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Best Late Week 1 College Football Bets: Spreads and totals

Florida State Seminoles quarterback Jordan Travis (13) looks to pass to a teammate. The Florida State Seminoles hosted a limited number of fans for the Garnet and Gold Spring Game Saturday, April 10, 2021. Garnet And Gold Edits016

After a limited spread in Week 0, Week 1 brings college football fans the first full meal of the 2021 college football season and with it comes many different betting possibilities. There are a lot of games to choose from, and PFF Greenline sees value in several. 

Let's dive in to PFF's best late Week 1 college football bets, including PFF's pick for Sunday night's Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. Florida State Seminoles showdown.

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Saturday: Army Black Knights (+2) vs. Georgia State Panthers

Jeff Monken led Army to at least eight wins in four of the past five seasons, including a 9-3 season in 2020. The Black Knights are extremely disciplined, averaging only 39 penalty yards per game — 13th-best in the country. They boast five quarterbacks with at least some starting experience, and the running back group is deep — they return four running backs who had a rush grade of at least a 70.0 PFF grade last season.

PFF Greenline uses exclusive game and player data to make projections on NFL game spreads, moneyline, and over/under.

Army unsurprisingly led the FBS with 722 rushing attempts, and 547 of those attempts were versus 8-plus box defenders. It blew away every other team with an 87% run-play rate. Georgia State was fortunate enough to not have to defend the run, as the Panthers only faced 330 rushing attempts in 10 games, though it did allow 4.9 yards per carry. 

Time of possession was not on Georgia State's side in three of its four losses last year.

Opponent (Score in Loss) Rushing Yards Allowed (Rush Yards/Attempt) Opponent Time of Possession Georgia State Time of Possession
Louisiana (34-31 OT) 240 (6.2) 29:50 30:10
Arkansas State (59-52) 58 (1.5)* 35:41 24:19
Coastal Carolina (51-0) 250 (5.3) 41:04 18:56
Appalachian State (17-13) 130 (2.8) 34:35 25:25

*Allowed 551 passing yards and 8 TDs to Arkansas State

Army’s triple-option grinds out the clock, and the Black Knights should be expected to dominate time of possession. As long as they have the ball, the Panthers and their 11 returning starters on offense will be limited in terms of quantity of possessions. The line has shifted off a key number from +3 to +2. PFF has the spread at Georgia State -1.2, making Army +2 a decent play, especially when the game is anticipated to have fewer possessions than normal. Army is also worth a moneyline sprinkle.

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