Saturday’s Best Bets: Add This College Football Week 9 Parlay

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Georgia Tech's DB Tre Swilling #3 celebates a safety against Clemson on September 18, 2021. Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images/AFP

The sports betting sites have released their NCAAF odds for Saturday’s Week 9 action. Two games, in particular, interest me as worth investing in, Virginia Tech vs. Georgia Tech and Virginia vs. BYU.

For reasons that I will explain below, you should play the total in the first game and the money-line in the second. Feel free to parlay both bets at the top sportsbooks in order to maximize your profit.

Virginia Tech Hokies vs. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

Saturday, October 30, 2021 – 12:00 PM EDT at Bobby Dodd Stadium

Virginia Tech Run Defense

Like last year, and it was apparent last week, Virginia Tech’s run defense continues to struggle. Currently, the Hokies rank 91st nationally in limiting opposing rushing yards per game. They faced a Syracuse offense last week that is absolutely run-first. The Orange quarterback is the type who thrives most as a runner. His completion percentage on the season is barely over 50 percent.

Nevertheless, Syracuse’s offense was able to amass 314 rushing yards en route to a 41-point output. Last week’s game shows that Virginia Tech’s run defense remains powerless even when it knows that the opponent will run the ball.

With our best bets in mind, I find the Syracuse game instructive because Georgia Tech, too, is known for being a run-first team. Because the Yellow Jackets rank in the upper half nationally in run percentage and have plenty of runners whom they like to feed, they match up well against the Hokies’ problematic run defense.

Georgia Tech’s run-play percentage dropped because it had to come from behind against Virginia -- and still, the Jackets managed to score 40 points. Jeff Sims offers a greater challenge at quarterback than Syracuse’s. Sims, this season, is completing over 60 percent of his pass attempts and has amassed over 290 passing yards in each of his past three games.

Still, Sims is more well-known for his scrambling abilities. Sims, Jahmyr Gibbs, Dontae Smith, and Jordan Mason are all liable to accrue a substantial number of carries in a given game. They all average between 4.5 and seven YPC for Georgia Tech.

Hokie Offense vs. Georgia Tech Defense

Know for your sports betting that Virginia Tech, too, can score a lot of points for a similar reason, Georgia Tech’s run defense is porous, ranking 82nd in opposing YPC. What surprises me about how bad the Jacket run defense is, is last week’s game against Virginia.

The Cavalier ground game has struggled all season. Still ranking 90th in rushing yards per game after struggling to get a push even against FCS schools like William & Mary, UVA amassed 240 rushing yards against Georgia Tech’s defense. Virginia Tech has a quarterback in Braxton Burmeister who has always been strongest as a rusher and therefore poses a similar threat on the ground that Virginia’s Brennan Armstrong did.

With a host of able running backs -- especially with the surging Malachi Thomas -- the Hokies will do what they want on offense. When the Jackets commit to stopping the run, they still fail to keep opposing offenses from driving downfield. Duke, for example, still ran the ball 62 times while its typically weak quarterback had his best performance in terms of passer rating against Georgia Tech’s unbalanced defense.

BYU’s WR Gunner Romney #18 catches a pass over Kaonohi Kaniho #14 of Boise State on October 9, 2021. Chris Gardner/Getty Images/AFP

Virginia Cavaliers vs. BYU Cougars

Saturday, October 30, 2021 - 10:15 PM EDT at LaVell Edwards Stadium

Virginia Offense vs. BYU Defense

Virginia was and is a pass-first team. Know for your NCAAF picks that the Cavaliers own the nation’s fifth-highest pass-play percentage. This fact means that Virginia’s offense matches up poorly against the Cougar defense because BYU’s strongest position group is its cornerbacks.

This year, the Cougars benefit from returning a very experienced, very talented, and deep group of corners. Examples of BYU’s successful pass defense include the team’s game against Boise State where it limited Bronco quarterback Hank Bachmeier to his worst passer rating of the season.

Still ranking 39th nationally in limiting opposing passer rating -- the Cougars suffered in this respect after facing a Baylor quarterback who built his efficiency off of the strong success on the ground that Virginia’s low-ranked rush attack can’t replicate -- the Cougar secondary can limit UVA’s offensive strength.

BYU Offense vs. Virginia Defense

If you don’t like the Cavalier offense, then it’s impossible to like the Cavalier team because Virginia’s defense is allowing just over 30 points per game, showing weakness both against the run and against the pass. BYU has a somewhat run-first offense, although its mixed play-calling reflects balance.

Jaren Hall typically won’t throw it more than 30 times for BYU. He presents a special threat to the Hoo defense, though, because UVA is vulnerable to mobile quarterbacks, as Jeff Sims’ 65 rushing yards last week provides the latest example of.

UVA ranks 114th nationally in limiting opposing rushing yards partly because of mobile quarterbacks. But with very strong bodies like Tyler Allgeier and his 5.2 YPC, BYU also has the personnel at running back to thrive against a Cavalier front seven that has lost so many key personnel at linebacker over the years.

The Verdict

Both Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech will do everything they want on offense. Meanwhile, BYU’s strong pass defense will limit Virginia’s pass-first offense and force Virginia to have to rely on its uniquely vulnerable defense to win.

For the above reasons, parlay the Georgia Tech/Virginia Tech "over" with the BYU money-line for your NCAAF picks. Be sure to use our trusty parlay calculator for your parlay betting needs.

Parlay Picks

NCCAF Pick: Virginia Tech/Georgia Tech Over 55 (-108) at Heritage Sports (visit our Heritage Sports Review)

NCAAF Pick: BYU ML (-125) at Heritage Sports

Parlay: (+247) at Heritage Sports

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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.