But if you don’t feel like going there, here are our ten favorite picks this week. (One record we haven”t flaunted this year is our actual “betting” record – we don’t actually bet, of course – of 135 our of 240, or 56.25%. Usually, we’re more concerned with our numbers as predictors in and of themselves; we hold our system to a higher standard than just “betting against the spread.”)
We see ten games in Week 4 where the ELO-Following Football numbers (and some other resources, including our eyeballs!) say the oddsmakers are slightly off. No guarantees, but hopefully we get more than five of these right and it balances out!
VIRGINIA TECH (-28.5) at Old Dominion. We have it as forty. ODU is NOT very good at all. Take the points.
Wisconsin at IOWA (+3.5). Iowa wins outright, in our view. No, Wisconsin isn’t as bad as they were last week, but Iowa’s pretty good, too.
MINNESOTA (+2.5) at Maryland. We think the Gophers win outright, too. Maryland started strong, but they do that. Once the conference season starts, they fade – and Minnesota usually gets BETTER in conference play, too.
STANFORD (-1.5) at Oregon. Have you seen who Oregon’s played so far? Bowling Green, Portland State, and San Jose State? They haven’t imaginedplaying anyone like the Cardinal!
WASHINGTON STATE (+3.5) at USC. Quick, while the Trojans are struggling with their freshman QB! This won’t last…but while they’re down, strike while the iron’s hot.
Ohio U at CINCINNATI (-7.5). The numbers only say it’s an 8-point margin, but Sagarin has it at 13, and if you watch the Bearcats’ games, they’ve been far beyond the spread every single game so far. They will be here, too.
Florida Atlantic at UCF (- 13.5). Central Florida hasn’t lost much without Scott Frost as coach – they’ve still got their star QB. And FAU is simply not as good as they were last year: they’ve dropped from a rating of 22 to 32 in three weeks. Take UCF and the points.
NORTHERN ILLINOIS (+10) at Florida State. Is it a no-brainer to say “how will the Seminoles even score ten points, much less win by ten”? Maybe. NIU is better than Samford, and Samford should have beaten them. Take the Huskies.
COASTAL CAROLINA (+4) at UL-Lafayette. I’ll be honest, I haven’t seen either team play this year. But we (and Sagarin and…) have the Chanticleers winning by two. That’s a BIG gap.
UNLV at ARKANSAS STATE (-7.5). The Rebels aren’t too bad, but stAte is very good this year. All three power schools in the Sun Belt are solid this season (Troy and App St as well). Take the points.