Week 1 College Football Odds: Hawaii Warriors vs. Michigan Wolverines

Jim Harbaugh's Michigan Wolverines are 40-point favorites in Week 1 action against Hawaii.
Jim Harbaugh’s Michigan Wolverines are 40-point favorites in Week 1 action against Hawaii.ek 

Hawaii-Michigan
Time: NOON
Spread: MIC -40
M/L: MIC -82500, HAW +27500
Total: 55

Betting odds c/o 5dimes

Michigan

The Michigan Wolverines really established momentum last season with QB Jake Rudock, but now in 2016 they will have to once again find the QB to make it all come together.

Those options will include Houston transfer John O’Korn, sophomore William Speight or even junior Shane Morris, but Jim Harbaugh has a knack with quarterbacks. Out of three options, it seems a foregone conclusion he can make at least one of them work. Michigan will be there in the Big Ten, it is just a matter of how, one might say.

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O’Korn is not a bad option. He threw 34 TDs in a season-plus at Houston, and Speight did well last season when he led the team to a comeback win against Minnesota. The WRs will not leave whomever it is high and dry, with a strong unit that features first team All-Big Ten WR Jehu Chesson and All-American TE Jake Butt. WR Amara Darboh is also in his senior year and should have a big season.

In the backfield, senior De’Veon Smith will be the primary ball carrier and senior Ty Isaac and fifth-year senior Drake Johnson will also see plenty of touches. On the line Michigan must find a replacement for C Graham Glascow, but it does return four others, including three as seniors.

Michigan was a dominant defensive team last season, ranking No. 6 in the nation in allowing just 16.4 points per game, while giving up just 158.5 passing yards and 280.7 total yards per game, good for No. 3 and No. 4 in the nation. It was a blitzing attack that will still undergo a few minor changes going into this season.

The Wolverines will run a base four-man front this season and DB Jabril Peppers, who won 2015 Big Ten Freshman of the year, is going to the SAM linebacker and big playmaker within it. He will still see time at CB and S, too, as arguably the single biggest key to Michigan’s attack this season. All American CB Jourdan Lewis is part of a superb secondary that is one of the best in the country.

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Michigan has the defense to contend in the Big Ten, and this is a team that can knock off the absolute best, though last year’s season concluding loss to OSU really hurt. The Wolverines have a pretty manageable schedule this year, and it keeps the door open for Harbaugh to build on last season’s momentum with an even bigger 2016.

Hawaii

Hawaii is implementing a hybrid offense this year that will mix run-and-shoot with read-option concepts. Brian Smith will coordinate the run attack and Craig Stutzmann will cover the passing. HC Nick Rolovich ran the four-wide passing attack when he was a QB and coordinator before spending four years at Nevada where they ran the pistol offense.

Ikaika Woosley was named the starting QB, and he is the only QB on the roster who had taken a college snap prior to this season. He has played in 37 FBS level games with double-digit starts, which gave him a clear edge in the QB battle with Beau Reilly and Aaron Zwahlen.

At WR, the Warriors have Marcus Kemp and Ammon Barker. Kemp recovered from a leg injury last season, and Barker started the final three games but was not targeted. Both will start this season.

During Rolovich’s playing career, 82.4 percent of Hawaii’s plays were passes in 2001. Hawaii has a better running game with this roster, though, and RB Saint Juste is healthy after missing last year with hamstring issues. Paul Harris rushed for over 1,000 yards last season and is now part of a by-committee approach that should be pretty good. The other guys in the mix are Steven Lalalaka and Ryan Tuisoa.

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