Virginia Cavaliers (0-0) at UCLA Bruins (0-0)
|Date & Time||Saturday September 5, 2015, 3:30 PM (EDT)|
The Line: UCLA Bruins -17.5 Over/Under 54
The UCLA Bruins and the Virginia Cavaliers face off on Saturday in Pasadena as they kick off their 2015 college football seasons.
The expectations are sky high this year for the UCLA Bruins who return several key players from last year’s team. While UCLA has experience on the roster they don’t have a ton at QB where freshman Josh Rosen appears to be the starter and he is already getting recognition as a future great. The Bruins ground attack is led by Paul Perkins who led the Pac-12 in rushing last season and Jordan Payton is back at WR as the offense returns nine of the 11 starters from last year. Myles Jack moves to MLB for the UCLA defense and Deon Hollins can bring the pressure and Jaleel Wadood leads the secondary. While UCLA is a popular pick to win the Pac-12 they are going to have to prove it on the field.
It has been a disappointing run the Virginia Cavaliers under head coach Mike London and this is a big year for him as the seat is red hot. Matt Johns is UVA’s starting QB this season after starting three games last year and he transfer if incumbent starter Grayson Lambert. Virginia’s running game was awful last season but they are hopeful Taquan Mizzell finally shows a glimpse of the talent he has while Canaan Severin and T.J. Thorpe should be top receiving targets. Virginia’s defense may be hampered by the loss of their top pass rushers but they were still 18th in the nation against the run where David Dean leads the DL and Quin Blanding leads the secondary. A win here would go a long way towards putting together a season that would save London’s job.
UCLA is 4-1 against the spread in their last five games and 7-3 against the spread in their last 10 December games. Virginia is 4-0 against the spread in their last four non-conference games, 4-0 against the spread in December games, and 9-4-1 against the spread in their last 14 games.
I don’t love laying a bundle of points especially for an opener but I don’t have a lot of options here so I will take UCLA but will be more of just a watcher of this game.