One Betting Tip, Trend or Stat for Every Week 3 College Football Game
USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Gary Patterson, Tom Herman and Matt Luke
- We've identified one key betting tip, trend, stat or thing to know for each college football game in Week 3.
- Use them as a starting point to your handicapping if you're trying to quickly run through the card.
OK, fine. Some games have two items. And there’s not one for every college football game. Just FBS vs. FBS ones.
If you want to quickly whip through the entire Saturday betting card, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve compiled one interesting thing bettors should know about each game. Stats, tips, situational spots, trends, things like that.
Use them as a starting point, but not as gospel. There’s too much to say about many of these games to fit in one post.
>> All odds as of 12 p.m. ET Friday. Download The Action Network App to get real-time odds and track your bets.
The Marquee Matchups
1. Ohio State (-12.5, 59) vs. TCU: In the 15 games in our database where a Texas-based team hosted a non-Texas opponent at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, the out-of-staters are 11-4 (73.3%) against the spread.
2. Since Gary Patterson took over at TCU in 2000, the Horned Frogs are 18-6 ATS as touchdown underdogs (9-1 last 10).
3. Alabama (-21, 71) at Ole Miss: S&P+ rankings for each team’s units…
- Alabama offense: 5
- Ole Miss offense: 1
- Alabama defense: 7
- Ole Miss defense: 115
4. USC at Texas (-3.5, 47): Trojans coach Clay Helton is 1-9 ATS as an underdog.
5. LSU at Auburn (-9.5, 44): SEC home favorites, such as Auburn, are 63-38-2 (62%) ATS since 2005, by far the best mark of any conference.
LSU quarterback Joe Burrow has completed just 47.7% of his passes for a lowly 6.6 yards per attempt against Miami and SE Louisiana.
6. Washington (-5, 47) at Utah: Winds of 15-20 mph are expected in Salt Lake City. When 20-mph winds hit a stadium, the under cashes 64.3% of the time.
7. Boise State at Oklahoma State (-2.5, 64.5): Boise State outgained UConn 818-193 last week in its 62-7 home victory.
OK, I Can Get Into These Games
8. FSU (-2.5, 68) at Syracuse: The Noles have received fewer than 40% of the betting action in only 12 games since 2011, and are 2-10 ATS in that spot. They’re getting 39% of bets at Syracuse.
9. Miami (-10.5, 57.5) at Toledo: Football Outsiders’ S&P+ rates Toledo (19) higher than Miami (32). The Rockets are also coming off a bye, for some reason.
10. Oklahoma (-17.5, 55.5) at Iowa State: Cyclones coach Matt Campbell is 22-12 ATS as an underdog, and 9-3 ATS as a double-digit underdog.
11. Duke at Baylor (-6, 49): This line swung 10 points in Baylor’s favor after Duke quarterback Daniel Jones was ruled out. It opened Blue Devils -4.
12. Hawaii at Army (-7, 62): Hawaii has one of the toughest situational spots of the season on Saturday — at noon ET (6 a.m. Hawaii time), about 5,000 miles from home and against an option offense. But its 5-2 ATS in the Eastern Time Zone since 2005.
13. Missouri (-6, 65.5) at Purdue: Purdue is 0-2, and has a -4 turnover margin (tied for 123rd out of 130 teams) and has averaged 90 penalty yards per game (121st). Mental errors.
14. BYU at Wisconsin (-21, 44): BYU was fourth-best in FBS at limiting explosive rushing plays last season, which will definitely be needed against Jonathan Taylor.
15. Arizona State (-6, 48) at San Diego State: ASU defensive coordinator Danny Gonzales coached with SDSU coach Rocky Long from 1999-2017.
So either he knows a lot about the Aztecs, or they know a lot about him. My guess is SDSU knows how to attack the Sun Devils defense.
16. Vanderbilt at Notre Dame (-13.5, 52): Vandy has covered its first two games by an average of 23 points, the second-highest margin in the country.
17. Houston (-1.5, 69) at Texas Tech: The Red Raiders haven’t allowed a sack yet this season. Houston’s Ed Oliver is a terrifying man (18 tackles, 4 TFL).
You Better Give Me a Great Reason to Bet These
18. Fresno State (-2.5, 49) at UCLA: Seventy-one percent of bettors are on UCLA, but 56% of dollars are on Fresno, moving this like from PK to -2.5.
19. Temple at Maryland (-17, 54.5): Our data at Sports Insights tracked seven steam moves that drove this over/under from 46.5 to 55 before another one came in on the under on Friday morning.
20. Troy at Nebraska (-10.5, 57.5): Despite losing its opener to Colorado, Nebraska outgained the Buffaloes by nearly 200 yards.
21. Arkansas State (-1.5, 72) at Tulsa: Group of 5 teams are 16-6 ATS the week after playing Alabama since Nick Saban took over in 2007. Ark State got blown out by the Tide last week, 57-7.
22. Miami Ohio at Minnesota (-13, 46.5): Miami is 5-18 in games decided by one possession since Chuck Martin took over as coach in 2014.
23. UMass at FIU (-4, 62.5): Nearly 90% of betting tickets are on the UMass-FIU under, but nearly 90% of dollars are on the over. It’s moved from 59 to 62.5
24. South Florida (-10.5, 59) at Illinois: Last season, USF outgained Illinois by more than 300 yards in a 47-23 win.
25. Central Michigan at Northern Illinois (-14, 46): NIU is last in FBS in yards per play at 3.18. CMU is ninth-worst at 4.25.
26. Georgia Southern at Clemson (-33, 47.5): Clemson plays an option offense this week, then another next week against Georgia Tech.
27. Tulane (-3.5, 57) at UAB: This is the second consecutive week UAB faces an option offense.
28. Ohio vs. Virginia (-3.5, 54): The total fell from 48 to 41 with Hurricane Florence expected to hit Charlottesville, but has since jumped all the way to 54 after the game got moved to Nashville.
29. North Texas-Arkansas (-7, 68.5): North Texas ranks third in the country with 6.61 plays per drive. The Mean Green can drain the clock with calculated yet efficient possessions.
30. Georgia Tech (-4, 54.5) at Pittsburgh: GT ranks 116th in passing offense, and Pittsburgh is even worse at 124th.
31. Colorado State at Florida (-20, 58.5): Florida ranked bottom 15 in percentage of solo tackles by opponents last season, meaning it doesn’t spread defenses out at all. Maybe that will bode better for CSU, which was torched by Hawaii’s run-and-shoot and Colorado’s spread offense.
32. Eastern Michigan at Buffalo (-3, 53): In the last three seasons, EMU is 14-2 ATS as an underdog.
You Cannot Make Me Bet These Games
33. Rutgers at Kansas (-3, 44.5): Rutgers has received the majority of the bets against a Power 5 team just five times since 2009.
The Scarlet Knights are getting 61% of bets against Kansas, dropping the line from +4 to +2.5 in some places.
34. Oregon State at Nevada (-3, 69): Oregon State’s offense has averaged at least 6.2 yards per play, a strong number, in each of its first two games — one at Ohio State and one against Southern Utah.
35. UTEP at Tennessee (-31, 47.5): UTEP has played at the slowest adjusted pace in the country this year and last. Its total against Tennessee has dropped from 51 to 47.5.
37. Kent State at Penn State (-34.5, 65): Kent State used to play at one of the slowest paces in the country, but under Art Briles/Dino Babers disciple Sean Lewis, the Golden Flashes are top 20 in plays per minute. They’re airing it out early and often.
38. Middle Tennessee at Georgia (-32, 55.5): This game got moved up to noon ET due to Hurricane Florence, but no rain is expected. The total has jumped from 52 to 55.5.
39. SMU at Michigan (-35.5, 53.5): SMU hasn’t topped 260 total yards in either of its first two games.
Seriously, Stop Trying
40. Akron at Northwestern (-21, 45): Northwestern forced seven punts on seven Duke possessions in the second half last week, and still lost by 14.
41. UL Lafayette at Mississippi State (-33, 64.5): ULL was 129th of 130 teams in defensive rushing efficiency last season.
MSU has run the ball better than almost anyone in the country so far this season. Kylin Hill has 261 yards on just 26 carries, while QB Nick Fitzgerald went for 159 yards on 19 attempts last week vs. Kansas State.
42. UL Monroe at Texas A&M (-27, 66): Texas A&M lost a heartbreaker to Clemson last week and plays at Alabama next week. Order up: a UL Monroe Sandwich.
43. Western Kentucky at Louisville (-23, 57): Remember when WKU was one of the best G5 teams in the country? The Hilltoppers lost to FCS Maine at home last week.
44. Texas State-South Alabama (-10, 49.5): South Alabama lost senior QB Dallas Davis as a grad transfer in the spring and hasn’t settled on a replacement.
The two guys vying for the job have combined for a 49% completion percentage and 4.0 yards per attempt, which ranks 129th in the FBS.
45. New Mexico (-4, 58) at New Mexico State: The week after playing Wisconsin, teams are 45-67 (40%) ATS since 2007. New Mexico played the Badgers last week.
46. San Jose State at Oregon (-42, 67.5): Oregon hosts Stanford next week in primetime, creating a lookahead spot here that could give San Jose State some value (vomits).
47. Ball State at Indiana (-14.5, 58): Ball State had one of the worst passing offenses in the country last season (5.2 yards per attempt, 128th of 130 teams). It hasn’t gotten much better this year (6.0, tied for 104th) despite a competitive game against Notre Dame last week.
Indiana has ranked top 40 in yards allowed per pass attempt in each of the last two seasons, although it did lose a good chunk of defensive contributors this offseason.