Is college football really here already? The excitement of football season returning is at an all-time high as the Ohio Bobcats travel to the West Coast to take on the San Diego State Aztecs in a Week 0 showdown! It is time to check out our college football odds series where our Ohio-San Diego State prediction and pick will be revealed.
After a magical 10-4 season in 2022 that concluded with trips to the MAC Championship and a thrilling overtime win in the Barstool Sports Arizona Bowl over Wyoming to cap it off, the Ohio Bobcats enter the 2023 season with lofty expectations of what they can accomplish out on the gridiron. Led by second-year head coach Tim Albin, the Bobcats are once again expected to be in the hunt for a MAC title. Do the Bobcats have what it takes to pick up right where they left off last season with a convincing victory over the Aztecs?
After months of conference realignment rumors that saw San Diego State flirting with other conferences to join, it appears that the Aztecs are staying a member of the Mountain West for the time being in large part due to the conference a $6.6 million payment that was previously being withheld by the conference. Nevertheless, the Aztecs are focused at the brand-new season at hand after going 7-6 including a win in the Hawaii Bowl over Middle Tennessee State.
Here are the college football odds, courtesy of FanDuel.
College Football Odds: Ohio-San Diego State Odds
Ohio: +2.5 (-105)
San Diego State: -2.5 (-115)
Over: 48.5 (-110)
Under: 48.5 (-110)
How to Watch Ohio vs. San Diego State
TV: Fox Sports 1
Stream: Fox Sports App
Time: 7:00 ET/4:00 PT
*Watch college football LIVE with fuboTV (click for a free trial)*
Why Ohio Will Cover The Spread
At first glance, the biggest reason why the Bobcats will cover the spread will be due to eight returning starters on the offensive side of the ball including QB Kurtis Rourke who will be the starter under center for his third year. On paper, Rourke is the modern-day prototypical field general with the ability to use his legs to extend plays down the field and a big arm with zip behind his throws. Remarkably enough, Rourke was indeed the heartbeat of the 2022 squad en route to 25 TDs through the air and only committing four interceptions to go along with four rushing touchdowns. If Rourke can pick up right where he left off, then Ohio could be in pretty good hands.
In addition, the true strength of this squad comes on the defensive side of the ball. Indeed, the defense is stacked with returning seniors and their invaluable experience. At the college level, past experience on the gridiron is vital. With names like DT Rodney Matthews and a pair of senior linebackers in Key Thompson and Bryce Houston, this Ohio defense will prove to be no joke starting on Saturday versus SDSU.
Why San Diego State Will Cover The Spread
A run-heavy team in recent years, San Diego State is one of the more competitive Group of Five schools that the nation has to offer despite a down year in 2022, based on their standards. At first look, the Aztecs have been predicted by the media to be a middle-of-the-pack type school within this year's Mountain West Conference, but SDSU could certainly prove their doubters wrong with a stellar performance in Week 0 in front of their home fans at Snapdragon Stadium.
Above all else, the main area of concern for the Aztecs heading into the 2023 campaign falls on the shoulders of a defensive unit that often struggled at times against better offenses in 2022. Simply put, the defense is going to have to make some stops against a high-flying Bobcat offense more often than not.
Luckily, the Aztecs are returning a dynamic quarterback of their own from last season in Jaylen Mayden. Bafflingly enough, it was Mayden who was initially a QB but switched to the safety position on defense before finally returning to his roots under center a few weeks into last year. Hoping to have improved on his accuracy during the offseason, Mayden will need to help the offense put up some points versus the Bobcats.
Final Ohio-San Diego State Prediction & Pick
I believe that there is far too much returning talent on the Ohio sideline for San Diego State to account for. In a Week 0 matchup that are usually often difficult to predict, give me the Bobcats to go on the road and put together a solid start en route to their march at a MAC title.
Final Ohio-San Diego State Prediction & Pick: Ohio +2.5 (-105)