Phil Steele Blog • August 5, 2015



Week One College Football Line Movements.


A few weeks back, I did a blog (June 29th) on the early Las Vegas lines for a majority of the marquee college football games in 2015.  While it is interesting to see how those games are perceived, there are limits on the amount that a person can wager for those games.

Recently, however, the “official” lines have been released for all of the week one college football games by several major casinos, so I am posting them here for informational and entertainment purposes only. This is not a gambling site and any mention of the point spread exists purely to inform you who was favored and expected to win when the games were played, as well as to start thinking about the exciting matchups that lie ahead.  

Please also note that these lines only include matchups between two FBS teams, so there are many more Week 1 games that are not listed below. Also below you can see the line movements between July 15th and today August 5th.

Official Week 1 College Football Line Movements

Taken from 7/15/15   Taken from 8/5/15
Thursday, September 3   Thursday, September 3
South Carolina (-2.5) vs North Carolina (Charlotte)   South Carolina (-3) vs North Carolina (Charlotte)
Florida International (+17) at Central Florida   Florida International (+17) at Central Florida
Oklahoma State (-20.5) at Central Michigan   Oklahoma State (-22.5) at Central Michigan
Michigan (+4) at Utah   Michigan (+5.5) at Utah
TCU (-14.5) at Minnesota   TCU (-14) at Minnesota
Duke (-13) at Tulane   Duke (-9.5) at Tulane
Ohio (-7.5) at Idaho   Ohio (-9.5) at Idaho
UTSA (+31) at Arizona   UTSA (+31.5) at Arizona
WKU (+2) at Vanderbilt   WKU (+2) at Vanderbilt
Colorado (-8.5) at Hawaii   Colorado (-8) at Hawaii
Friday, September 4   Friday, September 4
Baylor (-33.5) at SMU   Baylor (-34) at SMU
Michigan State (-20) at Western Michigan   Michigan State (-19) at Western Michigan
Kent State (+16) at Illinois   Kent State (+15.5) at Illinois
Washington (+11) at Boise State   Washington (+10.5) at Boise State
Saturday, September 5   Saturday, September 5
Old Dominion (-3.5) at Eastern Michigan   Old Dominion (-6) at Eastern Michigan
New Mexico State (+37) at Florida   New Mexico State (+36) at Florida
Penn State (-7.5) at Temple   Penn State (-6.5) at Temple
Florida Atlantic (+10) at Tulsa   Florida Atlantic (+7) at Tulsa
Virginia (+17) at UCLA   Virginia (+17) at UCLA
Stanford (-11) at Northwestern   Stanford (-11.5) at Northwestern
Louisville (+10.5) vs Auburn (Atlanta)   Louisville (+10.5) vs Auburn (Atlanta)
Arizona State (+3) vs Texas A&M (Houston)   Arizona State (+2.5) vs Texas A&M (Houston)
BYU (+6) at Nebraska   BYU (+5) at Nebraska
Troy (+23.5) at North Carolina State   Troy (+24.5) at North Carolina State
UNLV (+21) at Northern Illinois   UNLV (+21) at Northern Illinois
Akron (+31) at Oklahoma   Akron (+30.5) at Oklahoma
Bowling Green (+20) at Tennessee (Nashville)   Bowling Green (+21) at Tennessee (Nashville)
ULM (+35) at Georgia   ULM (+35) at Georgia
ULL (+14) at Kentucky   ULL (+15) at Kentucky
UTEP (+33) at Arkansas   UTEP (+33) at Arkansas
Georgia Southern (+20) at West Virginia   Georgia Southern (+18.5) at West Virginia
Texas (+9) at Notre Dame   Texas (+10) at Notre Dame
Texas State (+34) at Florida State   Texas State (+29.5) at Florida State
Wisconsin (+10) vs Alabama (Arlington)   Wisconsin (+10.5) vs Alabama (Arlington)
Mississippi State (-23) at Southern Miss   Mississippi State (-23) at Southern Miss
Arkansas State (+29) at USC   Arkansas State (+28.5) at USC
Sunday, September 6   Sunday, September 6
Purdue (+7) at Marshall   Purdue (+7.5) at Marshall
Monday, September 7   Monday, September 7
Ohio State (-14.5) at Virginia Tech   Ohio State (-10.5) at Virginia Tech


As you can see, 26 of the 38 games listed under 8/5/15 have a double digit point spread with only 8 games having a line under a touchdown.  This is common for the first few weeks with many of the top programs playing lesser opponents during the non-conference portion of the season.

Ohio State, the defending BCS Champion, is currently installed as a 10.5 point favorite against Virginia Tech after opening as a 14.5 point favorite due to their opening game suspensions.  Since 1999, the National Champion from the previous season is 16-0 with an average win of 44-14 in their season opener, so that line is actually a bit lower than usual.  Of course, the Buckeyes are not facing a “conventional” opening game for a defending champion in that they are playing on the road at night on Labor Day against the team that handed them their only loss last year in Virginia Tech.

Just a little over a month is left to Week 1!


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