College Football Week 0 Odds, Betting Lines & Best Bets
Dan Kilbridge | 15 mins
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It’s that special time of year. The calm before the storm. The fun starts this weekend, with another glorious college football betting season officially on the horizon with Week 0.
Alabama is the favorite to win it all with +175 odds at top online sportsbooks after losing to Georgia in the national championship a year ago. Ohio State is +300 while the defending-champion Bulldogs are +400. The top four college football playoff odds are rounded out with Clemson at +1000 after missing out on the College Football Playoff in 2022. Texas A&M and USC are available next at +2500.
Ohio State opens with Notre Dame in Columbus, while Georgia takes on Oregon in another marquee non-conference game. But college football season always starts with a smaller slate in what’s become known as Week 0.
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Fans will eat up any matchup after another long offseason and the early action provides a bigger audience for programs that might not otherwise see the national stage.
This year’s Week 0 college football slate is no exception, with an early sampling of intriguing matchups ahead of what promises to be another incredible, unpredictable season on the college football gridiron.
Week 0 College Football Odds & Point Spreads
Let's take a look at the latest odds, spreads and totals for college football Week 0. As ever, make sure you check out all the best sportsbooks and betting apps to get the best prices before wagering. Here's the Saturday slate:
Week 0 College Football Picks & Predictions
Nebraska Cornhuskers vs Northwestern Wildcats, 12:30 p.m. ET
The Cornhuskers are the heavy college football odds favorite for opening day despite losing six straight to finish the 2021 season. Coach Scott Frost’s seat is getting warmer and he reshuffled the staff this offseason knowing how critical these upcoming games are for his future. The defense was middle-of-the-road a year ago and can’t afford to take a step back, but the Huskers lose some key contributors on that side.
Northwestern also lost six straight to finish the season and was not competitive for the most part. However, Pat Fitzgerald has proved he can turn things around in a hurry. Improvement on the defensive side is a must after giving up 429.5 yards per game a year ago, and we wouldn’t automatically pencil the Wildcats in for another last-place campaign.
The Pick: Locked in Northwestern ATS (+12 at DraftKings) ➜
Nevada Wolf Pack vs New Mexico State Aggies, 2:00 p.m. ET
The action gets underway early with Nevada coming off a solid 8-5 season and heading to New Mexico State. It won’t look anything like the Wolf Pack team we saw a year ago, with a new head coach in Ken Wilson and just a handful of returning starters. Thus, it becomes a question of how much Wilson has been able to get these guys to buy in over the summer.
The Aggies were just 2-9 last season, but there’s a reason for optimism with former Minnesota coach Jerry Kill taking over the struggling program. We’re looking at two teams with two new coaches and a ton of turnover, which means a lot of uncertainty. Kill certainly gives the Aggies a great chance to start over, but a rebuild like this typically takes a year or two.
The Pick: Locked in Nevada ATS (-9 at DraftKings) ➜
Wyoming Cowboys vs Illinois Fighting Illini, 4:00 p.m. ET
Another non-conference matchup here with the Cowboys heading to Champaign to take on the Illini. We know the Cowboys always have a good defense, but it looks like it could be another offensively-challenged season for Wyoming.
The Illini are ready to keep moving in the right direction with Bret Bielema entering his second year at the helm. There’s a solid quarterback competition on offense and several returning starters on defense coming off a year in which Illinois lost a ton of close games. They could definitely sneak up and surprise a few teams this year and a bowl game is certainly a reasonable ask.
The Pick: Locked in Illinois ATS (-10 at DraftKings) ➜
UConn Huskies vs. Utah State Aggies, 4:00 p.m. ET
There’s not much left to say about former coach Randy Edsall's second stint with the Huskies. UConn went 6-30 since he returned in 2017, as he moves on and Jim Mora Jr. steps in to attempt the rebuild of all rebuilds. The Huskies did go 6-6 against the spread last season despite winning just one game, with lines ballooning to huge numbers throughout the season.
Utah State has been an electric offensive team and returns starting quarterback Logan Bonner for a fifth season. The Aggies should compete for a Mountain West title along with Air Force and Boise State and we wouldn’t be surprised to see them hang a massive number in the opener against this Huskies squad.
The Pick: Locked in Utah State ATS (-27 at DraftKings) ➜
Charlotte 49ers vs. Florida Atlantic University Owls, 7:00 p.m. ET
The 49ers have quietly built a proud program under Will Healy, but they’re still struggling to take the next step and compete in Conference USA. They return quarterback Chris Reynolds and have a lot of experience against top teams with aggressive scheduling in recent years.
Florida Atlantic has two 11-win seasons in the past five years but fell below .500 with a 5-7 showing a year ago. Coach Willie Taggart returns for the third year and the pressure is on to get the Owls back on track. They have enough returning experience and talent to do it. However the season ultimately shakes out, we like the Owls to get off to a fast start.
The Pick: Locked in Florida Atlantic ATS (-7 at DraftKings) ➜
Vanderbilt Commodores vs. Hawaii Rainbow Warriors, 10:30 p.m. ET
It wouldn’t truly be college football season without a little late-night action in Hawaii. The Rainbows have qualified for a bowl game in four straight seasons, though last year’s Hawaii Bowl matchup with Memphis got canceled at the 11th hour.
Todd Graham lost the locker room at some point and leaves town in an ugly fashion, replaced by first-year coach Timmy Chang. The former Hawaii star QB will run an up-tempo offense and we should see some very high totals on Warriors' games this season.
Vanderbilt is always in trouble with the SEC schedule, going just 2-19 over the past two seasons. There’s nowhere to go but up, and it remains to be seen if second-year coach Clark Lea will be able to solve the tricky puzzle that is Commodore's football.
The Pick: Locked in Hawaii ATS (+6.5 at DraftKings) ➜