- Week 5 of the 2019 college football season begins on Thursday, Sep 26th
- Ohio State brings a dominant offense into Nebraska
- Find my three favorite ATS picks for Week 5, below
Week 5 of college football begins on Thursday, Sep. 27th, with Navy vs Memphis. There are several road favorites with good value this week, including Justin Fields and No.5 Ohio State at Nebraska, and that’s exactly where the Week 5 ATS picks start.
Ohio State vs. Nebraska Odds
|Ohio State (#5)||-18 (-110)||-1000||O 67(-110)|
|Nebraska||+18 (-110)||+350||U 67 (-110)|
*All odds taken 09/24/19.
Ohio State is looking like a legit contender after four blowout wins to begin the season. They’ve been facing outmatched opponents, but starting QB Justin Fields is rising in the Heisman odds and proving to be a special talent.
Fields totaled six touchdowns in a single quarter against Miami (Ohio) in Week 2 to lead the Buckeyes to a 76-5 victory. OSU is 3-1-0 ATS this season and has put up at least 40 points each week. They also rank 11th on defense.
Justin Fields gets his second rushing TD of the day! ? pic.twitter.com/Kt0E23HGnj
— FOX College Football (@CFBONFOX) September 21, 2019
Nebraska was down 21-14 to a lackluster Illinois team after the first half in Week 4, but recovered for a 42-38 victory. While the Cornhuskers are 3-1 on the season, they’ve only covered the spread once and now have to face the team favored to win the Big Ten.
I don’t see Nebraska having an answer for Fields and the Buckeye offense. OSU has outscored the Cornhuskers 154-48 over the last three years and should continue that dominance this week. Nebraska had numerous mistakes in Week 4 that could have led to an Illini victory.
This line continues to move after the Buckeyes opened as only -13.5 favorites. They likely should have opened closer to 20, so take advantage of the value before the line moves even more.
Pick: Ohio State (-18)
Clemson vs. North Carolina Odds
|Clemson (#1)||-27 (-105)||—||O 61 (-110)|
|North Carolina||+27 (-115)||—||U 61 (-110)|
Clemson is the top-ranked team in the nation and has won 19 straight games. They’re going up against a 2-2 UNC team that is coming off an upset loss to Appalachian State and battling injuries. The Tar Heels could be without starting center Nick Polino, starting left tackle Charlie Heck, and starting receiver Antoine Green in Week 5.
If UNC senior LT Charlie Heck cannot go Saturday, UNC will start two freshmen, and three sophomores on the offensive line against Clemson.
— Jonathan M Alexander (@jonmalexander) September 24, 2019
There is also concern at the quarterback position for UNC, as backup QB Jace Ruder suffered an injury against Appalachian State and is questionable for Saturday. This would mean the team would be turning to true freshman Vincent Amendola if starter Sam Howell were to go down.
A growing list of injuries doesn’t bode well for any team when going up against a powerhouse such as Clemson. The Tigers are 3-1-0 ATS this season and are led by star quarterback Trevor Lawrence. Lawrence will be well-rested for this game after playing just one quarter in Week 4’s blowout victory over Charlotte. He should also be eager to have a monster game, as his stats through four games have paled in comparison to expectations.
The Tar Heels have failed to cover the spread in their last two games, losses to Wake Forest and App State. UNC fell behind early in both those games and have yet to hold a lead entering the fourth quarter this season.
With injuries piling up for the Tar Heels and Clemson expected to dominate on both sides of the ball, this one will get out of hand early. The Tigers were a 28-point favorite over Syracuse in Week 3 and easily covered (41-6).
Look for Clemson to take control early against UNC and run away with this one.
Pick: Clemson (-27)
Penn State vs. Maryland Odds
|Penn State (#12)||-7.0 (-105)||-240||O 60 (-110)|
|Maryland||+7.0 (-115)||+200||U 60 (-110)|
Both Penn State and Maryland underwhelmed in Week 3 and are coming off bye weeks. The Nittany Lions were a 17-point favorite over rival Pittsburgh, but only managed a 17-10 victory. RB Journey Brown continued to impress with 109 yards and a touchdown in the victory.
Maryland is coming off a 20-17 loss to Temple in Week 3 — their first defeat of the season. The Terrapins gave up a late TD in the fourth quarter and were stuffed twice on the goal line. The offensive line was hit hard all game and starting quarterback Josh Jackson was sacked four times.
I like Penn State to cover due to their defensive edge. These are two strong offenses who will be looking to get back on track in Week 5. The Terps have scored 22 offensive touchdowns in three games, but were held to just 340 yards by Temple. This will be the game for Penn State to rely on their experienced front-seven and prove they have one of the best defenses in the nation.
Penn State ran for 167 yards against Pittsburgh, while Maryland gave up 150 yards on 39 carries against Temple. Penn State has the ninth-ranked rushing defense in the nation and should be able to limit star running back Anthony McFarland.
The Nittany Lions have won the last four meetings and covered the last three. They’ve outscored the Terps 106-6 in the last two.
I also think Penn State can win the battle in the air with quarterback Sean Clifford. Terps QB Josh Jackson struggled against Temple, finishing 15-38 for 183 passing yards. Expect the Nittany Lions to follow in Temple’s shoes, putting a ton of pressure on Jackson, not allowing him to make easy, quick passes. PSU already has 11 sacks in their first three games.
The Nittany Lions have won the last four meetings and covered the last three. They’ve outscored the Terps 106-6 in the last two matchups. Look for Penn State to take advantage of Maryland’s inconsistent offensive line and rely on their rock-solid rush defense to win this one.
Pick: Penn State (-7)