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Week 4 College Football Line Move Predictions

The final week before full-on conference play begins and we are going to see a lot tighter lines in the upcoming weeks. I’m going to do my best to try to help you take advantage of line movements.

Each and every week I will provide a few early lines that I anticipate some movement on the closer we get to kickoff. I will explain why I expect line movements and which direction it will go to help you decide whether to bet the game early or wait till closer to game time.

Last week I looked at five games in which I thought there would be some movement and of the five games, one went in the direction I predicted while three went the opposite direction and one remained the same. This week, I have six games that I believe will have a different line come Saturday.

Scott Hastings’ Line Move Predictions 
CorrectIncorrectStayed The Same
772

No. 16 Oregon -10.5 @ Stanford

Oregon vs Stanford Game Center

Stanford returns home after a two-game road swing as it hosts No. 16 Oregon with the opening line seeing the Ducks as a -9 favorite and that has climbed to -10.5. This is the first time that there has been a double-digit spread between the Ducks and Cardinal since 2013 when Oregon was exactly a 10-point favorite and lost 26-20 at Stanford Stadium.

Stanford is struggling to defend against the pass, surrendering 280.3 yards per game through the air to rank 110th in college football. Meanwhile, Oregon averages the 18th-most passing yards per game at 319. The public seems to be over the moon for Heisman Trophy hopeful Justin Herbert and seeing this line less than two touchdowns should intrigue bettors.

Scott’s Prediction: Oregon -10.5 moving up

No. 8 Auburn @ No. 17 Texas A&M O/U 48

Auburn vs Texas A&M Game Center

The opening total for this game was 49 and has shifted down to 48. A pivotal clash in the SEC West has undefeated No. 8 Auburn hitting the road to take on No. 17 Texas A&M (2-1). The Tigers and Aggies have been swarming their competition defensively with Auburn ranking 22nd with 14.3 points per game allowed, while Texas A&M has given up 11.3 points per game to sit in 12th.

Auburn has relied on its run game to slash opposing defenses, averaging 281.7 rushing yards per game, but Texas A&M is giving up just 83.7 rushing yards per game and held Clemson star RB Travis Etienne to just 53 yards in Week 2. In that Clemson game, though, the Aggies were limited to just 289 yards and 10 points and I foresee a similar situation coming against Auburn’s tough defense.

Scott’s Prediction: 48 points moving down

No. 15 UCF -12 @ Pittsburgh

UCF vs Pittsburgh Game Center

UCF opened as an 11-point favorite, a line that has moved in their favor to -12. Following a narrow 17-10 defeat at Penn State, the Pittsburgh Panthers return home to host the No. 15 UCF Knights. Pitt brings a 1-2 record into this game, falling to now-No. 21 Virginia and at No. 13 Penn State while earning a 20-10 victory over Ohio. Meanwhile, UCF has demolished its competition through three games with an average winning margin of 38.

Last week, it seemed that the public earned a good win against the bookies as people pounded UCF -10 at home to Stanford and we may see a similar situation vs Pitt. Now, the Panthers defense has been strong both against the run and through the air but it will be put to the test against a well-balanced Knights team that attacks well in the passing and run game. In 2018, Pitt visited UCF and the Knights were a 13.5-point favorite and earned a 45-14 triumph. Now the line is 1.5 points different and with UCF on the road, I anticipate some buy on it.

Scott’s Prediction: UCF -12 moving up

No. 10 Utah -4 @ USC – Friday Night

Utah vs USC Game Center

A 1-point shift for the favorite No. 10 Utah ahead of its Friday night game at USC from -3 to -4. The Utes have taken care of business in non-conference play, outscoring opponents 96-29 with an elite defense paving the way. Meanwhile, the Trojans are coming off their first loss of 2019, falling 30-27 at BYU – that defeat following a somewhat surprising 45-20 home win over then-No. 23 Stanford in Week 2.

Last year, Utah hosted USC as a 7-point favorite and earned the win and cover with a 41-28 triumph. Many people tend to hold common opponents as gospel and although we are just in Week 4, USC and Utah have a mutual opponent in BYU, with the Utes earning a 30-12 win in Week 1 while the Trojans fell to the Cougars 30-27 last week.

Scott’s Prediction: Utah -4 moving up

Oklahoma St. @ No. 12 Texas O/U 74.5

Oklahoma State vs Texas Game Center 

Don’t fear a high total between Oklahoma State and No. 12 Texas as this total opened at 73 points and has climbed to 74.5. The Longhorns have had combined scores of 59, 83 and 61, while the Cowboys have had combined scores of 88, 70 and 61. Texas was able to put up 38 points on a tough LSU defense and Oklahoma State is averaging 49.33 points per game.

Last year, these teams combined for 73 points at Oklahoma State with the Cowboys earning a 38-35 win over the Longhorns. Oklahoma State is giving up a lot of yards per game against lesser opponents than Texas, while the Longhorns are getting torched through the air and Cowboys QB Spencer Sanders should be able to move the ball effectively.

Scott’s Prediction: 74.5 points moving up

No. 11 Michigan @ No. 13 Wisconsin -3.5

Michigan vs Wisconsin Game Center

No. 13 Wisconsin opened as a 3.5-point favorite at home to No. 11 Michigan and is up to -3.5. These are two 2-0 teams meeting in Week 4 coming off bye weeks that have reached this point in vastly different ways. The Badgers are 2-0 ATS and have yet to surrender a point, outscoring their opposition 110-0, while the Wolverines are 0-2 ATS, topping their opponents 64-42, including a narrow 24-21 double-overtime win over Army in Week 2.

There is a lot of hype behind the Badgers and a lot of hate toward the Wolverines in the early stages in 2019 and I expect people to play up that narrative ahead of this contest. However, last season these two squared off at the Big House and Michigan rolled to a 38-13 victory, covering the 10-point spread. We are looking at a 13.5-point swing from 2018 to 2019 and home vs away in this matchup. I expect the sharps to hit Michigan as a dog and drive the line down.

Scott’s Prediction: Wisconsin -3.5 moving down

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