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College Football Betting Preview: Penn State Nittany Lions vs. West Virginia Mountaineers

September 2, 2023


The West Virginia Mountaineers finished last season with a record of 5-7 and a Big 12 record of 3-6 which led them to finishing in a tie for 7th place in the conference and missing a bowl game for the first time since the 2019 season. Neal Brown is entering his 5th season as head coach for the Mountaineers and may be on the hot seat as he could be fired if West Virginia finishes with another losing record. 

West Virginia enters the season with an over/under win total of 5 wins which means they are projected to miss a bowl game for the 2nd consecutive season something that has not happened since the 1991-1992 college football season and based on Vegas odds are projected to be the 3rd worst team in the Big 12 only better than the BYU Cougars and the Houston Cougars.

The Penn State Nittany Lions finished last season winning their final five games of the season and finishing with a record of 11-2 and a Big Ten record of 7-2 which led to a 3rd place finish in the East Division of the Big Ten Conference and an appearance in the Rose Bowl against the Utah Utes a game the Nittany Lions won by a score of 35-21. 

This season the Nittany Lions enter the year ranked 7th in the AP Poll and 7th in the Coaches Poll while having an over/under win total of 9.5 wins with their two toughest games coming on the road against the Ohio State Buckeyes and at home against the Michigan Wolverines. Based on Vegas odds the Nittany Lions are projected to be the 3rd best team in the Big Ten behind the Ohio State Buckeyes and Michigan Wolverines and have the 10th best odds to win the National Championship as they are +2500 to accomplish that feat. 

BookMaker has the Penn State Nittany Lions listed as 21-point favorites at home against the West Virginia Mountaineers on Saturday in week 1 of the college football season. This will be the first time that these teams will face each other in college football. West Virginia finished last season with a record of 6-6 ATS overall, 3-3 ATS on the road, and 4-5 ATS as an underdog while Penn State finished 9-3-1 ATS overall, 4-2-1 ATS at home, and 8-2-1 ATS as a favorite.

Penn State is the more talented team this season as they are ranked in the top 10 and have an over/under win total of 9.5 wins while West Virginia is projected to miss a bowl game for the 2nd consecutive season something that hasn’t happened since the 1991-1992 college football seasons. Happy Valley is one of the toughest stadiums for road teams to win when the game is at night, which is the case in this matchup. 

I look for Penn State to have a statement win against the West Virginia Mountaineers which is why I am taking the Penn State Nittany Lions -21 at home for week 1 of the college football season on BookMaker. 

Spooky Express Pick: Penn State Nittany Lions -21

Written By: Daniel Newton