For every team that is expected to have a fantastic season this year, there are several others that are probably going to be squads to stay away from in this 2010 college football betting campaign. Check out our preview of the 2010 college football odds with our five teams that you should be avoiding this year.
North Carolina Tar Heels under 8 wins (-130 @ Brobury Sports): The Tar Heels return plenty of starting talent, but it may not translate into a great year. The biggest problem is at quarterback, where the starter may not be named until late August. Fifth year senior T.J. Yates may be supplanted by freshman Brynn Renner. At wide receiver, the Heels have plenty of weapons in Greg Little, Jheranie Boyd, and Erik Highsmith. Running back Shaun Draughn returns to the team after a season ending shoulder injury last year. The offensive line will be composed mostly of sophomores. The defense, on the other hand, is full of stars. Up front, the Heels feature DE Robert Quinn, who was last season’s sack leader. Other mainstays include all-conference award winner and last year’s interception leading safety Deunta Williams, and all-ACC cornerback Kendric Burney. Schedule wise, there may not be a guaranteed win, short of William & Mary. The Heels open with a neutral site game against LSU and then start ACC play with Georgia Tech before traveling to Rutgers. Miami and Florida State will be huge road tests, as will a home game against Virginia Tech. North Carolina is going to get banged up this year; making any bowl game would be a great success.
Penn State Nittany Lions under 8.5 wins (-125 @ Brobury Sports): The Nittany Lions are coming off an 11-2 season, but now face the task of rebuilding an offense in a tough conference. For starters, the quarterback situation is murky at best. Joe Paterno has sophomores Kevin Newsome and Matt McGloin, as well as freshman Paul Jones, to choose from. With none looking impressive this spring, Penn State will be forced to become a run-first team. Star RB Evan Royster will be a major factor. At wide receiver, the team returns its top two targets in Derek Moye and Graham Zug. The experienced O-Line has its work cut out. Defensively, Penn State has several holes to fill. Bani Gbadyu will lead three new starting linebackers, replacing three NFL draft picks. DE Jack Crawford will be an impact player on the line, while the secondary will be led by cornerback D’Anton Lynn and safety Nick Sukay. After a first week tune-up game against Youngstown State, the Nittany Lions will go to Alabama. In conference, Penn State avoids Wisconsin, but will have to face Iowa and Ohio State on the road. Seven wins would be a great success this year.
Auburn Tigers under 8.5 wins (-120 @ Brobury Sports): Auburn faces a tough year on offense, putting pressure on a strong defense. The Tigers, for the third straight year, will need a new starting quarterback. Cameron Newton, former backup to Tim Tebow, appears to be the favorite, beating out senior Neil Caudle and sophomore Barrett Trotter. At running back, the Tigers will have Mario Fanin and Onterio McCalebb to replace Ben Tate. Fanin proved to be a talented receiver and rusher last season, averaging 8.4 yards per rush and 9.8 per catch. Fortunately, the unit does retain its top two wide receivers in Terrell Zachery and Darvin Adams. The offensive line returns four starters, which will allow Newton time to throw. On defense, the Tigers look very strong. All four starting linemen have experience. Senior linebackers Craig Stevens and Josh Bynes will add talent and experience. In the secondary, there are four capable safeties to choose from. Auburn faces a favorable schedule, but a highly questionable offense will keep them from a nine or ten win year. The Tigers will face LSU and Georgia at home and travel to Alabama. Expect seven or eight victories.
UCLA Bruins under 5.5 wins (-120 @ Brobury Sports): Last year’s six regular season wins were sandwiched around a five game conference losing streak. This year, QB Kevin Prince will again be the starter, but with a new offensive scheme. Prince was not an effective player last year and suffered several injuries. At his disposal will be last year’s top two wide receivers, Taylor Embree and Nelson Rosario. The running game has a few options, starting with last year’s leader Johnathan Franklin. Joining him will be freshman Malcolm Jones. The offensive line returns four starters. On defense, the Bruins lose six starters, including Pac 10 Player of the Year Brian Price. However, the unit can build around a strong secondary, which includes free safety Rahim Moore. Moore led the nation last season with ten interceptions. At linebacker, the Bruins have Akeem Ayers to lead the way, but UCLA will need to find more talent to fill out the front seven. Things have to gel quickly for both units, as the schedule leaves little room for error. The non-conference schedule includes games at Kansas State and Texas, as well as a home game with Houston. In conference, UCLA goes to California and Oregon. The Bruins are going to be hard pressed to dig out five wins.
Stanford Cardinal under 7.5 wins (-135 @ Brobury Sports): The Cardinal has some work to do this season. It starts with replacing, Heisman runner-up RB Toby Gerhart. To keep the running game from sliding too far back, Stanford will use a pair of backs in Stepfan Taylor and Jeremy Stewart. The focus will shift to QB Andrew Luck, who was also last year’s second leading rusher. His passing game wasn’t stellar, but should be improving upon his 2,575 yards of a year ago. His two top targets will return, in Ryan Whalen and Chris Owusu. After them, though, there are no proven options. On defense, the Cardinal returns eight starters, but a new scheme will have them in different spots. DEs Thomas Kaiser and Chase Thomas led the team last season in sacks. The secondary is still up in the air, with no solid prospects to play free safety or fill one of the cornerback spots. The schedule offers little rest for the Cardinal, as three of the team’s first four FBS games will be on the road. Stanford travels to Notre Dame and Oregon before returning home to face USC in September. Seven wins would be a great success for an offense that is finding itself and a defense with holes in the backfield.