Fresno State vs. USC Prediction
The first full Saturday of college football concludes tonight at 10:30PM ET when USC plays host to Fresno State. Who will come away with a cover?
Game Snapshot & Odds
213 Fresno State vs. 214 USC
Saturday, August 31, 2019
10:30PM ET – Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum
Compare odds and from multiple different online sportsbooks and shop for the best lines at our new NCAAF Odds & Betting Page.
Public Betting Trends
According to the latest oddsmakers, USC is the clear favorite in this game, as the Trojans are getting odds of -13.5 points against Fresno State. The over/under total is listed at 52.5 points. The public betting currently has 63 percent going on USC as the favorite. This information is subject to change, however, so be sure to check out our NCAAF Public Betting Page for updated figures on the game.
Helton on a very hot seat at USC
The 2018 season was an ugly one for USC, as the Trojans went just 5-7 overall and 4-5 in the Pac-12. Head coach Clay Helton is on the hot seat for his sixth season leading the program. The Trojans were just 4-8 against the spread while going 6-6 with the over/under total.
USC’s offense was awful last season, averaging just 26.1 points and 382.6 yards per game. One of them is quarterback JT Daniels, who won a tough camp battle for the starting job. He threw for 2,672 yards and 14 touchdowns with 10 interceptions last year. He has his top receivers back this year, as Michael Pittman Jr., Amon-Ra St. Brown and Tyler Vaughns combined for 159 receptions and over 2,000 yards in 2018. Defensively, USC gave up 27 points and 388 yards per game in 2018. The defense has just three starters back, two of which come on the defensive line.
Fresno coming off big 2018
The Fresno State football team is coming off a huge 2018 season where it went 12-2 overall and 7-1 in the Mountain West, beating Boise State in the conference title game. The team is in its third year with Jeff Tedford leading the program. The Bulldogs were an impressive 10-4 against the spread last year and 10-4 with the under.
Fresno State had an offense that put up 34.6 points and 421.5 yards per game last season, but the Bulldogs return just two starters from that unit this year. The team loses a ton of skill-position talent including their starting QB and a 1,300-yard receiver. Jorge Reyna is the new starting QB for Fresno. He threw 12 passes in the 2018 season. Leading rusher Ronnie Rivers is back after putting up 743 yards and 10 touchdowns on the ground, but he has just one starter back on the offensive line. Defensively, Fresno State gave up just 14.1 points and 321.6 yards per game last season. The defense has only four starters back this year.
College Football Betting Trends
USC is just 7-19-1 ATS in its last 27 games overall and 3-9 ATS in its last 12 home games.
Fresno State is 5-1 against the spread in its last six non-conference games and 14-3-1 ATS in its last 18 road games.
Fresno State had a great 2018, but the Bulldogs just lost so many starters. It’s hard to see Fresno looking on its game in this opener with a lot of new pieces being worked into the lineup. USC definitely was disappointing last year, but I expect the Trojans to be improved on offense this year, especially to start the year with guys healthy. I think the Trojans will be able to break some plays and get some momentum going for the new year while covering this spread.
College Football Week 1 Prediction: USC -13.5