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Each week we will provide trends for the top teams in college football. Some trends will be team specific and others situational. Our database goes back to 2005, the trends include all games in that time frame unless otherwise mentioned.
No. 1 Alabama vs. Mercer (currently, no line)
The Iron Bowl will decide the SEC West title but before Alabama’s showdown with Auburn in Week 13, the Tide will host Mercer. Bettors shouldn’t look past the FCS school, they are often undervalued in games against Top 25 teams.
- Ranked teams against FCS opponents are 55-82 (40.1%) ATS since 2005
No. 2 Miami (-19) vs. Virginia
Miami didn’t just beat Notre Dame, they throttled the Irish 41-8. The 33-point victory was the second largest for the Canes in the Miami-Notre Dame series. The undefeated Hurricanes opened as 17-point favorites over Virginia, behind a majority of spread bets the line has moved to -19. It has not been profitable to wager on teams after a big win against a ranked opponent.
All teams after beating a ranked opponent by 30 or more points: 41-45-2 (47.7%) ATS
- If they are getting more than 50% of spread bets: 27-38-2 (41.5%) ATS
No. 3 Oklahoma (-35) at Kansas
Oklahoma is back in playoff contention following wins over No. 6 TCU and No. 11 Oklahoma State. Saturday’s matchup against Kansas is a step down in competition but the Sooners might struggle to cover the spread. At the time of publication more than 80% of spread bets are on OU in Lawrence.
In College Football Playoff era, teams favored by 30 or more points: 139-195-6 (41.6%) ATS
- Against conference rivals: 17-34 (33.3%) ATS
No. 4 Clemson vs. The Citadel (currently, no line)
On average, in our database, The Citadel has been underdogs of more than 30 points against FBS teams. Against ranked teams the spread jumps to 45-points. Saturday’s contest will be no different with Clemson as a heavy favorite at home. Bettors should be leery of laying the points with the No. 4 team in the country.
- In College Football Playoff era, top 5 teams vs. unranked opponents: 64-94-3 (40.5%) ATS
No. 5 Wisconsin (-7.5) vs. Michigan
As Dan McGuire points out in his college football opening line report, bettors have pounced on the Wolverines. Michigan opened as double-digit underdogs and are already down to +7.5. Wisconsin is a perfect 10-0, is this the week the Badgers fall?
Undefeated teams late in the season (November/December): 113-122-5 (48.1%) ATS
- In College Football Playoff era: 22-42-1 (34.4%) ATS
No. 6 Auburn (-36.5) vs. Louisiana Monroe
Auburn looked impressive in a 40-17 win over No. 1 Georgia. The Tigers’ national championship odds improved from 80-1 to 10-1 after the rout of the Bulldogs and the lookahead line for the Iron Bowl moved from Alabama -10 to -3. Fans in Auburn are excited, and rightfully so, but it seems everyone is looking past Louisiana Monroe. The Warhawks (4-5) aren’t going to be upset the Tigers but a cover is in play.
After beating a top 5 opponent, teams are 57-63-3 (47.5%) ATS
- Favored by 10 or more points in next game: 23-34-2 (40.4%) ATS
No. 7 Georgia (-21.5) vs. Kentucky
Saturday loss against Auburn was ugly but the good news for Georgia is that it is not out of the College Football Playoff race. The Dawgs are expected to rebound against Kentucky. UGA is -1650 on the moneyline, a 94.3% implied probability of winning. The Bulldogs are heavy favorites, can they win and cover?
- Top 10 team after a loss: 28-49-6 (36.4%) ATS
No. 8 Ohio State (-39.5) vs. Illinois
A week after getting rolled by Iowa, Ohio State stomped Michigan State 48-3. The defense that surrendered 55 points to the Hawkeyes allowed just a field goal at home to the Spartans. Will the defense shine again vs. the Illini?
- Teams that held ranked opponent to 3 or fewer points: 19-28 (40.4%) ATS
No. 9 Notre Dame (-17) vs. Navy
Ranked teams don’t get blown out often. Notre Dame’s 33-point loss to Miami was humbling. The Irish will try to get back on track with a home game against Navy. ND is a 17-point favorite over the Midshipmen.
- Ranked teams after losing by 30 or more points: 13-24-1 (35.1%) ATS
No. 10 Oklahoma State vs. Kansas State (currently, no line)
Oklahoma State is back in the Top 10 after beating No. 21 Iowa State 49-42 in Ames. Mike Gundy and the Cowboys need some help but the team’s Big 12 title hopes are still alive. The Pokes can help themselves by taking care of business against Kansas State on Saturday.
- Top 10 team after beating a ranked opponent: 165-178-4 (48.1%) ATS
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