College football picks, predictions against the spread for each top 25 game of week 5
Week 5 of the college football season features four matches between the teams ranked in the latest AP Top 25.
The SEC has two blockbuster matches this weekend. No. 2 Georgia faces No. 8 Arkansas in an unexpected top 10 showdown at 12 noon. No. 1 Alabama welcomes No. 12 Ole Miss at 3:30 p.m. ET in the latest installment of Nick Saban vs. Lane Kiffin.
That’s in the same window as another top 10 showdown between No. 7 Cincinnati and No. 9 Notre Dame, a game with a huge impact on the college football playoffs. Surprise Big 12 unbeaten No. 19 Oklahoma State and No. 21 Baylor clash at prime time.
BENDER: Georgia rises to 1st place in the playoff picture | Week 4 take away
This is the busiest weekend of the season so far and a chance to improve our record against the spread:
- Straight up: 61-14 (17-3 in week 4)
- Against the spread: 32-43 (9-11 in week 4)
- Excitements: 4-1 (1-0 in week 4)
With that in mind, take a look at this week’s picks:
Week 5 votes against the spread
Friday October 1st
No. 5 Iowa (-3.5) in Maryland (8 p.m., FS1)
Taulia Tagovailoa led the Terps to a surprising 4-0 start and won their last home game against the Hawkeyes in 2014. However, Iowa has not allowed more than 17 points in a game this season. The one above (48.5) is tempting too.
Choose: Iowa wins 31-26 and covers the spread.
No. 13 BYU (-8.5) in the state of Utah (9 p.m., CBSSN)
Jaren Hall (Rippen) could return this week but Baylor Romney proved a capable substitute against South Florida. The Cougars are 0-2 ATS favorites this season, and the Aggies have been in some shoutouts. Utah State can be easy going with football, too.
Choose: BYU wins 35-23 and covers the spread.
Saturday October 2nd
# 8 Arkansas at # 2 Georgia (-18.5) (12 p.m., ESPN)
The Bulldogs are 3-1 ATS this season and have only allowed 23 points. The Razorbacks are 4-0 ATS, and that includes two covers as an underdog. Georgia trailed Arkansas 7-5 at halftime last season before the Bulldogs opened the game. We believe Arkansas can keep up for four quarters in this game, even if it’s at a distance.
Choose: Georgia wins by 30-13 but can’t cover the spread.
# 14 Michigan in Wisconsin (-0.5) (12 p.m., FOX)
It’s a pick-em, and for good reason. Wisconsin have two losses and passing problems, but their running defense will test Michigan. The Wolverines haven’t won Wisconsin since 2001. Michigan has been 0-12 S / U as an underdog under Jim Harbaugh since 2015. You cancel the series in one fell swoop.
Choose: Michigan wins 23-20 in a UPSET.
Louisville at No. 24 Wake Forest (-6.5) (12:30 pm)
The Demon Deacons are ranked, but the Cardinals have recovered well from their season opening loss to Ole Miss. Malik Cunningham makes the difference with another outstanding performance for the cards on the road.
Choose: Louisville wins 34-31 in a UPSET.
# 7 Cincinnati (-2.5) at # 9 Notre Dame (2:30 p.m. NBC)
The Bearcats have the chance to take a big road win and they will challenge the Irish with the combination of Desmond Ridder and Jerome Ford. However, the Irish broke out against Wisconsin in the fourth quarter and will again emerge as underdogs.
Choose: Notre Dame wins 27-24 in a UPSET.
UL-Monroe at No. 16 Coastal Carolina (-34.5) (2:30 p.m., ESPN +)
When the Bearcats lose, the Chanticleers become the darling of the group of 5. Coastal Carolina have been favored by double digits in every game, and they are 3-1 ATS. The Warhawks are 3-0 S / U in this series.
Choose: Coastal Carolina wins 48-17 but can’t cover the spread.
# 12 Ole Miss at # 1 Alabama (-14.5) (3:30 p.m., CBS)
The line didn’t move much, and Ole Miss had an extra week to prepare for the Crimson Tide. This shootout between Bryce Young and Matt Corral is supposed to be fun. The Crimson Tide are 9-3 ATS with a residual disadvantage in the CFP era, but we think a half-point hook is enough to take down Ole Miss.
Choose: Alabama wins 44-33 but can’t cover the spread.
No. 3 Oregon (-8.5) in Stanford (3:30 p.m., ABC)
This used to be the big game in Pac-12. The Cardinal was a hit-or-miss team, and that put the line up two points. This is Oregon’s first game as a single-digit favorite and they benefit from another win on the road.
Choose: Oregon wins 31-20 and covers the spread.
No. 6 Oklahoma (-10.5), Kansas State (3:30 p.m., FOX)
The Wildcats have won the last two games and Oklahoma’s offense has been neutral for the past two weeks. K-State loses to Oklahoma State, but the Wildcats are 6-2 ATS as the home underdog under Chris Klieman.
Choose: Oklahoma wins 33-24 but can’t cover the spread.
No. 11 Ohio State (-15.5) in Rutgers (3:30 p.m., BTN)
The Buckeyes rank second in the FBS at 559.3 yards per game, and the defense bounced back with eight sacks against Akron. Rutgers is an improved team under Greg Schiano, but the Scarlet Knights’ biggest loss to the Buckeyes since joining the Big Ten is 22 points. Ohio State makes a statement to the rest of the Big Ten East.
Choose: Ohio State wins 45-17 and covers the spread.
No. 10 Florida (-8.5) in Kentucky (6 p.m., ESPN)
Kentucky is 4-0 and will try to beat the Gators at Lexington for the first time since 1986. The Gators are 1-2 ATS favorites this season, but this is the first single-digit spread. Florida’s defense makes a difference late and the Wildcats lose another heartbreaker at home.
Choose: Florida wins 28-24 but can’t cover the spread.
Louisiana Tech at No. 23 NC State (-19.5) (6 p.m., ESPN +)
NC State coach Dave Doeren has to protect himself from the hangover game after beating Clemson and it’s going to be tough. Louisiana Tech lost to Mississippi State and SMU by a total of three points. Take these points.
Choose: NC state wins 30-20 but cannot cover the spread.
Mississippi State in 15th place Texas A&M (-8.5) (7pm, SECN)
The state of Mississippi lost two heartbreakers to Memphis and LSU, and now they’re traveling against a team from Aggies looking to bounce back after losing to Arkansas. Texas A&M has won the last two meetings convincingly, but given the conflicting offenses, this feels like an aerial battle.
Choose: Texas A&M wins 29-23 but doesn’t cover the spread.
# 21 Baylor at # 19 Oklahoma State (-3.5) (7 p.m., ESPN2)
Surprise Big 12 unbeaten meet in prime time. The Bears lead the Big 12 at 273.3 yards per game and they will be motivated after losing 42-3 to the Cowboys last season. We still trust the home team in a coin flip game. The state of Oklahoma has won three games with a score this year. Make it four.
Choose: Oklahoma State wins 30-23 and covers the spread.
Indiana at No. 4 Penn State (-10.5) (7:30 p.m., ABC)
The Hoosiers beat Penn State in a 36-35 thriller last season, and probably no one in Happy Valley forgot that. Indiana is entering a brutal part of the schedule and this just wasn’t the same team as last year.
Choose: Penn State wins 34-17 and covers the spread.
Western Kentucky, Michigan State No. 17 (-9.5) (7:30 p.m., BTN)
Michigan State continues to surprise with star running back Kenneth Walker III, and that line looks low. The Hilltoppers are 3-0 ATS, but the defense allows 224.7 yards per game. The Spartans roll with it.
Choose: Michigan State wins 35-20 and covers the spread.
Boston College, No. 25 Clemson (-15.5) (7:30 p.m., ACCN)
The Tigers are 0-4 ATS but remain double-digit favorites against Boston College, a team that were double-digit ahead of the Tigers at halftime last season. Boston College is 4-0 and will come into play with a lot of confidence. Everyone at the ACC thinks they have a chance at Clemson until the Tigers blow someone up. We have to wait another week.
Choose: Clemson wins 31-24 but can’t cover the spread.
No. 22 Auburn at LSU (-3.5) (9 p.m., ESPN)
Auburn has to survive a trip to Death Valley at night, and it’s a place they haven’t won since 1999. That’s a lot of history to overcome, and LSU has made up the pieces since losing at UCLA in Week 2. Who re-created Auburn’s schedule?
Choose: LSU wins 27-20 and covers the spread.
Arizona State at No. 20 UCLA (-3.5) (10:30 p.m., FS1)
The Bruins have won their last two games and this is one game that could determine the Pac-12 South winner. However, the Sun Devils have the best defense in the Pac-12 and Jayden Daniels learns from the defeat at BYU. Stay up late for this one. It will be worth it.
Choose: Arizona State wins 31-30 in a UPSET.
# 18 Fresno State (-10.5) in Hawaii (11 p.m., CBSSN)
The Bulldogs are 4-1 ATS and Jake Haener gets more attention with every win. Hawaii has lost 11 balls and one hit-or-miss passing attack this season. Fresno State tops off a fun week with a late night cover.
Choose: Fresno State wins 36-22 to cover the spread.