For many teams in college football, Week 9 of the season may end up being pivotal, as this is the last chance to impress the Playoff Committee before they release their first official ranking on Halloween.
The teams who are currently in and around the playoff positions will want to put on a show, as this may lead the committee to look upon them more favorably when making a decision. The decision that we as bettors need to make is to decide which teams will win big and cover, and which ones will underperform. We have looked ahead at the entire Saturday schedule and have picked out a game from each of the different start times. Let take a closer look at our College Football ATS picks.
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Illinois Fighting Illini (+26) Vs Wisconsin Badgers
The Badgers are currently ranked #4 in the nation and have reached that point by being one of the best defensive football teams in the country. They have a stifling defense that is very tough to break down, and they also create havoc and turnovers that leave the offensive with consistently good starting field positions. Illinois doesn’t really pose a serious threat to Wisconsin, but that 26-point spread is one that I think is just a little too much on the high side. Wisconsin wins by double digits, but fail to cover.
Georgia Bulldogs (-13 ½) Vs Florida Gators
No matter how these teams are performing on the season, this is the one game that they both always have circled on the calendar. It is a match-up that the Florida Gators have dominated in recent years, but this Gators team is nowhere near as talented as past squads, and they are in fact in quite a bit of turmoil. On the other side of the coin, you have a Georgia Bulldogs team that has quickly become a legitimate National Championship threat, as they are getting the job done on both sides of the football. I expect a dominating performance and win from Georgia.
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (+14) Vs Clemson Tigers
The defending National Champions have not had a very pleasant last couple of weeks. It started out with a stunning loss to the Syracuse Orange and was followed by a video emerging that showed players boxing in the locker room. Coach Dabo Swinney has played down both the loss and the video in an attempt to keep his players focused for the upcoming game against Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets came close to upsetting the Miami Hurricanes last week, and while I don’t see them winning here, I do like them to cover against a Clemson team coming off their bye week.
USC Trojans (-3 ½) Vs Arizona State Sun Devils
This is one of those games where the spread may be a little understated because of recent performances. Th USC Trojans came into this season riding on a wave of hype that seemed destined to pull them under. That is exactly what has happened, as the Trojans have lost twice in their last 4 games, including being totally humbled in a 49-14 loss to Notre Dame last weekend. It certainly also does not help that USC has failed to cover in each of their last 5 starts. The Trojan are just 2-4 ATS in their last 6 visits to Sun Devil Stadium, but that have won 6 of their last 8. With the point spread so small, I think they win and cover this one.