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College Football Week 4 Betting Recap

NCAAF Week 4 Betting Recap

Each week during the college football season, we will do an autopsy to figure out where we were right, where we were wrong and where the box score may not have lined up with the final result. Here are some notable results from Week 4:

Where We Were Right…

San Jose State vs Air Force Over 45
San Jose State is going to be an interesting team to watch the rest of the season. The Spartans have talent and Chevan Cordeiro is one of the best quarterbacks in the Mountain West, but how big of a hole have they dug themselves with that non-conference schedule? San Jose State has already played a top-5 USC team, a top-15 Oregon State team, the MAC favorite in Toledo (on the road) and played a short-week game against Air Force with a rest and travel disadvantage. The Spartans have this week off to rest and recover. Keep an eye on them coming out of the bye next week at Boise State. The first month of their season either made them better and stronger, or pushed them into a pretty deep hole the rest of the way.

Georgia Tech +3.5 at Wake Forest
How many times are you going to see a team have a 29-13 advantage in first downs and lose by two touchdowns? Wake Forest out-gained Georgia Tech, had 29 first downs and only punted twice, but five turnovers from the Demon Deacons made the difference in this one. Georgia Tech wasn’t spectacular (14 penalties for 142 yards), but when you’re handed a 5-1 edge on turnovers and a 20-3 lead at halftime, it’s tough to screw that up.

West Virginia vs Texas Tech Under 55
We were pretty confident that West Virginia quarterback Garrett Greene was not going to play and that turned out to be accurate. Mountaineers’ backup Nicco Marchiol was 12-of-21 for 78 passing yards and two interceptions. Unfortunately, the other quarterback in this matchup also went down. Texas Tech’s Tyler Shough suffered a broken leg in the first half. His replacement, Behren Morton, was 13-of-37 for 158 yards and a touchdown in relief.

South Florida vs Rice Over 57
We were right about the high-scoring matchup. We weren’t right about who would be doing most of the scoring. Rice QB JT Daniels was fantastic again, going 27-of-40 for 432 passing yards and three touchdowns, but he suffered an ankle injury and missed most of the second half. One week after giving Alabama some fits, South Florida QB Byrum Brown was at it again to lead the second half comeback. Brown was 22-of-29 for 435 passing yards and led the team in rushing. Naiem Simmons caught eight balls for 272 yards. Keep an eye on Daniels’ status this week against East Carolina.

Oregon -20.5 vs Colorado
There will be dozens of complex stories written about Coach Prime and Colorado this week, but from a betting perspective, they are not a very difficult team to figure out. Their starting 22 is very, very capable. Their starting 22 can compete in the Pac-12. When the injuries and attrition start to mount up, that’s when they are going to be in big trouble. They had to go to double overtime to beat Colorado State in a game that ended at 2:30am ET the prior week and lost their two-way star in Travis Hunter. This was a horrible spot for them. This week against USC probably won’t get much easier. But after that, they have Arizona State, Stanford and a bye week. If they can keep their starting 22 mostly intact, they will continue to stay in the headlines and win games against mid-tier teams. If the injuries mount up, then Deion is going to need some more sunglasses.

Ohio -13 vs Bowling Green
Continue to keep an eye on the Bobcats in the MAC. Ohio is the only team in the MAC that didn’t have to travel to a Power Five school this season. Their opponent last week, Bowling Green, played at two SEC schools in non-conference play. Ohio was up 31-0 at halftime. It’s safe to say that one team had a lot more pep in their step than the other. Ohio enters its bye week, then hosts league-worst Kent State after that. The Bobcats are going to be incredibly fresh for their upcoming MACtion campaign.

Alabama -6.5 vs Ole Miss
Jalen Milroe and Alabama’s offense still have plenty of things to work out, but the Crimson Tide defense answered this call. Alabama held Ole Miss to 4.6 yards per play, including 56 total rushing yards. That’s fantastic, but the Crimson Tide offense hasn’t scored more than 24 points in their last three games.

Louisiana vs Buffalo Over 57
Louisiana’s offense has scored 30+ in all four games this season, including 40+ in back-to-back games. The Ragin’ Cajuns had 518 total yards in a balanced attack that saw them generate 7.7 yards per play against the Bulls. Louisiana makes the trek to Minnesota this week to face a Gophers team that has lost back-to-back games.

Penn State -14 vs Iowa
Iowa had 76 total yards on 2.3 yards per play. Cade McNamara was 5-of-14 through the air for 42 passing yards. Iowa ran the ball 17 times for a total of 20 yards. Sorry if you had to watch that one.

Where We Were Wrong…

Boise State -6.5 at San Diego State
Entering this season, the question in Boise was, “Who was responsible for the Broncos’ offensive resurgence last season?” Taylen Green took over at quarterback the same time that Dirk Koetter took over as offensive coordinator. Koetter retired after last season, and we’re starting to see how much he is missed. In three games against FBS opposition, Green is only completing 50-percent of his passes (40-of-80).

Indiana -16.5 vs Akron
One week after Tayven Jackson put his stamp on the Hoosiers’ starting QB job, his performance against the Zips already has the Bloomington faithful questioning the decision. Jackson was 24-of-34 for 299 passing yards in his first FBS start against Louisville last week. He was 11-of-26 for 190 yards against Akron this week. Yikes. Sophomore Jaylin Lucas caught ten passes for 98 yards last week against the Cardinals. He did not have a single target this week against the Zips.

Pitt vs North Carolina Under 49.5
Two observations from this one: a) We said a couple times last week and we’ll continue saying it. Drake Maye needs to do a better job of avoiding big hits. With the Tar Heels now at 4-0 and on the cusp of the top-15, it’s going to be very hard to protect Maye from himself. He obviously wants to win, and his teammates love playing with him. But he can’t continue to take these hard shots every week. b) If you took a look at the box score, this definitely doesn’t look like a game that saw 65 points. Neither team had 375 yards of offense. Pitt turned the ball over five times (two interceptions, one fumble and twice on fourth down). There was only one offensive touchdown in the entire second half. The scoreboard says this game flew over the total, but that wasn’t really the case.

Toledo vs Western Michigan Under 51.5
We saw this one coming from a mile away, but we assumed that Toledo’s offense would struggle, not the defense. In last week’s newsletter, we said, “Toledo has been prone to some head-scratching performances over the years, and a few of them have come against Western Michigan.” The Rockets were down by double digits at halftime before out-scoring Western Michigan 35-7 in the second half. Toledo is 0-6 against the spread following a straight-up win. They continue to be prone to head-scratching performances.

Illinois -16.5 vs Florida Atlantic
If you would have said before the game, “Illinois is going to have over 500 yards on offense and Luke Altmyer is going to go 25-of-36 for 303 passing yards,” we’re making this bet again. The Illini dug themselves a 10-0 hole in the first quarter before dominating the rest of the game. They had some opportunities to gain the point spread separation, but some sloppy fourth quarter execution ended those hopes.

UCLA +3.5 at Utah
All eyes were on Utah’s sideline and wondering whether or not Cam Rising would play. Those eyes should have been on Dante Moore and wondering whether or not he was ready for the spotlight. He wasn’t. UCLA’s freshman QB was 15-of-35 and threw an interception that was returned for a touchdown on the first play of the game. The Bruins’ defense was incredible, holding the Utes to 219 total yards and 3.4 yards per play. Moore couldn’t get anything going in his first trip to a hostile road environment.

South Alabama -16 vs Central Michigan
ESPN’s Bill Connelly does postgame win expectancy evaluations every week, and this was the most unexpected result from the weekend. South Alabama jumped out to a 14-0 lead, and it looked like the Jaguars would be on cruise control just like they were last week at Oklahoma State. South Alabama generated 405 yards of total offense on 6.9 yards per play, but the Jaguars’ defense couldn’t get a stop and Central Michigan scored the game-winning touchdown with 13 seconds remaining.

Notre Dame vs Ohio State Over 55
This definitely isn’t going in the “Bad Beats” category, but here’s a little bit of context: This game finished with 31 points and had more total yards (by a fairly wide margin) than the Pitt-UNC game, which finished with 65 points. If you would have said before the game, “Neither team is going to commit a turnover, there is going to be five total punts in the game and both teams are going to average 5.5 yards per play,” would you be interested in betting the over once again? We would be.