2018 Stanford Cardinal Season Win Total Picks and Predictions for NCAA Football
2017 Record: 9-5
2018 Las Vegas Season Win Total: 8.5
2018 Season Win Total Picks NCAA Football: 'Under'
Stanford had a roller coaster season in 2017. They started by getting crushed at USC in Week 2 and then losing a stunner at San Diego State the following week to open 1-2. But David Shaw righted the ship, and Utah won eight of its next nine, including a crucial home upset over Washington in November. Stanford capped the regular season with another Top 10 upset by thrashing Notre Dame 38-20.
But the year ended with two heartbreaking losses, falling by three points to USC in the Pac-12 title game and then losing by two points to TCU in the Alamo Bowl. The nine wins were the second-fewest in Shaw's seven-year tenure and just the second time this decade that Stanford failed to reach double-digits in victories.
Shaw, and Jim Harbaugh before him, have set the bar exceedingly high at Stanford. And the Cardinal, despite being the smallest school in the conference, once again enter the fall as one of the favorites to win the league.
Like Christian McCaffery before him, Stanford's Bryce Love was the most dominating offensive weapon on the West Coast last year. Love rushed for 2,118 yards and 19 touchdowns and caught another six balls for 33 more yards. Cam Scarlett backs up the Heisman runner-up and added eight touchdowns of his own last season.
Stanford has four starters back on the offensive line that paved the way for Love's gaudy numbers, including a pair of three-year starters in Jesse Burkett and A.T. Hall.
The development of sophomore quarterback K.J. Costello, who threw for 1,573 yards and 14 touchdowns last year, will determine if whether Stanford is a Pac-12 threat or a national title threat. Costello has his top four receivers back.
Stanford's defense actually took a step back last year. After allowing 20.4 points or fewer in five of the previous six seasons, the Cardinal allowed nearly 23 points per game. They lost three All-American talents, including Harrison Phillips and Justin Reid, and will be very young in the front seven.
Stanford will open this season with a pair of revenge games. They host San Diego State in Week 1 before a home game against USC, which beat the Cardinal twice last year.
The Cardinal have to play five of their nine league games on the road and also have to make a trip to South Bend to take on a ranked Notre Dame team that will be looking for some revenge of its own. The only three slam-dunk wins on the schedule look like home games against UC-Davis, Washington State and Oregon State. And if things go sideways early in the season then it is realistic to think that Stanford will be 3-3 heading into their Oct. 13 bye - with four of their final six games coming on the road.
Regardless, Stanford is going to be favored in at least nine games this year. And they've won an average of 10 games per season over the last decade. I am usually wrong with Stanford. And they just continue to churn out Top 10 and Top 15 teams even in years when I expect much less. I'm not high on the Cardinal this year; that schedule is just brutal. But I also hate betting against them. I do think that this team will go 8-4, but I am not going to be running to the window to get a ticket down against Shaw and Love.
Robert Ferringo has been the top football handicapper in the country the past seven years, earning nearly $28,000 in total football profit. He has also posted seven of nine winning seasons (including back-to-back winning years) and produced 26 of 41 winning football months and an amazing 45 of 70 winning football months over the past decade. Robert has eight of 10 winning NFL preseasons and he is at nearly 60 percent winners over his last 900 totals picks. Also, Robert's proprietary KING College Football Betting System has posted three of five winning seasons. Robert is looking for a third straight winning football year and wants more profit this fall. SIGN UP HERE TODAY AND TAKE ADVANTAGE OF OUR 3-FOR-1 FOOTBALL SPECIALS!
We are offering new clients $60 in free college football picks for Robert's picks or any Advisory Board handicapper of your choosing. Get your free college football picks now!
Read more articles by Robert Ferringo
Get all of this Weeks College Football Picks
Get all of this Weeks guaranteed Expert College Football Picks