College Football
Betting action report: Public backing Notre Dame, big money on Chiefs
College Football

Betting action report: Public backing Notre Dame, big money on Chiefs

Updated Oct. 12, 2023 12:53 p.m. ET

College football Week 7 odds are arguably more alluring than NFL Week 6 odds. That's due in large part to No. 8 Oregon facing No. 7 Washington in a game that will reverberate in the College Football Playoff odds market.

There's also No. 10 USC at No. 21 Notre Dame. And of course, it's impossible to go a week without acknowledging Coach Prime and the Colorado Buffaloes.

But worry not. We'll tackle the NFL market, too. 

Oddsmakers and experts help us dive into this week's NFL and college football betting nuggets.


Let's go!

Plucky Ducks, Hungry Huskies

Oregon is a point-spread bettors dream at the moment. The Ducks are 5-0 straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS), cashing for bettors in every game. Washington is 5-0 SU and 3-1-1 ATS.

BetMGM opened host Washington as a 3-point favorite, peaked at Huskies -3.5 briefly Monday, then backed up to Huskies -2.5 (-115, bet $10 to win $18.70 total). As of Wednesday night, Washington is at -3 (-105, bet $10 to win $19.52 total).

"It's been really back-and-forth, with sharp bets on both sides," BetMGM senior trader Cameron Drucker said Wednesday night, indicating professional action on Washington -2.5 and Oregon +3.5. "It will be interesting to see who we need come Saturday, if anybody. Very even money thus far."

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Oh, Say Can USC?

Southern Cal also hopes to stay in the national championship picture beyond this weekend. To do so, the Trojans will have to win outright as short underdogs at Notre Dame (Side note: This is a 7:30 p.m. ET kickoff, but the Big Noon on FOX pregame show — which begins at 10 a.m. ET — will originate from the Notre Dame campus).

Notre Dame actually opened as a 2.5-point favorite at BetMGM and touched -3 (-105) for a few hours Wednesday before dipping to -2.5 (-115).

"We will surely be needing the Trojans here. The public loves backing Notre Dame in these spots," Drucker said. 

Paul Stone, a Texas-based college football betting expert, is on the home favorite in this storied rivalry. USC was exposed in its 43-41 triple-overtime escape against Arizona. Further, Stone sees a Notre Dame bounce-back after a 33-20 loss at Louisville.

"Arizona is not considered a strong running team, and it rushed for more than 200 yards last week against Southern Cal," Stone said. "I look for the Irish to feed the ball to Audric Estime and control the clock against the Trojans."

So put Stone down for Notre Dame -2.5.

College Football Rocks on FOX

It's a full football Saturday on FOX. The actual Big Noon game — at noon ET — has No. 2 Michigan hosting Indiana. At 8 p.m. ET Saturday, No. 18 UCLA visits No. 15 Oregon State.

BetMGM has Michigan a 33.5-point favorite, actually down 2 points from the -35.5 opener. But that's not because of any substantive support for Indiana.

"We will probably be rooting for IU to cover the big number this week. The public has been backing Michigan every week, regardless of number," Drucker said.

That said, while the Wolverines are 6-0 SU, they're just 2-3-1 ATS. But they easily covered a 19-point spread at Minnesota last week, wiping out the Gophers 52-10.

UCLA-Oregon State is expected to be far more competitive than Indiana-Michigan. The Beavers opened -4 and are down a tick to -3.5 at BetMGM, but are getting attention on the spread midweek.

"Money is coming in on Oregon State so far. It seems the public likes what they see from [quarterback] DJ Uiagalelei to start the season," Drucker said.

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Going Pro

Let's step over to the NFL, with Wednesday night insights on a few games from Chris Fargis, senior director of trading risk for Fanatics Sportsbook. First up, three notable Sunday games on FOX:

49ers at Browns: "This game is tricky, with the status of Deshaun Watson's [shoulder] up in the air. It was assumed after a late scratch in the Browns last game that he would be healthy enough to go. But with this game opening 49ers -3.5, it has risen to -7. Again, the public likes the Super Bowl favorite 49ers." San Fran is taking practically all the spread action at Fanatics.

Lions at Buccaneers: "The Lions are flipping the script as a surprise contender for the Super Bowl this year. The Bucs have been better than expected behind Baker Mayfield, but public bettors are nonbelievers this week." Fanatics customers are hitting the Lions hard on the moneyline (-170, bet $10 to win $15.88 total), and Detroit -3 is getting the, ahem, lion's share of point-spread action, too.

Eagles at Jets: "This one could get very one-sided for the books, as sharp customers and the public are lining up to lay the points with the Eagles. This game opened at -6 and quickly got bet up to -7 from early-week sharp action." Again, the public is all over Philly. "No faith in the Jets," Fargis said.

Other games Fargis addressed:

Broncos at Chiefs: It's the Week 6 opener on Thursday night. "A quick turnaround for both teams here, and not much movement on the line. We had an opener of Chiefs -10.5, and that's where we currently sit. But to no surprise, the public loves the Chiefs." K.C. is not only getting the bulk of point-spread action, but moneyline play at a hefty -550 (bet $10 to win $11.82 total).

Seahawks at Bengals: "It looks like Joe Burrow is over his preseason injury and is connecting with Ja'Marr Chase again. The pair is coming off a monster game vs. the Cardinals. Not much movement here, with the game opening Bengals -2 and sitting at -2.5. The book needs the underdog again, but not as big."

Panthers at Dolphins: "The Dolphins are getting a ton of money in straight bets, as well as parlays. They are currently our second-most-selected parlay leg, just behind the Chiefs, who play [Thursday]." The implication is that, by Sunday, Miami will be the most-selected parlay leg.

The Sharp Side Professional bettor Randy McKay has a few NFL wagers he's already made this week. In the Minnesota-Chicago matchup on FOX, McKay got on the opener of Chicago +3.5. The line is down to Chicago +2.5, as Minnesota won't have star receiver Justin Jefferson (hamstring).

McKay also has two 6-point teasers tied to Chicago: Bears +8.5/Chargers +8.5 (vs. Cowboys); and Bears +8.5/Seahawks +8.5 (at Bengals).

"It's a house of horrors for the Vikings, who struggle in Chicago and now have lost Jefferson for at least four games," McKay said. "The Bears got their confidence back with the win vs. Washington, and they have more rest in this one."

Indeed, Chicago pounded Washington 40-20 in the Week 5 Thursday night game.

McKay also bet the Indianapolis Colts +4.5 at the Jacksonville Jaguars. The consensus line Wednesday night is Colts +4.

"This is a travel situation, where the Jags played two games in London and now have to play a division opponent," McKay said. "The Colts are looking strong with first-year coach Shane Steichen leading the way. Indy is physical again on the offensive and defensive lines."

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Coach Prime & Co.

Colorado closed as a 3-point favorite at Arizona State in Week 6, getting a late field goal to win 27-24. But the line didn't dip to -3 until a couple hours before kickoff; most of the week, the Buffs were higher than -3, from an opener of -6.5 down to -3.5.

If you took ASU on the point spread before game day, you got a win. That played to Stone's strategy last week when he recommended fading Colorado on the spread the rest of the season, due to the casual betting masses' infatuation with the Buffaloes.

However, Stone said he'd reconsider for this week's Stanford-Colorado game, a 10 p.m. ET Friday night matchup.

"I might hit the pause button for one week regarding the fade Colorado strategy," Stone said. "Stanford is one of the weakest Power 5 teams in the nation and might not put up much of a fight."

So keep your powder dry this week. But beyond that, Stone stands by his strategy. He noted Colorado has a bye in Week 8, then hits a difficult five-game season-ending stretch. That includes road trips to UCLA, Washington State and Utah — all ranked teams — and home games against Oregon State (also ranked) and Arizona.

Stone expects the Buffs to be underdogs against all but Arizona.

"In all likelihood, Colorado will continue to get love from the betting public," Stone said. "But I see the Buffs running out of emotional gas as the season marches on."

At BetMGM, Drucker confirmed Stanford will be a need this week, with Colorado still getting a fair amount of public action, and even a little professional betting support.

"For the first time all season, the sharps were on Colorado early," Drucker said. "We will surely be rooting for Stanford here come kickoff. The love for Colorado has slowed down a bit, but not as much as you may think."

As of Wednesday night, Colorado is an 11.5-point favorite at most sportsbooks. The Buffs opened as low as -9 at Circa Sports and -9.5 at Caesars Sports.

I Like Big Bets and I Cannot Lie

The Kansas City Chiefs have won 15 in a row against the AFC West rival Denver Broncos. Kansas City is a double-digit favorite to make it 16 in a row Thursday night. So two Caesars Sports customers decided to scrap the point spread and just bet on the seemingly sure thing of K.C. moneyline.

One bettor put $120,000 on Chiefs moneyline -600. As long as K.C. wins the game, the customer will profit $20,000, for a $140,000 total payout.

Another Caesars customer put $110,000 on Chiefs moneyline -550, also to profit $20,000, for a $130,000 total payout.

And in a Monday night leftover from NFL Week 5, a BetMGM customer in Las Vegas plunked down $230,000 on Raiders -1.5 (-115). That bettor got a good sweat when Las Vegas, with a 17-13 lead, missed a 52-yard field goal with two minutes remaining.

Green Bay got the ball in decent field position, at its own 42-yard line, and drove to the Vegas 35-yard line. But facing third-and-10 with 44 seconds left, Packers QB Jordan Love threw an interception in the end zone.

So the bettor held on to earn a $200,000 profit, for a total payout of $430,000.

Suffice it to say none of us will ever cash out for $200,000 profit. So always keep it reasonable. 

Enjoy the football-betting weekend!

Patrick Everson is a sports betting analyst for FOX Sports and senior reporter for He is a distinguished journalist in the national sports betting space. He's based in Las Vegas, where he enjoys golfing in 110-degree heat. Follow him on Twitter: @PatrickE_Vegas


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