2013 ESPN College Football Week 1 Odds: Virginia Tech vs. Alabama Print
Written by Drew Sharper   
Wednesday, 28 August 2013 15:00
NCAAF Headline News

Virginia Tech vs. Alabama Odds

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ATLANTA, GA (The Spread) – No. 1 Alabama begins its national title defense on Saturday when it faces Virginia Tech in the Georgia Dome at 5:30PM ET.

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Alabama is coming off its third national title in four seasons last year, as the Crimson Tide went 13-1 overall and 7-7 against the spread. Virginia Tech went just 7-6 a year ago and was only 4-9 against the spread. These two last met in 2009, with Alabama picking up a 34-24 victory.

Trends show that Alabama is 7-1 against the spread in its last 8 games on a neutral site and 10-4 ATS in its last 14 non-conference games. Virginia Tech is just 2-7-1 ATS in its last 10 non-conference games.

According to oddsmakers from Bovada.lv, Alabama is the favorite in this game, as the Crimson Tide have odds of -19 points against Virginia Tech. The over/under for the game has been set at 45.5 points. (View Matchup) The opening odds for this game had Alabama favored by 17.5 points. The spread was never lower than that, and is currently at its peak of 19 points. The over/under odds opened at 45 and have simply added the hook since.

Alabama loses some key pieces from the 2012 team, but the Crimson Tide have proven to be able to reload each season. The offense should be powerful again as it is led by senior quarterback A.J. McCarron, who threw for 2,933 yards with 30 touchdowns and three interceptions last season. McCarron has his top four receiving targets back and also has sophomore running back T.J. Yeldon returning. Yeldon had 1,108 rushing yards as a true freshman. On defense, Alabama has seven starters back from a group that allowed just 10.9 points and 250 yards per game. Five of the front seven starters are also back, led by linebacker C.J. Mosley, who had 107 tackles in 2012.

Virginia Tech is coming off one of its worst seasons under 27-year head coach Frank Beamer in 2012. The Hokies have hopes to rebound, led by quarterback Logan Thomas, who threw for 2,976 yards and 18 touchdowns last season, but also had 16 interceptions. Thomas also led the team in rushing, but that has to change this year for the Hokies to win consistently. On defense, Virginia Tech has nine starters back from a unit that allowed 22.8 points and 333 yards a season ago. The defense will be led by linebacker Jack Tyler, who had 119 tackles and 10.5 tackles for loss last year. The Hokies have all their secondary starters back, including cornerback Antone Exum, who had five interceptions in 2012. However, Exum is doubtful for this game with a knee injury.

Bet on College Football Week 1 Odds

In terms of Injuries, Alabama receiver Amari Cooper is probable despite a foot injury while defensive lineman Brandon Ivory is questionable with a knee injury. Virginia Tech offensive lineman Mark Shuman is out with a knee injury.

The Public Bets for this game are currently backing Alabama, as the Crimson Tide are getting 83% of the wagers with odds of -19 points against Virginia Tech.

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