College Football Betting Pace Report: The Week 6 Over/Unders to Watch

College Football Betting Pace Report: The Week 6 Over/Unders to Watch article feature image
Credit:

Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)

We’re back for the second iteration of a deep dive into the College Football totals market.

If you’re new to this, it will be an in-depth look at the totals market using yards per play, Success Rate, plays per minute and more. Using those metrics along with a look at the weather and key injuries, the goal of this piece is to hopefully help bettors beat the market before Saturday morning.

First, before we dive in, let’s take a look at where each team is at after Week 5 in terms of plays per minute and plays per game.

(Data via collegefootballdata.com)

Now, let’s dive into this week’s totals.

Michigan State vs. Rutgers

Michigan State Odds -5.5
Rutgers Odds +5.5
Moneyline -220 / +180
Over/Under 50.5 (+100 / -120)
Time 12 p.m. ET
TV BTN
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

I wrote this about the Spartans last week, but this is not the same ground-and-pound, eat-up-the-clock Michigan State offense that we were used to seeing under Mike Dantonio.

Michigan State is currently 35th in the country in plays per minute and its offense showed why it’s so effective last weekend by absolutely torching Western Kentucky’s defense for 7.1 yards per play and 10.9 yards per pass attempt.

The passing offense has been much improved this season, especially from a Success Rate standpoint. With Payton Thorne under center, the Spartans rank inside the top 50 in both Passing Success Rate and explosiveness. Last year, they were outside the top 90 in Passing Success rate.

The Spartans are still running 55.10% of the time, but they are dominating the line of scrimmage.

Michigan State ranks 12th in Offensive Line Yards, 5th in Rushing Success Rate and 8th in run blocking, per PFF. Because of that kind of success, their leading rusher Kenneth Walker III is now topping the country in rushing yards.

This is a great look at what makes @MSU_Football star @Kenneth_Walker9 so good. 😱 pic.twitter.com/DVII51E2eM

— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) October 3, 2021

Now, Rutgers’ front seven had been doing a good job stopping the run, up until last weekend against Ohio State when the Buckeyes ran for 5.6 yards per carry and had a 66% Success Rate on standard downs.

Offensively, Rutgers has improved greatly this season despite the horrible performance against Ohio State this past weekend.

The Scarlet Knights are top 45 in Success Rate, offensive Line Yards, and Rushing Success Rate and should be able to move the ball against a Michigan State defense that ranks outside the top 80 in both Passing and Rushing Success Rate allowed.

Rutgers is slightly below average in terms of plays per minute, but if it falls behind early in this game, it’ll have to pick up the tempo to match Michigan State.

Now, it is supposed to be windy with a chance of rain in the forecast for Saturday, but both of these teams’ success this season has come on the ground, so weather shouldn’t play too big of a factor.

I have 59.06 points projected for this game, so I think there is value on the Over, which currently the best price is at FanDuel with a total of 49.5 points.

Pick: Over 49.5 points

San Jose State vs. Colorado State

San Jose State Odds +2.5
Colorado State Odds -2.5
Moneyline +110 / -130
Over/Under 45.5 (-110/-110)
Time 3:30 p.m. ET
TV FS1
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

If you look at the table at the beginning of the article, you’ll see that both of these offenses are in the top half of college football in plays per minute.

However, it’s one thing to try and play fast. It’s another thing if your offense can’t do anything from a Success Rate or explosiveness standpoint.

San Jose State’s offense has been dreadful this year, gaining only 4.6 yards per play, which is 107th in country.

San Jose State hasn’t been able to run the ball with any success, gaining 3.6 yards per carry against FBS opponents. The team ranks 100th in Rushing Success Rate and 81st in rushing explosiveness.

Their offensive line hasn’t been able to get any sort of push either, as they’re 91st in offensive Line Yards, 115th in stuff rate allowed and 89th in terms of a run-blocking grade, per PFF.

That’s going to be a big problem against a Colorado State defense that is the No. 1 team in the country in Rushing Success Rate allowed, fourth in defensive Line Yards and third in stuff rate.

The passing game also hasn’t been able to have any success this season, ranking 108th in Passing Success Rate and 80th in passing explosiveness. To make matters worse, their starting quarterback Nick Starkel missed the last game against New Mexico State and is questionable to play on Saturday.

Colorado State’s offense does play incredibly fast, ranking 12th in plays per minute. However, they rank outside the top 100 in both Passing and Rushing Success Rate, which has equated to the Rams gaining only 4.5 yards per play, which ranks 111th in college football.

They have some injury worries on offense as well, as their starting running back David Bailey and No. 2 pass-catcher Dante Wright are both questionable to play in this game. That’s a big problem for a Rams offense that is only averaging only 4.0 yards per carry on the ground and 5.2 yards per attempt through the air.

It’s supposed to be a windy day in Fort Collins on Saturday, with 14 mph crosswinds throughout the afternoon, which will have an effect on the passing game.

I only have 38.72 points projected for this game, so I think there is some value on the Under 45.5 points, which is still available at DraftKings.

Also betting under in games where Steve Addazio is coaching since 2016 has been pretty profitable.


Pick: Under 45.5 points

The must-have app for college football bettors

The best NCAAF betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

East Carolina vs. UCF

East Carolina Odds +10.5
UCF Odds -10.5
Moneyline +280 / -365
Over/Under 67 (-120/+100)
Time 6 p.m. ET
TV ESPN+
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

Although UCF is without its star quarterback Dillon Gabriel, Gus Mahlzan still wants to play fast.

The Golden Knights are 16th in the country in plays per minute and still have a dynamic offense that can torch East Carolina’s defense.

Last week against Navy, the Golden Knights only ran 56 plays, as they allowed the triple option to eat up a lot of the clock. They still averaged 5.40 yards per play and 5.1 yards per rush against Navy’s front seven and they’ll likely be able to do the same against East Carolina.

The Golden Knights rushing offense is first in Success Rate, third in offensive Line Yards and fourth in Power Success Rate.

They’ll be going up against a Pirate front seven that has allowed 4.7 yards per carry, ranks 88th in Rushing Success Rate, ranks 111th in rushing explosiveness allowed and is 103rd in terms of a run defense grade, per PFF.

Additionally, East Carolina’s secondary is allowing 9.2 yards per attempt and ranks 67th in Passing Success Rate allowed, so UCF should be able to move the ball at will.

Holten Ahlers is starting to find his groove the past three weeks after a bad start to the season. Against Marshall, Charleston Southern and Tulane, he threw for 8.19 yards per attempt.

However, East Carolina is not that great of an offense from a Success Rate standpoint — ranking outside the top 100 — but boy is the offense explosive.

The Pirates are the sixth-most explosive offense overall and third in rushing explosiveness this season, which will give them a big advantage over UCF’s defense that ranks 85th in explosive plays allowed and 82nd in rushing explosiveness allowed.

Keaton Mitchell is faster than every player on the field @ECUPiratesFB

pic.twitter.com/Hdr8XSQQfr

— PFF College (@PFF_College) September 2, 2021

East Carolina is also 50th in plays per minute, so the pace of this game is likely going to be very fast, especially if East Carolina falls behind early.

I have 78.67 points projected for this game, so I think there is some value on Over 66.5 points, which is currently the best price available at FanDuel.

Pick: Over 66.5 points

UTEP vs. Southern Miss

UTEP Odds -2
Southern Miss Odds +2
Moneyline -130 / +110
Over/Under 44.5 (-110/-110)
Time 7 p.m. ET
TV ESPN3
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

I’ll admit it, this one is gross, but I do think there are a couple of advantages for both offenses to put some points on the board.

UTEP is one of the slowest offenses in the country — ranking 129th in plays per minute — but the Miner passing attack has been effective and explosive this season.

Granted he’s played a very easy schedule up until this point, but Grant Hardison is averaging a whopping 10.2 yards per attempt and has the Miners as the third-most explosive passing offense in the country.

A lot of that can be contributed to the fact that he has two of the best wide receivers in Conference USA in Jacob Cowing and Justin Garrett, who have combined for 11 catches of over 20+ yards this season and have receiving grades over 89 on passes over 10 yards, per PFF.

Love this ball from Gavin Hardison – and this catch from @UTEPFB WR Jacob Cowing, who is criminally underratedpic.twitter.com/WgbCsZw2AY

— Cam Mellor (@CamMellor) October 3, 2021

They’ll be going up against a Southern Miss secondary that has been horrible this season. They allow 10.1 yards per pass attempt, rank 88th in Passing Success Rate allowed, rank 120th in passing explosiveness allowed and rank 94th in coverage, per PFF.

Southern Miss offensively is in the same boat as UTEP because from a Success Rate standpoint, it hasn’t done anything this season, ranking outside the top 100 in both Passing and Rushing Success rate.

However, Southern Miss has an explosive offense, ranking inside the 40 in both passing and rushing explosiveness.

They made a change at quarterback last weekend going with freshman Jake Lange, who did turn the ball over three times vs. Rice last weekend but still averaged 8.2 yards per attempt.

They should be able to break off some explosive plays against UTEP’s secondary that ranks 93rd in passing explosiveness allowed, which is quite shocking, considering four of their five games were against New Mexico State, Bethune Cookman, New Mexico, and Old Dominion.

Southern Miss is closer to the FBS average in plays per minute, ranking 73rd, so I’d imagine it’ll try and push the pace and will throw the ball a ton trying to exploit UTEP’s weakness, which is its secondary.

It’s also supposed to be a beautiful day in Hattiesburg on Saturday with a high of 87 degrees and winds at less than five mph.

I have 52.07 points projected for this game, so I think there is some value on Over 44.5 points, which is available at DraftKings.

Pick: Over 44.5 points

The ultimate CFB betting cheat code

Best bets for every game

Collin Wilson’s biggest weekly edges

Profitable data-driven system picks

How would you rate this article?