The beginning of the college football season is always filled with a lot of mismatches, but there are always gems interspersed. We’ve got one here, as two of the best teams in the country prepare to face off to really kick the season into high gear.
The Washington Huskies are the favorites to win the Pac-12 while the Auburn Tigers are expected to be among the best teams in the SEC. They will face off in a Week 1 matchup that could have huge implications down the line.
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Both of these teams believe they have the type of talent to make it to the College Football Playoff in a matter of months. There is always an argument about the strength of different conferences and we will see how these programs from different coasts look against each other in NCAA football gambling.
This NCAA football game between the Washington Huskies and Auburn Tigers will be held at Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia at 3:30 p.m ET on Saturday, September 1st, 2018. The contest will be nationally televised on ABC.
We'll have NCAA football odds at BETCRIS.com available for every game of the 2018 NCAA football season.
The game may technically be at a neutral site but it will obviously favor Auburn, whose fans will only have a short drive to invade Atlanta. Despite being in a hostile environment, Washington only finds itself as a 1.5-point underdog. The oddsmakers clearly think a lot of this team and the betting public does as well, with about 64 percent of the action on the Huskies to cover.
The scoring total is listed at 48.5 points. The “under” has been the more common selection in NCAA football odds.
Matchup To Watch
Washington Offense vs. Auburn Defense -- This is strength vs. strength and it should be an intriguing battle. The Tigers consistently roll out one of the best defenses in the country and despite some losses this year should be no exception. Auburn boasts a fantastic defensive line that should be stout against the run.
Washington will test that theory with experienced running back Myles Gaskin, who has surpassed 1,300 yards rushing in each of his first three seasons with the team. Gaskin is no stranger to big games and if he can get it going on the ground, it will take the crowd out of it and give Washington a great shot at the upset.
If that doesn’t work, the team will still have a chance to move the ball through the air. Quarterback Jake Browning is into his fourth year as the starting signal-caller. He hasn’t put up gaudy numbers but knows how to take care of the ball and can let it rip when needed. Auburn will need to play error-free in the secondary because Browning has enough experience to pick up big plays when available.
Auburn quarterback Jarrett Stidham is dealing with a shoulder injury but he is expected to be ready to go for this game. If he misses the contest or is not at 100 percent, that would be a huge turn of events. Stidham is an NFL-quality passer. He completed 246-of-370 passes for 3,158 yards and 18 touchdowns with only six interceptions a season ago.
The Washington defense returns nine starters from a great group last season. This is going to be quite the test for Stidham but he has the talent to succeed against a defense even this good.
Free NCAA Football ATS Picks
Washington has to fly cross country, and the SEC is stronger than the PAC-12 in general, but the Huskies have a special group. It’s never easy playing in a place this unfriendly but the Huskies are very experienced and should be able to handle it.
Auburn is a good team but Washington has the chance to be a great one. Take the Huskies to pull off the mini upset in NCAA football odds.
NCAA Football ATS Pick: Washington 26, Auburn 23
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