Week 4 of college football treated fans to an exciting day filled with non-stop action. Best part? Our predictions definitely contributed to the thrills of the day. From noon until nearly midnight, we immersed ourselves in game after game with the Huskies covering their spread and securing another win to our tally in order to go up 3-2 for a winning day. So what do we have in store for our College Football Week 5 Editor’s Picks?
Well, given that Colorado is the talk of the town, almost all our writers have thoughts on their game against USC. Despite the Buffaloes getting shot down by the Oregon Ducks (42-6) last week and falling off the Top 25 ranked teams list, they’ll be under the spotlight again as the Heisman winner of last year, Caleb Williams, visits Boulder for an early kickoff.
In other exciting matchups, we’ll explore the possibility of an upset in the LSU and Ole Miss game, take a look into the Sun Belt conference for some late value, see what our computers predict for Illinois vs. Purdue and I’ll tell you why you should take the under in the Virginia game.
Ready for some fun? Let’s break down the NCAAF odds for Week 5.
LSU Tigers vs. Ole Miss Rebels
Saturday, September 30, 2023 – 06:00 PM EDT at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium
The first matchup on Saturday I want to focus on is LSU heading to Mississippi to face the Rebels as a 2.5-point favorite.
While Lane Kiffin is far from my favorite coach in college football, I do think that the Rebels can pull the upset here. Sure, many were counting on them to knock down Alabama even more in the rankings but Nick Saban and his Crimson Tide (one of his worsts) beat them in Tuscaloosa, 24-17.
I do think that Brian Kelly has improved the Tigers but I do think it’s far from being a finished product. Anyways, I digress, let’s allow our upset expert, Rainman, explain why he also likes Ole Miss in this spot.
“Their ability to limit Alabama quarterback Jalen Milroe’s scrambling ability justifies the hope that they hamper the scrambling prowess of LSU’s quarterback Jayden Daniels. Ashanti Cistrunk, for Ole Miss, is one of the SEC’s best returning linebackers. He adds stoutness to the immediate impact that top former recruit and fellow linebacker Suntarine Perkins has exercised especially on the pass rush.
“With this linebacker group and under a more effective defensive coordinator, Ole Miss will keep Daniels in check. The Rebels’ improved run defense will also help their rush attack be superior to LSU’s.” Rainman
NCAAF Pick: Ole Miss ML (+130) at BetOnline
Troy Trojans vs. Georgia State Panthers
Saturday, September 30, 2023 – 07:00 PM EDT at Center Parc Stadium
I know that the Sun Belt Conference is not home to the coolest teams but somehow life forced me to watch Troy against James Madison a couple of weeks ago and I have to say I was impressed by their offense. True, it is a work in progress and they have more potential than actual quality right now.
However, if my colleague LT Profits has found last-minute value in this matchup, then he’s got my attention. All I can say is that Troy passed the eye test while attempting a last-minute comeback a couple of weeks ago.
“There is a reason that Georgia State is close to a pick’em at home with a 4-0 record as that has come vs. one of the weakest schedules in the country, as the four teams that the Panthers have beaten have combined for just one win over FBS competition.
“And yet, despite that schedule, Georgia State ranks 98th in the country in total defense allowing 401.0 yards per game. Granted, the Panthers are 39th in total offense at 439.8 yards per contest, but that unit is now facing a “real” defense for the first time, with Troy ranking 28th in total defense, even holding Kansas State to below 400 yards.
“So we feel the records of both of these teams are deceiving as we see Troy as the better squad that should emerge victorious.” LT Profits
Illinois Fighting Illini vs. Purdue Boilermakers
Saturday, September 30, 2023 – 03:30 PM EDT at Ross-Ade Stadium
Sitting at 1-3, it’s hard to think that Purdue has been any good this season, especially considering that their only victory came against V-Tech. However, the Boilermakers had a chance of beating Fresno State, a team that just made its way into the Top 25 ranked teams. Last week they looked decent against Wisconsin.
Still, their passing game is atrocious and I think this is a tough matchup for them. Our football expert, Jason Radowitz, got the best college football predictions from our computers including taking Illinois on the moneyline, so I’ll let him expand.
“The good news is that Purdue’s pass rush is weak, and they’ve missed many tackles to start the season. The Boilermakers, like Illinois, have also allowed more than 400 yards per game on defense. It’s just that Illinois has been converting tackles and has looked better against the run.
“Illinois should be more consistent defensively against Hudson Card and Purdue’s offense. Card has only thrown three touchdowns and also has three interceptions this season. The run game for Purdue also hasn’t been as sharp.” Jason Radowitz
NCAAF Pick: Illinois ML (+110) at Bovada
USC Trojans vs. Colorado Buffaloes
Saturday, September 30, 2023 – 12:00 PM EDT at Folsom Field
Colorado was outperformed in every aspect of the game, last week against Oregon. The Ducks slammed the brakes on the Buffaloes’ hype train with a 42-6 victory… or did they? As soon as the line came out, the public ran to dump more money on Colorado, especially after watching Caleb Williams and USC struggle to cover the spread against a lesser Arizona State team.
But, with the money continuing to pour on Colorado and the line sitting pretty at 21.5, just like it did last week, it’s clear that the oddsmakers want the public to take the underdog.
Our college football senior writer, Willie Bee, has the Trojans as one of his best bets for Saturday and I’m tailing right behind.
“Southern Cal has never lost to Colorado, winning all 16 meetings with the last 11 coming as PAC-12 foes. The Trojans have won four of the last five by double digits and covered a massive 34.5-point spread in the matchup a season ago in Los Angeles. The three most recent games in Boulder all went ‘over’ the totals, with this year’s target set at 73.5.
“Sanders and the Buffs felt disrespected at being 3-TD underdogs at Oregon last Saturday, then went out and proved the oddsmakers weren’t generous enough in a 42-6 humiliation up in Eugene. An offense that averaged more than 41 PPG in the first 3 outings was held to under 200 yards and only managed to avoid being shut out with a late score.” Willie Bee
Penn State Nittany Lions vs. Northwestern Wildcats
Saturday, September 30, 2023 – 12:00 PM EDT at Ryan Field
Before the season started, it was already clear that Northwestern would struggle to be competitive. However, many will look at the 2-2 record and their win over Minnesota and wonder if there is any value in the Wildcats getting more than 20 points against Penn State.
Short answer: No! If there is something that James Franklin has proven is that he likes to take advantage of weaker teams, like Northwestern. Franklin is one of those coaches who seems to be aware of the spread, especially after a late touchdown call against West Virginia, back in Week 1.
But hey, the Nittany Lions are 4-0 both straight-up and ATS. Coincidence? Listen, or better said, read what our guru Donnie RightSide has to say.
“This is what they do when they have a team that’s not as good as them. They love to put them away and put them away with ease, similar to what you saw in the game against Illinois and also the game last week. They absolutely hammered Iowa at home.
“Now this is a road game here, the opening line actually was 21.5 and has now bounced up to 25.5 and I do believe that Penn State is going to win this game by four plus touchdowns.” Donnie RightSide
NCAAF Pick: Penn State -25.5 (-110) at BetOnline
Virginia Cavaliers vs. Boston College Eagles
Saturday, September 30, 2023 – 02:00 PM EDT at Alumni Stadium
Given the number of teams in college football, looking for value might not always result in a top matchup or backing a good team. Taking into account that it also depends on circumstances, sometimes you might end up having to settle for a 0-4 team going on the road against a 1-3 team.
Well, that’s the case for my pick this week, as I look towards the Virginia and Boston College. The Cavaliers’ record is awful, but they have been a fun team to watch, in particular quarterback Anthony Colandrea.
Last week they almost pulled a last-minute comeback against NC State (24-21) that would have been a huge upset for the Wolfpack. However, given what I’ve seen, I feel there is even more value in the total of this game.
The line opened up at 55.5 and although the ticket count is on the over, the money has poured in on the under.
Another thing to consider is the fact that BC averages 28 points per game while Virginia sits at 20.8. However, that number should be lower as the Cavaliers have failed to score more than 14 points in two of their four games. The only outlier was 35 points against JMU.
Let’s side with the pros and back the under in this game, before it goes below the key number of 54.
NCAAF Pick: Under 54 (-110) at BetOnline
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.