By Todd Fuhrman
Here we go! Week 4 of the College Football season approaches and we’re tweaking our Bet the Board Top 10 accordingly. How often do you see a team LOSE and move up in our rankings? Well, that’s exactly the case this week as TCU jumped into the top ten bumping the Badgers after Wisconsin suffered an inexcusable home loss to BYU. Georgiajumps up two spots to #2, with a (possible) challenge at Missouri this week, but we use the term challenge relatively loosely. Our overrated team may shock some this week (after reading, it shouldn’t), while we go to Lynchburg, Virginia for our Best Bet.
Vegas Top 10 Week 4:
3.) Ohio State
7.) Mississippi State
LSU comes into Week 4 with a 3-0 record, allowing only 12.6 points per game including wins against Miami and Auburn. While both those teams have obvious flaws, the undefeated start lead by Dave Aranda’s defense is still impressive. However, there is impressive, and then there is catapulting to #6 in the country, as they’ve done in the popularity poll. To be frank, LSU doesn’t crack our Top 10 and it’s with good reason. They’re a +7 in Turnover Margin, rank 102nd in the country in yards per play (a pedestrian 4.7), and are actually -0.1 in net yards per play this season! That’s right; every time the ball has been snapped in an LSU game this season, on average, they’ve been beat. We need to see more consistency on offense collectively and from Joe Burrow who is completing just 46% of his passes before we can call the Tigers an elite side. With a brutal schedule approaching in October, I expect LSU’s stay as a public darling to be short lived.
Underrated: Boise State
While the Broncos couldn’t come through for us last week (maybe they’ll keep a stop-watch on their 4th down snap to punt time), that doesn’t mean they deserved to fall out of the Top 25. Boise State threw for 130 more yards than Oklahoma State, showing plenty of efficiency through their aerial attack. The special teams blunders cost this team along with coaching, and while they struggled to move the ball on the ground against the Cowboys (who, by the way, are 3rd in the country in Opponent Yards per Play); they still reside in our Top 25. We expect this Boise State team to rise back up, starting next week at Wyoming where they focus on repeating as Mountain West champions.
Best Bet: Liberty +13.5
The 3-0 Mean Green machine of North Texas comes into Liberty on the heels of a 44-17 stomping of SEC powerhouse (sarcasm) Arkansas. Meanwhile, Liberty had their game postponed a week ago, so they come in with extra rest. We saw this line open 13.5 at BetOnline.AG, with early support for the underdog. Liberty blew out Old Dominion in their first game but proceeded to fall the following week to Army (drew plenty of sharp action, closing +7.5 after opening +12) despite throwing for 8.3 yards per play. They had 2 fumbles and an interception, causing what should have been a close game into a blowout. North Texas is riding high, but Liberty’s offense (7.4 yards per play) should do enough to stay within the number as North Texas could be caught looking ahead to conference rival Louisiana Tech.