College Football Picks: Week 1

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Below are the Week 1 projected picks for this week’s slate of college football games. First, a warning: These projections are conservative. Alabama is projected to be the best team in the nation this year, but they only come in at 27% above average. Every year, the best team in the nation finishes around mid-40% above average, and the absolute elite teams finish at 50% above average or better. These picks will likely get better as we start getting real data into them, rather than just the offseason projections.

Anyway, these are pretty self explanatory. Each team has a projected score, which is adjusted for strength of schedule and home field advantage (except for games played on neutral fields). Each team also has an expected win probability, expressing how often you would expect team A to beat team B. Not all games are listed here, of course, as I am not collecting data on FCS teams. Also, Old Dominion and East Carolina does not have a projection, as this is Old Dominion’s first year in the FBS. I expect East Carolina to beat them, however, so I gave the win probability to the Pirates.

If you are interested in seeing the projected team ratings for each team, click here.

Thursday Proj. Score Win Probability
UNLV 25 36.72%
Minnesota 32 63.28%
Utah State 29 58.31%
Utah 25 41.69%
UNC 25 41.61%
S. Carolina 30 58.39%
Tulsa 23 32.23%
Bowling Green 33 67.77%
Mississippi 26 54.29%
Vanderbilt 25 45.71%
Rutgers 21 36.86%
Fresno State 28 63.14%
USC 33 68.36%
Hawai’i 23 31.64%
Akron 26 28.09%
UCF 38 71.91%
Friday Proj. Score Win Probability
Florida Atlantic 22 13.65%
Miami 46 86.35%
Western Michigan 16 17.62%
Michigan State 32 82.38%
Texas Tech 30 52.03%
SMU 29 47.97%
Saturday Proj. Score Win Probability
N. Illinois 29 48.38%
Iowa 31 51.62%
Boise St. 22 40.15%
Washington 27 59.85%
BYU 30 59.36%
Virginia 25 40.64%
ULL 30 51.13%
Arkansas 28 48.87%
Alabama 27 84.46%
Virginia Tech 15 15.54%
Washington State 21 40.31%
Auburn 26 59.69%
Kentucky 25 40.10%
W. Kentucky 30 59.90%
Georgia 38 58.88%
Clemson 33 41.12%
LSU 20.55 52.14%
TCU 21.48 47.86%
Nevada 28 26.31%
UCLA 44 73.69%
Northwestern 32 66.52%
Cal 24 33.48%
Purdue 24 33.02%
Cincinnatti 32 66.98%
Louisiana Tech 28 35.30%
NC State 34 64.70%
Buffalo 27 30.92%
Ohio State 38 69.08%
Umass 11 0.00%
Wisconsin 52 100.00%
Central Michigan 24 26.98%
Michigan 37 73.02%
Miami (Ohio) 31 32.64%
Marshall 42 67.36%
Penn State 27 49.997%
Syracuse 27 50.003%
Miss. State 26 38.11%
Oklahoma State 31 61.89%
Idaho 21 18.09%
North Texas 37 81.91%
UAB 27 46.95%
Troy 30 53.05%
Wyoming 27 27.32%
Nebraska 41 72.68%
Akron 26 28.09%
UCF 38 71.91%
Toledo 22 27.02%
Florida 35 72.98%
FIU 25 47.09%
Maryland 26 52.91%
Rice 26 26.67%
Texas A&M 38 73.33%
Temple 18 18.23%
Notre Dame 36 81.77%
Old Dominion N/A 0.00%
East Carolina N/A 100.00%
Texas State 31 55.92%
Southern Mississippi 26 44.08%
Louisiana-Monroe 32 40.91%
Oklahoma 36 59.09%
New Mexico State 21 6.27%
Texas 55 93.73%
UTSA 37 57.79%
New Mexico 32 42.21%
Florida Atlantic 22 13.65%
Miami 46 86.35%
Sunday Proj. Score Win Probability
Ohio 24 30.13%
Louisville 34 69.87%
Colorado 25 31.40%
Colorado State 33 68.60%
Monday Proj. Score Win Probability
Florida State 24 44.84%
Pitt 29 55.16%
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