College Football's Top Underdogs - Week 4 of Upset Possibilities
by Doug Upstone Scores & Statson
We move along in the schedule and we start drifting into conference play. This week we have two upsets we are looking at in the Big 12, a pair in the Pac-12 and one out of the Big Ten. Iowa might have been a play for us this week, but with Wisconsin having lost to BYU, the Hawkeyes are not getting the points we would have predicted and moved on.
All odds courtesy of
#353 Arizona at #354 Oregon State (+6) - Defeating Southern Utah does not count for much, which is what both these Pac-12 clubs have done for their lone victory. Arizona looked ridiculously bad in losses to BYU and Houston. Whatever Kevin Sumlin thought he might be walking into in a positive sense, that has not worked out. Oregon State was coming off a 1-11 campaign and new coach and former player Jonathan Smith has been working overtime to change the culture. Though they lost 77-31 at Ohio State, the Beavers hung 721 yards on the Buckeyes. Last Saturday, after trailing 30-7 at Nevada, OSU missed a 33-yard game winning field goal on the last play of the game. With the Wildcats 0-8 ATS in road games after two contests where 60 or more total points were tallied, we'll side with the eager Beavers who could win.
#361 Nebraska (+19) at #362 Michigan - Nebraska is off to their worst start in 61 years. There is a belief Michigan could maul them in the Big House. However, the Cornhuskers are more beating themselves than being outplayed with three turnovers in both losses. If coach Scott Frost can have his team protect the ball, there is every reason to believe they can score at least 20 points. That means the Wolverines have to reach 38 to cover the spread, which is not a given, even if the Huskers defense is nowhere close to "Blackshirts" level. History tells us the Wolverines are 6-18 ATS after scoring 37 points or more in two straight games. Michigan by 13.
#371 Texas Tech (+13) at #372 Oklahoma State - Is this spread correct? Probably. Oklahoma State just handled Boise State with relative ease at 44-21. Yet, two scores came via blocked punts that led to touchdowns and they only outgained the Broncos by 10 yards. Texas Tech can score, as evidenced by scoring 62 points on a pretty good Houston club. The Red Raiders defense was supposed to be better, but there has been zero evidence of that thus far. This has makings of typical Red Raiders and Cowboys shootout and it's hard to forecast Okie State will win by more than 10 points with Texas Tech 6-0 ATS after a home game where both teams score 31 or more points.
#379 TCU at #380 Texas (+3.5) - TCU gave their all in the loss to Ohio State before falling. In the grander scheme of things, this tussle matters more to the Horned Frogs because it counts toward a conference championship. Texas was supposed to be improved and possible Top 25 squad, but after losing to middling Maryland team again and having to hold off a less than rugged Tulsa troop, it looked like 2017 all over again for the Longhorns. After starting meekly versus USC, Texas found their confidence and rolled the Trojans 34-3 over the last three quarters in Austin. That boost of confidence will go a long way for the Horns as they improve to 8-0 ATS after playing a game at home and win outright.
#409 Arizona State (+17) at #410 Washington - College football has conference numbers that make no sense. You might have two fairly evenly matched teams but one always seems to struggle against the other. Take is Pac-12 encounter, where Washington is 1-10 SU versus Arizona State and is incredible 0-11 ATS. The fact is the Huskies have only been favored in the last two, thus, part this is not an impossible outcome. Still, name another matchup that finds one team on an 11-0 spread roll? Watch for the Sun Devils to fall, but just by 14 points.