News & Analysis

PFF College's Week 5 NCAA spread picks

Sep 21, 2018; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Washington State Cougars quarterback Gardner Minshew (16) throws the ball against the Southern California Trojans in the second quarter at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Welp. Oregon was unable to get us our third-straight PFF College Pick of the Week right last week, blowing a 23-point-turned-17-point second-half lead before losing in overtime at home to Stanford. And, while we did get NC State (-5.5) and continued to pick up line value for the 10th time in 17 moves so far this year, we were unable to build off of our winning Week 3 in Week 4.

This week we’re going to try something different.  We’re still going to have our College Pick of the Week, accompanied with a writeup by us. However, instead of us picking five games from our model’s selections, we’re simply going to give out all of our model’s picks this week. After seeing good model pick after good model pick go unselected by us during our weekly process, we felt that it was best to release all of our ATS as opposed to leave it to chance again. Enjoy!

Follow us on twitter at @BrownBenjamin22 and @PFF_Eric and listen to the PFF Forecast here.  

Utah at Washington State (+2)

Prediction: Washington State 27-26 (Washington State covers)

Point (Ben Brown): In a hotly contested Pac-12 matchup, Washington State’s Air Raid offense squares off against the Utah Utes and their 12th-ranked defense. The Utes might have the best secondary in the FBS allowing just a passer rating of 49.1. Without the benefit of lots of generated pressure, the coverage unit has still locked down from an EPA standpoint with less than 32 percent of early-down attempts being deemed successful. Our model likes the upside associated with the Washington State pass offense making the Cougars slight favorites at home. This game will come down to the ability of Gardner Minshew and his plethora of receivers to convert some deep passes against the Utes defense. The exotic looks offered by one of the best (and most entertaining) offenses in the FBS will create enough separation for the Cougars to cover the points at home.

Counterpoint (Eric Eager):  With roughly the 50th-most-difficult schedule in college football through four weeks (in terms of our PFF ELO metric), the Utes have one of the best defenses in the nation – first in the Pac 12 in early-down success rate allowed on passes and tied for second against the run. Washington State’s schedule doesn’t rank in the top 100 of college football, and they surrendered a clean-pocket passer rating of 138.6 to USC’s freshman J.T. Daniels, who up until that point had been the worst passer in the conference. If they can’t get more than the five pressures they got on Daniels, maybe even Tyler Huntley can improve enough to even the disparity at the game’s most important position.

 

All other picks:

Penn State (+3.5) versus Ohio State and UNDER 71
Iowa State (+10.5) at TCU
NC State (-5) versus Virginia and OVER 54.5
Virginia Tech (+5) at Duke
Washington (-17.5) versus BYU and OVER 45
Tennessee at Georgia OVER 52
Southern Miss at Auburn UNDER 54
Mississippi at LSU UNDER 59.5
Syracuse at Clemson UNDER 66
Indiana at Rutgers UNDER 51.5
Utah at Washington State OVER 50.5
Arkansas State (-3) at Georgia Southern and OVER 54.5
Army (+7) at Buffalo and OVER 54.5
Oregon at California OVER 58.5
Northwestern (+14) versus Michigan
Georgia State (+8) versus Louisiana-Monroe
Nevada (+6.5) at Air Force
UTSA (-9.5) versus UTEP
Western Michigan (-1) at Miami (OH)
Temple (+13.5) at Boston College
Kent State (+7.5) at Ball State and UNDER 64.5
Louisiana Tech (+7.5) at North Texas
Central Michigan at Michigan State OVER 46
Florida (+7.5) at Mississippi State
UMass (+13) at Ohio and UNDER 69.5
Purdue (-3.5) at Nebraska and UNDER 57.5
Hawaii at San Jose State UNDER 66
Toledo at Fresno State UNDER 61.5
South Alabama at Appalachian State UNDER 56.5
Louisville (+6.5) versus Florida State
Tulane (+14) versus Memphis
Wyoming (+17) versus Boise State
Arkansas at Texas A&M UNDER 60
Rutgers (+17) versus Indiana
Kansas (+17) versus Oklahoma State and UNDER 62
Colorado (-9.5) versus UCLA and OVER 60.5
East Carolina (-7) versus Old Dominion

 

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