College Football Predictions & Best Bets for Week 9

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Oklahoma State's Ollie Gordon (0) carries the ball in for a rushing touchdown as West Virginia's Anthony Wilson (12) pursues during the second half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 21, 2023, in Morgantown, W.Va.
(AP Photo/Chris Jackson)
Chase Kiddy @chaseakiddy Oct 25, 2023, 12:39 PM
  • College Football Week 9 is approaching, providing a new slate of good bets.
  • Best bets for Oklahoma-Kansas, West Virginia-UCF, and more.

The stretch run of the college football betting season is officially here. The first College Football Playoff rankings will be revealed in a few days. 

Fans and bettors can start handicapping games with clear positioning and stakes in mind.

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

College Football Best Bets: Week 9 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 college football 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. 

Oklahoma at Kansas Spread Prediction

Oklahoma had a Week 7 bye, which provides a pretty clear line of demarcation for the Sooners. Before the bye, Oklahoma was the hunter; after the bye, Oklahoma is now the hunted.

The Sooners weren’t the Big 12 favorite before the bye. That honor belonged to the Texas Longhorns, who jumped out with a quick win over Alabama in Week 2 and became a conference darling. That all changed with Oklahoma’s Week 6 win over Texas.

Oklahoma has a perfect ATS record through the bye because the market hadn’t fully adjusted to how good head coach Brent Venables’ team is this year. Now, bettors must pay full price for admission to the Oklahoma show, and the Sooners are getting everyone’s best game when they come to town.

That’s why I like Kansas this week. The Jayhawks’ offense should challenge Oklahoma’s improved defense and leave the backdoor open in the fourth quarter, if necessary. And now that this point spread has eked up to a full 10 points, I feel I’m getting a great price to go against a hunted Oklahoma team that’s now priced out. 

Best Bet: Kansas +10

Indiana at Penn State Spread Prediction

It’s hard not to have a bad taste in your mouth with Penn State after last week’s dreadful offensive showing in Columbus. 

But remember, long-term college football bettors know what Penn State is. They’re the team that loses to Ohio State & Michigan and beats the breaks off everyone else. 

Penn State was 6-0 against the number ahead of last week’s game against the Buckeyes. Here are the margins of victory for their home games this year:

  • 63 points (UMass, Oct. 14)
  • 31 points (Iowa, Sept. 23)
  • 56 points (Delaware, Sept. 9)
  • 23 points (West Virginia, Sept. 2)

It’s hard to unsee what happened last week, but Penn State dominates the rest of this conference. Indiana already lost to Maryland by 27 and Michigan by 45, and I’m expecting a similar result here. I’m not afraid to lay four touchdowns and change. 

Best Bet: Penn State -32.5

West Virginia at UCF Spread Prediction

This number is fascinating to me, both because of what West Virginia is and what UCF is. 

West Virginia jumped out to a 4-1 start that caught many college fans (but not me) off guard. That’s fair, since the Mountaineers’ win total for the whole season was 4.5. 


UCF struggled through the latter half of September and the opening weeks of October because its quarterback, John Rhys Plumlee, was injured and not playing.

But recent results have market-corrected both teams a bit. West Virginia has fallen back into the pack after successive conference losses to Houston and Oklahoma State. UCF took first-place Oklahoma to the wire in Norman last week.

With UCF trending up and West Virginia trending down, the Knights are a full touchdown favorite here, in a point spread that would have looked straight-up insane about 13 days ago. 

But it’s the right number. It might even be a little light. West Virginia’s defense has been vastly overrated after its hot start, and the UCF offense is just much more potent with Plumlee in command. 

Best Bet: UCF -7

Cincinnati at Oklahoma State Spread Prediction

You probably wouldn’t know it unless you’re a Big 12 fan, but Oklahoma State is playing really well right now, and I want to ride the hot hand. This team has figured out its issues on offense, and the defense is, uhh, also present. 

After losing games to South Alabama and Iowa State, the Cowboys have righted the ship with three really impressive wins over Kansas State, Kansas, and West Virginia – three teams that can all make their case as top-half Big 12 teams. 

Now, the Cowboys will play a home game against Cincinnati, which might be the worst team in the conference. Giving away a touchdown and the hook is not enough for me to think twice about this game. I’d make this at least Oklahoma State -10.

Best Bet: Oklahoma State -7.5

Ole Miss at Vanderbilt Total Prediction

One of the most successful betting strategies I’ve had this year is blind-betting overs in Vanderbilt games and LSU games. I track college football over/under records, and the Tigers & Commodores are a combined 16-0 to the over.

The Ole Miss offense should post plenty of offense here. The only question I have is whether or not Vanderbilt’s offense can do enough to cash this ticket. 

Best Bet: Ole Miss/Vanderbilt Over 63.5

Best College Football Parlay This Week

One college football parlay to consider for Week 9 is:

  • Clemson -375
  • Memphis -300
  • Appalachian State -900

That’s a three-leg parlay for -115. Make sure to check out my 2Kparlay, too!

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 college football predictions, odds, and betting opportunities that I think are 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.