Boise State at UCF 9/2/21 - College Football Picks & Predictions

Game: UCF Knights vs Boise State Broncos
Date & Time: 9/2/2021, 11:00 PM UTC
Location: Spectrum Stadium
Address: Spectrum Stadium, Orlando, USA
Latest Odds: UCF -5 ; O/U 68

Two Group of Five powerhouses will open their season with a daunting task when the Boise State Broncos travel on the road to the Bounce House to take on the UCF Knights. Boise State finished last season 5-2 after losing to a top-10 BYU team in week three and then losing in the MW Championship to San Jose State 34-20. UCF also had a loss to BYU, in the Boca Raton Bowl, and finished the year 6-4, their worst finish in over half a decade. 

Boise State figures to be a major factor in the Mountain West again, they’ve played in the Mountain West Championship game in each of the last four seasons. The Broncos return nine starters on the offensive side of the ball including sophomore quarterback Hank Bachmeier, he showed a lot of promise last season despite battling COVID and starting just five games. Bachmeier completed 61.5% of his passes for 1,150 yards and six touchdowns.

All of the weapons will be back with a deep running back room led by George Holani Jr. who was injured a majority of last season, he rushed for 1,014 yards as a freshman but had just 19 carries for 110 yards and 2 touchdowns in 2020. Andrew Van Buren took over the backfield with a solid 395 yards and 8 touchdowns last season. The top three receivers will return, including dynamic playmaker Khalil Shakir who had 872 total yards and six touchdowns last year.

The Broncos defense was one of the worst in this dominant era of Boise State football allowing 373 yards and 27.1 points per game, their worst since 1998. The defense will return 8 starters and after a full offseason, they should have no problems being one of the best defenses in the Mountain West and return seven of their top eight tacklers.

UCF had a down season after racking up double-digit wins in their last three seasons, including an undefeated season in 2017. The Knights do have a new coach after hiring former Auburn head coach Gus Malzone. The knock-on Malzahn throughout his time at Auburn was the inability to develop quarterbacks, lucky for him, UCF has one of the best quarterbacks in the nation returning.

Dillion Gabriell, a two-and-a-half-year starter after taking over from McKenzie Milton following a knee injury, is one of the best quarterbacks in school history. Gabriel tossed for 3,570 yards and 32 touchdowns to just four interceptions, he’s expected to be one of the best quarterbacks in the nation despite losing his number one receiver. UCF will have another potent offensive unit and with 99 career starts coming back on the offensive line, the sky's the limit.

UCF’s struggles last season were simply on the defensive end where they allowed 492 yards and 22.2 points per game, they returned nine starters on the defensive side of the ball and should be able to take a step forward after last seasons’ debacle. 

Odds Table

Betting Trends

  • Boise State are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games.
  • The total has gone OVER in 5 of Boise State's last 7 games.
  • Boise State are 16-4 SU in their last 20 games.
  • Central Florida are 2-7 ATS in their last 9 games.
  • Central Florida are 12-5 SU in their last 17 games.
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Free NCAA Football Pick: Boise State Broncos +5

Defense wins football games, but this UCF offense is going to be dominant all season long. With the fired-up home crowd behind them, the excitement of a new, highly touted coach, and one of the best quarterbacks in the nation they’re able to get the win at home. However, this Boise State defense is going to be solid, Hank Buchmeier takes a step forward and the Broncos are able to keep this game close enough to cover the near touchdown spread. Final score prediction, UCF wins but doesn’t cover ATS 35-32.


Terry Edelmann
WIN/LOSS 71/63
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