It’s Week 10 of the College Football season; if you are having some trouble focusing back in on football after the Braves World Series, here are some important notes to help you get ready for the weekend.
The Big Games
Michigan State (-3) @ Purdue
Let’s start the week with one of the few “trap” lines. Michigan State is fresh off a massive win against Michigan as they travel to West Lafayette. These teams don’t match up often, the last meeting being in 2014. Only twice since 2000 have the Spartans been a road favorite at Purdue, going 0-2 ATS in those meetings. However, Mel Tucker has his team cashing tickets for bettors this season with a 6-2 ATS record.
North Carolina (-2.5) vs. Wake Forest
Another “trap” line as undefeated Wake Forest is an underdog in Chapel Hill. Don’t be fazed by the Tar Heels’ 4-4 record; Mack Brown’s team is 4-1 at home this season. But recent history doesn’t like UNC in this spot. As a favorite of 1-3 points, North Carolina is 0-4 ATS in their last four games, losing three of the four games outright. All four of those games were also at home. Wake will come in ready to play, especially since they’ve been in this spot already this season. In September, as a 3.5-point road underdog to Virginia, Wake ended up winning 37-17.
Texas A&M (-4.5) vs. Auburn
Two 6-2 teams meet in College Station in what seems like a pretty even matchup. Even the public seems pretty split on who wins this one, and both teams are 5-3 ATS this season. Good news for Auburn, they have been road underdogs in SEC play twice (+4.5 at Arkansas, +3 at LSU) and have won both games outright. For Texas A&M, in their last seven SEC games as a home favorite, they’ve won six outright. The only loss was a 26-22 game to Mississippi State back in early October.
Alabama (-28.5) vs LSU
Yikes, that’s a pretty massive spread for a rivalry game. Ironically, the last time LSU was this big of an underdog in an SEC game was one year ago, when Alabama came to Death Valley as a 28.5-point favorite. The Tide covered, dominantly winning 55-17. Nick Saban clearly has no problem running up the score. In their last four SEC games as a 28.5-point favorite or bigger, Alabama has covered all four with final scores like 52-3, 42-13, and 63-3. The last time the Tide were this big of a favorite in an SEC game and didn’t cover was the beginning of last season at Missouri when the Tigers scored a meaningless garbage-time touchdown in a 38-19 blowout.
Oregon (-7) @ Washington
A primetime Pac-12 North rivalry takes place in Seattle, and the home Huskies find themselves touchdown underdogs to highly ranked Oregon. The public has rushed to jump on the Ducks, and with good reason. Oregon has dominated this rivalry for almost two decades, winning 14 of the last 16 meetings. This will be the sixth time since 2007 that the Ducks are road favorites at Washington, with Oregon being 5-0 ATS in the previous five. And Washington as a home underdog… not great. The Huskies haven’t won a game as a home underdog since November 2012, and they’ve lost their last six in such circumstances.
Under the Radar
Wisconsin (-13.5) @ Rutgers
Wisconsin travels to the State University of New Jersey (a.k.a. Rutgers) right after a big win against Iowa, where they took back control of the Big Ten West. But will the Badgers lay an egg here? Since 2017, Wisconsin is 7-2 ATS as a double-digit road favorite. Meanwhile, Rutgers is 1-7 ATS in their last eight Big Ten games as a home underdog.
Ole Miss (-10) vs. Liberty
An intriguing game in Oxford as two explosive offenses meet. Liberty scored 62 last weekend against UMass (no surprise there) and covered their spread of 35 points. Some may be surprised by this line and rush to bet the Rebels, but it seems the experts are betting Liberty early in the week. Hugh Freeze’s Flames have pulled the upset in this spot before and have covered two straight games as a double-digit road underdog, including a 38-35 win at Virginia Tech and a 30-24 win at Western Kentucky last season.
Cincinnati (-22.5) vs. Tulsa
College Gameday is headed to Cincy for the first time, and it should be a breeze for the Bearcats, who are laying over three touchdowns. In their last three home conference games as a three-touchdown favorite or higher, Cincy covered all three easily. And after recent struggles against Navy and Tulane, they will be looking to come out and make a statement. But Tulsa could hang around, though. In their last five games as a 22.5-point underdog or more, Tulsa is 5-0 ATS and lost three of those games by one possession.
Kentucky (-1) vs. Tennessee
A really intriguing game takes place Saturday night in Lexington as Kentucky has been a bettor’s best friend this season, going 6-2 ATS so far. But this may not be a good spot for them. Kentucky has been favored over the Vols only four times since 2007, and they have failed to cover any of the four games while losing three of those games outright. But the stats don’t look great for Tennessee, either. In their last ten games as an underdog, the Vols are 2-8 ATS and have won only one of those games. Last year, Tennessee was a 6.5-point favorite at home, but Kentucky’s defense was dominant in a 34-7 Wildcats win.