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NY Post
New York Post
2 Sep 2023

NextImg:Boise State vs. Washington prediction: College football odds, picks

An 11-2 record in Kalen DeBoer’s first season as head coach was certainly enough to get the Huskies and their fans excited about the future, but the hype accelerated and reached another level as soon as Michael Penix Jr. announced that he was returning for the 2023 campaign.

The playoff hype may be a bit much, though the Huskies are certainly talented enough, especially on offense, to prove me wrong.

Regardless, the Huskies should get off to a fast start this season.

Washington was 5-2 ATS at home last season and DeBoer is 9-1 ATS in his career in non-conference games.

I expect both those trends to continue this week and am backing Washington -14 against Boise State.

A season ago, Penix led an electric Washington offense that averaged nearly 40 points per game and seemingly scored at will.

With Penix – who threw for 4,641 yards and 31 touchdowns (while also rushing for another four) – and arguably the best receiving crew in the nation back, there’s no reason to expect the Huskies offense to be any less dominant this season.

We know Washington will put up points, but will it be able to slow down Boise State enough to cover 14 points?

The Huskies gave up an average of 25.8 points and 372 yards per game a season ago.

Kalen DeBoer

Kalen DeBoer
Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

That’s certainly not great, but it got the job done – largely with the help of that explosive offense.

Additionally, the Huskies have continuity on their side.

Not only is Washington’s entire coaching staff back, but the Huskies have 34 players on the roster who have started at least one game for Washington.

That includes 17 players on the defensive side of the ball, who should take a step forward in their second year under co-defensive coordinators Chuck Morrell and William Inge.

Boise State quarterback Taylen Green is talented, but the Huskies should be able to slow him down enough.

Green, the reigning Mountain West Freshman of the Year, got a taste of Pac-12 competition last season as he threw for 155 yards and ran for 102 more against Oregon State, but Reser Stadium was under construction last season and wasn’t nearly as hostile as Husky Stadium could be Saturday.

Also, he didn’t need to keep pace with an offense as prolific as Washington in that outing.

Bush Hamdan, Boise State’s new offensive coordinator, used to work at Washington, so he’s aware of the atmosphere and can tell Green what to expect, but it’s also his first game as the Broncos offensive coordinator and there could be some growing pains.

The Broncos could find some success running the ball, which would keep the clock moving and limit Washington’s possessions, but if the Huskies put up points as expected, Boise State may need to abandon the run game and become one dimensional sooner rather than later.

All signs point to Washington and it just seems like there’s too much for Boise State to overcome in this spot.

Bet Washington to cover the 14 points and you may also want to look into Washington going over its team total.

The prediction: Washington -14 (FanDuel)