College Football Odds & Moneyline Picks: Troy, TCU Lead Top Week 5 Underdog Bets
George Walker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: TCU running back Emari Demercado.
- Another college football Saturday means another day with value plenty of underdogs.
- Stuckey and Collin Wilson broke down to of their favorite moneyline underdogs below in TCU and Troy.
- Check out their full analysis for both Week 5 games below.
This week, Collin will get us started at noon with a home conference pup, while I'm going with a non-conference dog out on the highway in primetime. If you're feeling lucky, a parlay of both pays over 7-1 odds.
- 2018-21: 49-83 +4.1 units
- 2022: 2-6 +0.1 units
- Overall: 51-89 +4.2 units
Wilson: TCU +200
-110o / -110u
-110o / -110u
Plenty of questions remain unanswered for Oklahoma head coach Brent Venables after last week's home loss to Kansas State.
Dual-threat quarterback Adrian Martinez sliced the Sooners for 148 yards and four touchdowns on the ground to go along with 234 yards through the air.
Venables acknowledged issues at the linebacker position with no chance of highly-touted freshmen recruits providing aid to the position at the moment. Oklahoma has dropped to 110th in Defensive Line Yards and outside the top 75 in Success Rate.
Those defensive problems could prove costly once again this week against TCU, which fields one of the most explosive rushing attacks in the nation, led by another dual-threat quarterback in Max Duggan. He didn't have to run much last week against SMU because he didn't need to use his legs, but that could change this week.
Kendre Miller and Emari Demercado combined for three touchdowns and multiple chunk plays on the ground. Duggan also connected with 11 different targets against the Mustangs. Both are very positive signs that Duggan and company are getting more comfortable in Sonny Dykes' Air Raid offense in Fort Worth.
Oklahoma has plenty of statistical advantages on the offensive side of the ball, specifically through the air. TCU ranks 116th in Pass Rush in the new scheme deployed by defensive coordinator Joseph Gillespie. I expect that unit to continue to improve as the season progresses, but Oklahoma should move the ball.
As a result, this outcome will be determined by which offense maximizes third downs and scoring opportunities. So far, TCU has the clear advantage in both categories. For example, TCU ranks in the top 20 nationally in third-down conversion rate, while Oklahoma has been just average in that department.
As a result, TCU should remain a national leader in available yards gained against a struggling Sooners defense, giving them a very good chance to pull off this home upset against an Oklahoma team that is just 4-11 against the spread (26.7%) as a road conference favorite over the past five seasons, failing to cover by an average of over five points per game.
Stuckey: Troy +175
-115o / -105u
|Western Kentucky Odds|
-115o / -105u
I'll happily take close to 2-1 odds on the better team, per my latest power ratings iteration. I think we're getting value here due to a flawed perception difference between these teams.
Western Kentucky has covered three straight against FBS foes en route to a 3-1 start, but its three wins have come against Hawaii, FIU and Austin Peay. The former pair are arguably the two worst FBS teams in the country by a country mile. Austin Peay is actually the best of that trio and gave the Hilltoppers a game in Bowling Green in the opener, which many seem to have forgotten about.
Every metric obviously looks good for the Hilltoppers, but I'm not sure those statistics have much meaning given the schedule of opponents. This is still an offense that's trying to replace quarterback Bailey Zappe (now with the Patriots) and a host of other key starters.
Meanwhile, Troy sits at just 2-2 but has played an exponentially tougher schedule. If not for a miraculous last-second Hail Mary in Boone, it would boast a 3-1 record with wins over Marshall and Appalachian State with a lone loss at Ole Miss.
The experienced Trojans have one of the best defenses at the Group of Five level, led by stud linebacker Carlton Martial, who will likely break the FBS record for career tackles this year. They should serve as a rude awakening for this Hilltoppers team that has played nothing but fluff to date.
Additionally, quarterback Jarret Doege transferred from WKU to Troy right before the season started. I'm sure he can share some potential valuable trade secrets, as Troy head coach Jon Sumrall alluded to earlier this week.
There's too much value to pass up here with Troy.