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July 12, 2023

Summer and schoolusually don’t mix too well, but in this instance, it’s an ideal time to take a look at the college football landscape.

We kick off SEC week, and we have former NFL QB Ryan Leaf and senior editor Max Meyer’s favorite over bets in the conference.

LEAF: Texas A&M Over 7.5 Wins (-200)

Texas A&M’s offense was a disaster last season, but Jimbo hired Bobby Petrino to address that and then some. He has tremendous instincts calling plays, and the Aggies are going to put up points. I like the guys they have at quarterback, and I think some of their other highly touted young talent will step up as well.

MEYER: LSU Over 9.5 Wins (-115)

Brian Kelly exceeded expectations in Year 1 at LSU, and the surprising successful marriage between OC hire Mike Denbrock and transfer QB Jayden Daniels caused a lot of doubters to eat crow. Daniels seems primed to take another step forward with more experience running Denbrock’s scheme, having all five OL starters back and a very strong pass-catching group to throw to.

Linebacker Harold Perkins Jr. is one of the top players in the country. LSU gets star defensive tackle Maason Smith back after he suffered a season-ending knee injury in last year’s opener. The Tigers landed a lot of key transfers to address their weakness on D (the secondary), along with former Oregon State standout linebacker Omar Speights.

The Tigers don’t have to play the best team in the country (Georgia) in the regular season, but do face the most vulnerable Alabama team in a long time. This LSU team is so well-respected by the market that it’s a short road favorite against a top-10 team in Florida State. I actually think LSU is better than Alabama atop the SEC West, and Kelly’s group should once again push for a CFP bid.