2015 Record: 6-7
2016 Las Vegas Season Win Total: 7.0
2016 Season Win Total Picks NCAA Football: 'Push'
Last year I loved me some Washington State . The Cougars responded with nine wins straight up and an outstanding 10-3 record against the spread. Wazzou closed the season with four of five wins, including a bowl victory over Miami, and as shocking as it is to believe, these guys were really just a few plays away from winning 12 games. They choked away a game to FCS foe Portland State and then took losses from Cal and Stanford in the final seconds.
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It was really only a matter of time before Mike Leach got things going in Pullman. It might have taken a little longer than the locals had hoped. But Leach, now entering his fifth season, has taken the Cougars to two bowls in the past three years and has Wazzou at No. 30 in the Coaches Poll entering the season. That really is an incredible accomplishment when you consider that A) Leach's predecessor, Paul Wulff, won only nine games in four years, and B) Washington State hadn't been to a bowl game since 2003.
Stud quarterback Luke Falk returns, as does his No. 1 target, Gabe Marks (104 catches last year). A trio of three-year starters forms the bulk of the offensive line, and their top three running backs return as well. This is the core of a group that should surpass last year's solid 31.5 points per game. You know Leach's teams like to air it out, and this team is built to outscore its opponents.
But Washington State will need to at least match last year's defensive effort. They lost five starters and five of their top 10 tacklers from a group that was No. 74 in points allowed (27.7 per game). That is below average but would be more than enough to support an offense that should be scoring around 35 per outing.
Washington State wasn't a fluke last year. They won at Oregon, at Arizona and at UCLA. They get all three of those tough opponents up in Pullman this year. And they have winnable road games at Arizona State, Oregon State and Colorado. They also host rival Washington to close the season.
That said, I am going to have to punt on this one and call for a push. I think Washington State will play a major hand in determining who wins the North. But they aren't good enough to compete for that crown themselves. Leach teams are always good for an upset. But I think Wazzou is susceptible to one or two upsets themselves, as the Cougars won't be sneaking up on anyone this fall.
Robert Ferringo is one of the top football handicappers in the country and tallied an unrivaled $20,800 in football profit between 2011 and 2016, including his amazing 2013 NFL season in which he hit 62.1 percent (95-58). Robert has produced 14 of 22 winning football months and an amazing 37 of 57 winning football months over the past decade. Robert has eight of nine winning NFL preseasons and he is at nearly 60 percent winners over his last 750 totals picks. Also, Robert's proprietary KING College Football Betting System has posted three of four winning seasons and is 122-92 over the last three years (57.0 percent).
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