Category Archives: College

Best College Football Bets for Week 4

Welcome back for some more college football betting picks and our best bets for Week 4. Last week, we went 1-2 once again. That takes us to 3-6 on the year. At least we’re consistent! In all seriousness, it may be time to start fading these picks and betting the opposite. Do what you have to do.

We finally have an awesome college football slate to bet this week, as most of the country is playing conference games this week. All lines come via Draft Kings as of Thursday evening. Also, be sure to catch me and my fellow ATB bettors’ locks and underdogs of the week on Around The Book (those picks are actually hitting). Let’s get started and dive in!

#22 UCLA at #11 Utah: Under 52.5 (-110)

Picking a Chip Kelly team to go under feels wrong, but it is not as crazy as you might think. Surprisingly, the under has it in each of UCLA’s last two games. It also helps that Utah has not hit an over all year.

Photo Credit: Rob Gray-USA TODAY Sports

There is reason to believe that could change with the return of quarterback Cam Rising. However, that could be a blessing in disguise for under bettors. Rising will certainly be rusty. Also, the Utes will likely be looking to ease him back into things with a run-heavy game plan. That makes even more sense when you consider their opponent thrives on offensive volume.

With Utah taking the air out of the ball on one side, and playing great defense on the other, UCLA is going to struggle to drag the total over 52.5. I love the under in this one.

Louisiana Tech at Nebraska: Louisiana Tech +20.5 (-108)

This pick is mostly predicated upon the fact that Nebraska might struggle just to score more than 20 points. So far this season they are actually averaging fewer than 20 points per game, and they haven’t exactly faced a murderer’s row of defenses either. The Huskers have faced Minnesota (34th in FBS), Colorado (103rd), and Northern Illinois (78th).

For what it’s worth, Louisiana Tech is ranked 98th in scoring defense, but at least their offense can keep pace. The Bulldogs are averaging over 30 points a game. As long as they can get to 14 this week, they should be able to hold Nebraska under 35. This is one of those situations where the math outweighs the discrepancy in talent. Take the points.

#3 Texas at Baylor: Texas -14.5 (-110)

Texas might actually be back. The jury is still out until we figure out just how bad Alabama is, but it sure seems like the Longhorns are a legit top five team, at least. Baylor, on the other hand, is perhaps the biggest enigma in college football right now. The Bears started off losing to group of five Texas State, then gave #11 Utah a nail-biter, only to follow it up by letting Long Island, a mediocre at best FCS team, hang around into the fourth quarter.

If the pattern continues, Baylor should make a game out of this one. Regardless, they will struggle to stay within 20 against a Texas team that is rolling. The thing to really like about this pick is that it is a night game. It just feels like one of those games that stays close for a half, but then the favorite begins to impose its will and runs away in the fourth quarter. I love the vibes here, lay the points with the Longhorns.

Week 4 College Football Best Bets Recap

  • UCLA @ UTAH UNDER 52.5 (-110)
  • Louisiana Tech +20.5 (-108)
  • Texas -14.5 (-110)
  • Parlay odds: +601

Best College Football Bets for Week 3

Things did not get any better for us in week two of the college football season. Thanks in large part to a brutal result in the Utah game, we went 1-2 on the weekend, taking us to 2-4 on the year. The meat of the season, which is typically easier to read, cannot come soon enough.

In all honestly, this looking like a pretty boring weekend of college football. Luckily, we have some more bets this week to make it interesting. All lines come via Draft Kings as of Thursday evening. Also, be sure to catch me and my fellow ATB bettors’ locks and underdogs of the week on Around The Book (those picks are actually hitting). Let’s get started and dive into the best bets in college football for Week 3!

Photo Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

#15 Kansas State at Missouri: Kansas State -4 (-110)

Let’s start off our look at the best bets in college football for Week 3 with a marquee matchup between two undefeated power five programs. This clash of titans could go either way.

Yeah… no. This is going to be lopsided.

Mizzou might actually be the worst undefeated team in all of FBS, or at the very least the Power Five. Their 2-0 record is comically misleading. The Tigers, at home for both games, beat South Dakota (an FCS program) and Middle Tennessee by a combined 19 points.

To be fair, Kansas State has not played anybody, either. However, they still looked like the defending Big 12 champs in both games. The Wildcats outscored Southeast Missouri (another FCS program) and Troy 87-13 combined.

This is essentially a matchup between a team with College Football Playoff aspirations, and a team that is going to struggle to make a bowl game this year. Yes, Missouri usually plays way above their heads once or twice year, but you never know when that will be. Even if they do, it still might not be enough to keep within a field goal. Hammer Kansas State to cover this generous spread.

South Carolina at #1 Georgia: Over 54.5 (-110)

This game seemed a lot more intriguing a few weeks ago. The Gamecocks appeared to be a team on the rise, and the there were worries that the Bulldogs could take a step back this year. So far, neither of those things appear to be true. South Carolina looks like an upper-middle of the pack SEC team once again, and Georgia looks poised for another CFP run.

This is a matchup between two teams who can put up a lot of points. Only one, Georgia, plays any defense. The points should be flying in this one. These teams average a combined 78.5 points per game this year. Even if Georgia limits South Carolina’s offense, the Bulldogs could probably hit the over themselves. The over is a lock in this one.

James Madison at Troy: JMU Money Line (+120)

This is one of those lines that feels like a clerical error. Just by looking at their resumes this season, you would think the Dukes would be favored. They just beat a power five team while Troy got smoked by one the same weekend.

In all fairness, the Trojans played a much better team in Kansas State. Also, JMU could be in danger of a let down after beating Virginia. Finally, this game is at Troy. These are the factors that the bookies are likely considering.

Regardless, James Madison is a great pick here. This program has been on the rise. The former FCS powerhouse is coming off its first FBS season last year, in which the Dukes went a respectable 8-3 (yes, they only played 11 games). They are real threat to finish the year at the top of the Sun Belt, even if they technically aren’t allowed to compete in the conference championship game. Smash the JMU money line.

Week 3 College Football Best Bets Recap

  • Kansas State -4 (-110)
  • South Carolina @ Georgia OVER 54.5 (-110)
  • James Madison ML (+120)
  • Parlay odds: +701

Best College Football Bets for Week 2

Well, week one was a bit of a stinker. We went 1-2 on opening weekend, but we learned a lot about the current college football landscape. We can apply that knowledge to this week’s slate of games and hopefully come up with three winners. All lines come via Draft Kings as of Thursday evening. Also, be sure to catch me and my fellow ATB bettors’ locks and underdogs of the week on Around The Book. Let’s get started and dive into the best bets in college football for week 2!

Photo Credit: University of Utah Athletics

#12 Utah at Baylor: Utah -7.5 (-112)

This line seems awfully generous. Baylor, coming off a loss to lowly Texas State, should be getting a lot more than a touchdown against a top 15 team, especially one that is coming off a convincing win over an SEC blue-blood. It begs the question, what does Vegas know that we don’t.

The fact that the Bears are at home could help their cause. Also, Utah could have a hangover after a big week one victory. However, those factors are both mitigated by the fact that the Utes are getting a few extra days to rest and travel due to playing on a Thursday last week.

It just seems like a stretch to think that Utah will let this Baylor team hang around. Dave Aranda’s squad is way down. They haven’t won a game in over 10 months. The Bears likely won’t even keep this one in single digits. Hammer Utah to cover.

#20 Ole Miss at #24 Tulane: Ole Miss -7 (-115)

Regardless of the result this is a fun game. We have two top-25 programs that are very close geographically playing in a tiny 30,000 seat stadium. It will be standing room only, and it will be chaos.

Unfortunately, this matchup might be a bit overhyped. The Rebels look like a threat to win the SEC East. They stomped Mercer by 66 points. Meanwhile, the Green Wave look like a contender in the AAC. They beat a slightly tougher opponent in South Alabama by 20. That is a big difference.

This is the type of game in which Lane Kiffin’s side will use as a statement team. They will crush a ranked team with inferior talent, and build a bunch of hype. Then they will stumble against LSU and Alabama. Take Rebels to cover a touchdown.

Stanford at #6 USC: Stanford +29.5 (-112)

The disrespect that Stanford is getting this year is astounding. They were only favored by three against Hawaii last week, which they easily covered. Nevertheless, the Cardinal are once again being treated like a Group of Five program, essentially getting 30 points in a rivalry game.

In defense of USC, they look very good. Also, they might have the best player in the country in Caleb Williams. The only problem is that Williams can’t play defense. The Trojans are horrible on that side of the ball. They might need close to 60 to cover.

This game will likely be at least somewhat close. Stanford has actually won three out of the last five matchups. Also, there has not been a victory of thirty points or more on either side of this rivalry since USC did it back in 2006 during their heyday. This should be an easy cover for Stanford

Week 2 College Football Best Bets Recap

  • Utah -7.5 (-112)
  • Ole Miss -7 (-115)
  • Stanford +29.5 (-112)
  • Parlay odds: +569

Best College Football Bets For Week 1

We are back with more Best Bets! The college football season gets going in earnest this weekend with a great slate of games. We will be doing things a little different with just three picks this year, as you can catch the rest of my picks on the Around The Book pod each Wednesday evening. The picks below all offer great value, especially when parlayed together. All lines come via Draft Kings as of Friday morning. This week’s picks have a combined +649 odds when parlayed. Let’s get started and dive into the best bets in college football for the opening week!

#21 North Carolina at South Carolina: South Carolina Money Line (+114)

Beamer ball baby! The Gamecocks have flown under the radar all summer despite playing some great football to close out the 2022 season. On the flip side, the Tar Heels have gotten a ton of hype, including a top-25 ranking, despite a terrible finish to last season.

The matchup between quarterbacks Spencer Rattler and Drake Maye is a microcosm of what I mentioned above. Maye has been touted a Heisman hopeful and possible top-five NFL draft pick. It has been nothing but crickets around Rattler. The latter will certainly arrive in Chapel Hill with something to prove.

There is also solid value with this pick. Anytime you can get plus odds on what is essentially a toss-up game, it is hard to pass up. I love the Gamecocks to pull off what could be one of the first ranked upsets of the year. Speaking of possible ranked upsets…

#18 Oregon State at San Jose State: San Jose State +16.5 (-110)

This is one of my favorite picks all weekend. There is even some temptation to take the Spartans money line at a juicy +550. For the sake of the parlay, let’s play it safe with this generous spread.

We saw San Jose State give USC a solid fight last weekend with a strong first half. Unfortunately, the talent deficit — especially at quarterback — won out and the Trojans pulled away in the second half. Oregon State does not have the same overwhelming talent on their roster as USC, especially at quarterback. Clemson transfer D.J. Uiagalelei is far cry from Caleb Williams.

The Beavers garnered a lot of hype this summer after posting a 10-win season in 2022. A lot of that is based on the assumption that they have upgraded at quarterback. That is not a guarantee. Don’t expect this offense to run it up on San Jose State the way that USC did. The Spartans should have no problem keeping within two scores. This should be a fun game to watch on Sunday, just like our next pick.

#5 LSU vs #8 Florida State: LSU -2.5 (-110)

We have to bet the biggest game of the weekend. This one has all the makings of a fun matchup. Two top-10 ranked blue-blood programs playing at a neutral site at night in the season opener. What’s not to like? The best part is there is a great betting opportunity here as well.

Full disclosure, I love the Tigers this year. They are my pick to win the SEC. Also, I think Florida State is, once again, overrated. This is not to say that the Seminoles are a bad team. It is more that they are a good team in an average conference. Meanwhile, LSU is a great team in a great conference.

Expect the Tigers to come out and make a statement. Head coach Brian Kelly will be looking to avenge last year’s 24-23 loss to Florida State, which was his LSU debut. The Tigers are much better this year, thanks in large part to the growth of Jayden Daniels. He should have a great game, and LSU should win this one by at least a touchdown.

Week 1 College Football Best Bets Recap

  • South Carolina ML (+114)
  • San Jose State +16.5 (-110)
  • LSU -2.5 (-110)

Is Wisconsin’s Braelon Allen RB1 in the 2024 NFL Draft?

Wisconsin running back Braelon Allen finds himself with a tremendous opportunity to rise up NFL draft boards this season.

The running back position has never seen worse value than right now. The NFL has been telling the world, time and time again, that they no longer value the position. Whether it be the franchise tag ordeals of Josh Jacobs and Saquan Barkley, or the ongoing Jonathan Taylor controversy in Indianapolis; running backs are seeing teams draft their replacements before paying the star. 

With the way the game is going, teams are going to be looking for the next cheap running back. The 2023 NFL draft saw a running back picked in the top ten, with Texas Star Bijan Robinson going to the Atlanta Falcons. That simply will not be the case this year. There are a handful of guys battling for the coveted “RB1” crown, but the biggest name to watch resides in Madison, Wisconsin. Braelon Allen has the opportunity to fully cement himself as the top runner in the 2024 NFL draft class. 

Strengths on tape

Allen is the definition of a meat-and-potatoes runner. He finds the hole, bursts through, and keeps his legs moving to gain additional yardage. Allen pairs a strong and physical running style with nice vision and an ability to make cuts and find running room. He is also a patient runner who does a good job to allow his blocks to develop. Allen routinely breaks through arm tackles and does a great job to fall forward and pick up extra yards.

In the pass game, Allen can be an interesting option on screens and swing passes because of his ability to break tackles and follow blocks. And of course, the often-forgotten trait for running backs is pass protection. Allen brings the violence and had some beautiful blocks last season.

Areas of concern 

Allen probably won’t win too many foot races in the NFL. His long speed is modest, but nothing to be incredibly concerned about. Allen sometimes struggles to beat people to the corner when trying to bounce it outside. Quickness is easily his biggest weakness. While fast, Allen is not a twitchy mover. He is an explosive runner, but not a shifty one. He does not provide much in terms of route running or lining up in the slot or out wide. 

Verdict: Is Braelon Allen the RB1 for the 2024 NFL Draft?

Allen has a tremendous chance to be the first running back taken in April. A rare combination of size and speed make him a threat to hit a homerun at all times. Allen certainly has some competition for the spot, though. Players like Michigan’s Blake Corum and Arkansas’ Raheim Sanders are also names to watch for the top spot.