Chicago Cubs vs. Philadelphia Phillies
Friday, August 31, 2018, 7:05 pm ET

CHICAGO CUBS +101

The Cubs continue to roll along, and while it’s often not easy, they’re finding ways to get close wins. For Friday’s matchup, the underdog Cubbies have better hitting splits across the board compared to the Phillies. Starter Jose Quintana is certainly a mixed bag, but he struck out a season-high 10 Phillies in 5.2 innings of work on June 6. He’s allowed just nine homers in 14 road starts, and the Phillies are a team that uses the long ball to score runs, more than most. Nick Pivetta has allowed 11 runs over his last 10.1 innings of work, and was tagged for four runs in five innings in his one meeting with Chicago.

SportsLine Expert: Adam Thompson (144-96 in last 240 MLB ML picks)

Cincinnati Reds vs. St. Louis Cardinals
Friday, August 31, 2018, 8:15 pm ET

ST. LOUIS -205

There are reasons to believe the Reds’ offense is better than the Cardinals’ unit. But those are thrown out the window Friday. When Cincy starts Homer Bailey, the team is 1-17. One and seventeen. And the Cardinals have been one of the more successful teams against him, hitting a ridiculous .421 over 114 career at-bats. Conversely, St. Louis is a perfect 6-0 when Austin Gomber starts, including a quality start against these Reds. St. Louis has won 18 of its last 19 when scoring at least three runs. I see that happening here.

SportsLine Expert: Adam Thompson (144-96 in last 240 MLB ML picks)

>>MORE: See all MLB picks

 K.J. Hill #14 of the Ohio State Buckeyes runs with the ball against the Wisconsin Badgers in the Big Ten Championship at Lucas Oil Stadium on December 2, 2017 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Ohio State won 27-21.

K.J. Hill (Photo Credit: Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Oregon St. Beavers vs. Ohio St. Buckeyes
Saturday, Saturday 1, 2018, 12:00 pm ET

OHIO ST. -38.5

My data suggests the Buckeyes will cover this massive number about two-thirds of the time Saturday when they host the woeful Beavers. Whether Urban Meyer was at the helm never mattered in this one, which might be the biggest FBS mismatch in Week 1. The Buckeyes are national-title contenders, while the Beavers are among the worst Power Five programs. Ohio State can basically name its score here, and recent history suggests the Buckeyes aren’t opposed to laying it thick on inferior opponents.

SportsLine Expert: Stephen Oh (3-0 in last 3 Ohio St. ATS picks)

Washington Huskies vs. Auburn Tigers
Saturday, Saturday 1, 2018, 3:30 pm ET

WASHINGTON +1.5

This is one of the opening weekend’s biggest matchups, but I don’t agree with the line. Yes, Auburn won the SEC West last season, but it has one of the least-experienced offensive lines in the country and it’s facing a veteran, and talented Washington defense. Give me a Chris Petersen team as an underdog any time.

SportsLine Expert: Tom Fornelli

Michigan Wolverines vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Saturday, Saturday 1, 2018, 7:30 pm ET

MICHIGAN +1

Michigan has not earned the right to be favored at Notre Dame, against an Irish squad that has the same rating coming into the season as Michigan. The Irish deserve at least 2.5-points for home field. But I do think Michigan will eventually earn a higher rating, beginning with a win Saturday night. Michigan has a QB now with Ole Miss transfer Shea Patterson, the one area Jim Harbaugh has no consistent production in his three years. He has 17 starters returning, mostly his recruits, including nine starters from last year’s defense that allowed only 271 ypg. Harbaugh can sell the rivalry better than Brian Kelly after Notre Dame ended the once-annual game, coincidentally, just prior to Harbaugh’s arrival. Michigan gets the win.

SportsLine Expert: Micah Roberts

>>MORE: See all College Football picks

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