3 College Football Best Bets for Saturday, October 22

3 College Football Best Bets for Saturday, October 22

This week’s college football schedule is highlighted by five games featuring ranked-versus-ranked opponents. Those games will dominate the headlines Saturday evening and provide bettors with opportunities to cash in on significant payouts.

We’ll preview one of those contests as well as other games that provide bettors multiple opportunities for good returns on their wagers. We’ll examine three games from Saturday’s slate that bettors should consider with these best bet selections.

Cincinnati vs SMU – Betting Preview

The Cincinnati Bearcats – ranked No. 21 in the country and winners of five straight – hit the road Saturday against the SMU Mustangs. The Bearcats have continued their dominance of the American Athletic Conference (AAC) as Cincinnati has won every conference game they’ve played since 2020.

SMU enters the game 3-3 fresh off their 40-34 victory over the Navy Midshipmen. The Mustangs own the nation’s fourth-best passing offense, throwing for over 350 yards on average. Senior QB Tanner Mordecai has thrown for 2,016 yards at the season’s midpoint, completing 15 of those passes for touchdowns against six interceptions.

Cincinnati, meanwhile, rested last week with a well-timed bye. Multiple players should be back from injuries against SMU, providing a boost for the Bearcats. Cincinnati also used the time off to work on improving their passing game after back-to-back contests where first-year QB Ben Bryant struggled as he threw for a combined 344 yards with three interceptions in those two games.

Best Bet: Cincinnati -4

The Bearcats have the nation’s 19th-best pass defense in the country, limiting opponents to 186 yards per outing. The pressure they exert on opponents is immense with 25 QB Hurries and 23 sacks. Expect Cincinnati to make Mordecai’s life miserable and easily roll to another AAC victory in Dallas.

Key Betting Trends for Cincinnati at SMU:

  • SMU is 1-5 ATS in 2022
  • SMU is 0-3 ATS as an underdog in 2022
  • Cincinnati is 2-3 ATS as a favorite in 2022
  • SMU and Cincinnati have gone under the total in each of the last six games
  • Cincinnati is 9-20 on the over in road contests under Luke Fickell
  • Cincinnati is 7-12-1 ATS on the road against AAC opponents under Luke Fickell

West Virginia vs Texas Tech – Betting Preview

West Virginia University (WVU) travels to take on Big 12 foe Texas Tech this weekend with both teams in search of their second conference victory. The Mountaineers and Red Raiders enter with identical 3-3 records after the first half of the 2022 regular season.

WVU boasts a much-improved offense this season, averaging 38 points per contest and nearly 462 total offensive yards each game. The biggest improvement has been with Georgia transfer QB JT Daniels under center. The new Mountaineer has thrown for 1,492 yards and nine TDs against three interceptions. His top target is WR Bryce Ford-Wheaton, who has caught 40 passes for 463 yards and four TDs.

The Texas Tech offense has progressed under first-year head coach Joey McGuire. Second-year QB Donovan Smith has thrown for 1,475 yards in five games, completing 61 percent of his passes en route to a seven-TD, two-INT showing thus far. Smith returns to the starting lineup after healing during the open date last week, looking to improve on his already impressive numbers.

Best Bet: Texas Tech -6.5

The howling, relentless winds at Texas Tech’s Jones AT&T Stadium give road teams fits, evidenced by the Red Raiders’ 3-0 mark at home in 2022. The Mountaineers have only a decisive road victory over a bad Virginia Tech squad to their credit and have lost their other two road games (at Pitt, at Texas) by a combined 25 points.

While the under/over is an attractive 65 points with two defenses that struggle against the pass, the safer bet is for WVU to have a let-down performance on the road after upsetting Baylor at home last week. The Mountaineers are 0-3 under Neal Brown in the game after upsetting a ranked opponent, losing each time by more than a touchdown.

Key Betting Trends for West Virginia at Texas Tech:

  • WVU is 4-2 ATS in 2022
  • WVU is 3-7 ATS in the last 10 meetings with Texas Tech
  • Texas Tech has gone over five of its six games in 2022
  • Texas Tech is 2-0 straight-up as a favorite this year
  • Texas Tech is 1-5 straight-up in the last six October games

Mississippi State vs Alabama – Betting Preview

The No. 24 ranked Mississippi State Bulldogs get the unenviable task of taking on the No. 6 ranked Alabama Crimson Tide in Tuscaloosa Saturday night in the SEC’s marquee matchup. The Bulldogs are tasked with giving Nick Saban’s Alabama squad its second consecutive loss, a feat that has not happened in nearly a decade.

Mississippi State enters the matchup with the eighth-ranked passing offense in the country. Junior QB Will Rogers has pioneered that production, racking in 2,324 yards and 23 TDs against only four interceptions. Rogers has spread the production around as nine different receivers have 10 or more receptions on the year.

Alabama has Heisman winner Bryce Young back for this game. In his last game against Tennessee, Young was electric in throwing for 455 yards and two TDs. Jahmyr Gibbs was dominant in the Tennessee game as well, rushing for three TDs and 103 yards on 24 carries while also catching five passes for 48 yards.

Best Bet: Mississippi State +21

While the Volunteers have more talented wide receivers than Mississippi State, Tennessee exposed Alabama’s weakness against the pass. The Bulldogs will be able to move the ball up and down the field against the Crimson Tide, keeping this game closer than the three-TD spread oddsmakers put into place.

The over/under on this game is also enticing at 61 points. Mississippi State has had only two games exceed that total this year, however, as the Bulldogs have improved significantly on defense in 2022. Alabama’s normally rock-solid defense is suddenly vulnerable, surrendering the most points the Crimson Tide have allowed in over 115 years.

Key Betting Trends for Mississippi State at Alabama:

  • Mississippi State is 3-0-1 ATS at home in 2022.
  • Mississippi State has gone over in all four home games in 2022.
  • Mississippi State has been favored in every game until this matchup with Alabama.
  • Alabama is 1-2 ATS on the road in 2022
  • Alabama has gone over three times this season, including two of the last three games.

Ernie Horn

Sports Betting Contributor

Ernie is a 25-year veteran of the newspaper industry. He spent those early years working as a sports reporter and editor, but made the move back to the digital world in 2022. Ernie covers college football and NFL betting for Hello Rookie.