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College Football Predictions for August 26

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The college football season kicks off this weekend with five games, headlined by Oregon State’s trip to Colorado State and the Stanford-Rice clash in Australia. Here are predictions for every game on the Week 0 slate.

Oregon State at Colorado State

The first game of the 2017 season — the Beavers and Rams kick off at 2:30 ET on Saturday — is the most compelling of the opening weekend. Colorado is a trendy pick to contend in the Mountain West Mountain Division after winning four of its final five league games of the 2016 season. Oregon State showed significant improvement in Year 2 under Gary Andersen despite winning only four games. The Beavers should take another step forward in 2018.
Oregon State 30, Colorado State 27

College football rankings: Oregon State

Portland State at BYU

BYU opens the season against an FCS opponent that went 3–8 last season and lost its two games against FBS opponents (San Jose State and Washington) by a combined score of 107–38. This will serve a nice tune-up for the Cougars’ trip to Houston to face LSU on Sept. 2.
BYU 55, Portland State 10

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Hawaii at UMass

Google tells me that Hawaii will travel 5,014.35 miles to play this football game. That’s quite a trip. The Rainbow Warriors were one of the most improved teams in the nation in 2016, improving from 3–10 in the final season of the Norm Chow era to 7–7 in Nick Rolovich’s first year at his alma mater. UMass’ struggles as an FBS Independent figure to continue in Year 2 of Mark Whipple’s second stint with the Minutemen.
Hawaii 41, UMass 33

College Football Rankings: Hawaii

USF at San Jose State

Both programs are under new leadership … but that’s where the similarities end. At USF, Charlie Strong inherited arguably the top Group of 5 team in the country, one that features an elite playmaker at quarterback in Quenton Flowers. Things aren’t as promising at San Jose State, where Brent Brennan — most recently the wide receivers coach at Oregon State — takes control of a program that has had two winning seasons in the last 16 years.
USF 38, San Jose State 20

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Stanford vs. Rice (Sydney, Australia)

A Bay Area Pac-12 team will open its season in Australia for the second straight season. Cal rolled past Hawaii 51–31 last year, and we can expect a similar result (if not more lopsided) from Stanford and Rice. The Cardinal should dominate this game at the line of scrimmage.
Stanford 44, Rice 10 

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