Betting News & Analysis

College Football Betting 2021: Best late Week 11 Bets — spread, total & moneyline

Starkville, Mississippi, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback Bryce Young (9) reacts after a touchdown against the Mississippi State Bulldogs during the fourth quarter at Davis Wade Stadium at Scott Field. Mandatory Credit: Matt Bush-USA TODAY Sports

Another eight ranked teams fell in Week 10, with two top-10 teams losing for the third consecutive week. Now, Georgia, Cincinnati, Oklahoma and UTSA are the only undefeated teams remaining. With bowl season getting closer and closer, each college football game becomes more meaningful in terms of eligibility and College Football Playoff contention.

My Week 10 picks went 2-3, bringing my year-to-date record to 33-34 for +1.69 units. Here are more spread, total, and moneyline picks for Week 11. All lines are from DraftKings Sportsbook.

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New Mexico State vs. Alabama (UNDER 67)

Tale of the Tape

These two programs could not be any more different: New Mexico State is 1-8, with their lone win coming against FCS competition. Alabama is 8-1 and the No. 2 team in the country.

The Aggies have problems all over their defense and currently sit at the bottom of the FBS in every facet of defensive play. Through 10 weeks, they have allowed 0.101 expected points added (EPA) per play, 116th among 130 FBS programs, while their 7.1 yards allowed per play comes in at 125th.

New Mexico State: Team defense grades and ranks among 10 FBS teams (2021)
PFF Metrics PFF Grade FBS Rank (out of 130)
Team defense grade 35.2 130th
Run-defense grade 38.9 129th
Tackling grade 28.2 130th
Pass-rush grade 58.5 129th
Coverage grade 36.1 130th

After a close scare against LSU last week, Alabama now has an opportunity to reset against a team like New Mexico State before crucial games against Arkansas and Auburn to close out the season.

A notable concern from Saturday’s game was the Crimson Tide's inability to run the ball, as they mustered just six rushing yards from 26 carries in a performance that was uncharacteristically poor for an Alabama offense. The Crimson Tide is now relying on their quarterback, Heisman front-runner Bryce Young, whose 91.1 passing grade ranks seventh among the 148 FBS quarterbacks with at least 100 dropbacks on the year.

Implied Value Under Over
Cover probability 55.2% 43.5%
Break-even 51.7% 51.7%
Value 3.5% -8.2%
Matchup to Watch: Alabama DI Phidarian Mathis and edge Will Anderson Jr. vs. New Mexico State's offensive line

The New Mexico State offensive line has allowed 13 sacks, 36 hits and 129 hurries on 479 pass-blocking snaps this season — Akron is the only offensive line that has given up more total pressures. The Aggies rank 127th among 130 FBS programs in pressure rate allowed (37.2%) and team pass-blocking grade (25.4).

The interior of the Aggies' offensive line is the biggest weakness, as left guard Gabriel Preciado, center Eli Johnson and right guard Carson Pharris have combined to allow six sacks, 15 hits, and 63 hurries while grading below 50.0 in pass protection.

Crimson Tide pass-rushers Phidarian Mathis and Will Anderson Jr. have both graded above 70.0 in the pass-rush. Mathis' 12.9% pass-rush win rate ranks sixth among the 30 SEC interior defenders with at least 100 pass-rush snaps, while Anderson's mark of 16.2% ranks ninth of 37.

X-Factor: Alabama RB Brian Robinson Jr.

As 51.5-point favorites, this game is expected to get out of hand quickly. This will greatly help the under, with the only concern being how many points the starters score before they head to the pine.

Robinson's 89.9 PFF rushing grade is the third-highest mark in the SEC, but he leads the conference in rushing touchdowns (12) and missed tackles forced on runs (52).

PFF Greenline implies a 3.5% value when taking the under. This defense plays well against teams with inferior offensive talent, so I believe Alabama will run the ball and emphasize improvement in the ground game. With Arkansas and Auburn looming, look for the Crimson Tide to put this game away early and lean on the rushing attack to chew the clock and get out of this game healthy.

Georgia vs. Tennessee (UNDER 56)

Tale of the Tape

The under 59.5 points play in the GeorgiaMissouri game was the correct one a week ago, and it will likely be the correct play in week 11. After all, the No. 1 ranked Bulldogs have yet to allow more than 13 points in a game this year.

Georgia has earned a nation-leading 95.7 team defense grade, ranking first among FBS programs in expected points added (EPA) allowed per play (-0.326) and yards allowed per play (3.8).

The Tennessee Volunteers, on the other hand, are making steady progress under first-year head coach Josh Heupel. After finishing the 2020 season ranked 96th among FBS programs in EPA per play, the 2021 version of this attack ranks 29th in the same metric.

Implied Value Under Over
Cover probability 54.3% 44.0%
Break-even 51.5% 51.5%
Value 2.8% -7.5%
Matchup to Watch: Tennessee WRs VELUS JONES JR. and Cedric Tillman vs. Georgia CBs Derion Kendrick and Latavious Brini

Jones and Tillman are quarterback Hendon Hooker‘s top two targets in the passing game. Jones ranks fourth among SEC wideouts in yards per route run at 3.12, while Tillman's 1.86 is good enough for 16th. The duo has combined for 24 explosive passing plays of 15 or more yards through 10 weeks.

The Tennessee receiving duo will face off against Georgia slot corner Latavious Brini and outside corner Derion Kendrick. Both players have graded above 79.0 this year, while Kendrick has allowed a passer rating of just 38.1 on throws into his coverage.

X-Factor: Georgia DI Jalen Carter

Carter's 89.2 PFF pass-rush grade leads the team, as does his 24 total pressures, 16.3% pressure percentage and 20.8% pass-rush win rate. If the Bulldogs can control the line of scrimmage, as they have shown throughout the season, Tennessee will be limited in what they can do up the middle.

PFF Greenline is a strong believer in Georgia limiting what Tennessee can do offensively. As a result, there is approximately a 3% value in taking the under.

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

UAB Blazers (ML +170) vs. Marshall Thundering Herd

Tale of the Tape

Both UAB and Marshall boast a 6-3 record and a 4-1 record in conference play.

This game has all the makings of a tight defensive battle, as both of these defenses have graded above 85.0 over the last 10 weeks. UAB's 91.8 team defense grade ranks seventh in the nation, while Marshall's 85.1 comes in at 26th.

Implied Value UAB Marshall
Win probability 39.7% 60.3%
Break-even 36.9% 67.4%
Value 2.8% -7.1%
Matchup to Watch: UAB EDGE Alex Wright vs. Marshall RT Kendrick Sartor

Sartor has allowed just one sack, three hits and 12 hurries across 306 pass-blocking snaps this season, which is impressive at first glance. However, he has also lost 14 additional pass-block reps that haven't resulted in pressure, which is why his PFF grade currently sits at good but not great 63.4.

Sartor will now have to go up against UAB edge defender Alex Wright, whose 90.6 PFF grade ranks sixth among FBS edge defenders this season. Through 10 weeks, Wright has generated 38 total pressures from 176 pass-rush snaps.


Marshall is second in the conference in passing attempts, passing yards, deep pass attempts and explosive passing plays, so they are going to test this Blazers secondary.

The good news for UAB is that the defense ranks 13th in the FBS in team coverage grade. Swoopes and Thomas have combined to allow just 42 catches from 74 targets (56.8%) while breaking up 16.2% of the targets thrown their way.

PFF Greenline implies value in taking the Blazers to win this game outright. I believe that Marshall’s poor run defense is not a good match for UAB’s rushing attack, and UAB’s team defense grade edges out Marshall’s.

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

Air Force Falcons (-2.5) vs. Colorado State Rams

Tale of the Tape

As a triple-option team, the Falcons run the ball over 84.2% of the time — only Army runs more often. They lead the Mountain West with 60 explosive run plays of 10 or more yards and 2.5 rushing yards before contact per attempt.

The Colorado State run defense will provide an entertaining matchup, as they pace the Mountain West with an 84.4 run-defense grade while allowing a fifth-best 0.143 EPA per run play.

Implied Value Air Force Colorado State
Cover probability 54.3% 45.7%
Break-even 52.4% 52.4%
Value 1.9% -6.7%
Matchup to Watch: Colorado State’s TREY MCBRIDE vs. Air Force defense

Colorado State’s Trey McBride is not only the conference’s premier tight end; he makes a compelling case to be the favorite for the John Mackey Award.

McBride's 94.5 receiving grade leads the nation through 10 weeks. He already has 20 more receptions than the nation's next-closest tight end, with his 842 receiving yards, 376 yards after the catch and 50 first downs all leading the way at the position.

X-Factor: Air Force EDGE Vince Sanford

Rams QB Todd Centeio's passer rating without pressure is 92.3, but it drops to 69.9 when he is hurried.

Sanford and his 89.0 pass-rush grade will be the best chance for the Falcons to create pressure. He is a well-rounded defender and leads the team with six sacks, 11 hurries, 27 stops and three forced fumbles.

PFF Greenline implies the spread should be at -3.3, almost a point off the market. Air Force will find success in the triple-option. The floor has crumbled beneath the Rams, as Year 2of the Steve Addazio era brings up questions about whether he is already on the hot seat.

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

Kansas Jayhawks (+30.5) vs. Texas Longhorns

Tale of the Tape

It is the beginning of November, and five teams in the Big 12 have losing records in conference play. Texas and Kansas are two of those teams.

Kansas played competitively against Oklahoma three weeks ago but followed up that solid performance with blowout losses to Oklahoma State and Kansas State. The Jayhawks will have a question mark at the quarterback position entering Saturday, as both Jason Bean and Miles Kendrick are questionable.

Texas also has questions regarding the quarterback position, but not for injury reasons. Casey Thompson took over as the starter in Week 3 and won three games, putting up a season-high 90.6 grade against Texas Tech that was followed by an ugly 33.4 passing grade in a win against TCU.

Since then, the Longhorns have lost four straight, including three consecutive games blowing a second-half lead. In the last three weeks, Thompson has generated three big-time throws and four turnover-worthy plays. He was quickly benched in last week's game against Iowa State, though replacement Hudson Card failed to turn things around, averaging 4.1 yards per attempt.

Team Passing Comparison
Metrics Kansas Texas
PFF Grade 57.6 67.6
Passer rating when clean 90.9 130.2
Passer rating under pressure 41.4 40.1
Big-time throw % 5.11% 3.28%
Turnover-worthy play % 5.84% 4.92%
Matchup to Watch: Texas WR XAVIER WORTHY vs. Kansas safety KENNY LOGAN JR.

Outside of true freshman Xavier Worthy, the Longhorns' wide receiver corps is extremely suspect. This year, the first-year pass-catcher has hauled in 35 of his 59 targets for 679 yards and eight scores, averaging 19.4 yards per reception and generating a 117.9 passer rating from his quarterback.

The Jayhawks’ highest-graded player in coverage, Kenny Logan Jr.,  has a 75.4 coverage grade and 75.1 tackling grade. Although Logan will not directly cover Worthy, look for the defense’s leading tackler to make plays to stop this anemic Longhorn defense. Worthy is second among Big 12 receivers in explosive pass plays, and his average depth of target of 15.8 yards is tied for fourth of all Big 12 receivers with at least 100 snaps.


Johnson's 77.7 overall grade leads the team entering Week 11, as does his 24 total pressures, three sacks, three hits and 18 hurries. Johnson is fourth on the team with 14 stops and fifth with 29 tackles. Against the top two teams in the Big 12, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State, Johnson contributed five total pressures in each game.

There comes the time when there are simply too many points for a team to cover. Steve Sarkisian is an offensive mastermind but has not demonstrated that ability during the four-game losing streak. “All gas, no brakes” has come to a halt, with 27 second-half points during that stretch.

Add in a depleted wide receiver room, a 4-5 season that has not met expectations and a player leaking a coach yelling at the team, and there are concerning problems with the Longhorns football program.

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