Conference play really ramps up, and there are a handful of Big 12 underdogs to look out for this week, alongside an enticing Arkansas-Alabama matchup. Get your Week 5 College Football betting picks as we look at several underdogs.
Week 5 College Football Underdog Picks & Bets
Week 4 saw a few major surprises, including another Kansas State upset of Oklahoma and a complete meltdown from Miami against Middle Tennessee. Week 5 is bound to bring some more impressive performances from underdogs. Let’s take a look at which teams you can’t overlook when making bets this weekend.
Arkansas (+16.5) vs. Alabama
The chances of an Arkansas win over Alabama are slim, but I keep remembering how closely the Razorbacks kept their game against the Tide last season. Even on the road, Sam Pittman’s team wasn’t intimidated and managed to match Alabama offensively much of the way.
This year, Arkansas is at home and might have a more well-rounded team. It still probably won’t be enough to knock off Alabama – Bryce Young has another year under his belt and the Tide pulverized Vanderbilt last weekend – but this is an Alabama team that did have a hard time getting past Texas on the road earlier this season.
Can K.J. Jefferson and the defense keep this game within two touchdowns? It’s absolutely doable.
Kansas Moneyline (+135) vs. Iowa State
Come aboard the Kansas hype train before it leaves the station. I had Kansas as a strong underdog pick against Houston two weeks ago, and all the Jayhawks have done is win since then. Not only does Kansas have four wins for the first time since 2009, but Jalon Daniels looks like a legitimate Heisman contender. It’s not time to abandon Kansas yet.
Iowa State has been a mixed bag this season, losing to Baylor as a slight home favorite last weekend. The Cyclones flashed an impressive defense early in the season but allowed 361 yards of offense to the Bears.
While Kansas’ defense isn’t an area of strength, there are enough cracks in Iowa State’s defense for an outstanding offense to put together another great game. Kansas moneyline (+135) is worth considering, and Kansas +3.5 is a must unless the line edges even closer.
West Virginia (+9) vs. Texas
Texas suffered an embarrassing defeat on the road in Week 4, blowing a late lead to Texas Tech and losing in overtime after a Bijan Robinson fumble. While they’ve proven a little something at home, nearly taking down Alabama early in the season, there are cracks in the foundation for the Longhorns.
There are more than a few cracks in the foundation for West Virginia, but this is a team that has started to find itself in the last two weeks. The Mountaineers’ offense is in good shape as JT Daniels continues to look more comfortable. The offense is at least cohesive enough to give Texas’ defense a challenge, especially if the Longhorns’ struggles defending Donovan Smith are any indication. Texas may have Quinn Ewers back for this game, but it was tough to blame their issues against Texas Tech on Hudson Card.
Something to watch for is Texas’ late-game struggles. Steve Sarkisian does a nice job of getting his team prepared, but the Longhorns have struggled with in-game adjustments. This trend might make West Virginia an intriguing live bet during the game. If the Mountaineers fall in a hole and the live line moves further in Texas’ direction, West Virginia could get some of those points back late in the game. At +9, WVU is a nice value overall.
Texas Tech (+7.5) vs. Kansas State
Kansas State knocked off Oklahoma for the third time in Chris Klieman’s four seasons last weekend, and Adrian Martinez looked like prime Michael Vick in the process. Just a week earlier, the Wildcats scored 10 points in a loss to Tulane. We don’t know what to expect from this Kansas State team and have never known what to expect from Martinez. For that reason alone, Texas Tech +7.5 is worth a look.
The Red Raiders’ offense looked terrific in an upset win over Texas on Saturday, as QB Donovan Smith continues to settle into the system under new coach Joey McGuire. Concerns that Texas Tech will regress to the mean after such a highlight win can be offset by the same concerns for Kansas State.
If Oklahoma had limited Martinez’s production on the ground, the path to a win would’ve been pretty clear. With the nation’s full attention now on Martinez’s legs, Texas Tech should prepare accordingly and make sure they don’t let him beat them on the ground.
Easier said than done? Maybe, but Martinez and Kansas State still have plenty to prove, and the Red Raiders have proven they can keep up with some solid offenses.