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NCAAF Betting Rewind/Lookahead: Upsets Abound

What a weekend it was in the college football world with four top-20 teams losing and another one barely escaping with its undefeated record still intact.

When looking at the college football best bets, five underdogs from the Power-5 conferences won outright on Saturday while No. 3 Texas, No. 10 Notre Dame and No. 17 Miami were among the favorites to fall.

NCAAF Betting Rewind/Lookahead: Upsets Abound
Quarterback Dillon Gabriel #8 of the Oklahoma Sooners | Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images/AFP

When reviewing the biggest Week 6 upsets, Miami, favored by 19 points, stumbled late in a 23-20 loss to Georgia Tech. Previously winless UConn was a 10-point underdog before going on the road to win at Rice 38-31. No. 5 Florida State, No. 9 Southern California and No. 16 Ole Miss all won but failed to cover.

Eleven of the 13 remaining undefeated Football Bowl Subdivision teams hail from the Power-5 conferences. The ACC, Big Ten and Pac-12 lead the way with three each. Nevada and Sam Houston State are the only winless FBS teams.

When looking at the college football score predictions, there are four Week 7 matchups between teams ranked in the Top 25 in the Associated Press poll.

In the national polls, Oklahoma moved from 12th to No. 5 and Louisville went up 11 spots to No. 14 in the Associated Press poll. Texas and Washington each dropped six spots and Notre Dame fell from 10th to 21st. In the American Football Coaches Association poll, Oklahoma went from 12th to seventh and Louisville from 25th to 15th in that poll while Texas dropped out of the top 10 and Miami fell out of the top 25.

Georgia (+250) leads the way in the odds of winning the national title. Michigan (+350), Florida State (+900) and Ohio State (+900) are the next closest competitors according to the college football odds. The title-winning odds for Texas fell from +750 to +2000.

Oklahoma Strikes Late

The final regularly scheduled Big 12 game between longtime rivals Oklahoma and Texas was expected to be the game of the week and it did not disappoint.

Dillon Gabriel‘s touchdown pass with 15 seconds to go lifted the Sooners to the 34-30 win over favored Texas. Oklahoma, listed by the sportsbook as a four-point underdog, delivered the biggest win in the two seasons with Brent Venables as Oklahoma’s head coach.

 

Texas quarterback Quinn Ewers threw for 346 yards but also had a pair of costly interceptions and that included one on the opening drive.

Texas doesn’t face another ranked team for the remainder of the regular season so time will tell whether a win over Alabama earlier in the season will be enough to get the Longhorns in the College Football Playoff if they win out.

Lack of the Irish

There would be no late-game drama for Notre Dame when the Fighting Irish headed to play Louisville.

Notre Dame, which had won 30 games in a row against Atlantic Coast Conference teams, saw Louisville score 16 straight points to open the fourth quarter on the way to a 33-20 win. It marked the first time that Louisville defeated top-10 teams in back-to-back seasons and it was done with different head coaches.

After losing late to Ohio State earlier this season, there will be no hopes of Notre Dame securing one of the four spots in the College Football Playoffs.

Fighting Irish coach Marcus Freeman is taking some heat for the Notre Dame performance, but not nearly as much criticism that is coming the way of Miami’s Mario Cristobal.

With a chance to take a knee and run out the clock, Miami instead called for a running play while up by three points in the final minute. Running back Don Chaney fumbled and Georgia Tech stunned the Hurricanes on a 44-yard touchdown pass from Haynes King to Christian Leary with just one second left to play to give the Yellow Jackets the improbable 23-20 win.

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USC Trojans Hold On – Again

Southern California continues to live dangerously.

After nearly blowing a 27-point halftime lead to Colorado a week earlier, the Trojans needed to stop a two-point conversion pass in the third overtime to escape with a 43-41 win over Arizona.

Reigning Heisman Trophy winner Caleb Williams had three touchdown runs, but he had a pretty quiet game throwing the ball and the defense once again looked very much like the unit that might spoil USC’s title hopes.

Among Football Bowl Subdivision teams, only South Carolina, Georgia Tech, LSU and Colorado allow more yards per game than the Trojans.

USC might join Oregon and Washington as the other undefeated teams in the Pac-12, but the Trojans are tied with California for last place in the Pac-12 with a 2-4 record against the college football lines after going into the game as a 21-point favorite.

Favorites Rolling Right Along

While Texas stumbled, the top teams didn’t have any issues winning in Week 6.

No. 1 Georgia rolled to a 51-13 win over previously undefeated Kentucky as tight end Brock Bowers (seven catches, 132 yards) had another huge game and the defense held Kentucky running back Ray Davis to 59 yards.

Michigan headed to Minnesota and extended its Big Ten winning streak to 17 games with a 52-10 rout. A pair of interceptions for touchdowns enabled the Wolverines to cover with ease as a 19-point favorite. That worked out well for those rolling with Michigan are part of the NCAA free picks and parlays.

Ohio State had a little more of a challenge in covering as a 17½-point favorite, but managed to do just that with a 37-17 win over previously undefeated Maryland. Receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. broke out with 163 yards on eight catches.

Week 6 Bad Beats

There were some anxious moments for those who bet online during Week 6.

Ohio State, listed as the 17½-point favorite, led Maryland by 17 points with just over two minutes left to play before a late field goal gave the Buckeyes a 20-point lead.

LSU, which was favored by 6-6½ points, was only up by three points on Missouri before the Tigers scored a defensive touchdown with 34 seconds to play.

Temple, a 14-point underdog, trailed UTSA 49-34 and had four plays inside the 10 on its final drive to come through with the back-door cover, but the Owls were unable to pull it off.

Texas A&M had a touchdown nullified by a penalty with 2:58 to play. The Aggies eventually settled for the field goal for the final points in a 26-20 loss. If the Aggies had the touchdowns and extra point, they would have covered. The field goal still sent the game over the 45-point total.

Boise State, the eight-point favorite against San Jose State, led by eight when Jonah Dalmas lined up for a 54-yard field goal with 54 seconds left. It was no good as the game ended with an eight-point margin.

When Thomas Castellanos scored from 1 yard out with 25 seconds to play, he not only lifted Boston College to the 27-24 win over Army but the TD sent the game over the 47-point total.

Taking a Look Ahead

The Week 7 schedule will be headlined by a top-10 battle in the Pac-12 with No. 8 Oregon traveling to meet No. 7 Washington.

Quarterbacks Michael Penix Jr. of Washington and Bo Nix of Oregon rank third and fifth nationally in passing efficiency. They have combined for 31 touchdown passes and just three interceptions.

Three of the last four games between the Huskies and Ducks have been decided by four points or less and this could be another barn burner with host Washington favored by three points. The 67½-point total is the highest among the games from the Power-5 conferences.

Keep an eye on the USC-Notre Dame, Miami-North Carolina, UCLA-Oregon State and Texas A&M-Tennessee games as well.

Sooners, Ducks, Nittany Lions Still Overall/ATS Perfect

There are still three teams with perfect records outright and against the college football odds.

That list is headlined by Oklahoma thanks to the win over Texas. Oregon’s perfect record will be on the line against Washington while Penn State is coming off a bye week and steps out of conference to face a 1-6 UMass team.

Liberty remained undefeated on the field, but a five-point win over winless Sam Houston knocked the Flames from the group of teams that have covered in every game this season.

Illinois and Vanderbilt are the only teams yet to cover against the NCAA football odds this season.

On the Move

Here’s a look at the biggest line moves in Week 6.

The biggest line movement among teams from the Power-5 conferences came in the Kentucky-Georgia game. The Wildcats were 23½-point underdogs on Sept. 28. The line moved to 17 a week before the game and closed at 14½. Georgia led 34-7 at halftime and had no issues covering for the first time this season.

Wake Forest went from being a 14½-point underdog against Clemson to a 20½-point underdog by kickoff. The Demon Deacons lost 17-12 but easily covered.

The Oklahoma-Texas, Maryland-Ohio State, and Syracuse-North Carolina had three-point moves.

Oklahoma not only covered as 3½-point underdogs, the Sooners won the game outright on a Dillon Gabriel touchdown pass with 15 seconds left to play to give Oklahoma the 34-30 win.

 

 

What are the most profitable college football betting markets?

Going with double-digit underdogs to cover can pay off rather well.

 

How can past performances affect college football predictions?

Teams like Georgia, Alabama, Michigan and Ohio State are in contention for the national title every season.

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