The No. 15 Penn State Nittany Lions (+8000 to win the national title) will be facing a lightweight in Week 1 of the 2019 college football season, as they take on FCS team Idaho Vandals this coming Saturday. The Nittany Lions, however, will be introducing a new regular starting quarterback. Will the Vandals be able to expose and rattle him? Or will Penn State crush the Vandals and send them back to FCS with battered morale?
Betting Preview for the Idaho Vandals vs Penn State Nittany Lions Week 1 College Football Game on August 31 2019
Where: Beaver Stadium, University Park
When: Saturday, August 31, 2019, 3:30 PM ET
TV Broadcast: BTN
Betting on the Idaho Vandals (0-0 Overall / 0-0 Conference)
The 2018 FCS season wasn’t something the Vandals could brag about, as they finished with just a 3-5 record in the Big Sky conference and a 4-7 overall record. To be fair, the Vandals faced respectable opposition — relatively speaking — last year, crossing paths with the likes of the Fresno State Bulldogs and the Florida Gators. In both games, the Vandals were vandalized beyond recognition, but if anything, at least they got a taste of solid competition before another likely landslide loss in their 2019 season opener. Idaho averaged 25 points and 369 yards per contest last year. This season, they will get the benefit of having an experienced starting quarterback in Mason Petrino, who passed for 1,938 yards and 15 touchdowns against nine interceptions in 2018. Petrino could also use his legs to generate yards, as he rushed for 245 yards and three touchdowns on 77 carries, too. Petrino at least will have his old reliable weapon back, as Jeff Cotton is still on the roster. Cotton lead the team with seven touchdowns a year ago.
Betting on the Penn State Nittany Lions (0-0 Overall / 0-0 Conference)
It’s hard to blame the Nittany Lions if they are overlooking their first assignment of the year. The The Vandals are simply the kind of team a ranked team like Penn State will have to find more motivation to even think about them. But at the end of the day, the Nittany Lions can’t ignore their opponents. They will have to flex their muscles while they can, especially against a gimme opponent like the Vandals. With Trace McSorely having gone to the NFL, the quarterback role will be in the hands of sophomore Sean Clifford. Clifford may have shaky moments early in the season as he gets used to his new role, but the Vandals don’t seem to be the team to make him push the panic button. Idaho had an atrocious defense in 2018 that even FCS teams were able to abuse. Against Fresno State and Florida, the Vandals gave up a total of 142 points while coming up with just 23 of their own.
The under is 4-1 in the Nittany Lions’ last five games.
The Nittany Lions win, 60-9.
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