Texas vs Maryland

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The Maryland Terrapins pulled a shocker on the Texas Longhorns in last season’s opener, and shoot for a repeat performance when the teams open the 2018 season Saturday afternoon on “neutral” turf at FedExField. Where should the smart betting money align itself on this contest?

College football point spread:
The Longhorns opened as 10.5-point favorites, according to sportsbooks
monitored by OddsShark. (Line updates and matchup report)

College football betting pick, via OddsShark computer: 31.4-11.8 Longhorns (College football picks on every game)

Why the Texas Longhorns can cover the spread

The Longhorns return 14 starters this
season after going 7-6 straight-up and 8-5 against the spread last
season, their first campaign under head coach Tom Herman. Texas started
4-5 last year, then won three of its last four games, including a bowl
victory over Missouri. Also, the Longhorns lost four games by a total of
15 points, which means they were only a few plays away from winning
nine or 10 games.

Seven starters return on offense, led by a
couple of quarterbacks with starting experience and three along the
offensive line. And seven starters return on a defense that limited
opponents to 366 yards per game last season, including six of last
year’s top nine tacklers. Texas actually struggled at home last season,
but went 4-2 SU and 5-1 ATS outside of Austin.

Why the Maryland Terrapins can cover the spread

The Terrapins return 13 starters this
year from a team that finished 4-8 last year. Maryland reached 4-4 last
season but lost its last four games, as injuries took a tough toll.
Eight starters are back on offense, including two quarterbacks with
starting experience, last year’s top two rushers and the entire
offensive line.

And while only five starters are back on
defense, they include four of last year’s top-seven tacklers. Plus the
Terps added a couple of big-time transfers on that side of the ball.
Maryland just beat the Longhorns in last year’s season opener 51-41 in
Austin. The Terrapins ran the ball for 263 yards that day in winning
outright as 19-point underdogs.

Smart betting pick

Texas is shooting to make the leap into
contention in the Big 12 this season, and may just do it. Maryland, on
the other hand, is opening this season under a cloud, with head coach DJ
Durkin on administrative leave. The Terrapins are also operating under a
new offensive coordinator, with a new system, which means that unit
might struggle early this season. Smart money here likes the Longhorns.

College football betting trends

The total has gone over in seven of Maryland’s last nine games.

Maryland is 2-6 ATS in its last eight games.

Texas is 9-3 ATS in its last 12 games.

All college football odds and betting
trends according to Bleacher Report’s official odds partner, OddsShark.
Check out OddsShark on Twitter and Instagram or head to YouTube for
more betting picks and analysis on this week’s top games. You can also
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