James Madison Dukes (1-0) at NC State Wolfpack (9-4)
|Date & Time||Saturday September 1, 2018, 12:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: NC State Wolfpack -14.5 -- Over/Under: 56.5
The James Madison Dukes will visit the NC State Wolfpack in college football action on September 1 at Carter-Finley.
The Dukes are coming off something of a historic season, as they finished the regular season undefeated in 2017, the second time in school history that’s happened. JMU ended the season with a misstep however, falling to North Dakota State in the National Championship game.
The Dukes have some talent replacement issues to work with this season, as QB Bryan Schor will be out, as well as WRs Terrence Alls and John Miller. We’re probably looking at Cole Johnson to take over at QB, but he’ll have some competition heading into the season.
Over on the NC State side, they managed to go 9-4 last year, and 6-2 in ACC play. That effort was worth second place in the Atlantic Division and a trip to the Sun Bowl. In that final game, the Wolfpack bagged a win over Arizona State.
The Pack gets back QB Ryan Finley this season, and he’s coming off a nice run in 2017 with 3518 yards, 17 touchdowns and six INTs. With Nyheim Hines gone, Reggie Gallaspy will take the lead RB role after logging 506 yard and seven touchdowns last year.
The over is 4-0 in the Dukes’ last four versus the ACC and 7-1 in their last eight road games. The over is also 6-1 in JMU’s last seven games in September.
Meanwhile, the under is 5-1 in the Wolfpack’s last six games on grass and 8-2 in their last 10 games overall. The over is 5-1 in NC State’s last six non-conference games.
This should be an interesting game, as both these teams have some talent across the board. It may take JMU’s offense a little time to get its proverbial feet wet, so we could see a few missteps along the way—especially early on in the year. With that in mind, I’m more comfortable taking NC State for the cover here.