The curtain is set to fall on the college football regular season this week, so this is the final chance to profit and a full slate of games this weekend. With that in mind, we look at some of the line moves on the CFB odds board in order to spot the best value bets.
So without too much fuss or muss, let’s get started.
Line Moves on the College Football Odds Board
No.2 Ohio State at No. 6 Michigan
Lookahead Line: Ohio State -7 1/2
Opening Line: Ohio State -7 1/2
Current Line: Ohio State -8
Ohio State took down Michigan State last weekend with shocking ease, beating the Spartans 56-7 to improve to 10-1 overall and 8-0 in the Big Ten. A big factor in the victory was the play of quarterback C.J. Stroud, who torched the Spartans defense. Stroud completed 32 of 35 passes for 432 yards and six touchdowns, advancing his case in the run for the Heisman Trophy this season.
Michigan took down Maryland 59-18 for its third straight win and improved to 10-1 overall and 7-1 in the Big Ten. The Wolverines easily covered as the 16-point road favorites for college football picks, thanks to running back Donovan Edwards running riot over the Terrapins with 10 catches for170 yards receiving and a touchdown.
The stakes are high in this matchup with both teams looking to get into the Big Ten Championship mix and, even, the College Football playoffs. Ohio State has won the last eight meetings with Michigan, but for the first time in forever, Jim Harbaugh has Michigan playing competitive football. Harbaugh’s record against Ohio State is 0-6, so there’s nothing he’d like more than to finally snap the negative trend.
Alas, not only are the odds stacked against Michigan, but the public appears to be betting up the Buckeyes. As it is, the line has jumped out to Ohio State -8 and it could tick up as bettors find the Buckeyes infinitely more appealing.
For those that fancy the Wolverines in this pivotal Big Ten showdown, waiting to see how high this line ticks up might be the smart move. As scintillating an upset by Michigan is in theory, it’s going to be a tough ask. Therefore, the more points you can grab with Michigan, the better.
No.10 Oklahoma at No.7 Oklahoma State
Lookahead Line: Oklahoma State -3½
Opening Line: Oklahoma State -3½
Current Line: Oklahoma State -4½
One of the biggest games of the week is the Big 12 showdown between No.10 Oklahoma and No. 7 Oklahoma State. By all accounts, this game is expected to be a competitive and hard-fought battle. Both are tied for first place in the Big 12 behind a 10-1 overall mark and a 7-1 record in conference play. Appropriately, oddsmakers went to press with a modest line for betting online enthusiasts to sink their teeth into, opening Oklahoma State as the -3½ home favorites.
Considering the quality of both teams, one would have thought that the Sooners at +3½ would have attracted bettors. On the contrary, the Cowboys appear to have had more pull at early doors, with 60% of early bets laying the points with the hosts.
The upshot of which has seen the line jump up by at least a point in the market, opening up even better value on the Sooners than initially existed. That’s great news for those looking to back the Sooners to close out their Big12 sojourn in winning fashion. But don’t prevaricate because buyback on the Sooners could push this line back down before kick-off.
Penn State at No.12 Michigan State
Lookahead Line: Michigan State -1
Opening Line: Penn State -1
Current Line: Penn State -2
Michigan State’s ambition and dreams of grandeur came crashing down last weekend, on the heels of an embarrassing defeat to the Buckeyes. There will be no Big Ten Championship or College Football Playoffs for the Spartans.
On the heels of the disappointment, market sentiment clearly turned against the Spartans because they opened as the slight underdogs at home to Penn State. Michigan State is 9-2 on the season and 6-2 in Big Ten play.
The Nittany Lions, in the meanwhile, bounced back into the win column with a shutout of Rutgers (28-0). They improved to a 7-4 record overall and a 4-4 record in the Big Ten. Backup quarterback Christian Veilleux stepped in for Sean Clifford after the starter suffered an injury. Vellieux threw for 235 yards and three touchdowns.
Everything about this market and the line movement feels like an overreaction to one bad loss and the end of College Football Playoffs contention. It still doesn’t change the fact that Michigan State is at home where the Spartans are … wait for i t… undefeated (5-0).
Penn State has had a good season but not a great one. Most of their victories have come against lesser opponents in the conference. However, against the top-tier, Penn State has struggled.
For Michigan State backers, this market currently is wildly attractive so grab the Spartans as the +1, +1 ½ or, even, +2 home underdogs before this line dwindles down to a pick’em or crosses over into favorite territory.