College Football Odds & Picks for San Jose State vs. Boise State: Saturday’s Betting Value Lies With Spartans

College Football Odds & Picks for San Jose State vs. Boise State: Saturday’s Betting Value Lies With Spartans article feature image
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Loren Orr/Getty Images. Pictured: Hank Bachmeier.

Editor’s Note: Saturday’s San Jose State vs. Boise State game was canceled due to COVID-19 issues at Boise State around 11:30 a.m. ET.

San Jose State vs. Boise State Odds

San Jose State Odds +12 [BET NOW]
Boise State Odds -12 [BET NOW]
Moneyline +330 / -435 [BET NOW]
Over/Under 58.5 [BET NOW]
Time 4 p.m. ET
TV FOX
Odds updated Friday morning and via BetMGM. Get an INSTANT $500 deposit match at BetMGM today.

Boise State looks to make it five straight wins in the Mountain West when it hosts undefeated San Jose State on its blue turf on Saturday afternoon.

San Jose State is surprisingly tied atop the Mountain West standings at 4-0. The Spartans have taken care of business at home and pulled off an upset against San Diego State earlier this season. However, this will no doubt be their toughest test on the schedule, and the Spartans will need a win if they are going to play in the Mountain West title game.

Boise State’s season has been filled with ups, downs and weird box scores. The Broncos blew out Colorado State by 31 points despite getting outgained in the game. They were covering for most of the game against Hawaii last weekend before giving up 15 unanswered points in the fourth quarter. If the Broncos want to remain the elite program in the Mountain West, a win here would go a long way.

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San Jose State Spartans

Offense

The Spartans made a drastic switch on offense last season by going to a more pass-heavy attack, and so far, it’s done wonders. Arkansas transfer Nick Starkel has been fantastic so far, averaging 9.2 yards per attempt and leading the Spartans to a ranking of 16th in terms of Passing Success, according to College Football Data. San Jose State returned all of its main targets from last season, so there shouldn’t be any drop-off any time soon.

The ground attack hasn’t been called on much this season. as the Spartans throw the ball on 56% of their plays. So far it’s been pretty average, as they’ve carried the ball for 4.2 yards per carry.

San Jose State also returns three starters on an offensive line that has been tremendous in pass protection so far; Starkel has only been sacked twice this season.

Defense

The defensive side of the ball has improved greatly from last season, as the Spartans are 35th in defensive success rate per College Football Data. They’ve allowed only 4.8 yards per play through their first four games and have excelled versus the run.

Eight of SJSU’s top 11 tacklers are back from 2019, and the Spartans are poised to be one of the best defenses in the Mountain West. They’ve allowed only 3.1 yards per rush attempt so far this season, which is the second-best mark in the Mountain West. They also rank inside the top 35 in Power Success Allowed, Defensive Rushing Success, and explosive rushing allowed. That will come in handy against Boise, which has struggled to run the ball this season at only 3.8 yards per carry.

The pass defense is where San Jose is going to have to step up if it’s are going to beat Boise on the Smurf Turf. The Spartans are allowing 7.9 yards per pass attempt so far on the season. They have a lot of experience returning in their secondary but will have to improve if they are going to slow down Hank Bachmeier.

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Boise State Broncos

Offense

Despite their 5-1 record, the Broncos have had an up-and-down season. They’ve looked really dominant at times and then average at others. Their offense, however, has been stellar behind sophomore quarterback Bachmeier, who is averaging 8.6 yards per attempt and has four touchdowns in his three starts on the season. In those three games, the Broncos have scored 40+ points.

Bachmeier is in a perfect situation to succeed, with all of his targets and top three running backs returning in 2020. Junior wide receiver Khalil Shakir has been a matchup nightmare for opposing secondaries, as he already has 38 catches and six touchdowns on the season.

The running game has struggled at times this season because of their offensive line. The Broncos had to replace four starters on the line. That’s going to be an issue against San Jose State, as the Spartans already have 14 sacks in four games this season.

Defense

Boise State has struggled on the defensive side, mainly because it has given up way too many explosive plays. The Broncos are 116th in explosiveness allowed and 121st in explosive passing allowed this season, per College Football Data. That is not going to bode well against Starkel and Company on Saturday.

In its biggest test of the season, Boise’s defense got torched by BYU. It allowed 8.81 yards per play and 12.3 yards per attempt to Zach Wilson. Starkel and San Jose State’s offense will be the best offense it’s seen since the BYU game. Will the Broncos be up for the task on Saturday, or will we see a repeat of the BYU game?

Betting Analysis & Pick

I think San Jose State is absolutely capable of pulling off an upset against Boise State. Starkel and the Spartan passing attack should be able to throw the ball all over the Broncos’ secondary similar to what Wilson was able to do.

I only have Boise State projected as a -3.25 favorite at home on Saturday afternoon, so I think there’s plenty of value on the Spartans at +12.

Pick: San Jose State +12 (down to +7).

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