Upset odds and picks for Week 1
Michigan-Alabama, Auburn-Clemson and other top games from opening week
Every week during the season, Will Harris will check with the computers (using TeamRankings' game predictor) and wiseguys to evaluate the upset possibilities in college football's most compelling games and give his picks for who'll come out on top.
Upset Watch kicks off the 2012 season with a look at 10 games, including the Alabama/Michigan and Clemson/Auburn clashes. Our first edition of the year jumps right into action against some teams we'll be picking against regularly this season, like LSU and Stanford, and introduces others that we expect to back frequently, like Michigan State and Ball State.
Opening week features a lot of big numbers, as always, but there are still a few gems even among the mismatches.
We'll touch on all of the biggest games each week this year and scour the rest of the FBS slate for value wherever it hides.
Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Michigan Wolverines (Dallas)
Alabama is favored by 13.5 points
TeamRankings win odds for Michigan: 25 percent
Last year's Crimson Tide won it all thanks to the best defense of the past generation, but the chance to repeat hinges on the other side of the ball. This Alabama offense won't set any national records, but it will be the school's highest-scoring attack since the 1973 team.
Alabama's offensive line may be the very best in the nation, and that might expose Michigan's most glaring holes. The Wolverines lost three starters off the defensive front, and the talent that remains is not in Bama's class at the line of scrimmage.