Ahead of the second game of the season against Hawaii, the Michigan Wolverines, fresh off of a blowout win over Colorado State, open up as a massive betting favorite over the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors. According to Caeser’s Sportsbook, Michigan opens up as a 51-point favorite in the contest Saturday night. That point spread is the largest in the history of the Michigan football program.
It’s relatively easy to see just why Michigan opens up as such an overwhelming favorite. Fresh off of their thrashing of Colorado State Rams, the Wolverines jumped up to #4 in the Associated Press rankings for week 2. The high ranking comes after losses by Utah (#7), and Notre Dame (#5), as well as an unimpressive showing by the sixth-ranked Texas A&M Aggies.
The Rainbow Warriors have started off the season 0-2 after home losses at the hands of both Vanderbilt and Western Kentucky. They were outscored 112-27 in those two games.
The game represents the first collegiate start for sophomore quarterback JJ McCarthy, who has seen action, albeit in a limited role, both last season as a freshman, as well as in the first game of this season against Colorado State. He is currently in a quarterback competition with senior quarterback Cade McNamara, who was the main starter for Michigan last season and led them to a win over Ohio State, a Big Ten championship, and the program’s first-ever appearance in the four-team College Football Playoff.
The rise of McCarthy through both spring and fall camps led Michigan Head Coach Jim Harbaugh to decide to use the first two games of the season as a tryout to determine the starting quarterback.
An unimpressive showing from McNamara in the inaugural game of the season has led to much of the fanbase and media looking for McCarthy to come in and try to right the ship. It doesn’t help McNamara’s case in that McCarthy came into the Colorado State game after the victory was secured and looked solid in his limited action. He even ran in a touchdown.
It will be interesting to see if Michigan manages to cover the spread considering how most of the backups will be playing the majority of the second half of the game assuming the game is well in hand. However, the large point spread does resemble confidence in the offense to be able to put up big numbers against lesser competition with McCarthy under center.
The Wolverines take on the Rainbow Warriors on Saturday at 8:00 on Big Ten Network.
The over/under for the game has been set for 67.
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