College Football Last Chance Value Picks Week 13: Two Rivalry Underdogs and a Favorite

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DJ Giddens #31 of the Kansas State Wildcats runs the ball for a touchdown against the Baylor Bears in the second half of the game at McLane Stadium. Ron Jenkins/Getty Images/AFP

Where did the season go? It doesn’t feel like it was that long ago it was Week 0 and we were all stunned by Northwestern as a 12-point underdog upsetting Nebraska in Ireland 26-21. And yet here we are in the last week of the regular season for college football.

When this time of year happens, it is Rivalry Week, when many of the biggest rivals with a rich tradition do battle for not only what is going on this season, but for bragging rights in many states for the next 364 days until they meet again.

That is our focus college football picks this week. Which rivalries have the most value against the spread?

If you’re looking to bet on your favorite local teams, don’t forget to check out our betting guides on the best sports betting sites for Florida and Kentucky.

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Louisville Cardinals vs. Kentucky Wildcats

Saturday, November 26, 2022 – 03:00 PM EST at Kroger Field

These two rivals are playing for the Governor's Cup, and despite starting this rivalry in 1912, this will be just the 33rd meeting.

The rivalry was suspended in 1924 because of the hatred the schools and fans had for one another, and they went 70 years between games, restarting in 1994 and having played every year since.

Louisville looked unprepared for their opening game and was whipped by Syracuse 31-7, and after another bad loss at Boston College, the Cardinals were 2-3. Doubts emerged if Louisville would even be bowl-eligible and if coach Scott Satterfield would be back for a fifth season. Then something clicked and the ‘Ville caught fire and they are 5-1 SU and ATS since, with their lone setback at Clemson.

Kentucky was 10-3 last year and though expectations were lowered having to replace a great deal of talent, particularly in the offensive and defensive lines, hopes were still high for a 9-win season.

The offensive line was a weakness from Day 1, both in run-blocking and pass protection. Keeping QB Will Levis on his feet was a continual issue and having running back Chris Rodriguez Jr. suspended until October robbed the Wildcats of continuity, which explains their 6-5 record.

Follow The Away Team

Kentucky is a 2.5-point home favorite to retain the Governor's Cup for a fourth straight time. However, the betting odds tell us the oddsmakers think Louisville is the better team (Kentucky gives 3.5 points playing in Lexington).

There are two keys to follow. The team with the most rushing yards is 24-1 SU and coming into this skirmish; the Cardinals average 197 rushing yards with the Wildcats at 121.

The other aspect to consider, the visiting team is 9-4 SU and 11-2 ATS. Take the points with the Cards.

NCAAF Pick: Louisville +2.5 (-105) at Bookmaker

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Kansas Jayhawks vs. Kansas State Wildcats

Saturday, November 26, 2022 – 08:00 PM EST at Bill Snyder Family Football Stadium

This in-state confrontation is known as The Sunflower Showdown. This battle started in 1902 and other 1910, they have met every year since, making it the fifth longest continuous rivalry in Division 1 college football.

Kansas got off to a stunning 5-0 start and was ranked in the Top 25 before falling 38-31 to what turned out to be a very good TCU crew. The Jayhawks have since lost five of six, and the biggest reason for the decline is that the defense was not strong enough to hold. If you skip the Tennessee Tech opener, Kansas allowed 27.5 PPG in their fast start. Since the Jayhawks have worn down, they’ve surrendered 39.8 PPG in their last half-dozen outings.

Coming off a 7-5 regular season, nobody was certain if Kansas State was better or the same in 2022. After falling to Tulane at home 17-10 to begin 2-1, that uncertainty only grew about the Wildcats. (That setback turned out to be nothing with the Green Wave 9-2 going into this weekend).

After upsetting Oklahoma the following week, K-State players believed they were good and their only two other losses were to TCU and Texas.

Kansas State Dominance in This Rivalry

People told Bill Snyder he was crazy for taking the Kansas State job in 1989, as it was probably the worst football program in D-1 football. Snyder made few promises, other than saying his top mission was to beat Kansas every year.

Beginning in 1993, Snyder went 22-1 SU in two stints against Kansas. Since 1992, K-State is 25-5 and 21-9 ATS over the Jayhawks, which includes 13-1 and 10-4 ATS at home.

With a victory, the Wildcats would make it to the Big 12 title game against TCU next week and when they are ranked like they are now (15th), they are 12-0 SU and ATS vs. Kansas.

NCAAF Pick: Kansas State -12 (-110) at Bookmaker

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Florida Gators vs. Florida State Seminoles

Friday, November 25, 2022 – 07:30 PM EST at Bobby Bowden Field at Doak Campbell Stadium

This will be a game worth watching on ABC Friday night and the atmosphere will be electric. This instate rivalry won’t be the same level of anticipation as the Steve Spurrier and Bobby Bowden years, but it might be on its way back to a high level.

Head coach Mike Norvell had an even bigger task than he expected in Tallahassee, but in his third season, he got rid of the selfish upperclassmen and replaced them with more athletic and talented players who are interested in winning for their teammates and the school instead of just for themselves.

The offensive catalyst is QB Jordan Travis who engineers the No.16 total offense in the country, which averages 35.4 PPG. As we have come to expect from Mike Norvell's teams, the offense is balanced, averaging 217 yards on the ground and 257 through the air. This year the defense made big strides, holding the opposing team 18.2 PPG which is 13th in points allowed.

The maturation in the Seminoles is shown after opening 4-0, followed by dropping three in a row by 18 total points, these Noles are on a 4-0 SU and ATS roll.

Gators Still Have Much to Improve

First-year coach Billy Napier will also need some time to turn things around in Gainesville. Florida is 6-4, and losing to Kentucky was a bit of a surprise, but less so coming out flat after upsetting Utah in the season lid-lifter.

Defeats to Tennessee, LSU and Georgia were mostly expected when looking back by last Saturday’s setback at Vanderbilt is the one truly black-eye after outgaining the Commodores by 162 yards. Chances are the Gators were looking to this battle. QB Anthony Richardson is a talent and as a sophomore, his best days are ahead of him. He tends to be hot or a little cold, yet, even with a defense that ranks 101st in total yards, Richardson can still carry them.

Florida To Keep it Closer Than Expected

The numbers suggest Florida State should win and cover the -10. If this was years ago in this rivalry, when the home teams and favorites used to dominate, we’d back the Seminoles.

But we believe Richardson will play an outstanding game and his running ability will create problems for the Noles to keep the Gators in the game.

Plus, coach Napier’s teams are 15-3-1 ATS as underdogs, and Florida slides under the number.

NCAAF Pick: Florida +10 (-110) at Bookmaker (visit our Bookmaker Review)

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*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.