One of the best college football slates in recent memory will take place this weekend.
The “Group Chat” segment of the latest episode of “Bear Bets” broke down this week’s big games and handed out some futures bets to make.
Let’s get right to their thoughts!
Schwartz: “I like Utah in this spot here. The number is -4.5 [at recording] and this was without Cam Rising playing. If he comes back — which I do believe he will play this weekend for Utah — I think this game could be a touchdown or more for Utah on this win. It’s also worth noting Dante Moore, UCLA’s quarterback, it’s his first true road start. Playing against San Jose State doesn’t count. But Utah hasn’t lost a home game since 2018. It’s where teams go to die.”
Hill: “How about an Under in that game? Like Schwartz said about UCLA, with a young quarterback, UCLA’s actually a little better on defense. On the other side of the ball, you’re going to have an inexperienced quarterback or a banged-up quarterback in Rising.”
Sammy P: “Geoff, when you say the words ‘Cam Rising [is playing],’ you have to lay the -4.5. Depending on when you listen to this, you probably want to get down on Utah as soon as possible because once we see on the ticker, or on Twitter, that Cam Rising is in, that thing is going to get blasted and that’s going to change everybody’s mood. So it’s gonna get to -7.”
Schwartz: “Oregon is going to win this game by a lot of points. I don’t know if I’m going to lay the -21.5. I try not to bet on my team very often, but I went back and watched Colorado’s offense on film. I want to do this properly: I’m gonna be very disappointed if Oregon’s defensive line and secondary do not control this game.”
Sammy P: “I think there’s no coincidence that Colorado goes from -24 to -21. I mean, we’re talking about a 45-point swing from a ‘dog to a favorite and that’s justified. And I think the real conversation we should have is how much is Travis Hunter worth? … When you think about it, the number that opened at Oregon -17 and immediately got hit -20.5 and -21. He’s their best defensive back, so he guards the best receiver on the other team. How many times against TCU and against Colorado State did Shedeur Sanders look for Travis Hunter on third-and-5, third-and-6?”
Schwartz: “To me, it has no bearing really on what’s going to happen this weekend because Florida State has a lot of advantages in this game. And what happened last weekend is irrelevant to me. It matters what they did against LSU, but also what Clemson can’t do offensively against Florida State’s defensive front.”
Hill: “I like Jordan Travis over 32.5 rushing yards. I feel like these quarterbacks, in big games when the money’s in the middle of the table, can kind of run whenever they want and they sort of save it for the games that matter.
“I lean towards Florida State in the game. I just don’t know that Clemson has the talent at receiver. Not a fan of Cade Klubnik. Dabo [Swiney] can get conservative in these big games. He loves to trot that field goal kicker out on fourth-and-2 when his kickers are no good. So I think Dabo forgets that.”
Hill: “I like Ohio State. I just think they’re better on both lines. Notre Dame, usually in these spots, they’re not up to the task, but they finally have a quarterback. It’s weird, where Ohio State, you don’t really trust their quarterback. It’s not a vintage Ohio State team. So, this is really a fascinating game.”
Sammy P: “Maybe the Over, too. I think these two teams can both score. We know they have downfield threats. Notre Dame finally has a quarterback that can throw the ball 25 yards, which is nice. … The look-ahead number in the summer was Ohio State -10. So, it feels borderline cheap on Ohio State.”
Here’s a nickel to bet on a national championship winner. Who are you placing your bet on?
Sammy P: Washington +2500
“Why not put it on maybe the best quarterback on the West Coast? Can we get there collectively as a nation? All right, Michael Penix‘s not better than Caleb Williams. And he’s not going first overall. But to throw for almost 500 yards and complete 80% of your passes against Michigan State is pretty frickin’ crazy.”
Hill: Penn State +1600
“They’ve got a defense. It looks like they’ve got a quarterback. The schedule is manageable. We’re not going to find out about them for a while because, man, it is cupcake city.”
The Bear: Texas +1000
“I think their road is the easiest to the playoff now that they have that Alabama win in hand. You basically get them — even if you lose the regular-season game with Oklahoma — to the Big 12 title game.”
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