College Football Odds Breakdown

Believe it or not, the Southeastern Conference is not the center of the college football universe. The Big 12 has actually performed at a higher overall level this year, but the SEC has five of the Top 10 teams in the polls – including the No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide and the No. 2 LSU Tigers. Even a team as powerful as the No. 5 Oklahoma Sooners is bound to get lost in the tall shadow the SEC is casting over the NCAA odds board.

As it happens, LSU are featured in the marquee matchup on the Week 9 NCAA football lines. They’re the hottest commodity in football right now, and a real title threat with the Crimson Tide losing their superstar quarterback for the foreseeable future. Here are this week’s most important games on the FBS calendar at Bovada Sportsbook.

NCAA Odds Week 9: Best Odds and Matchups

1. No. 9 Auburn Tigers at No. 2 Louisiana State Tigers (Saturday, 3:30 PM ET, CBS)

This has been an incredible start for LSU (7-0 SU, 5-2 ATS). They’ve been on the rise since head coach Ed Orgeron took over the program in 2016, but these Tigers began the year at No. 6 on the preseason rankings, which partly explains why they’ve been so profitable against the NCAA football odds. Then again, Auburn (6-1 SU and ATS) have been even more profitable. They might be getting too many points here at +11. The 58.5-point total is also vulnerable with about a 50% chance of rain falling over Baton Rouge at game time.

2. No. 8 Notre Dame Fighting Irish at No. 19 Michigan Wolverines (Saturday, 7:30 PM ET, ABC)

If you like to “fade the public” when you bet on NCAA football, it’ll be hard to choose a side in this matchup – fitting, given that it’s a pick’em at press time. But the Fighting Irish (5-1 SU, 4-2 ATS) haven’t drawn as much action as the Wolverines (5-2 SU, 3-4 ATS) this year. Maybe Notre Dame’s cosmic flop during last year’s College Football Playoff has something to do with it. Michigan’s offense is sputtering in its first season under co-ordinator Josh Gattis; the Irish have had their own issues with their offensive line, leading to a low total of 49.5 points on what should be a sunny Saturday in Ann Arbor.

3. No. 13 Wisconsin Badgers at No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes (Saturday, 12 PM ET, FOX)

This could have been the highlight on the Week 9 NCAA football betting calendar, but Wisconsin (6-1 SU, 5-2 ATS) messed things up last week by losing 24-23 to Illinois as 30.5-point road favorites. That takes the Badgers almost completely out of the CFP conversation, which is too bad – they were playing like one of the very best teams in college. Nobody has outplayed the Buckeyes (7-0 SU, 6-1 ATS) this year, but as 14.5-point home favorites, that half-point over the magic number 14 may be enough to make the underdogs from Wisconsin the right pick.

4. Arkansas Razorbacks at No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide (Saturday, 7 PM ET, ESPN)

College football is built on roster churn—no one is irreplaceable in this sport. But Alabama (7-0 SU, 3-4 ATS) will tread a more difficult path now that QB Tua Tagovailoa has undergone surgery for a high-ankle sprain. If only Jalen Hurts hadn’t left for Oklahoma. Mac Jones will get the start this week against the Razorbacks (2-5 SU and ATS), and while Jones isn’t a household name, he is considered a competent “game manager” who shouldn’t be too worried about facing an Arkansas team that is getting 32 points in Tuscaloosa.

5. Boston College Eagles at No. 4 Clemson Tigers (Saturday, 7:30 PM ET, ACCN)

Despite beating the tar out of Louisville (+25.5 at home) last week, the Tigers (7-0 SU, 5-2 ATS) fell one more spot in the polls to No. 4. The defending champions are getting zero respect coming out of the ACC, which has been the weakest of the Power 5 conferences by a wide margin. Boston College (4-3 SU, 5-2 ATS) are one of the ACC’s weakest teams, but they have beaten expectations this year, and they may be worth a look as 33.5-point road dogs – especially if the skies open up over Memorial Stadium. There’s about a 25% chance of rain according to the latest forecast.