Boise State vs. Oregon State Odds, Picks: Is There Value on the Underdog?

Boise State vs. Oregon State Odds, Picks: Is There Value on the Underdog? article feature image

Tyler Ingham/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Hank Bachmeier.

  • The Boise State Broncos travel to Corvallis and open up the season against Oregon State.
  • The Beavers are slight home favorites in a marquee Week 1 contest.
  • Continue reading for Brad Cunningham's analysis and best bet.

Boise State vs. Oregon State Odds

Saturday, Sept. 3
10:30 p.m. ET
Boise State Odds
-110o / -110u
Oregon State Odds
-110o / -110u
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

Boise State makes the short trip to Corvallis to take on Oregon State on Saturday night.

The Broncos are coming off a disappointing 7-6 season in 2021. It was Andy Avalos' first season in Boise, so there were some growing pains with the new coaching staff.

Boise State comes into this season as one of favorites to win the Mountain West, but an opening weekend trip to Corvallis may define how the Broncos' season goes.

Oregon State has turned into one of the best rushing offenses in all of college football over the past few years and this season will be no different. However, all other phases of the game leave a lot to be desired for Jonathan Smith.

Beating Boise State to open the season would put Oregon State on the path toward making just its second bowl game in the past nine years.

Boise State Broncos

Bronco Offense

Boise State is coming off a 7-5 season, but it returns a ton of production. Starting quarterback Hank Bachmeier is back under center in his second season in Tim Plough's system.

Bachmeier was incredibly solid last season, putting up a PFF passing grade of 82.9 with 21 big-time throws and only eight turnover-worthy plays.

He does lose his top receiver in Khalil Shakir, so I would imagine Boise State will lean on its rushing attack with veteran George Holani, who averaged 4.8 yards per carry last season.

Hello Holani!! 👋

RB George Holani is back with a vengeance and gets SIX for his first Boise State carry of the season

— PFF College (@PFF_College) September 11, 2021

Bachmeier also has 86 starts coming back on the offensive line, including two All-Mountain West performers from last season. So, the Broncos' offense should be just as good as it was last season.

Bronco Defense

Andy Avalos is known for his ability as a defensive coordinator and propelled that unit for Boise State in 2021. The Broncos finished the year 21st in Success Rate Allowed and 23rd in Finishing Drives. PFF also graded them as the 32nd-best defense in college football.

Avalos returns his entire defensive line, three of his top four linebackers and his entire secondary, which is almost unheard of in college football today.

The front seven ranked top-30 in Rushing Success Rate Allowed, Stuff Rate and Power Success Rate Allowed — all key factors when facing Oregon State's rushing attack.

The secondary had an 87.8 coverage grade by PFF last season and ranked 25th in Passing Success Rate Allowed. Simply put, it's going to be difficult for Oregon State to move the ball.

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Oregon State Beavers

Beaver Offense

Oregon State had an electric offense last season with Chance Nolan at quarterback. The Beavers finished eighth in the country in EPA/Play and ranked fifth in Success Rate.

A lot of that had to do with their rushing attack, which averaged 5.3 yards per carry behind the No. 1-ranked offensive line in terms of Offensive Line Yards.

Well, things are changing in Corvallis.

The Beavers lose starting running back BJ Baylor, who had 1,337 yards on 227 attempts last season, first-team All-Pac 12 center Nathan Eldridge and right guard Nous Keobounnam.

The offensive line will still be one of the best in the Pac-12, but someone else is going to have to step up at running back, or else this rushing attack is going to fall out of the top 25.

Beaver Defense

Oregon State was a catastrophe on defense last season, allowing opponents to record 5.8 yards per play while ranking 95th in EPA/Play and 99th in Havoc.

The entire defensive line is back, but it's the age-old question in college football — how much can a team really improve with everyone back if it was so bad the previous season? Oregon State ranked 70th in Defensive Line Yards, 92nd in Stuff Rate and 116th in Power Success Rate Allowed.

The linebacking corps gets all of its starters back, except for Avery Roberts, the leader of the defense. Roberts had 126 tackles in 2021, which was 40 more than anyone else on the team. It's going to be very difficult to replace that type of production.

The secondary has all four starters back in 2022, but this was just an average unit last year. Oregon State was 67th in Passing Success Rate Allowed, 68th in passing explosiveness allowed and 82nd in EPA/Pass Allowed. So, Boise State should be able to move the ball through the air.

Boise State vs. Oregon State Betting Pick

Oregon State really should not be favored in this game even though it's in Corvallis. The fact that Boise State returns most of its front seven — a group that finished top-30 in various key metrics against the run — is huge for the Broncos.

I have Boise State projected as a -5.5 favorite, so I love the Broncos at +2.5 and would play them to -1.

Pick: Boise State +2.5 (Play to -1)

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