College Football Betting Primer: What to Know Before Placing Week 10 Bets (Saturday, Nov. 4)

College Football Betting Primer: What to Know Before Placing Week 10 Bets (Saturday, Nov. 4) article feature image

Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images. Pictured: Oklahoma helmet and football.

It’s a blockbuster week in college football.

Frankly, get ready for more of the same down the stretch. While most of the top contenders have not looked impenetrable this year, they have mostly cruised along this season. We are set up for a November slate full of massive, season-defining showdowns.

We start in the SEC with a pair of semifinal games, one in each division. Check back on this site later in the week for “mega guides” for each of Missouri-Georgia and LSU-Alabama. There’s a Heisman showdown in LA, Big 12 separation games and a hearty dose of Group of Five intrigue.

I'm so excited to kick back and enjoy the slate. But first, let’s look at some things to know nationwide.

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Saturday, Nov. 4
Noon ET

This looks like a bowl-eligibility elimination game in The Swamp.

Arkansas is 2-6 and would need to pull off a stunning November sweep starting now to make the postseason. The Gators need just one more win to bowl, but after this one, their final three games are all against CFP top-15 opponents.

Saturday, Nov. 4
Noon ET

Can Jacksonville State pull off the upset in the Battle of the Gamecocks?

The Gamecocks are two-touchdown underdogs to the Gamecocks, despite accumulating a much gaudier record against CUSA competition in their first year in FBS.

Bill Connelly’s SP+ calls this a 10-point margin, not the 15 it currently sits at most shops.

I mean, Jacksonville State coach Rich Rodriguez does have a few wins over a Beamer for his career — just against Frank, not Shane.

Saturday, Nov. 4
Noon ET

Will the Longhorns need to show something more at quarterback to beat this surging Kansas State team?

Without Quinn Ewers, Texas might need to use Maalik Murphy in the run game, or else the whispers to turn to Arch Manning will become yells.

Regardless, they will need to find a solution for their red-zone woes if they want to cover the 4-point spread, let alone win. The 'Horns are 70th in FBS in Finishing Drives, while the Wildcats are 10th.

Saturday, Nov. 4
Noon ET

Unlike Tyler from Spartanburg, our man Stuckey is buying Clemson in this spot. In his excellent Stuckey’s Spots column, my favorite weekly piece that graces these electronic pages, he lays out the case for the underdog Tigers.

With Dabo’s outfit getting +3.5 points at home, this is a classic buy-low/sell-high moment against Notre Dame.

“Including the postseason," Stuckey writes, "Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney is 14-7 against the spread (66.7%) as an underdog of more than a field goal, covering by 4.6 points per game.”

Maybe Dabo was right and all Clemson needed was some people to get off the bandwagon.

Saturday, Nov. 4
2 p.m. ET
The CW

Both of these teams are surprisingly competent, or maybe it just feels that way because they have each upset North Carolina. Georgia Tech has developed a bizarre strikes-and-gutters pattern, alternating wins and covers as underdogs with losses as favorites each of the past five weeks.

Saturday, Nov. 4
2:30 p.m. ET
CBS Sports Network

By now you know the drill on Commander-in-Chief’s unders, one of the greatest trends in the history of gambling.

The total opened at 36 but has dropped down to 31.5, offering an enticing number for those looking to bet a treasonous over. It’s honestly not a bad idea if you trust Air Force’s excellent offense (7th in Success Rate), but don’t expect much help from Army’s struggling attack (103rd).

Saturday, Nov. 4
3:30 p.m. ET

The first of two semifinals in the SEC this weekend, with the winner of each claiming the inside track to a spot in Atlanta. Missouri put a scare into these Bulldogs last fall under the lights in Faurot Field.

Is Georgia vulnerable enough to let that happen again?

Collin Wilson shared an intriguing scouting nugget: Georgia relies almost exclusively on quarters and Cover 3, but Missouri quarterback Brady Cook has his best splits against those looks.

Saturday, Nov. 4
3:30 p.m. ET

Is this the last Bedlam ever? That seems to be the case in the short term — maybe in 2040 or something these schools will get over it and bring back their storied rivalry.

The joke is that anything can happen in Bedlam — Oklahoma can win by a little, or it can win by a lot. The Sooners will put their 90-19-7 record in the series on the line as 6-point road favorites.

In recent weeks, they haven’t lived up to the level of play that they showed in their Red River win. Meanwhile, the underdog Cowboys were on fire in October, winning won and covering the spread four games in a row.

Saturday, Nov. 4
3:30 p.m. ET

This game made headlines when it opened at a historically low total of 29.5. It has since crept up by a skosh to 31.

With news out of Iowa that offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz will not return next season, perhaps his newly liberated young charges will go out and do something crazy, like get 200 yards or maybe two touchdowns.

Our BJ Cunningham lays out the case for the over.

Saturday, Nov. 4
5 p.m. ET

One of two 70-point totals on the board this week, this contest in San Marcos is drawing less attention than the star-studded affair in Los Angeles.

It shouldn’t because these are two of the fastest offenses in the country (pace numbers). Texas State’s new offense has taken the Sun Belt by storm, replicating the formula of Georgia Southern last year.

Saturday, Nov. 4
5:30 p.m. ET
Pac-12 Network

While most of the country will be enjoying perfect crisp autumn football weather this weekend, the Pacific Northwest has wind and drenching rain in the forecast for Saturday. (I acknowledge that this is perfect football weather for some of you sickos.)

This affects the handicap because how can you judge Oregon’s motivation? Will the Ducks look to sling it around and pad Bo Nix’s Heisman resume against a likely overmatched foe? Or will they play conservatively and look to escape the gnarly conditions with a safe, healthy win?

Saturday, Nov. 4
7:30 p.m. ET

A Heisman matchup in Hollywood, as the reigning winner Caleb Williams takes on the presumptive favorite Michael Penix Jr.

Despite a pair of lackluster games, and a surge from Michigan’s JJ McCarthy, the Washington quarterback still sits atop of the Heisman odds board at +277. A big game here could drop that number even further.

Saturday, Nov. 4
10 p.m. ET
CBS Sports Network

Our Group of Five Deep Dive podcast is essential weekly listening. This week’s episode was excellent and not just because you got to hear Mike Calabrese say the phrase “three very guilty-looking bananas.”

More importantly, Calabrese laid out a compelling handicap to lay the points with Fresno, while Mike Ianniello countered with a strong argument for Boise State.

This matchup of classic Mountain West powers is essentially a play-in to the league title game.

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