Free Week 1 Prediction: Vandals vs. Nittany Lions Odds
Looking for Idaho Vandals vs. Penn State Nittany Lions free picks? Week 1 betting sees the Vandals taking on the Nittany Lions on Saturday, August 31st, 2019 at Beaver Stadium, University Park, Pennsylvania. Cappers Picks provides complimentary handicapping picks all NCAA football season long so stay tuned for more FREE college football predictions like this Idaho Penn State free pick.
College Football Handicapping: Week 1
(0-0) Idaho Vandals vs. Penn State Nittany Lions (0-0)
Date: Saturday, August 31st, 2019
Time: 3:30 PM EST
Venue: Beaver Stadium, University Park, Pennsylvania
NCAA Football Spread: Nittany Lions -39.5
NCAA Betting Total: 58.5
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This matchup will be a lopsided one as the Idaho Vandals will visit the Penn State Nittany Lions.
These teams have never met before and that is mainly because Idaho is a FCS school.
The Vandals had a rough season last year, going 4-7 in the FCS. Some of their notable losses were to Fresno State and Florida. Fresno State beat them 79-13 last season and Florida beat them 63-10 in the regular season finale. Penn State is better than Fresno State and Florida, so this game has the makings of another beat down.
Idaho will return their starting quarterback, Mason Petrino for his senior season. Petrino threw for 1,938 yards in 2018 and 15 touchdowns. He also threw 9 interceptions.
Offensively the Vandals are going to be severely outmatched. They averaged 24.5 points per game in 2018, but I am not sure they will be able to score against the Nittany Lions. I only see them scoring maybe 7 points to 10 points if the Nittany Lions make some mistakes.
The defense could not be much worse for this Vandals side. They allowed 37.5 points per game and that was against FCS competition for all but two games. The Vandals are going to allow so many points in this game as Penn State is miles better than them.
Penn State Nittany Lions
Penn State was underwhelming last year as they finished 9-4. They lost to Ohio State, Michigan State, and Michigan in the regular season. Then they lost to Kentucky in their bowl game to make things worse. This game against Idaho is a joke, but they must show up an execute effectively.
The biggest blow to Penn State was the loss of their quarterback, Trace McSorely to the NFL draft. McSorely was obviously a huge part of the team the past few years, which means replacing him could be an issue. They will turn to Sean Clifford most likely to take over center. Clifford saw very limited action last year, but threw for 195 yards and two touchdowns. The crazy part is he was just 5 for 7 on the season. He also threw a 95 yard pass in a game, which was the longest pass for the team. Playing at home is just what Clifford needs to settle in at starting quarterback. I do not see many mistakes being made against Idaho, so it should be smooth sailing from start to finish.
Penn State was 32nd in the country last season when it comes to scoring. They averaged 33.8 points per game. While I do believe this number could drop, they will score plenty in this first week game against Idaho. Until Penn State plays a team that can actually test them, their offense will put up some big numbers.
Penn State enters 2019 after having had a top 20 defense in points allowed. They allowed an average of 20 points per game, and I believe they will hold Idaho well below this number. I do think Idaho can score, but maybe only 7 to 10 points is what they will get.
NCAA Football Handicapping Trends
- Penn State are 18-2 SU in their last 20 games at home.
- Idaho are 1-7 SU in their last 8 games played in August.
- Idaho are 13-6-1 ATS in their last 20 games.
Free Week 1 NCAA Football Pick
To be honest, I do not know why they are playing this game when there is such a large gap in talent between these two programs. Penn State is the obviously winner here as they will start the season 1-0.
4* Free NCAA Betting Pick: OVER 58.5
Even though I think Penn State could win this game by about 60, I am not trusting them on the spread. They will likely pull their starters sometime in the second half and I think they will take their foot off the gas when it is clear that the game has gotten out of hand. I will take the over as Idaho is sure to get at least a touchdown.
Week 1 Free Score Prediction: Idaho 10 – Penn State 49
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