Michigan State running back Kenneth Walker III
Michigan State running back Kenneth Walker III (9) runs on his way to scoring a 94-yard touchdown against Rutgers during the second half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021, in Piscataway, N.J. Michigan State won 31-13. (AP Photo/Adam Hunger)

NCAAF BEST BETS, OCT. 16

Patrick Werkmeister

With the college football season shockingly already halfway over, it is important to get familiar with these teams that will be playing in December and January. All best bets for this week are at a margin of 4.5, so that must entail good betting fortune. It was once again another fruitful outcome for these picks at 2-1, where a 3-0 record was just a point away courtesy of Wake Forest. Although these plays have not been 100% accurate, they have performed at a very efficient rate. With this streak in mind, here is what I like for this Saturday.


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Auburn @ Arkansas (-4.5)
In this SEC matchup, quarterback Bo Nix and the Auburn Tigers travel to Fayetteville to face off against the Arkansas Razorbacks and QB KJ Jefferson. The opening line in this one favored Arkansas by three and a half-points and they have been beat up by the public even more to -4.5. This game marks just the second time in the last 10 meetings between these two that Arkansas has been favored over Auburn. The Tigers are 1-6 SU and ATS in their last 7 games as an underdog. Contrarily, the Razorbacks are 7-2 ATS in their previous 9 home games. Last week, Arkansas lost in devastating fashion to Ole Miss and Heisman favorite Matt Corral 52-51. After scoring a touchdown as time expired, head coach Sam Pittman went with a bonehead call to go for the two-point conversion that the Razorbacks ultimately failed to convert. This call lost them the game where they otherwise could have gone into overtime and earned a victory against a skilled opponent. However, their offense has been one of the best in the country and can play with anyone. Following their blowout loss to Georgia, Auburn has clearly shown this season they can’t compete with quality teams. This margin is quite small considering the Razorbacks are at home, so take Arkansas to cover the points.

Michigan State (-4.5) @ Indiana
From Bloomington, the Indiana Hoosiers host the Michigan State Spartans in this Big Ten contest. The 10th ranked Spartans opened this game favored by just three and a half-points, but they are now listed as four and a half-point road favorites. The Hoosiers are a shoddy 1-5 ATS this year, whereas Michigan State is an impressive 4-0-2 ATS with a 6-0 overall record. While Indiana had a bye in Week 6, the Spartans added a Rutgers victory to their impressive resume. After putting up nearly 600 yards of offense, they have certainly arrived as a top 10 team in the country. They won’t be facing too tough of a challenge on offense vs this subpar Hoosier defense, so expect them to be very productive on that side of the ball. On the other side, Indiana lost their only playmaker at QB Michael Penix Jr, so they won’t have much help from their offense either. With three wins on the road already, Michigan State is clearly the better team, and should win by at least a touchdown. Take Sparty minus the points in Indiana.

Pittsburgh @ Virginia Tech (+4.5)
For this ACC contest, Heisman candidate QB Kenny Pickett and the Pitt Panthers look to steal one on the road in Blacksburg against the Virginia Tech Hokies. This line opened up at one and a half-points, but the money has been heavy on Pittsburgh, pushing the spread to 4.5. With one of the most difficult places to play in the country, it’s not a great idea to fade the Hokies as four and a half-point home underdogs. Despite their home loss against Notre Dame, it was a hard-fought game where they lost by just a field goal. They had an eight-point lead against the top 10 Irish in the 4th quarter, but they could not close it out as Notre Dame scored 11 straight. However, Pitt will be an equally tough test for the Hokies. This year, the Panthers lead the ACC in points per game and yards per game with 53 and 558, respectively. Since the last Panthers win in Blacksburg was in 2015, this game will definitely be their toughest test of the year. They play every team very competitively and I don’t see that changing here, so take the Hokies at home plus the points.

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