College Football Odds for Week 3 (2021) – Dissecting Early Lines for the Top 25

By Dan Vasta in College Football
| September 14, 2021 7:37 am PDT

Week 2 of the 2021 college football season featured the Big Ten and the Pac-12. Many teams were upset, and only the strong survived.

Many top performances were on display, and Week 3 will have a few more premier matchups. These are the top 20 games this weekend, and one of them is a conference matchup.

The SEC was not in many featured games this past week. They are back on the national stage though when Alabama heads to Gainesville to take on Florida.

The other matchup is an impressive non-conference battle between Auburn and Penn State.

Here is the breakdown for the early Week 3 college football betting lines involving Top 25 squads via Sportsbetting.ag.

College Football Odds for Week 3

  • Nebraska (+22) -105 at No. 3 Oklahoma (-22) -115
  • New Mexico (+28.5) -110 at No. 7 Texas A&M (-28.5) -110
  • No. 8 Cincinnati (-3.5) -116 at Indiana (+3.5) -104
  • No. 16 Coastal Carolina (-13) -110 at Buffalo (+13) -110
  • No. 15 Virginia Tech (+3) -113 at West Virginia (-3) -107
  • Michigan State (+6.5) -105 at No. 24 Miami (-6.5) -115
  • Purdue (+7) -108 at No. 12 Notre Dame (-7) -112
  • No. 1 Alabama (-16) -116 at No. 11 Florida (+16) -104
  • Tulsa (+26) -105 at No. 9 Ohio State (-26) -115
  • Georgia Tech (+28.5) -108 at No. 6 Clemson (-28.5) -112
  • Kent State (+22.5) -108 at No. 5 Iowa (-22.5) -112
  • South Carolina (+30) -108 at No. 2 Georgia (-30) -112
  • Virginia (+9) -105 at No. 21 North Carolina (-9) -115
  • Tulane (+14) -105 at No. 17 Ole Miss (-14) -115
  • No. 23 Arizona State (-3.5) -115 at No. 19 BYU (+3.5) -105
  • No. 14 Iowa State (-30) -115 at UNLV (+30) -105
  • Fresno State (+11.5) -110 at No. 13 UCLA (-11.5) -110
  • Georgia Southern (+23.5) -110 at No. 23 Arkansas (-23.5) -110
  • Northern Illinois (+27.5) -108 at No. 25 Michigan (-27.5) -112
  • No. 22 Auburn (+6) -108 at No. 10 Penn State (-6) -112

The third week of the 2021 college football season is nearly upon us. The experts have adjusted early trends and now the results are starting to show with these spreads and money lines.

The SEC and the Big Ten do not match up often in the regular season, and this Top 25 tilt should be exhilarating.

If you noticed, there are only 20 matchups listed here, but this breakdown will still cover every team’s odds that is ranked in the Top 25 going into week three.

Nebraska at No. 3 Oklahoma

  • Nebraska (+22) -105
  • Oklahoma (-22) -115
  • Over 61 (-110)
  • Under 61 (-110)

This Sooners vs. Huskers clash will be the first meeting since these two met in the 2010 Big 12 title game. These rivals will be meeting on the 50th anniversary of their Game of the Century in 1971.

Nebraska has not been great as a road underdog lately, especially at 20-plus points. That’s bad news against Spencer Rattler, who is as explosive of a quarterback as you’ll find in the college ranks.

The Cornhuskers have gone 0-6 straight up, but have been 4-2 against the spread since 2004.

Nebraska has only been a three touchdown-plus underdog three times since 2016.

New Mexico at No. 7 Texas A&M

  • New Mexico (+28.5) -110
  • Texas A&M (-28.5) -110
  • Over 50.5 (-110)
  • Under 50.5 (-110)

The top college football betting apps have New Mexico priced as a massive favorite in week three.

The Aggies have dominated the Group of Five, going 26-0 with an average margin of victory at 26.8 points per game.

Texas A&M under Jimbo Fisher is 11-6 at home against the spread, but the Aggies are 5-2 against the spread at home when favored by 20-plus.

No. 8 Cincinnati at Indiana

  • Cincinnati (-3.5) -116
  • Indiana (+3.5) -104
  • Cincinnati to Win (-182)
  • Indiana to Win (+162)
  • Over 50 (-110)
  • Under 50 (-110)

The Hoosiers and Tom Allen went 2-0 against the spread as a home underdog, but he has gone 3-14 against Top 25 squads.

As a road favorite, Luke Fickell is 3-5. He is just 3-4 against the spread with a number between 5-8.

Indiana is looking for their first nine-win season since 1967, and another loss would likely prevent that from happening with games against Ohio State, Michigan, and Penn State all on the horizon.

No. 16 Coastal Carolina at Buffalo

  • Coastal Carolina (-13) -110
  • Buffalo (+13) -110
  • Coastal Carolina to Win (-500)
  • Buffalo to Win (+395)
  • Over 57.5 (-110)
  • Under 57.5 (-110)

The Chanticleers are 3-1 against the spread as a road favorite under Jamey Chadwell, and they are off to a hot start in Vegas.

They are 2-0 against the number this season, though both were home. Buffalo is 5-0 in their past five home games as an underdog, but it will be the program’s first-ever regular-season meeting with the Sun Belt.

This game also has a hefty total that could push for 60 points by week’s end. If you want to bet on it, first do yourself a favor and brush up on how to bet on college football totals.

No. 15 Virginia Tech at West Virginia

  • Virginia Tech (+3) -113
  • West Virginia (-3) -107
  • Virginia Tech to Win (+129)
  • West Virginia to Win (-149)
  • Over 50.5 (-115)
  • Under 50.5 (-105)

This matchup will have a highly entertaining environment in Morgantown.

Justin Fuente came through over North Carolina as a home underdog. However, he has been a disastrous 5-12 against the spread as a road favorite.

West Virginia is 2-4 as a home underdog under Neal Brown, who is also 2-10 against the AP Top 25 straight up.

Michigan State at No. 24 Miami

  • Michigan State (+6.5) -105
  • Miami (-6.5) -115
  • Michigan State to Win (+200)
  • Miami to Win (-240)
  • Over 55 (-110)
  • Under 55 (-110)

The Hurricanes were throttled against Alabama in their season opener and barely survived against Appalachian State.

The latter is especially troubling for their prospects going forward.

Adding to the pile, they are just 5-7 at home as a home favorite.

The Spartans will have their first trip to Coral Gables since 1982, but the Hurricanes are 3-7 in their last ten games against the Big Ten.

Purdue at No. 12 Notre Dame

  • Purdue (+7) -108
  • Notre Dame (-7) -112
  • Purdue to Win (+235)
  • Notre Dame to Win (-280)
  • Over 58.5 (-110)
  • Under 58.5 (-110)

The Boilermakers have lost seven straight games in this series and five in a row on the road.

Jeff Brohm is on the hot seat and will be fighting for his job.

The good news? Against the spread as a road underdog, Purdue is 7-1 under Brohm.

Brian Kelly is 27-31-3 as a home favorite after failing to cover the spread against Toledo last week. The Irish have won nine of the recent ten meetings, but the Boilermakers covered six of them.

No. 1 Alabama at No. 11 Florida

  • Alabama (-16) -116
  • Florida (+16) -104
  • Over 58 (-110)
  • Under 58 (-110)

These two juggernaut programs have met 17 times since 1992, but ten have been in the SEC title game.

Dan Mullen is 2-0 against the spread at Florida as a home underdog but is 14-10 overall.

Nick Saban has been a favorite in 153 of the last 154 games, and he is 81-8 as the AP No. 1 squad.

Alabama has gone 33-23 against the spread as road favorites, but they have owned the number over Florida. The Tide has won eight of the past ten and has covered in seven of them.

Tulsa at No. 9 Ohio State

  • Tulsa (+26) -105
  • Ohio State (-26) -115
  • Over 61 (-110)
  • Under 61 (-110)

The Buckeyes have failed to cover this number at home in four of their past five games. They have won all five comfortably, but the Buckeyes have not come off a non-conference home loss like they have this time around.

Ohio State still has CFP hopes, but they’re also coming off a surprising loss to Oregon.

The Buckeyes will undoubtedly bounce back here, and they’ll probably even cover this crazy spread.

Georgia Tech at No. 6 Clemson

  • Georgia Tech (+28.5) -108
  • Clemson (-28.5) -112
  • Over 51 (-115)
  • Under 51 (-105)

Clemson needs to win the rest of their games in blowout fashion if they expect to get back into the CFP discussion.

The home team in this series has dominated, but the Tigers have flexed their muscles overall.

Under Dabo, Clemson has won six in a row with an average margin of victory at 31 points per game. The Tigers are 7-4-1 against the spread in the past 12 meetings.

Kent State at No. 5 Iowa

  • Kent State (+22.5) -108
  • Iowa (-22.5) -112
  • Over 55 (-110)
  • Under 55 (-110)

Iowa has done the job against the MAC, going 24-4 all-time and winning the last four matchups by 19.5 points per game.

The Hawkeyes are only 4-6 in the past ten games as 20-plus point home favorites. That could have some bettors thinking twice about taking them to cover.

They still have an average margin of victory of 29 points in those games, all wins.

Kent State hasn’t put up much of a fight yet in 2021. They’ve lost by 31 and 50 in their first two contests.

South Carolina at No. 2 Georgia

  • South Carolina (+30) -108
  • Georgia (-30) -112
  • Over 48.5 (-110)
  • Under 48.5 (-110)

Georgia has the top defense in the country these days, and they are laying the heavy number here.

The Bulldogs are winners of six straight SEC openers, but the home teams have struggled against the spread.

Six of the past seven road teams in this series have covered.

Virginia at No. 21 North Carolina

  • Virginia (+9) -105
  • North Carolina (-9) -115
  • Virginia to Win (+280)
  • North Carolina to Win (-350)
  • Over 65.5 (-110)
  • Under 65.5 (-110)

Coming off their beatdown victory against Illinois, Virginia as a road underdog is a live one at that. The Cavaliers are 7-0 against the spread in the past seven road openers.

The home team in this matchup has gone 5-10 in the past 15 meetings.

Tulane at No. 17 Ole Miss

  • Tulane (+14) -105
  • Ole Miss (-14) -115
  • Over 73 (-115)
  • Under 73 (-105)

The Rebels are 7-1 against the Group of Five since 2016 but entered 6-4 this season as home favorites.

Ole Miss has one of the top 10 offenses in college football and can outscore anybody, and they dismantled Tulane 39-0 in their last meeting (2012).

Tulane famously kept things tight with Oklahoma back in week one.

Naturally, bettors may be a bit hesitant to bite on the spread in favor of Ole Miss here.

No. 19 Arizona State at No. 23 BYU

  • Arizona State (-3.5) -115
  • BYU (+3.5) -105
  • Arizona State to Win (-170)
  • BYU to Win (+150)
  • Over 51 (-110)
  • Under 51 (-110)

The Sun Devils have knocked off these Cougars in 20 of the last 25 meetings. The Pac-12 is on an all-time high these days after Oregon upset the Buckeyes.

Under Herm Edwards, ASU has gone 2-4 against the spread as a road favorite.

No. 14 Iowa State at UNLV

  • Iowa State (-30) -115
  • UNLV (+30) -105
  • Over 52.5 (-110)
  • Under 52.5 (-110)

The Cyclones defense is on a mission this season with the way they have played through the last two weeks.

Under Matt Campbell, the Cyclones are 6-3-1 against the spread.

This is one of the biggest point spreads of the week involving Top 25 teams. For a little extra help deciding how to bet on this and other games, use this guide to betting on point spreads.

Fresno State at No. 13 UCLA

  • Fresno State (+11.5) -110
  • UCLA (-11.5) -110
  • Fresno State to Win (+335)
  • UCLA to Win (-415)
  • Over 61.5 (-110)
  • Under 61.5 (-110)

UCLA looks to be among the top Pac-12 contenders, especially in a struggling division of the South.

When the Bruins are three-plus touchdown home favorites, they are 2-5 against the spread.

They are 6-1 outright, so they should avoid an upset.

No. 22 Auburn at No. 10 Penn State

  • Auburn (+6) -108
  • Penn State (-6) -112
  • Auburn to Win (+200)
  • Penn State to Win (-240)
  • Over 52.5 (-110)
  • Under 52.5 (-110)

This non-conference game will be the third meeting between these two. The Nittany Lions are 7-3 against the spread when favored between 6-8 points.

In terms of standing in the Top 25, this is probably one of the biggest games of week three.

Auburn has gone 4-6 against the spread in their past ten games as a road underdog of 6-8 points. They have pulled off one upset, but the Tigers have an 11.7 average margin of defeat in the nine losses.

Northern Illinois at No. 25 Michigan

  • Northern Illinois (+27.5) -108
  • Penn State (-27.5) -112
  • Over 55.5 (-110)
  • Under 55.5 (-110)

Michigan has not gagged a home game away against FBS competition at this type of point spread.

However, the Wolverines have struggled to cover the large number. In the last five games of such a point spread at home, Michigan is 2-3.

Georgia Southern at No. 23 Arkansas

  • Georgia Southern (+23.5) -110
  • Arkansas (-23.5) -110
  • Over 52.5 (-110)
  • Under 52.5 (-110)

Arkansas seems to be back to relevant football, as taking down Texas was understandably special.

That aside, this non-conference matchup is in rare territory. The Razorbacks have not laid this large of a number with any consistency.

The Razorbacks have failed to cover the past five-point spreads of at least three touchdowns. All five of those home games were also non-conference tilts.

Betting on College Football in Week 3

There you have the early college football betting lines for the Top 25 teams for week three.

How many upsets will we witness this time around? Which teams will falter, and who will continue to surpass expectations?

The college landscape has given us plenty of chaotic moments. We saw underdogs coming out of nowhere to cover the spread and win outright.

Study your games and take some good notes. This look at the week three college football odds should get you started, but for some of the best bets this week, hit up our NCAA football picks section.

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