College Football Predictions & Best Bets for Week 4

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Kentucky wide receiver Anthony Brown-Stephens (5) and running back Demie Sumo-Karngbaye (0) celebrate in the end zone after a touchdown during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Akron in Lexington, Ky., Saturday, Sept. 16, 2023.
(AP Photo/Michelle Haas Hutchins)
Chase Kiddy @chaseakiddy Sep 20, 2023, 3:55 PM
  • College Football Week 4 is approaching, providing a new slate of good bets.
  • College Football underdogs from down the board are great options.
  • Best bets for Kentucky, Ole Miss-Alabama, North Carolina, and more.

It’s time for conference play. Week 4 is here, and college football this weekend will mostly turn away from non-conference matchups.

That’s not the case everywhere, though, as some of my favorite college football betting odds from this weekend include some of those last remaining non-conference holdouts. 

Today – as I do every Wednesday throughout the college football regular season – I’ve put together a handful of my favorite NCAAF bets for you to consider this weekend. 

College Football Best Bets: Week 4 Predictions

After I’ve handicapped the whole board each week, I will publish my best plays from the wider canon of college football odds. 

I’ll provide a short explanation of why I like each bet, so you don’t have to go on faith alone.

If you prefer an audio version of this weekly article, you can always subscribe to The Lion’s Edge, my weekly handicapping podcast for BetMGM. 

Georgia Southern at Ball State Spread Prediction

Georgia Southern is the far better team here and undervalued after a misleading loss at Wisconsin, so I am predicting that Southern will cover the 6.5-point spread at Ball State.

If you read last week’s Week 3 predictions, you already know Georgia Southern +19.5 was one of my favorite bets of the week. 

That ticket went down in flames after Georgia Southern was an apoplectic -6 on turnovers for the game – and that’s without even counting a seventh turnover on downs and a missed field goal. Final score: 35-14. Eight empty drives – most of them ending in positive territory – and all we needed was a lousy two points for the cover. Yuck.

The silver lining here is that the market is not correctly accounting for how well Southern played in the game, or how good it’s generally been so far this year. This is a team that will be in the mix for the vaunted Sun Belt East. The Eagles are absolutely a touchdown better than Ball State, even on the road. 

Best Bet: Georgia Southern -6.5

Ole Miss at Alabama Spread Prediction 

Alabama is grossly overvalued here and playing a legitimately good team, so I am predicting a cover and outright win for Ole Miss. 

I know this is Alabama and Nick Saban we’re talking about, and after all these years, the Tuscaloosa machine has earned a certain amount of institutional trust. But that’s kind of my whole problem with this line: it seems like it’s all about the past. 

There is nothing on tape that Alabama has done through three weeks of this season that says they deserve to be a full touchdown favorite over this Ole Miss team.

Lane Kiffin’s offense with the Rebs is legitimately good, and Alabama doesn’t have a P5-caliber quarterback. Both sides of the ball are down from previous years. 

The Rebels should completely outclass this team on offense, which will, inevitably, wear down Alabama’s blue-chip defense. I predicted Texas would win in Tuscaloosa, and I see the same thing here for Ole Miss. 

Best Bet: Ole Miss +7; Ole Miss ML +220

North Carolina at Pittsburgh Spread Prediction 

Pittsburgh has shown how offensively incompetent it is over the last two weeks, which is a major reason why I’m predicting that North Carolina covers its 7.5-point spread on the road.

I don’t know how you can walk away from Pittsburgh’s two games against FBS competition with any impression other than how bad Phil Jurkovec is. Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi has never been an offensive wizard, but this year’s offense is so bad that it essentially breaks the team’s ability to be competitive. 

Now, Pitt must play a legitimately good team in UNC, which is clearly a notch or three above West Virginia and Cincinnati. I’ve been skeptical of North Carolina thus far, but the Heels have played solid on both sides of the ball and won by margin. 

At bottom, this number is too light for an opponent like Pittsburgh. North Carolina was -7 at home against Minnesota last week; how is it only -7.5 for a road game against Pitt?

Best Bet: North Carolina -7.5

Nevada at Texas State Spread Prediction

Texas State has a powerful offense that should quickly outrun winless Nevada. Therefore, I predict that Texas State will cover its 17.5-point spread in Week 4.

Texas State is 3-0 against the spread and has the best cover margin – 23 points per game – in college football. Regular column readers and podcast listeners know I’ve been beating the drum for the Bobcats.

This week, Texas State draws lowly, winless Nevada in a non-conference matchup. Nevada got blown out by FCS Idaho in Week 2.

The end zone will be open all day long for Texas State, and G.J. Kinne’s offense will rack up points for a full 60 minutes. I’m not worried about the margin. 

Best Bet: Texas State -17.5

Kentucky at Vanderbilt Spread Prediction 

Vanderbilt has clearly taken a step back from last year and continues to be overvalued by the betting market. With the Wildcats showing balance and good quarterback play behind Devin Leary, I’m predicting that Kentucky covers its current 13.5-point spread against Vanderbilt this weekend.

Vanderbilt was a scrappy upstart in 2022 but has been among the worst ATS teams in college football this year. The Commodores have yet to cover a game. 

Kentucky is clearly the best team Vanderbilt will have played to this point. The Wildcats have a capable, balanced offense with NC State transfer Devin Leary now running the show. 

Here’s a stat for you: Kentucky has rushed for an average of 269 yards per game against Vanderbilt across its last eight contests. That includes a 6.8 yards per game mark.

Kentucky has delivered dominance against Vanderbilt in recent years, and what I’ve seen so far this year says it will again this weekend. The market has been far too soft on Vanderbilt. 

Best Bet: Kentucky -13.5

Best College Football Parlay This Week

One NCAAF parlay to consider for Week 4 is:

  • SMU +210
  • Ole Miss +220
  • West Virginia +200

This three-leg underdog parlay is currently priced at +2876, which is outstanding. However, one I’m really fond of here is a three-team round-robin. Any successful combination will net you around +800, with the full round-robin paying out a huge sum. 

Make sure to check out my 2Kparlay later this week. 

College Football Picks Against the Spread

If you like this sort of content, I’d recommend checking out my podcast, The Lion’s Edge, which I host on behalf of our content team here at BetMGM.

Every week, I highlight odds and bets that I think are interesting or ripe for advantage bettors, like me. I also bring on expert guests from both inside and outside of the sportsbook, so you can learn a little bit more about key topics in online sports betting.

Check it out and subscribe on the podcast player of your choice. You can also listen to some of the most recent episodes in the podcast player below.

College Football Parlays

BetMGM is the King of Sportsbooks and the King of Parlays. And college football season is a perfect chance to build parlays.

With hundreds of games and thousands of odds combinations each year, you can build a parlay with heavy moneyline favorites, short underdogs, or prop bets. It’s a thrilling way to get closer to the action and make every play count.

Visit the online sportsbook today to view all football betting opportunities!

If you don’t have an account, register today with BetMGM’s welcome bonus. And check back for the best sportsbook promotions each day of the year.

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About the Author

Chase Kiddy

Read More @chaseakiddy

Chase Kiddy is a writer for BetMGM and co-host of The Lion's Edge, an NFL and college football podcast available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and everywhere else. He has also written for a number of print and online outlets, including the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Washington Post, Daily News-Record, and HERO Sports. His first novel, Cave Paintings, is in development.

Chase Kiddy is a writer for BetMGM and co-host of The Lion's Edge, an NFL and college football podcast available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and everywhere else. He has also written for a number of print and online outlets, including the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Washington Post, Daily News-Record, and HERO Sports. His first novel, Cave Paintings, is in development.