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Picks, predictions and bet splits for college football on Saturday, September 4th

It’s the first fully loaded Saturday of the college football season and offers plenty of great value plays for bettors.

Indiana v Michigan State
Michael Penix Jr. of the Indiana Hoosiers drops back to pass in the first quarter of the game against the Michigan State Spartans at Spartan Stadium on November 14, 2020 in East Lansing, Michigan.
Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images

The Saturday college football slate includes plenty of good ones, and there’s enough value on the board to get your season started off right. We take a look at some of our best picks on today’s board here.

No. 1 Alabama -19.5 vs. No. 14 Miami (FL)

The Week 1 showcase game featuring Alabama is always exciting for fans, but it has never gone well for the Crimson Tide’s opponents. In the last four games like this one, Alabama has outscored its opponents 169-30. Three of wins games came against ranked teams with the closest result being a 17-point win over then-No. 3 Florida State. The Crimson Tide roll in this game easily and that’ll likely be the case once again. Miami is a good team, but not on Alabama’s level.

No. 11 Oregon vs. Fresno State over 64

The Ducks are going to put up points, but don’t count out Fresno State in this contest. Bulldogs quarterback Jake Haener had a big week against UConn, setting up a massive showdown for his individual season. He’ll try to keep pace with a prolific Oregon offense, which means the over is in play here. This isn’t quite on the level of #Pac12AfterDark, but Fresno State is competent enough to make this a fun, high-scoring game.

No. 17 Indiana +4 vs. No. 18 Iowa

Iowa is the favorite at home, but Indiana is the trendy pick in the conference with QB Michael Penix Jr. coming back. He’s ready to go Week 1, meaning Iowa’s defense is going to have its hands full. The Hawkeyes were a decent scoring team last season at No. 40, but 2019 is a more accurate reflection of their offensive output with a 87th-place finish. Indiana should be able to get the job done here.

Jalen Berger over 57.5 rushing yards vs. Penn State (-115)

Berger is expected to be the lead running back at Wisconsin this year and even with Graham Mertz at quarterback, the Badgers are a running team. Penn State was stout against the run last year, but still gave up 130.2 yards per game on the ground. Berger is going to get volume in this game and should break off enough big runs to surpass 58 yards.

UCLA (+120 moneyline) over No. 16 LSU

It’s always worth taking a value upset play to make Saturdays interesting. UCLA, coming off a big win, gets to play LSU at home in what is the game of the season for head coach Chip Kelly and QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson. The Tigers have better athletes, but the Bruins have the better quarterback who needs a bounce-back game to jump back in the Heisman conversation. The stage sets up well for UCLA to pull off the shocker here.


Here are the latest bet splits for college football from DraftKings Sportsbook for the games of Saturday, September 4th.

CFB Splits September 3rd

Teams Spread % Handle % Bets Total Points % Handle % Bets Moneyline % Handle % Bets
Teams Spread % Handle % Bets Total Points % Handle % Bets Moneyline % Handle % Bets
#10 North Carolina -5.5 75% 88% Over 63.0 22% 62% -220 70% 88%
Virginia Tech +5.5 25% 12% Under 63.0 78% 38% +180 30% 13%
Duke -6.5 85% 84% Over 60.5 27% 26% -240 94% 91%
Charlotte +6.5 15% 16% Under 60.5 73% 74% +195 6% 9%
Old Dominion +32 30% 48% Over 63.0 11% 21% +3000 9% 12%
Wake Forest -32 70% 52% Under 63.0 89% 79% -9000 91% 88%
Kansas -13.5 32% 64% Under 56.0 68% 54% -525 95% 94%
South Dakota +13.5 68% 36% Over 56.0 38% 61% +385 5% 6%
Michigan State +3 26% 32% Over 45.5 74% 49% +140 41% 46%
Northwestern -3 74% 68% Under 45.5 26% 51% -160 59% 54%
South Dakota State +3 31% 10% Over 52.5 57% 56% +125 41% 27%
Colorado State -3 69% 90% Under 52.5 43% 44% -145 59% 73%
Saint Francis PA +32 29% 45% Over 54.5 76% 76% OTB
Eastern Michigan -32 71% 55% Under 54.5 24% 24%
Northern Colorado +38 55% 67% Over 56.5 39% 67% OTB
Colorado -38 45% 33% Under 56.5 61% 33%