CFB Best Bets Week 5

Last Updated: Sep 29, 2023

Half a dozen teams have a chance to win the National Championship, but Colorado won’t be one of them.

The Oregon Ducks were a one-unit winner for me last week with their beatdown of the Buffaloes.

My two-unit play on UTEP was unsuccessful after it failed to cover against UNLV, and my one-unit Under play on Akron-Indiana went Over in overtime. Overall, it was a disappointing 3-3-1 Week 4. On to Week 5…

Stephen Nover’s TGD Picks Record: 14-12-1 (-4.8 Units)

CFB odds used in these betting tips are current as of Wednesday, Sept. 27, at 12:30 a.m. ET

CFB Week 5 Best Bets

Kansas @ Texas

BEST BET: Kansas +16.5 (-110)

Caesars Sportsbook • WAGER: 2 Units

In Lance Leipold we trust.

Leipold has turned the Jayhawks around in his three years as Kansas head coach, opening 4-0 for the second straight year.

They are a Top 25 team, and a victory against third-ranked Texas would be one of the most significant in Jayhawks football history.

There is precedent, as Kansas upset the Longhorns, 57-56, as a 31-point road underdog in 2021 during Leipold’s first season.

Texas quarterback Quinn Ewers has come through with a big season following his up-and-down freshman year thanks to some dynamic weapons. Ewers is a solid sleeper choice according to the latest Heisman Trophy odds.

But the Wildcats have their own star quarterback in Jalon Daniels, and Texas hasn’t faced a quarterback of his caliber yet this season.

The Wildcats also have the Big 12’s only returning 1,000-yard rusher in Devin Neal and have scored 27 or more points in all four of their games.

While Kansas is extremely motivated, Texas has its annual Red River Rivalry game against Oklahoma next week. That’s the game the Longhorns want to win more than any other, so it’s a major look-ahead spot.

South Florida @ Navy

BEST BET: South Florida +3.5 (-110)

DraftKings • WAGER: 1 Unit

I got sold on South Florida two weeks ago when it gave Alabama a hard time, losing 17-3 as a 34.5-point underdog.

The Bulls followed that up by upsetting Rice, 42-29, as three-point underdogs last week.

Byrum Brown is an underrated dual threat for South Florida, accounting for 1,236 yards passing/rushing and 11 touchdowns, and he’s coming off a monster performance against Rice.

Navy quarterback Tai Lavatai doesn’t have that versatility.

South Florida has the necessary run defense to win this game, ranking 20th in that category. The Bulls held Alabama to 310 yards and Rice to only seven third-down conversions.

The one-dimensional Midshipmen average just 17 points and rank 130th in passing yards. Navy was supposed to be better balanced offensively under new coach Brian Newberry, but so far, that hasn’t happened. South Florida can stop the run and has the quarterback edge.

Texas A&M vs Arkansas (Arlington, Texas)

BEST BET: Arkansas +6.5 (-105)

bet365 Sportsbook • Wager: 1 Unit

Yes, Texas A&M is better than last year, but the Aggies still aren’t that good and shouldn’t be laying a touchdown at this neutral-site matchup at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

The Aggies are 3-1, with their three victories coming at home against weak foes New Mexico, Louisiana-Monroe and rebuilding Auburn. The Aggies got smacked by Miami in their lone road game, losing by 15 points to the Hurricanes.

Arkansas has star power with quarterback KJ Jefferson and running back Raheim Sanders, who entered the season considered one of the five best running backs in the nation. He’s questionable after missing the first three games with a knee injury.

Texas A&M has its own key injury with quarterback Conner Weigman questionable after an ankle problem suffered last week.

Arkansas gave LSU a tough matchup last week before losing, 34-31, as an 18-point road underdog.

The Razorbacks are underrated because of a 38-31 loss to BYU two weeks ago as a nine-point home favorite. That was a fluke loss, though, as the Razorbacks outgained the Cougars by 143 yards and held them to 281 total yards.

CFB Week 5 Betting Prediction Leans

Notre Dame @ Duke

BET LEAN: Duke +5.5 (-109)

BetRivers Sportsbook • Wager: 1 Unit

I love the job Mike Elko is doing at Duke, turning the Blue Devils around in his two years. Duke is 4-0 this season, with all of its victories coming by at least three touchdowns – including upsetting Clemson. Riley Leonard is an excellent quarterback.

Notre Dame is off an excruciating loss to Ohio State last Saturday. The Irish blew a late lead because of bad coaching decisions, and that defeat could linger.

It’s going to be tough for Notre Dame to get up for this matchup after coming so close against Ohio State.

Duke has covered in nine of its last 11 games, and the Blue Devils are 6-1 ATS as underdogs under Elko. Notre Dame could be a fun longshot bet going by their CFB National Championship odds.

Virginia @ Boston College

BET LEAN: Over 54.5 Totals Points (-110)

BetMGM Sportsbook • Wager: 1 Unit

We have two really bad defenses here. Throw in a mix of two improved offenses and Boston College playing at a top-15 tempo and there should be enough points scored to go Over this total.

Virginia is surrendering 37.8 points per game, has only one takeaway and ranks 112th in total defense. Boston College gives up 35.5 points per game, does not have a takeaway and rates 111th in total defense.

Clemson @ Syracuse

BET LEAN: Syracuse +7 (-110)

DraftKings Sportsbook • Wager: 1 Unit

Syracuse nearly upset Clemson last season, losing 27-21 as a two-touchdown road underdog.

The Orange are better this season, and Clemson is worse. It’s a tough scheduling spot for the Tigers, too, after they lost at home in overtime to Florida State last week.

Sparked by improved quarterback Garrett Shrader, the Orange are 4-0 SU, 3-0-1 ATS.

Another key for Syracuse was hiring Rocky Long to be its defensive coordinator. The Orange have yielded the seventh-fewest points per game in the nation at 10.8 while ranking 15th in total defense.

Coastal Carolina @ Georgia Southern

BET LEAN: Georgia Southern -6.5 (-109)

Unibet Sportsbook • Wager: 1 Unit

Georgia Southern is 3-1 SU and 3-0-1 ATS, with its lone loss coming to Wisconsin when the Eagles were minus-6 in turnover ratio. The Eagles still got a point-spread push in that game.

They just beat Ball State by 37 points on the road last week. By contrast, Georgia defeated Ball State by 42 points at home and Kentucky overcame Ball State by 30 points at home.

Georgia Southern ranks 18th in total yards and is in the top 50 in total defense.

Coastal Carolina is off a disappointing, nationally televised home loss (30-17) to Georgia State.

Chanticleers quarterback Grayson McCall hasn’t been as good as expected. I prefer Georgia Southern quarterback Davis Brin.

How To Bet College Football Week 5

Conference games

Most of the remaining regular season games are going to be conference matchups. This means that for those games, you must properly analyze how teams playing non-conference games will do against opponents close to their skill level.

The difference between bad and awful

The key to handicapping many games this weekend is figuring out the difference between bad and awful. Many weak teams are playing each other this weekend, and the trick to picking winners in those games is figuring out the degree to which certain teams are bad.

Some teams are bad, but decent against other poor-performing teams, and other teams just perform poorly against everyone.

Read more about how to bet on college football.

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