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Best College Football Bets Week 2 | CFB Picks & Predictions

Written by: Tanner Kern
Published September 6, 2023
11 min read
Best College Football Bets Week 2 2023

Week 2 of the college football season has arrived. The big games are starting to pop up all over the calendar. The marquee contest of the week will feature Texas and Alabama from Tuscaloosa. 

We’re going to break down this game, and two others throughout the article. Every week we give our best bets for the upcoming college football slate. Make sure to check back weekly for the best plays!

Illinois @ Kansas

Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook.

PICK: Kansas -3

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The Illinois Illini opened as a two point underdog on DraftKings Sportsbook, and the line has been bet up to three. Kansas is the public play in this spot, but it feels like the right side of the line. For the Illini to win, they’re going to have to be successful defending the Jayhawks’ high powered offense. 

Kansas faced Missouri State in the opener, and dominated the game as they were expected. Devin Neal rushed for 94 yards on 13 carries, and Jason Bean was very efficient through the air. The quarterback was 22 of 28 for 276 yards with two touchdowns. 

The Jayhawks also looked very good on the defensive side of the ball, but they were better in every area of the field than the Bears. Illinois snuck by Toledo 30-28 in the opener. The Rockets are a good MAC team, but this game shouldn’t have been as close as it was considering Illinois’ Big 10 talent. 

Illinois was very one dimensional on offense behind quarterback Luke Altymer. He made plays with his arm and legs, but was the sole playmaker for the team. If Kansas can neutralize one aspect of his game, and keep him in the pocket it should be a good night for the home team.

The best part of Kansas' game is their ability to stop the run. Everything Illinois does is predicted on Altmyer having the option to use his legs. We expect a spy to be placed on the quarterback, and the Jayhawks to run all over the Illini. 

The worst part of the Illinois game last week was their inability to stop the run. This isn’t a recipe for success against an offense that put up over 500 yards of offense in the opener. Kansas is bigger, faster, and stronger than Toledo, so Illinois must be better than they were last week. 

We expect this line to continue creeping in favor of Kansas, so act quickly before it jumps to -4.

Texas @ Alabama

Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook.

PICK: Alabama -7 (-110)

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Can the Texas Longhorns walk into Tuscaloosa and beat the Crimson Tide? NO. 

I’m sorry for everyone that likes Texas in this spot, but the mismatch between the two teams is vast, especially with this game being played at Bryant Denny Stadium. Last season, Alabama escaped Austin with a win in a nailbiter, but Nick Saban’s team made multiple mistakes.

Alabama got lucky to win, but this season we believe they won’t be overlooking the Longhorns. Texas didn’t look great in their opener against Rice. They only won 37-10, and failed to cover the spread.

There were multiple miscues on the offensive side of the ball and even though Quinn Ewers was 19 of 30 for 260 yards and three touchdowns, he wouldn’t have been close to this against a team like Alabama. 

Jalen Milroe looked solid at quarterback for Alabama in their opener against Middle Tennessee State. He threw for just under 200 yards and led the team in rushing. Alabama’s offense will be able to score against Texas, but the real reason we like the Tide is because of their defense. 

They held Middle Tennessee State to 211 yards of total offense, and forced two turnovers. Alabama was expected to win this game, but there were very few schematic mistakes for the defense.

This unit will neutralize Quinn Ewers and find a way to cover the touchdown spread. It may come down to the fourth quarter, but we like the Crimson Tide to cover the spread. 

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AUTHOR

Tanner Kern

337 Articles

Tanner Kern has been working in the betting industry since 2020. He currently is a social media content creator at DraftKings and contributes to multiple sites in addition to WSN, including Forbes and VSiN. He is also the cohost of the podcast Ride the Line at WSN.

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