Frank Solich is one of our favorite coaches in college football, and he has done a tremendous job at Ohio since returning to Athens in 2005. Solich’s coaching pedigree is impressive as he put together a 58-19 (.753) record over a six years as Nebraska’s head coach before coming back to his home state of Ohio. While at Nebraska, Solich was named Big 12 Conference Coach of the Year twice, while also leading the Cornhuskers to nine or more wins in five of his six years on the sidelines. Since arriving in Athens, Solich has led the Bobcats to five bowl games, including four consecutive postseason appearances (45-14 win over ULM last year). The experts at Pro Edge Sports Picks lean with Ohio (+20.5) in its Week One contest against Louisville for several reasons, including:
- Ohio enters the 2013 campaign with a dynamic offense led by quarterback Tyler Tettleton, who threw for 2,844 yards last season (62.1%; 18-4 ratio) despite missing one game to injury. Tettleton is now healthy and is expected to exceed the numbers he produced in his freshman year wherein he threw for 3,302 yards (64.0%; 28-10 ratio) on the way to setting single-season school records for touchdowns and passing yardage. Tettleton also finished the 2011 season as Ohio’s second leading rusher with 658 yards (4.0 yards per carry).
- The Bobcats also feature a very strong backfield led by Iowa State transfer Beau Blankenship, who set a school record last season with nine 100 yard games. Blankenship finished the year with 1,604 yards on 5.1 yards per rush attempt, while also averaging 8.7 yards per pass reception.
- The offensive line returns three starters and should improve upon last year’s production if it manages to stay healthy. This injury-plagued unit allowed sixteen sacks in the final three games of the regular season, but those results were due to injuries and injuries alone.
For technical support, let’s note that Ohio is 5-1 ATS as non-conference underdogs, whereas the Cardinals are 1-5 ATS in home openers. The betting public is enamored with Louisville this season based on quarterback (and Heisman candidate) Teddy Bridgewater, but 20.5-points is just too many points to give one of the most astute coaches in the game today.
Pro Edge Sports Picks Week One Free College Football Sports Pick:
Ohio (+20.5) (-110) over Louisville