Pick: Tennessee -35.5 MORE: Take the SN Transfer QB Quiz!Purdue vs. Penn State (8 p.m., FOX)Purdue ended last season with an impressive 48-45 win over Tennessee in the Music City Bowl Denver Pioneers Jerseysin a game where star WR David Bell and DE George Karlaftis opted out to prepare for the NFL Draft. With QB Aidan O'C


The college football season hits the ground running Thursday night, kicking off five straight days of action on the gridiron. For those looking to get some betting action down, we look into the point spreads for some of the notable games including Penn State's trip to Purdue and Oregon State's home contest against Boise State.

These odds have been up for several months, and the point spreads have since sharpened. Taking that into account, we bring you our best ATS picks for some of this weekend's televised matchups featuring non-AP Top 25 schools.

All odds courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook

Thursday, Sept. 1 

Tennessee vs. Ball State (7 p.m., SECN)

Tennessee is arguably Georgia's biggest threat in the SEC East, and the Volunteers will get off to a smooth start with a comfortable home win over Ball State. It's always tough to lay such a big number, but Ba FSU vs. Miami Rivalry Jerseys ll State grades out as the 115th best offense and 117th best defense (out of 130 FBS schools) per PFF. It's tough to envision the Cardinals even getting to 14-plus points on what will be an improved Tennessee defense. Volunteers QB Hendon Hooker's big day results in a six-plus TD victory for the 'Vols as they hang 50-plus points on the Cardinals.

Pick: Tennessee -35.5 

MORE: Take the SN Transfer QB Quiz!

Purdue vs. Penn State (8 p.m., FOX)

Purdue ended last season with an impressive 48-45 win over Tennessee in the Music City Bowl in a game where star WR David Bell and DE George Karlaftis opted out to prepare for the NFL Draft. With QB Aidan O'Connell back for a sixth year, Purdue's offense won't take as big of a step back despite losing its top two receivers. Under head coach Jeff Brohm, Purdue has overperformed in the betting markets as an underdog, sporting a 19-8 ATS record. Take the field goal and the hook and back the 'Boilers to keep it close.

Pick: Purdue +3.5 

Missouri vs. Louisiana Tech (8 p.m., ESPNU)

Kentucky vs. Louisville Rivalry Jerseys

Brady Cook takes over at QB for the Tigers following Connor Bazelak's departure at QB, and while the Tigers offense might take a while to get in a groove, they're capable of notching a three-plus TD victory over a fairly weak Louisiana Tech defense. 

Pick: Missouri -20.5

Minnesota vs. New Mexico State (9 p.m., BTN)

Kirk Ciarrocca is back as the offensive coordinator for Minnesota, which is great news for fifth-year QB Tanner Morgan. Morgan had his highest passing yard output in his lone season with Ciarrocca in 2019, one College Cold Weather Gear where he received second-team All-Big Ten honors. The Golden Gophers offense also gets back star RB Mohamed Ibrahim after missing essentially all of 2021 with an Achilles injury. Minnesota's improved offense rolls over New Mexico State, a team power rated 125th per PFF.

Pick: Minnesota -36

Friday, Sept. 2 

Old Dominion vs. Virginia Tech (7 p.m., ESPNU) 

Virginia Tech's offense was one of the weaker units among power five teams California Baptist Lancers clothes a seaso Ferris State Bulldogs shirt n ago ranking 82nd in yards per play (5.6), but the addition of Marshall transfer Grant Wells should allow for a more consistent offense this season. Virginia Tech goes into Norfolk and secures a TD-plus Week 1 win.

Pick: Virginia Tech -6

Duke vs. Temple (7:30 p.m., ACCN) 

This matchup is the opposite of strength on strength, as Duke's lackluster offense faces off against a weak Temple defense. Given Temple's willingness to air the football out, take the nine and a half points in what could be a competitive contest throughout.

Pick: Temple +9.5

Indiana vs. Illinois (8 p.m., FS1) 

Illinois already has a win under its belt, defeating Wyoming 38-6 in Week Zero, but going into Bloomington and winning two straight is a much tougher task. Still, Illinois' balanced offense does enough and gets to 2-0 as Chase Brown and Tommy DeVito continue their solid play.

Pick: Illinois moneyline +115

Colorado vs. TCU (10 p.m., ESPN) 

We gave this game out almost a month ago explaining that Colorado is one of the weakest power conference FBS teams and getting TCU at -8.5 was a worthwhile bet. The market has moved a good deal from then, but even with the Horned Frogs still under a two-touchdown favorite, they ge Buffalo Bulls shirt t the job done by notching a comfortable win over the Buffaloes in Boulder.

Pick: TCU -13.5

Saturday, Sept. 3 

Maryland vs. Buffalo (12 p.m., BTN) 

Maryland's offense led by redshirt juni NCAA Autographed Memorabilia or Taulia Tagovailoa is too much for the Bulls' defense to hold in check. The 'Terps notch a big home win and cover the spread in the process. Buffalo's run-first offense is put in an uncomfortable spot early in the game with a negative game script.

Pick: Maryland -24

Boston College vs. Rutgers (12 p.m., ACCN)

We broke this game down a bit in our ACC betting preview as we think Boston College's offense gets off to a strong start against Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights are unable to match scores with the Eagle Alabama vs. Auburn Rivalry Jerseys s as Boston College covers in its season opener.

UPDATE: Rutgers QB Noah Vedral, TE Matt Alaimo, and RB Aaron Young are out on Saturday.

Pick: Boston College -7

Appalachian State vs. North Carolina (12 p.m., ESPNU) 

Another game we gave out earlier in our ACC betting preview has seen some movement both ways as some bettors aren't fully convinced the Tar Heels can win in Boone. We think North Carolina QB Drake Maye will have an efficient enough performance, leading North Carolina to a 2-0 start.

UPDATE: North Carolina WR Josh Downs (lower body), will not play. With Downs out, we don't recommend getting involved in this game.

Pick: North Carolina +2.5

San Diego State vs. Arizona (3:30 p.m., CBS) 

San Diego State plays its first game inside Snapdragon Stadium against Arizona on CBS. While the Wildcats figure to show improvement from last season, San Diego State's stability on both sides of the football leads the Aztecs to a Week 1 win and cover.

Pick: San Diego State -6.5

Wyoming vs. Tulsa (3:30 p.m., FS1) 

Wyoming looks to bounce back at home against Tulsa after allowing 477 total yards to Illinois in Week Zero. While Tulsa's offense isn't as efficient as Illinois', the Golden Hurricane do enough to secure a TD-plus victory in Laramie.

Pick: Tulsa -6.5

Mississippi State vs. Memphis (7:30 p.m., ESPNU)

Mississippi State's offense is one of the most efficient units in college football and it's possible Beloit College Buccaneers clothes Memphis' defense struggles to put together consistent stops against them. Bulldogs get to 1-0 in a rout over the Tigers.

Pick: Mississippi State -16

North Texas vs SMU (7:30 p.m., CBSSN) 

SMU's a dark horse contender in the AAC, but to be laying 11-points on the road against North Texas is a bit too steep of a price. PFF has this game projected closer to 10-points, and while that isn't a big difference between the projection and point spread, we agree that it's wiser to side with the Mean Green here.

Pick: North Texas +11

Syracuse vs. Louisville (8 p.m., ACCN) 

Louisville heads into the Loud House to face Dino Babers and the Orange. Malik Cunningham's play-making ability is too much for Syracuse's defense to hold in check for 60 minutes, leading the Cardinals to a road victory.

Pick: Louisville -4.5

Oregon State vs. Boise State (10:30 p.m., ESPN) 

Oregon State's a team that's a bit undervalued in the betting markets to begin the season and as a result, the Beavers are short home favorites over Boise State in Week 1. Oregon State's offense methodically grinds the Bro WVU vs. Pitt Rivalry Jerseys ncos down, resulting in a Week 1 victory.

Pick: Oregon State -2.5

Washington vs. Kent State (10:30 p.m., FS1) 

The Kalen DeBoer era begins in Seattle, as the Huskies welcome in Kent State as three-plus TD favorites. Washington profiles as a team who could outperform its regular-season win total projection, but in terms of its Week 1 matchup, Kent State keeps it closer than the current spread indicates.

Pick: Kent State +23

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