2019 Arizona State Sun Devils College Football Odds and Expert Betting Picks
2018 Record: 7-6
2019 Las Vegas Season Win Total: 7.0*
2019 Season Win Total Picks NCAA Football: 'Under'
Last year at this time I was laughing at the thought of Herm Edwards coaching college football. But the wild-eyed old coach had a few tricks up his sleeve and guided Arizona State to a surprising season that featured two Top 20 wins, a win at USC, a cup of coffee in the Top 25, and a bowl game.
Most importantly, Edwards was able to inject some excitement back into this flagging program. Now he has 15 starters and some street cred that he is hoping to parlay into an even bigger season.
Arizona State went 7-6 last year, so it is not as if they had a major breakout. But that was still nearly double the amount of wins I thought they would muster. Not only did the Sun Devils win games, but they were competitive against everyone. Their 11-point bowl loss was the only game that they lost by more than a touchdown.
The key to the Sun Devils season was turnovers. They finished the year with a +10 turnover margin, and Edwards' bend-but-don't-break defensive style, surprisingly, worked. Seven starters are back on that side of the ball, including a pair of three-year starters at cornerback.
Besides and opportunistic defense, Arizona State also leaned on some high-end talent on offense last year. Quarterback Manny Wilkins was a three-year starter and had a great senior season. Wideout N'Keal Harry was taken in the first round of the NFL Draft. And Eno Benjamin rushed for 1,700 yards. Benjamin is the only one of those three back in Tempe, and if he gets injured (he had 335 touches last year), then this offense is in trouble.
Arizona State should be able to bank two easy wins to start the year before their rematch with Michigan State (in Lansing). If they can win at Cal on Sept. 27, then there is a good chance that this team could have six wins heading into a stretch of three of four road games.
The Sun Devils get USC, Oregon and rival Arizona all in Tempe in November. And their only road game that month is at Oregon State.
I know this is a bit of a cop out, but I would take Arizona State to 'push'. I think they have an easy enough schedule to get to seven wins. If you put a gun to my head and made me pick 'over' or 'under', I would go with 'under'. They don't have a quarterback, one injury to their running back could derail their entire offense, and I think that the odds of them overachieving for a second year in a row are slim.
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