We’re still a few months away from the return of college football, but the anticipation is slowly building across the country with spring practices in the books and the spring transfer portal window closed. Below, we continue our college football odds series with an over/under win total prediction for the Colorado Buffaloes.
Here are the latest college football odds, courtesy of FanDuel
College Football Odds: Colorado Regular Season Win Total
Over 3.5 Wins: +128
Under 3.5 Wins: -160
Why Colorado Could Hit The Under
A lot has changed in the two months since Colorado was boldly predicted to make a bowl game appearance in the first season under new head coach Deion Sanders. That includes an unfathomable amount of players entering the transfer portal last month.
Despite drawing a massive, raucous crowd at the Spring Game—which was nearly 25 times the size as last year’s—the reports out of the Spring Game weren’t great, and there was a colossal post-spring practice exodus that followed. Losing so many players in such a short period of time is going to lead to plenty of growing pains.
But it was supposed to be a rocky situation in Boulder, at least initially, with the hire of Coach Prime and the inevitable wave of transfers following a disastrous 1-11 season. Nevertheless, expectations should be set low, as the Buffaloes face a daunting schedule that includes matchups with six of the top 18 teams from last season.
With so many departures to overcome, it’s easy to see Colorado getting crushed by the likes of TCU, Oregon, Oregon State, USC, and Utah. Each of those programs are currently ranked in the top 20 in our early college football playoff rankings.
Heading into the summer, there are only a few remotely favorable games on paper—Stanford, Arizona State, and the Rocky Mountain Showdown against Colorado State. Each program won three games last year. You can also probably throw in the return of the highly anticipated rivalry game against Nebraska, with the ticket prices already through the roof.
But the rest of the Buffaloes’ games are a tall task, with no FCS opponents on the schedule, either.
Colorado’s also built its roster on players from the transfer portal, so it’s going to take time to develop chemistry. While there’s a ton of potential in junior quarterback Shedeur Sanders, he’ll have his work cut out for him as he tries to turn around a Buffaloes offense that averaged just 172.9 passing yards per game last year, by far the worst mark in the Pac-12.
Why Colorado Could Hit The Over
Despite the record number of transfers, Sanders has received a vote of confidence from Colorado athletic director Rick George. And despite inevitable growing pains that will come in the first year of a complete rebuild, the excitement is real in Boulder.
Sanders’ presence drew more fans to the aforementioned Spring Game than the last nine Colorado spring games combined, and the Buffaloes have already accomplished a wild feat not seen since 1996.
In the blink of an eye, the Buffaloes have emerged as one of the most intriguing teams in the country. The school hasn’t won a bowl game since 2004 and has endured a losing season in 15 of the last 17 years.
Previously named one of the biggest winners from the transfer portal, Colorado’s obviously trending in a positive direction. A sneaky transfer portal addition will certainly help their offense, but the Buffaloes still clearly have some tough sledding ahead this season.
But if there’s anyone that’s capable of turning this struggling program around, it’s Coach Prime. Jackson State finished 4-8 in 2019, before hiring Sanders as a first-time head coach. The Tigers went 4-3 in 2020 and followed it up by going undefeated in conference play and winning the SWAC in back-to-back seasons.
The initial road ahead will be chock-full of obstacles, so Sanders will need to continue to implement the same drive and big-picture vision that led to his immense success at Jackson State. With Coach Prime leading the charge, there’s a ton of optimism for a program that produced the fifth-best recruiting class in its conference, and the 30th-best in all of college football, per 247Sports.
Final Colorado Win Prediction & Pick
As appealing as it is to buy into the initial hype, the Buffaloes are simply facing too many obstacles with the brutal schedule and record number of transfers to hit the over here in the first year under Coach Prime. Not getting a favorable matchup against California—the Buffaloes’ only win last year—doesn’t help their chances, either.
Final Colorado Prediction & Pick: Under 3.5 Wins: -160