College Football Week 1 Picks: Louisiana Tech Bulldogs vs. Oklahoma Sooners

Louisiana Tech Bulldogs vs. Oklahoma Sooners
Saturday, 8/30/14, 7:00 PM EST
Opening Point Spread:  Oklahoma -39.5
Current Betting Line:  Oklahoma -39.5
Opening Total:  N/A
Current Total:  N/A
Odds Courtesy of 5Dimes

The Oklahoma Sooners will be one of the main contenders to reach the championship game this season
The Oklahoma Sooners will be one of the main contenders to reach the championship game this season

Louisiana Tech will open up a season away from Ruston for the sixth consecutive season, as it looks to improve upon its miserable 2-14 SU mark in road openers—a statistic hard to ignored when looking over the college football betting lines in Week 1.  The Bulldogs will welcome back 13 total starters, with the main player to watch being running back Kenneth Dixon, who ran for 981 yards on 151 carries last year.  Louisiana Tech is 1-8 ATS in its last nine non-conference affairs.

The Bulldogs will have a new look on defense with the hiring of former Texas Longhorns coordinator Manny Diaz—a unit that will rely heavily on a secondary that returns three of four starters.  Dixon’s health is certainly worrisome on the other side of the football, as he’s been known to miss time with knee injuries, especially since the offensive line will replace four graduating starters.

Oklahoma is going to be one of the more popular college football picks in the opening week, considering it has compiled a dominating 87-5 SU record at Memorial Stadium during the Bob Stoops era in Norman.  The Sooners are expected to return 14 starters, while quarterback Trevor Knight assumes the full-time role at that position after a spectacular performance in the 2014 Sugar Bowl against the Alabama Crimson Tide.  He became the 14th freshman signal-caller to start a game at the prestigious program, and the fourth to start a season opener.  Oklahoma is 4-0 ATS in its last four non-conference affairs.

The Sooners defensive front can take over this football game if coordinator Mike Stoops is able to motivate the unit, while the linebacking core could end up being one of the best nationally.  Oklahoma is capable of scoring without the football—racking up 48 defensive touchdowns under Stoops, including five such instances a season ago.  Senior placekicker Michael Hunnicutt will likely knock threw a ton of PATs in this affair, but he’s a weapon to handicap the rest of the season after connecting on 24 of 27 field goals in 2013.

Sports bettors will likely back the Sooners due to the Bulldogs being 1-6 ATS in their last seven games versus Big 12 Conference opponents.

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