College Football Betting Pace Report for Week 10: 3 Totals to Watch, Including Army vs. Air Force
Edward Diller/Getty Images. Pictured: Tyrell Robinson.
It’s already been a busy week in college football, and it’s only going to get busier.
There’s plenty to keep an eye on from a totals perspective heading into Week 10, including a Sun Belt battle between Appalachian State and Arkansas State in Jonesboro, a Big 12 defensive slugfest between Oklahoma State and West Virginia, and a potential over in Army vs. Air Force.
If you’re new to this, we take 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.
Before we dive in, let’s take a look at where each team sits in terms of plays per minute and plays per game after Week 9.
Now, let’s dive into this week’s totals.
Army vs. Air Force
|Army Odds||+2.5 (-106)|
|Air Force Odds||-2.5 (-114)|
|Moneyline||+118 / -144|
|Over/Under||36.5 (-118 / -102)|
|Time||12 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.|
I know. Even the thought of taking an over between two triple-option teams that play at a snail’s pace is making you feel uneasy inside. But hear me out.
Army has been very effective offensively this season, as the Black Knights are 27th in Offensive Success Rate.
There are a couple of advanced metrics that serve as indicators on whether or not the triple option is effective, and Army is checking every box right now. The Black Knights are 36th in Rushing Success Rate, 10th in Stuff Rate Allowed, and ninth in Power Success Rate.
The Air Force front seven is 14th in Rushing Success Rate Allowed, but it’s 110th in Stuff Rate and 129th in Power Success Rate Allowed. Additionally, Air Force is 125th in rushing explosiveness allowed, so Army’s triple option should be able to break off a few big runs.
Army starting quarterback Christian Anderson, who got knocked out of the first half of the Wake Forest game is practicing this week, which will be huge considering he’s Army’s leading rusher this season.
— College Fantasy Football (@FBSFantasyFoot) November 2, 2021
Air Force’s triple option has also been pretty effective this season, considering it’s gaining 4.9 yards per carry on the ground and ranks 18th in EPA/Rush.
What Air Force will be able to do against Army is break off a lot of big plays. The Falcons’ triple option ranks 29th in rushing explosiveness and first in passing explosiveness.
Now, Air Force does only throw the ball on 12.97% of its offensive plays, but Army is 128th in the country in rushing explosiveness allowed and 103rd in passing explosiveness allowed.
Army’s defense is also 73rd in Stuff Rate, while Air Force’s offensive line is 14th in Stuff Rate Allowed.
So, as crazy as it sounds, I have 46.76 points projected for this game, so I think there’s some value on over 36.5 points and would play it up to 39.
Pick: Over 36.5 (Play to 39)
Appalachian State vs. Arkansas State
|Appalachian State Odds||-21.5 (-105)|
|Arkansas State Odds||+21.5 (-115)|
|Moneyline||-1250 / +710|
|Over/Under||67.5 (-114 / -106)|
|Time||2 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.|
The Appalachian State offense has been humming right along with Chase Brice under center.
The Mountaineers are now sixth in Passing Success Rate and 14th in EPA/Pass, while Brice himself has a 90.6 passing grade with 20 big-time throws and only five turnover-worthy plays.
— App State Football (@AppState_FB) October 22, 2021
They should be able to throw the ball with just as much success as they did against UL-Monroe this past weekend because Arkansas State has one of the worst secondaries in all of college football.
The Red Wolves are allowing 9.8 yards per pass attempt, sit 127th in EPA/Pass, and are graded as the 127th-best coverage unit in college football, per PFF.
The problems for Butch Jones’ defense also extends to the front seven, where Arkansas State is allowing 7.2 yards per carry. That mark ranks dead last in college football. So, I have a hard time seeing how they’re going to keep Appalachian State under 40 points.
Arkansas State’s offense hasn’t been great from a Success Rate standpoint, but it’s been explosive. The Red Wolves rank 39th offensive explosiveness, with most of it coming in the passing game.
They’ve been utilizing backup quarterback Layne Hatcher for the past three games, but he has been pretty effective by throwing the ball for 7.3 yards per attempt and posting an 85.9 passing grade in the game against Coastal Carolina three weeks ago.
Appalachian State’s weakness in its defense is in the secondary. The Mountaineers are allowing 7.8 yards per attempt and rank 64th in EPA/Pass allowed. So, the Red Wolves may be able to throw the ball with some success and will likely be throwing the ball a lot if they fall behind early.
Arkansas State also plays with one of the fastest paces in the country, sitting at 2.63 plays per minute, which ranks 11th in the country. Meanwhile, Appalachian State is 58th in the country in plays per minute.
I have 79.48 points projected for this game, so I love the over at 67.5 points and would play it up to 70 points.
Pick: Over 67.5 (Play to 70)
Oklahoma State vs. West Virginia
|Oklahoma State Odds||-3|
|West Virginia Odds||+3|
|Moneyline||-145 / +120|
|Time||3:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.|
Oklahoma State’s defense has been unbelievable this season. The Cowboys are allowing only 4.6 yards per play, which is the 11th-best mark in the country.
The strength of Mike Gundy’s defense is its front seven, as the Cowboys give up only 2.9 yards per carry and are graded as the No. 6 run defense in college football, per PFF.
Additionally, the Cowboys are 18th in Rushing Success Rate Allowed, 11th in Defensive Line Yards, and 14th in EPA/Rush allowed. So, for a West Virginia rushing attack that has been very average this season — gaining only 3.8 yards per play — it’s going to be really difficult to establish a consistent rushing attack.
The secondary has been very solid this season, as it’s allowing only 6.9 yards per attempt, owns an 87.9 coverage grade, per PFF and is 19th in EPA/Pass allowed. For a quarterback like Jarret Doege who only has a 74.1 passing grade, per PFF, it’s going to be a difficult matchup.
From a Success Rate standpoint, the Cowboys are pretty average, ranking 69th in the country. The biggest problem for Oklahoma State is even though it runs the ball 62.74% of time, it hasn’t been that effective on the ground.
The Cowboys gain only 3.8 yards per carry and rank outside the top 80 in Rushing Success Rate, Offensive Line Yards and EPA/rush. The West Virginia front seven has been incredibly stout this season, as it allows only 3.9 yards per carry and ranks 58th in EPA/Rush allowed.
I only have 41.17 points projected for this game, so I think there’s some value on under 49.5 points and would play it down to 47.
Pick: Under 49.5 (Play to 47)