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Reply To: NCAAF Week 5 – Previews, Articles, Info. Saturday 10/3/15

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Essential Week 5 Betting Tips for College Football’s Top Games

Looking for some quick-hitting betting info for Week 5 of the college football slate? We break down all the need-to-know facts and figures for Saturday’s Top 25 NCAAF contests.

(21) West Virginia Mountaineers at (14) Oklahoma Sooners (-6.5, 59.5)

* West Virginia leads the nation in scoring defense (7.7 points per game), interceptions (nine), turnover margin (plus-3.3) and fourth down defense (0-for-7). No doubt part of the reason for those glowing stats could be a non-conference schedule that included wins over Georgia Southern (44-0) of the Sun Belt and a FCS school, Liberty (44-17). But the Mountaineers erased any doubt that their defense is for real with the blowout win over a respectable Big Ten team in Maryland, holding the Terrapins to 326 total yards, including just three yards passing and 80 total yards while building a 38-0 halftime lead.

* Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield, a transfer from Texas Tech who was the 2013 Big 12 Freshman of the Year, has been outstanding in his first year starting for the Sooners, ranking third in the nation in total offense (400.3), second in points responsible for per game (28.0) and seventh in passing yards (354.0).

Texas Longhorns at (3) TCU Horned Frogs (-15, 70)

* The Longhorns are off to a shaky 1-3 start and innuendos have begun circulating that second-year coach Charlie Strong is a poor fit for the job. Texas lost its last two games — to California and Oklahoma State — by a combined four points and Strong is trying to salvage the season with TCU and Oklahoma being the next two opponents.

* The Horned Frogs are averaging 51 points over their past three games and topped 600 total yards in each contest, including back-to-back efforts of over 700 yards.

Purdue Boilermakers at (2) Michigan State Spartans (-21.5, 55)

* Purdue has struggled to win games against Michigan State in recent seasons but haven’t been such a bad wager. The Boilermakers have lost five-straight meetings but have gone 3-1-1 ATS in those games, covering the spread in three straight.

* The Spartans extended their streak of scoring 30 or more points to a team-record 12 games while sweeping through their non-conference schedule and must avoid peaking ahead to road tilts against Rutgers and Michigan on the horizon. The Spartans are 6-6 ATS (including 0-4 this season) and the O/U count is 8-4 in those 12 games.

Minnesota Golden Gophers at (17) Northwestern Wildcats (-4.5, 39.5)

* With a victory on Saturday, Minnesota would improve to 10-5 over its last 15 Big Ten contests – matching the school’s best 15-game league stretch since Nov. 11, 1972-Oct. 26, 1974. The Gophers are 12-2 ATS in the previous 14 showdowns with opponents from the Big Ten.

* The Wildcats sustained their fair share of defensive injuries last week, losing safety Godwin Igwebuike and defensive end Ifeadi Odenigbo; Igwebuike (upper body injury) is listed as questionable for this weekend.

Iowa Hawkeyes at (18) Wisconsin Badgers (-6.5, 44.5)

* While the defense has done its part, the offense – led by quarterback C.J. Beathard (68.2 percent completion rate, six touchdowns, one interception) – is also productive, averaging 37.8 points. The Hawkeyes are 49th in the nation in rushing (196.3) with senior Jordan Canzeri (316 yards, Big Ten-best eight TDs) leading the way.

* The Badgers have not allowed a touchdown in 188 minutes, 2 seconds dating back to their season-opening loss to Alabama, defeating Miami (Ohio) 58-0 and Troy 28-3 prior to blanking Hawaii 28-0 last week.

(13) Alabama Crimson Tide at (6) Georgia Bulldogs (-1.5, 51)

* Alabama enters the contest as an underdog, snapping a 72-game streak of being favored dating back to the 2009 SEC championship game.

* Georgia QB Greyson Lambert has completed 33 of his past 35 passes for 476 yards and five touchdowns in his past two games, directing a Bulldogs offense scoring 45.5 points per contest (11th nationally). Running back Nick Chubb is a legitimate Heisman candidate who enters Saturday having rushed for 100-plus yards in 12 consecutive contests, and has combined with Sony Michel for 10 rushing scores.

(9) Florida State Seminoles at Wake Forest Demon Deacons (+20, 44)

* Florida State will be without junior RB Mario Pender, who suffered a collapsed lung during practice last week. But the Seminoles are led by sophomore running back Dalvin Cook (476 yards, five touchdowns), who is fourth in the nation at 158.7 rushing yards per game.

* Sophomore quarterback John Wolford (ankle) did not play in Wake Forest’s 31-24 loss to Indiana last week after missing most of the previous contest – a 17-14 victory over Army, but has since returned to limited practice. “When John (Wolford) is healthy, he will be our starting quarterback,” Demon Deacons coach Dave Clawson said at his weekly press conference. ” I think if John is 70 percent or 80 percent, then (freshman quarterback) Kendall (Hinton) gives us our best shot to win. …”

(1) Ohio State Buckeyes at Indiana Hoosiers (+22.5, 66)

* Top-ranked Ohio State attempts to stretch its record Big Ten regular-season winning streak to 25 consecutive games when it visits Indiana to open conference play on Saturday. The Buckeyes have gone 8-0 in Big Ten play in each of the past three seasons, posting a record of 13-10-1 ATS in those games.

* Indiana junior WR Ricky Jones (ankle) is expected to play; he leads the Hoosiers with 18 receptions for 411 yards and three touchdowns.

(4) Baylor Bears vs. Texas Tech Red Raiders (+17, 88)

* Baylor QB Seth Russell got his first college experience playing in a close game when he came on in relief of Bryce Petty (concussion) against Texas Tech last season and threw a touchdown pass to help his team hang on for the win. “Getting that experience and a feel for the atmosphere was definitely valuable,” Russell told reporters. “I feel like I kind of got thrown into the fire and I answered well, or as well as I needed to.”

* Oddsmakers have been setting high totals when the Bears and Red Raiders meet and this season is no different. These matchups have seen totals of 82, 80, 84 and 79.5 the past four meetings and books have a total of 88 on the board for Saturday’s game. All four of those previous matchups have cashed for Over bettors.

Kansas State Wildcats at (19) Oklahoma State Cowboys (-7.5, 49.5)

* Kansas State has lost four straight at Oklahoma State by an average of 4.5 points. The Wilcats are 3-1 ATS in those four games.

* Oklahoma State (16) and Kansas State (12) are tied for fourth in the country with four sacks per game. “It’s good for us to keep getting pressure on the quarterback, without having to bring five or six (rushers) and play coverage behind them,” Oklahoma State defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer told The Oklahoman. Oklahoma State’s Emmanuel Ogbah leads the league with 5.5 sacks while teammate Jordan Sterns tops the Big 12 with 40 tackles.

Washington State Cougars at (24) Cal Golden Bears (-17.5, 71.5)

* Washington State defeated the Golden Bears 44-22 in its last visit to Berkeley in 2013. Furthermore, the Cougars are 6-1 ATS in their last seven meetings in California.

* California’s Jared Goff has entered the Heisman Trophy race with 1,240 passing yards and 11 touchdowns against three interceptions. Goff threw for 342 yards with two touchdowns in last week’s 30-24 win at Washington and the Golden Bears enter this weekend as the Pac-12 North’s only undefeated team.

Eastern Michigan Eagles at (8) LSU Tigers (-44.5, 60.5)

* The Eagles have averaged 435.5 yards per game with a balanced attack and scored 48 points in a victory against Wyoming – their only road game. Darius Jackson leads the way with 407 yards rushing (6.9 per carry) and seven touchdowns while Shaq Vann has contributed 240 and three, respectively.

* Sophomore tailback Leonard Fournette looks to add to his impressive rushing numbers on Saturday night. The Heisman Trophy front-runner has gained 631 yards in the first three games for the Tigers, who should get a breather against the struggling Eagles — last among 127 FBS teams in rushing defense (373.3 yards).

(5) Ole Miss Rebels at (23) Florida Gators (+7, 51)

* The Rebels lead the SEC in passing (344.5 yards per game), total offense (543.5) and scoring (54.8), but the offense sputtered somewhat against Vanderbilt. Chad Kelly (1,219 passing yards, 10 TDs, 3 INTs) continued to put up big passing numbers but threw two picks against the Commodores after only one in the first three games.

* Redshirt freshman Will Grier still hasn’t locked up the starting quarterback job, according to coach Jim McElwain, despite passing for a career-high 283 yards and throwing two TD passes to lead the fourth-quarter comeback against the Vols. McElwain said Wednesday that Grier (725 yards, 6 TDs, 3 INTs) will make his fourth straight start but Treon Harris also could see action.

(22) Mississippi State Bulldogs at Texas A&M Aggies (-5.5, 63)

* “Mississippi State is pretty good,” Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin said. “Five or six weeks last year they were No. 1 and have the quarterback with the most experience in the league.” Sumlin was referring to senior signal-caller Dak Prescott, who has thrown seven touchdowns and zero interceptions this season and also fared well in last season’s 48-31 victory over the Aggies.

* Only Penn State (18) has more sacks among FBS teams than Texas A&M (17), which is led by defensive end Myles Garrett (6.5). Daeshon Hall has contributed four sacks, making the Aggies the country’s only team with two players in the top 10 nationally.

Arizona State Sun Devils at (10) UCLA Bruins (-13, 60)

* The receiving corps for the Sun Devils should get plenty of attention as it is led by D.J. Foster, the team’s leading rusher last season turned wide receiver who has recorded just one play of more than 20 yards this season. Gary Chambers has emerged as a first-down machine for Arizona State, and the senior is coming off his first career 100-yard receiving effort against USC.

* The biggest hurdle for UCLA thus far has been replacing three injured starters on defense – linebacker Myles Jack, cornerback Fabian Moreau and defensive lineman Eddie Vanderdoes, all of whom have been lost for the season. The Bruins welcomed another starter back last weekend in defensive back Ishmael Adams, who returned from a three-game suspension and produced an interception that set up a touchdown in the 56-30 win at Arizona.

(7) Notre Dame Fighting Irish at (11) Clemson Tigers (-2, 51.5)

* DeShone Kizer was thrown into the fire immediately at Virginia in Week 2 when Malik Zaire went down, and he has responded to the challenge of leading the Fighting Irish offense. The sophomore scored his first rushing touchdown against Massachusetts last week and added a pair of scores through the air before taking most of the second half off in the 62-27 win.

* The Tigers led the nation in total defense last season and are once again in the Top 10, though depth has been a concern behind the front seven. “Our defense is kind of right where I thought they’d be,” Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney told reporters. “I didn’t think we’d have a big drop-off if we could stay healthy with our first group, that’s kind of how it’s played out.”

(24) Oregon Ducks at Colorado Buffaloes (+7.5, 68.5)

* Ducks WR Byron Marshall (nine receptions for 121 yards) is likely lost for the season after reportedly undergoing surgery for a lower leg injury suffered against Utah.

* The Buffaloes enter with a three-game winning streak but have lost 11 straight Pac-12 games (7-4 ATS) and that latter fact doesn’t matter to junior quarterback Sefo Liufau. “We actually believe we can win this game this year,” Liufau told reporters. “We’re pretty confident this week and we believe we can get the job done if we execute.”

Arizona Wildcats at (20) Stanford Cardinal (-13.5, 60.5)

* The Wildcats’ suspect defense will be undermanned for the next few weeks while All-American linebacker Scooby Wright recovers from a sprained right foot suffered in the 56-30 loss to UCLA. Fellow linebacker Derrick Turituri is questionable due to an unspecified injury, and the Wildcats could also be without starting quarterback Anu Solomon (concussion), who will be a game-time decision.

* When the Cardinal get near the goal line, Christian McCaffrey often gives way to 5-9, 205-pound Remound Wright, who has rushed for five touchdowns this season, including four from the 1-yard line. The balanced running attack has created opportunities for senior quarterback Kevin Hogan, who has bounced back from a quiet outing against Northwestern by throwing seven touchdowns against one interception over the last three games.