pandemic is a bunch of horse crap. 94% of all deaths due to COVID-19 happened to people who already had existing conditions, like cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and 90% of the deaths occur in people over 65. So, get over it. Maybe people will wake up, take off the stupid masks and someday fans will be allowed to attend games.

Lookit, last season, UAB was 9-5, losing to Appalachian State in the New Orleans Bowl, so they're pretty good. The Blazers are a pick to compete for the Conference USA championship, should the college football season get that far. They're good enough to win this game, but the Bears were 9-4 last season and already have a win to their credit. They should keep it close and maybe pull off a big upset.

Coin Flip: UAB

Prediction: Blazers 27 Bears 22


9:00 pm South Alabama at Southern Mississippi (-13, 55 1/2) - If the line stays under 14, Southern Miss is a pick. Not because they're anything special - they closed out 2019 with three straight losses - but because the Jaguars of South Alabama basically suck, especially on defense. They were 2-10 last year and against quality opponents, they weren't even in the same stadium.

South Alabama lost to Memphis, 42-6, UAB, 35-3, and Appalachian State, 30-3. Good luck against the Golden Eagles who are looking to come back into prominence in Conference USA.

Coin Flip: South Alabama

Prediction: Golden Eagles 34 Jaguars 10



Saturday, September 5

1:00 pm Eastern Kentucky at Marshall (-24, 52 1/2) - Finishing 2019 with a respectable 7-5 mark, the EK Colonels will look to be offensive-minded against a Thundering Herd team that looks to improve on its 8-5 mark from a year ago.

Marshall has already had its season opener against East Carolina cancelled twice due to coronavirus concerns, so they should be rarin' to go. Last season, the only team Marshall beat by 21 points was VMI, winning their opener, 56-17. They'll be looking for a similar result against their Division 1 opponents out of the Ohio Valley Conference.

Noting the talent gap between FBS FCS and Marshall's home field advantage - though with few fans that may be a negligible edge - coaching will be at a premium and that also goes to Marshall head coach, John "Doc" Holliday, who's been at the helm since 2010 at Marshall. Not a world-beater, Marshall may make enough first game mistakes to keep the Colonels alive for a potential upset.

Coin Flip: Eastern Kentucky

Prediction: Thundering Herd 31 Colonels 24


1:30 pm Middle Tennessee at Army (-3 1/2, 55) - The Black Knights of Army had best be advised not to snooze on the Blue Raiders because they are normally a solid squad with plenty of sub-SEC talent. Last year, Middle Tenn. suffered through an unusual 4-8 season. They'd been to a bowl every year since 2014 prior to that, so a rebound to form is probable.

Defense was a major issue for the Raiders, so Army should look to exploit it with their running attack, usually among the top three in the country. Army went 5-8 last year and closed out the season being humiliated by Navy, 31-7. Their wins over the likes of Rice, Morgan State, UMass, UTSA, and VMI aren't anything to be hyped over, thus, the tight line on this one.

Coin Flip: MIddle Tennessee

Prediction: Blue Raiders 27 Black Knights 20


Click here for late games.


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