College football season is so close that you can taste it. In a few short days, the pigskin will be flying and Lee Corso will be putting on headgear. All will be right in the world. College football season also means that gamblers can come out of hiding from the dog days of summer. Before the games begin, it’s time to place your futures bets on over/under win totals. Let’s take a look at five intriguing bets to consider.
*Note: The over/under totals represent regular season games only. Conference championships and bowl games are not included. All totals are taken from Oddshark.*
Georgia: O/U – 10.5 wins (-130)
Can the Georgia Bulldogs recapture the magic from last season and make the College Football Playoff? The Bulldogs have to replace a lot of talent on both sides of the ball with the big pieces being linebacker Roquan Smith and running backs Sony Michel and Nick Chubb. However, quarterback Jake Fromm, who is a future NFL prospect, returns with more experience so look for the offense to rely on his arm a little more this year. Plus, it’s not like this team is going to be falling off the face of the Earth with a rebuild. It’s not a rebuild, it’s a reload. Coach Kirby Smart is bringing in a 5-star recruiting class. Looking at the schedule, I see two potential hiccups: at LSU and vs. Auburn. I expect Georgia to win one out of the two and then run through everyone else. Bet the over. Georgia Over 10.5 wins
Washington: O/U – 10.5 wins (-145)
Since his arrival in 2014, Chris Petersen has brought the Huskies to two New Year’s Six games including a trip to the College Football Playoff (CFP) in 2016. The Huskies did not lose a lot of impact players and will return veteran quarterback Jake Browning and running back Myles Gaskin. This team has the potential to be very, very good. However, needing 11 wins from a team with the following games on the schedule is a tough pill to swallow: Auburn (in Atlanta), at Utah, at Oregon, vs. Stanford, at Washington State. Washington is going to be at the top of the Pac 12, but I see 10 wins in their future, not 11. Washington Under 10.5 wins
Notre Dame: O/U – 9.5 wins (+110)
If you hate Notre Dame, this is going to be a tough year for you. Notre Dame is going to fight for a spot in the CFP. I’m actually shocked the win total is set at 9.5. The biggest loss on the defensive side was their star defensive coordinator, Mike Elko, to Texas A&M. That being said, the defense is outstanding, ranking first in the country in terms of returning production. Plus, the offense still has Brandon Wimbush, Dexter Williams, and Myles Boykin carrying the load. What favors Notre Dame is their schedule. Most of their ranked opponents will travel to South Bend (Michigan, Stanford, Florida State) and they will be favored in most, if not all, of their games. Hammer the over. Notre Dame Over 9.5 wins
Missouri: O/U – 6.5 wins (-155)
If you don’t know a thing about Missouri football, that’s ok. All you need to remember are two words, Drew Lock. He is arguably the most explosive quarterback in the country, who threw for almost 4,000 yards and absurd 44 TDs. If you had no idea Lock played for Missouri, you might think he plays in the Big XII. Lock is putting up huge numbers against SEC defenses. The schedule is not easy with Georgia, South Carolina, and Alabama in three straight weeks. That being said, this team won 7 games last year. If Lock stays healthy, they have a chance to win every game. Missouri Over 6.5 wins.
TCU: O/U – 7.5 wins (-135)
I had to do a double take when I first saw this. 7.5 wins for a team that’s coming off an 11 win season? Expect that low total to be bulletin board for the best coach in the Big XII, Gary Patterson. The defense is going to be fine with defensive end Ben Banogu and linebacker Ty Summers up front. The quarterback and offensive line are giant question marks. Kenny Hill aka Kenny Trill is gone so now the keys to the offense belong to sophomore Shawn Robinson. Plus, the Horned Frogs need to replace four all-conference linemen. Notable games are Ohio State (in Arlington), at Texas, vs. Oklahoma, and at West Virginia. If the line holds up and Robinson is decent at best, TCU can win at least 8 games. TCU Over 7.5 wins.