The college football season is finally upon us. And with that, comes the surprises that will inevitably come in week 1.

We are only basing our opinions on last year’s results, so it’s difficult to judge where teams will settle in for the first few weeks of the season.

Despite that outlook, there’s still three good college football underdogs who should make your weekend a lot better in the handicapping world. Check out these three games for the best underdog bets.

South Carolina should compete well in week 1 as one of the top college football underdogs. Flickr/

South Carolina (+5) vs. North Carolina State

The public moved this line way off the mark. Oddsmakers tabbed the Gamecocks as four-point favorites in the opening line, only to see it swing nine points in the direction of the Wolfpack.

I get that oddsmakers may have overvalued the SEC’s influence on this game, but the betting public went too far in the direction of the ACC. North Carolina State will miss one of its best defensive backs in the game, and despite the optimism, this team still only won seven games last year. There are plenty of returners on North Carolina State’s roster, but I’m not buying the hype.

South Carolina’s offense was atrocious last season and still won six gams. The offense returns 10 starters, along with a defense that should be dominant once again. South Carolina deserves a little hype, too, so don’t drink the Wolfpack Kool-Aid. — Go Against The Chalk with South Carolina

South Alabama (+24) at Mississippi

South Alabama has legitimate players. They have power five transfers and a recent track record of not only competing against big-school teams, but beating them.

This game is ripe for a major upset if you’re in the mood for putting in a long-shot moneyline. South Alabama returns several key players from last year’s unit that went to a bowl game, while Mississippi is in the midst of extreme turnover. The coach just got fired and they have nothing to play for this season.

The Rebels have talent, but no motivation. I actually can’t believe this line is that big. Watch for quarterback Dallas Davis to make a slight name for himself in this one, keeping this one close throughout game. — Go Against The Chalk with South Alabama

Washington at Rutgers (+27.5)

OK, this is a bit of a stretch after last year’s 48-13 shellacking. But I get Washington traveling cross-country in their first game since being outclassed in the national semifinal.

I like my chances.

The Huskies return a ton of talent, but will have some pieces to replace, especially on defense. And there’s that hangover, where the Huskies trampled through their schedule last year only to lose on the biggest stage. That oftentimes affects teams in the wrong direction, sending them into sleepwalk mode into games such as this.

And Rutgers will be better this season (how can they not?). The Scarlet Knights return 13 starters to a unit that will have its head coach Chris Ash there for a second season, and the return of Jerry Kill as an offensive coordinator. Rutgers isn’t good, but it’s good enough to not get beat by four touchdowns. — Go Against The Chalk with Rutgers

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