We’re back to .500, at 19-19, in our college football bets this season because of a bad 7-10 week last Saturday. To be fair, there were two pushes, and if not for a series of turnovers and a fluke fumbled punt resulting in a touchdown, I’d have been right on my Vanderbilt-Wake Forest Under and Ball State +42 at Georgia. With a horrible slate this week, no top 25 games, here are our SEC and top bets overall.
LSU -9.5 at Mississippi State; Under 54.5
Yes this game is on the road, but the LSU Tigers had essentially a bye last week against Grambling, while the Mississippi State Bulldogs needed overtime to beat the Arizona Wildcats late at night. This being a noon kickoff favors LSU, so they’ll get on a roll early. They’re being underrated by the college football world from that season-opening loss.
Kansas State -3.5 at Missouri; Over 47.5
Look, the Missouri Tigers are bad, one of the worst Power Five teams in college football. I wasn’t sure of that until last week when they struggled so severely with the MTSU Blue Raiders. As a result, even while playing this game at home, the Kansas State Wildcats cover easily. The over/under is a 50/50 shot here, but just being so low is why I’m taking the under.
South Carolina +27.5 at Georgia; Under 54.5
Like I said, the Georgia Bulldogs needed a ton of turnovers to cover last week. They won’t do the same against the South Carolina Gamecocks. The UGA offense is worse than it’s looked, and South Carolina has a major issue with pass protection. As a result, the under is far and away the best pick here, but South Carolina covers too.
Alabama -32 vs. South Florida; Under 61
Former Tennessee Football offensive coordinator Alex Golesh brings the Josh Heupel offense to Tuscaloosa. After a tough loss to the Texas Longhorns last week, the Alabama Crimson Tide should rebound in strong fashion. They do have an elite defense, and the South Florida Bulls have no defense, which is why they cover. Still, Jalen Milroe won’t hit that over.
UL Monroe +36 at Texas A&M; Under 53.5
All signs point to the Texas A&M Aggies rebounding and covering against the Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks. However, that was the start of Jimbo Fisher’s team unraveling, which is why the offense under Bobby Petrino will play worse this week. They will still win, but things are about to fall apart in epic fashion.
Tennessee -6.5 at Florida; Under 58.5
After starting at 8.5, the line has moved two points into the Florida Gators’ favor. However, they have no offense to speak of, and even with issues in the passing game, the Tennessee Vols should be able to shut down Graham Mertz. Those two storylines, though, are why the under is a great play here. This isn’t last year’s UT team.
Vanderbilt -4 at UNLV; Under 59
Yes, I know, never bet on the Vanderbilt Commodores. Going out west to face the UNLV Rebels should hurt them, but they did put up a fight with the Wake Forest Demon Deacons last week. I have faith in Clark Lea to find a way to pull out a win here, as the team did look much better, and it’ll probably be by a touchdown with good defense, so take the under.
Ole Miss -18 vs. Georgia Tech; Over 63
Lane Kiffin and the Ole Miss Rebels beat a depleted Tulane Green Wave team last week, but scoring 37 points on them on the road was still impressive. As a result, they should have a field day with the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets’ defense. Their scoring alone is why I’m taking the over and them to cover. We’re looking at like a 55-17 game.
Arkansas -8 vs. BYU; Over 47.5
Playing their D game, the Arkansas Razorbacks still beat the Kent State Golden Flashes by three touchdowns, more than UGA beat them by last year. With the BYU Cougars coming to town, Sam Pittman’s team will be much more focused, and K.J. Jefferson will continue to make a case for the best quarterback in the SEC.
Akron +25 at Kentucky; Under 49.5
Offensive coordinator Liam Coen’s health issues combined with last week’s poor play are enough to suggest the Kentucky Wildcats won’t cover this huge spread. Mark Stoops’ team will win in his old-school ways, with defense, against an Akron Zips team that is well-coached under Joe Moorhead. That means an ugly game that hits the under.
Week 3 best bets
Tennessee at Florida, the Under 58.5
This is by far the best pick in college football right now. The Vols’ clear-cut strength on defense is their pass rush. Florida has no tackles, and their quarterback has no mobility. Meanwhile, UT isn’t clicking on the long ball like they were last year, so Joe Milton III won’t take those deep shots. As a result, the under is an easy play.
Washington -16 at Michigan State
Michael Penix Jr. is a Heisman candidate right now, and the Washington Huskies could be a favorite to win the Pac-12. Given the issues with the Michigan State Spartans and Mel Tucker this week, I’m seeing a blowout on the road. Washington may well win this game 55-0 or something like that. They will absolutely dominate.
Colorado State +23.5 at Colorado
They’re the story of college football, and this is the first week everybody is betting on the Colorado Buffaloes. College GameDay is coming to town and everything. The Colorado State Rams are bad too. However, Deion Sanders’ team will finally struggle to deal with success, and with the Oregon Ducks next week, they’ll be looking ahead. Add in the rivalry factor, and CSU puts up a fight.