Monday, February 6, 2023

College football odds, picks, predictions for Week 1, 2022: Proven simulation backing Florida, Louisville

The Lincoln Riley era at USC will begin Saturday versus the Rice Owls in one of the many Power Five vs. non-Power Five matchups on the Week 1 college football schedule. Rice hasn’t had a winning season since 2014, so it is just the kind of opponent that the Trojans should easily lap and get the Los Angeles fans riled up. Vegas certainly thinks that will happen, per the Week 1 college football odds, as USC is a 32.5-point favorite at Caesars Sportsbook.

That is the third-largest Week 1 college football spread for Saturday’s slate of games, trailing only Texas (-37.5) vs. UL-Monroe and Alabama (-42) vs. Utah State. Rice lost by 55 points the last time it played a Pac-12 team, so should one expect a similar result on Saturday? Before locking in any Week 1 college football picks for those games or others, be sure to see the latest college football predictions from SportsLine’s advanced computer model.

The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every FBS college football game 10,000 times. Over the past six-plus years, the proprietary computer model has generated a stunning profit of almost $3,600 for $100 players on its top-rated college football picks against the spread. It enters Week 1 of the 2022 college football season on a 45-32 run on all top-rated college football spread and money-line picks that dates back to 2021. Anyone who has followed it has seen huge returns.

Now, it has turned its attention to the latest Week 1 college football odds from Caesars and locked in picks for every FBS matchup. Head here to see every pick.

Top college football predictions for Week 1

One of the college picks the model is high on in Week 1: Florida (+2) covers at home against No. 7 Utah at 7 p.m. ET. The Utes return 17 starters but they have developed a habit of getting off to slow starts before picking things up later in the season. In each of the last two years, Utah has lost each of its first two games versus FBS teams.

Florida will have the best player at the most important position come Saturday night in quarterback Anthony Richardson. He is a darkhorse Heisman candidate despite starting just one game last year. Richardson is a dual-threat QB who plays in an offense that should accentuate his skills. Utah struggled with these types of players last year, allowing an average of 89.5 rushing yards to quarterbacks Jaren Hall and Lucas Johnson in losses to BYU and San Diego State, respectively.

Richardson is projected to amass nearly 300 passing yards and over 40 rushing yards, while Florida’s running backs top 100 ground yards on their own. That will be just too much for Utah to keep up with as it is rather limited through the air, finishing with the second-fewest passing yards in the Pac-12 last season. The model has Florida winning outright and has the Gators covering in almost 60% of simulations.

Another prediction: Another prediction: Louisville (-5) covers on the road against Syracuse at 8 p.m. ET. The Cardinals dominated this matchup last season, picking up a 41-3 win in November. They could be an underrated team coming into the 2022 season after three of their six losses came by just one score in 2021. Quarterback Malik Cunningham is back after leading the ACC in rushing touchdowns (20), becoming the second quarterback in school history to rush for more than 1,000 yards.

He put on a show against the Orange last season, accounting for five total touchdowns in the first half of the lopsided win. Syracuse has now been outscored 71-3 in its last two meetings with Louisville and is now just 29-43 in six seasons under head coach Dino Babers. The Orange had the worst passing offense in the conference last year, which is one reason why the model has Louisville covering the spread in well over 60% of simulations. See which other teams the model likes here.

How to make college football picks for Week 1

The model has also made the call on who wins and covers in every other FBS matchup in Week 1, and it’s calling for a big favorite to go down hard in a shocking upset. You can only get every pick for every game at SportsLine.

So what college football picks can you make with confidence? And which heavy favorite goes down hard? Check out the latest college football odds below, then visit SportsLine to see which teams win and cover the spread, all from a proven computer model that has returned almost $3,600 in profit over the past six-plus seasons, and find out.

College football odds for Week 1 (via Caesars)

See full Week 1 college football picks, odds, predictions here

Saturday, Sept. 3

Colorado State at Michigan (-27.5, 58.5)

Featured Game | Michigan Wolverines vs. Colorado State Rams

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Cincinnati at Arkansas (-6, 51.5)

Featured Game | Arkansas Razorbacks vs. Cincinnati Bearcats

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Oregon at Georgia (-17.5, 52)

Featured Game | Georgia Bulldogs vs. Oregon Ducks

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UTEP at Oklahoma (-31.5, 57)

Rice at USC (-33.5, 61.5)

Utah at Florida (+3, 51)

Featured Game | Florida Gators vs. Utah Utes

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Utah State at Alabama (-41.5, 62.5)

Notre Dame at Ohio State (-17.5, 58.5)

Featured Game | Ohio State Buckeyes vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish

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Sunday, Sept. 4

Florida State at LSU (-3, 51.5)

Featured Game | LSU Tigers vs. Florida State Seminoles

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Monday, Sept. 5

Clemson at Georgia Tech (+21.5, 49)

Featured Game | Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets vs. Clemson Tigers

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