College Football Betting Guide: Thursday 10/14/21

Navy is off to a slow start at 1-4 this season, but there is reason to believe they are a better team than their record shows. Where else are opportunities to bet Thursday's college slate?

numberFire has built comprehensive algorithms to pinpoint the bets with the highest probability of returning money, whether you are betting on the total, the spread, or the moneyline.

For those new to numberFire, we use a five-star system to show which bets you should be targeting for any given game. Stars represent how much you should risk on a wager relative to what you would normally bet.

For example, if you would normally bet $110 to win $100 on a -110 spread wager, if we give a 3-star ranking, we suggest risking three times that amount: $330 to win $300. Here are the best bets for this weekend with guidance from our model. All advanced statistics are courtesy of the S&P individual team statistical profiles, except where noted.

Note: Lines are subject to change throughout the day after this article is published. Please check here to make sure you're seeing the most updated information.

Georgia Southern vs South Alabama

Georgia Southern +3.5: 2 Stars out of 5

Georgia Southern is 2-4 on the year, including a 1-2 conference record in the Sun Belt. The Eagles lost both their conference games by only one score to Louisiana-Lafayette and Troy, losing both games by a combined 11 points. Georgia Southern earned their only conference victory against Arkansas State by a score of 59-33, so they have performed fairly well overall in conference games despite their 1-2 record.

South Alabama is 3-2 overall but 0-2 in the conference, losing both conference games by just two points against Louisiana and Texas State. The Jaguars have had difficulty scoring this season, averaging only 26 points per game despite not playing any Power 5 opponents.

We project a final score of 28.81-28.95 in favor of South Alabama, so the game is essentially a toss-up. Our model likes Georgia Southern to cover the spread that includes a 0.5-point hook, giving them a 61.44% likelihood to do so.

Navy vs Memphis

Navy +10.5: 4 Stars out of 5

Navy is 1-4 to start the year, but they have faced a difficult schedule so far. They have still performed well in each of their last 3 games and covered the spread. Navy lost to Houston by only one score, then beat Central Florida, and then lost on a late TD to #24 Southern Methodist. The Midshipmen’s opponents are a combined 22-7 so far this season, and they have yet to face a team that is currently under .500. Therefore, they have performed well in recent weeks despite their record, and that usually keeps a team underrated from a betting perspective.

On the other side, Memphis got off to a 3-0 start that included a win over Mississippi State, but they have since followed it up with three straight losses to Group of 5 opponents. Memphis has yet to win a game against an FBS opponent by more than 5 points, and that makes the spread of 10.5 against Navy seem particularly steep.

Our model gives Navy a 69.75% likelihood to cover the double-digit point spread, and we predict Memphis to win by a modest 4.20 total points. Navy will look to cover yet another spread as one of the betting darlings of a wild 2021 season.