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9 Largest Football Spreads You Can Bet This Weekend

by: Esteban On  Friday, October 4, 2013



Gambling is wrong. It destroys lives, and can pull people into a cycle of addiction from which they often never recover.

That said, during football season, there are always countless wonderful games to wager upon (legally), and we’ve picked a few here that offer HUGE spreads. A game with a huge spread isn’t any more or less risky than a game with a narrow spread, but they’re fun to ogle.

Just remember: NEVER take the points against your favorite (and favored) team just because there’s a huge spread. Because they will fail to cover the spread, then they will flat-out lose the game. That’s a gambling rule.

At any rate, here are nine of the largest spreads from this weeks college and pro games.

9. Louisville (-31.5) vs. Temple

alabama georgia state 4 broncos cowboys 2 jacksonville st louis 1 jets falcons 3 louisville plays temple 9 minnesota michigan 6 De'Anthony Thomas umass bowling green 7 west virginia baylor 8

Louisville is enjoying something of a football renaissance, currently ranked 7th in the polls. Temple is not. In fact, Temple is 0-4. Last time Louisville played in Temple, they killed the Owls 62-0. Last year, it was a 45-17 nailbiter. There are no sure things in football, but I GUARANTEE ON THE LIVES ALL THOSE DEAR TO ME THAT LOUISVILLE WILL COVER THE SPREAD*.

*Not an actual guarantee.

8. West Virginia vs. Baylor (-28)

west virginia runs on baylor 8

Last year’s contest between the two resulted in a 70-63 shootout. So think twice before picking the under. However, we’re not here to talk about the O/U, we’re here to talk about the spread. This year, both teams have different QBs, with Baylor ranked 17, and WV just happy to be playing some football. West Virginia has cycled three starting QBs since the departure of Geno Smith, so it’s pretty clear they’re not poised to make a huge move. If they do, it will be a shock to everyone.

7. UMass vs. Bowling Green (-26.5)

umass plays bowling green in football 7

Whatever. If you’re an alumni of either one of these schools, you’ll presumably know far more about the teams than I will. If you’re not an alumni, you’ve either got a tip, which means that you (see above) know more about these team than I do, or you’ve just got a flat out gambling problem. I refuse to enable that sort of behavior. Think of your kids. If you don’t have kids, get some kids. Then think about them.

6. Minnesota vs. Michigan (-18.5)

minnesota michigan 6

I don’t know much about Minnesota’s squad, but I know that Michigan is completely capable of not only failing to cover, but losing the game outright. In Michigan’s favor, Minnesota isn’t a strong squad, and there’s even some uncertainty as to who will start at QB for them, though it’s assumed it will be Phillip Nelson, lest he screw up. Minnesota hasn’t clicked under Coach Kill in three years, so it’s looking like these guys aren’t primed to make a run at any sort of big-time opponent yet. That all said, there’s no one worse than Michigan when it comes to falling apart in minor games, though USC and UT are both making runs at that distinction.

5. Oregon (-38.5) vs. Colorado

De'Anthony Thomas running

This is a curious one, because while Oregon is an offensive powerhouse, ranked #2, they’re favored by almost 40 against a known team. Granted that known team is terrible, but they’re widely regarded as a huge program, which means that they’ll have depth and (presumably, but seemingly not in practice) a knowledgeable coaching staff behind them that will keep them from getting blown out. Again, this is all theoretical, and I wouldn’t put it past the Buffaloes to fall down by 55, as they’re notoriously terrible on national stages over the past, I dunno, decade or so.

4. Alabama (-54.5) vs. Georgia State

alabama runs the football on georgia state 4

Uhh. I can’t say that my scouting files on Georgia State are completely current, but I can say that Alabama has laid the hurt to far better teams. However, when spreads get to be this astronomical, it essentially comes down to the coach’s whims and strategy as much as it does the talent of the team. When’s Saban pulling his QB? When’s he going to the running game to put Georgia State and the fans out of their misery? Unless you know the answers to these questions, this might be the biggest gamble of the week.

3. New York Jets vs. Atlanta (-9)

jets celebrate against the falcons 3

The Falcons aren’t a great team this year. In fact, their record is worse than the Jets. But the populace seems to have more faith in Matt Ryan than they do in the Jets, who have made more news in their tumultuous offseasons than they have in their performances on the field. Nine points may not seem like much after looking at the college spreads, but in the NFL, covering that guy is a downright herculean endeavor. Especially when you don’t have Tim Tebow on your squad anymore. (Just kidding.)

2. Denver (-7) vs. Dallas

broncos tackle the cowboys 2While this line pales in comparison to the one we’re seeing next week in the Broncs-Jags matchup (Broncos by 28ish), and the Cowboys are shaping up to be a better version of the team they were last season, none of that changes the fact that the Broncos are on a tear perhaps not seen since the Pats went on their undefeated campaign all the way to the Super Bowl. Given that information, this spread actually seems a little low.

1. Jacksonville vs. St. Louis (-11.5)

jacksonville runs after st louis 1

When St. Louis has a near two-touchdown spread over your team, it’s probably not only time to fire your coach, but possibly evacuate your city as well. The fact that it was up at 13 a few days ago means that Vegas might be pulling this one out of the stratosphere, but putting the money on Sam Bradford’s ability to come up big, even against the Jags, might be the biggest gamble on this list.