Everyone's favorite college football pick-off between family members is back for something like its seventh installment.
For those of you unfamiliar with the rules, my brother (The Skinny) and I will each submit our five favorite picks against the spread in college football each week. The one with the best record at the end of the season gets a chocolate martini bought and paid for by the loser.
The best part for BH's loyal readers: They get a chance to tap into my decidedly mediocre handicapping mind with an analysis of my picks each week. All for free.
With that, on to the picks for the opening weekend of the 2015 season.
BLATANT HOMERISM--Week 1
North Carolina vs. South Carolina (-2.5)
Once again, the Gamecocks kick off the college football season on a Thursday night. They’ll be hoping for a better outcome this time than last season’s drubbing from Texas A&M in their season opener.
And that’s a big reason why I like South Carolina in this spot. Steve Spurrier can lean on last season’s embarrassment in the opener to get his squad focused, and he’s one of the best at crafting a game plan with extended time to prepare. The Head Ball Coach also seems fairly pissed off about young whippersnappers cracking wise about his age.
In other words, I have a hard time seeing him allow the ‘Cocks to drop this one, especially with Larry Fedora on the other sideline.
The pick: Gamecocks cover the three.
Washington (+12) at Boise State
I don’t have particularly high hopes for the Huskies this year. Once they enter the meat of their Pac-12 schedule, I expect them to take their lumps.
I do, however, think a line of nearly two touchdowns on this game is out of whack. Yes, Boise will field a solid team this season, but opinion of the Broncos is probably a little inflated after their Fiesta Bowl win over Arizona.
Plus, you just know the Huskies will be fired up about the school signing the richest naming-rights deal for a stadium in college sports.
The pick: Broncos by not enough, if at all.
Baylor at SMU (+35.5)
I was really feeling Baylor in this game until I spoke with Dave Bartoo earlier this week on the podcast. He laid out a compelling case for the Ponies. I bought it.
The pick: Baylor 45, SMU 28.
Louisville (+10.5) vs. Auburn
I hold Mr. Robert Petrino in similar regard to the OBC when it comes to prepping with extra time. Auburn is yet another squad that is probably a little overhyped.
The pick: Cards plus the points.
Colorado (-7.5) at Hawaii
Look, you can’t see it in their record, but the Buffaloes are getting better. You’re just going to have to trust me on this, alright?
After finding something akin to an offensive groove under young quarterback Sefo Liufau last season, Mike MacIntyre turned his attention to upgrading the CU defense in the offseason. It just so happens that Jim Leavitt, one of the more respected defensive minds in the football coaching world, needed a job. Fortuitous and whatnot.
Meanwhile, Hawaii has turned into the Sade of college football: full of exotic intrigue, but their best days on stage are way behind them. Norm Chow hasn’t produced a hit since his offense at USC was making Oklahoma looked silly in the Orange Bowl more than a decade ago. (That Reggie Bush was a smooth operator.)
The pick: The Buffs plow through the Rainbows secondary on their way to a comfortable win.
THE SKINNY--Week 1
Oklahoma State at Central Michigan (+24.5)
Stanford (-12) at Northwestern
BYU (+7) at Nebraska
Penn State at Temple (+7)
TCU (-14.5) at Minnesota