Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Western Kentucky vs. Austin Peay odds, line: 2022 college football picks, Week 0 predictions from top expert

The Austin Peay Governors face a stiff test to open the 2022 college football season. As the FBS world opens its schedule, Austin Peay represents the FCS in a road tilt against the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers. Austin Peay finished the 2021 season with a 6-5 record and changed conferences in the offseason, joining the ASUN. WKU represents Conference USA and posted a 9-5 record in 2021 that included an appearance in the conference championship game.

The Hilltoppers are 27.5-point favorites in Bowling Green for this noon ET kickoff. The total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, or the over/under, is 64.5 in the Western Kentucky vs. Austin Peay odds. Before making any Austin Peay vs. Western Kentucky picks or CFB predictions, you need to see what SportsLine college football expert Zack Cimini has to say.

A Las Vegas handicapper who’s never afraid to buck conventional wisdom, Cimini excels in multiple sports. Over the past two NBA seasons, Cimini is 134-101-1, returning $2,296 to $100 players. All-time in MLB, he sports a record of 535-468-6, returning $2,962 to $100 bettors. All-time in college basketball, he is 423-375, returning $1,331 to $100 players. 

In addition, Cimini is 5-0 in his last five college football picks involving Western Kentucky, returning $500 to $100 bettors. Anyone who has followed him is way up.

Now, Cimini has set his sights on Austin Peay vs. WKU and just locked in his picks and CFB predictions. You can head to SportsLine now to see his picks. Now, here are several college football odds and betting lines for WKU vs. Austin Peay:

  • Austin Peay vs. Western Kentucky spread: WKU -27.5 
  • Austin Peay vs. Western Kentucky over/under: 64.5 points 
  • AP: The Governors are joining ASUN this season 
  • WK: The Hilltoppers won eight of the last nine games in 2021 
  • Austin Peay vs. Western Kentucky picks: See picks here.

Why Austin Peay can cover

The Governors have a lot returning, and Austin Peay also projects to face a retooling Western Kentucky team. Austin Peay won its last three games in 2021, and the Governors return a top-flight wide receiver in Drae McCray. McCray, a preseason All-Conference selection in the ASUN, caught 53 passes for 882 yards and exceeded 1,000 all-purpose yards last season. Special teams could also be an edge for the Governors with kicker Maddux Trujillo, who met or exceeded multiple school records for field goal kicking in 2021. 

From there, Western Kentucky loses a great deal of production from last season, including Bailey Zappe, who set FBS records in the passing game. The Hilltoppers bring back only four starters from the team’s prolific 2021 offense, and Western Kentucky must also replace its top two wide receivers in addition to quarterback. Defensively, Western Kentucky was below-average by the metrics in 2021, further opening the door for Austin Peay.

Why Western Kentucky can cover

Western Kentucky’s roster is a cut above that of Austin Peay, and the Governors historically struggle against FBS opponents. In fact, Austin Peay is on a 28-game losing streak against FBS competition, losing by 37.8 points per game in those defeats. The Governors have lost the last five games against FBS opponents by at least 35 points and have not defeated an FBS team since 1987. Western Kentucky won eight of its last nine games last season, including a three-touchdown win over Appalachian State in the Boca Raton Bowl. 

The Hilltoppers do lose considerable talent from the 2021 offense, but the infrastructure is in place from a group that led FBS in passing yards and passing touchdowns. Western Kentucky also finished the 2021 season at No. 2 in the country in total yards and points per game, and the Hilltoppers have an experienced quarterback in grad transfer Austin Reed.

How to make Austin Peay vs. Western Kentucky picks

For Saturday’s contest, Cimini has identified a critical X-factor he believes makes one side of the spread a must-back. He’s sharing what it is, and which side of the Austin Peay vs. Western Kentucky spread he’s backing, only at SportsLine.

So who wins Austin Peay vs. Western Kentucky? And which critical X-factor makes one side of the spread a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the Austin Peay vs. Western Kentucky spread you need to jump on Saturday, all from the expert who has crushed his college football picks, and find out.  

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