We’re always looking for an edge.

Favorites, long shots, live bets or deep sleepers. If there’s a college football betting trend to break down, we’ll find the profit. One underrated trend in the college football world is looking at how teams fare in the first half and first quarter, specifically. Below, we’ve compiled the data as of Week 12 for this season’s college football first-half and first-quarter betting report.

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If you’re looking for more tips for your college football bets, check out our How to Bet on Football article or head over to our NCAA Football Computer Picks page to see what underdogs the Odds Shark computer likes this week. To find the sportsbook that’s right for you, head over to our Sportsbook Review page.

College Football First-Quarter Betting Trends

2022 College Football First-Quarter Spreads and Betting Trends
Betting MarketSU RecordATS Record (Profit)
Home Teams213-117-64196-181-16 (-$1125.64)
Favorites242-87-63200-177-15 (+$28.18)

The above data from Odds Shark’s database is only for games containing at least one FBS team.

There has been no clear and obvious betting trend to take advantage of from our first-quarter college football data so far this season. The home teams certainly haven’t been profitable, but there has been a smidge of profit to be found from the favorites, against the spread (ATS). So far this season, there hasn’t been much money to be made on first-quarter OVERs either, with the totals of games with at least one FBS team going OVER at a record of 184-186-23, for -$2557.46 in profit (for $100 bettors).

While the blind bets haven’t produced a great trend for us so far this season, there are some teams that have been profitable in the first quarter.

The best first-quarter ATS records in 2022 belong to:

  • SMU: 8-2
  • Florida: 8-2
  • Louisiana-Lafayette: 8-2
  • Massachusetts: 8-2
  • Illinois: 7-2

Some of these first-quarter covering teams make sense, as they’ve outperformed expectations and covered complete games, too. But one standout is the Florida Gators, who are just 6-4 ATS in complete games. However, the Gators seem to perform particularly well in the opening quarter, scoring 8.3 points per first quarter (16th-most in the country) while allowing just 5.8. The Gators’ dominance weirdly drops off in the second, though, ranking just 60th in second-quarter points scored.

This could be because teams struggle to initially defend dynamic Florida QB Anthony Richardson but are able to adapt defensively as the game moves on.

You can bet on Florida and utilize these first-quarter tips over at Bovada:

College Football First-Half Betting Trends

With the first-quarter trends in mind, let’s take a look at what we can learn from the first halves so far this season.

2022 College Football First-Half Spreads and Betting Trends
Betting MarketSU RecordATS Record (Profit)
Home Teams244-127-23185-204-5 (-$3610.35)
Favorites274-91-23192-191-5 (-$1685.45)

Once again, the above data from Odds Shark’s database is only for games containing at least one FBS team.

Unlike with the first-quarter trends, there isn’t even a glimmer of profit to be had from blind betting the favorites or home teams in the first half so far this year. The OVERs, too, haven’t been cashing well in the first half. So far this season, first-half OVERs in FBS games are 191-200-3 (-$2710.07).

But, one key OVER trend to note from the first halves has been the profitability of the Oregon Ducks. The OVER is 8-2 in Oregon’s first halves so far this season, gaining almost six units of profit.

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Looking at individual teams by ATS first-half records, here are the best teams so far this season:

  • North Texas: 9-2
  • Mississippi State: 8-2
  • Penn State: 8-2
  • Buffalo: 8-2
  • Iowa: 8-2

Beyond this top five, another first-half outlier has been Duke. The Blue Devils have been particularly dominant in the first half, scoring 18 points per first half (ranking 25th in the country). Even in Duke’s three losses this season, they’ve still been leading or within one possession at the end of the first half.

The Iowa Hawkeyes average just 12 points per first half this season (81st). That ranks down with teams like Bowling Green and Texas El Paso. But, in the most classic Iowa way, the Hawkeyes have been particularly profitable due to the defense. Iowa allows the fourth-fewest first-half points in college football (7.1), and just 5.2 first-half points per game at home.

You can bet on Iowa and utilize these first-half tips over at Bovada:

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