The top 10 bets for Week 3 of the college football season
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If I ever based picks solely on trends, I'd never play another game that kicked off later than 3:30 ET.

For the second consecutive week last Saturday, most of what was won during the day was given right back once the sun started to sink. That said, there's no correlation to Week 3 plays, which are both low in volume and all during the day or afternoon.

As always, be sure to shop around for the best numbers.

Top Plays

North Texas at Arkansas

Pick: Over 69

Last week's over play on Arkansas-Colorado State was a complete misfire. The Razorbacks were content with just handing the ball off for 5 yards a pop and abandoned the passing game altogether. It wasn't very Chad Morris-like. That's on me, but after taking a shot on that Arkansas over, I'll fire on this one as well, with a quarterback on the opposing sideline I like more this time around.

If you don't know Mason Fine by now, I'm hoping you will by the end of Saturday's game, for reasons beyond (though ideally including) lighting up the scoreboard. The North Texas quarterback has engineered two gaudy offensive performances in 2018 to give the Mean Green the top passing attack in the country so far.

It's still unclear who will start for Arkansas, but the offense should be able to score at will against one of the lowest-rated defenses in the C-USA.

Vanderbilt at Notre Dame

Pick: Over 52

Jonathan Daniel / Getty Images Sport / Getty

It's a "blah" matchup on paper, but I don't think Vanderbilt's offense - or at least its potential - is being valued enough.

Though I don't want to look into the Nevada game too much - it's a one-game sample against a poor defense - Vandy put up 41 points in a game where it probably should have had more than 50. The Commodores had a couple 60-plus-yard drives deep into Wolf Pack territory that stalled due to either turning the ball over or turning it over on downs. Notre Dame on the road will be a tougher test, but I'm not looking for 50-plus points from Vanderbilt (although if the Commodores want to do that, sure).

It all goes back to this sort of sneaky offense that Vanderbilt has. Quarterback Kyle Shurmur is taking more shots down the field as he gains experience, and the team's got enough talent at the skill positions to create big plays.

Notre Dame also missed some opportunities last weekend. There was obvious potential for the Fighting Irish to come out a bit flat versus Ball State a week after preparing for a prime-time game against Michigan - and, like clockwork, Notre Dame escaped with an eight-point win over a MAC school (24-16) and failed to score on three drives that bled into Ball State's 40-yard line.

The Fighting Irish still haven't had "that game" on offense. They lost a huge chunk of last year's production but still boast a massive line and a dual-threat quarterback in Brandon Wimbush who can make plays - when he's not turning the ball over. Might this be the week they finally click? I'll say yes.

Hawaii at Army

Pick: Under 62

Hawaii is fun again.

The Timmy Chang and Colt Brennan eras of the early- and mid-2000s were sorely missed, but the Rainbow Warriors are back to their scoring ways, putting up 43 or more points in their first three games to start the 2018 season undefeated.

And I firmly believe this is where it stops.

Saturday presents their first real challenge of the season. It'll be a 6:00 a.m. (Hawaii time) kickoff in West Point against an Army triple-option attack that has both the efficiency and patience to limit possessions for the Rainbow Warriors.

In a game that should be dictated by Army's tempo and not the other way around, I'm looking for an atypically low-scoring Hawaii affair Saturday.

Extra Points

Georgia Tech at Pitt

Recommended Pick: Pitt +4

Georgia Tech enters Week 3 a bit banged-up on offense with running back KirVonte Benson out for the season and starting quarterback TaQuon Marshall dealing with a toe injury he suffered last week.

For Pitt, good luck trying to find a poorer effort than last weekend's 51-6 drubbing by Penn State at home.

There might be a slight overreaction, however, as I think the wrong team is favored. Georgia Tech is playing its second consecutive road game on the heels of a hard-fought loss to South Florida, while Pitt has a chance to lick its wounds and get back on track in its home stadium. There's a good chance both teams will feel some sort of hangover from last week. I'd take the home team plus the points.

Arkansas State at Tulsa

Recommended Pick: Arkansas State -1

Kevin C. Cox / Getty Images Sport / Getty

I think it'll be much easier for Arkansas State to bury the tape from last week against Alabama than it will be for Tulsa to exert the same effort it showed in a 28-21 loss to Texas where they gave the Longhorns all they could handle. And from a talent perspective, Tulsa isn't close to being in the same tier as the Red Wolves.

San Jose State at Oregon

Recommended Pick: Under 67.5

Oregon's going to have to tote the point load here.

Last week I was skeptical about handing out San Jose State's team total under 14.5, given the possibility that the Spartans could sneak in some garbage-time scores against Washington State, but this offense is so inept it actually exceeded expectations (by not living up to them).

Missouri at Purdue

Recommended Pick: Purdue +6.5

Jamie Squire / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Purdue has been great at racking up yards but hasn't been great at cashing them in for points.

Oh, and the Boilermakers also lost to Eastern Michigan as a 17-point favorite, so I apologize for burying the lede.

Missouri, on the other hand, hasn't been tested. Quarterback Drew Lock has started his Heisman campaign with 687 yards and eight touchdowns to no interceptions.

Only three games into the season, this is probably Purdue's last chance before completely unraveling. I'd take a shot on Jeff Brohm to rally the troops and cover the 6.5.

Ohio State at TCU

Recommended Pick: Under 59.5

Offensive firepower will likely be the headline, but both defenses are pretty darn good too.

Ohio State has been a scoring machine. Whenever you refresh the app, the Buckeyes have another seven points on the board. It's almost stupid how efficient they've been. But there's a tougher test on the doorstep with TCU, one of the biggest outliers in a Big 12 conference short on defense.

The Horned Frogs boast a legitimate unit that might not fully compress Ohio State's offense, but should pose the first challenge of the season after the Buckeyes sliced up Oregon State and Rutgers for 77 and 52 points, respectively.

Defensively, Ohio State doesn't need to do anything out of the ordinary. It's one of the best fronts in college football and, if it can get quarterback Shawn Robinson into passing situations, should limit points.

LSU at Auburn

Recommended Pick: Auburn -10

Betting on LSU would require having faith that the Tigers will continue to successfully run the ball. That's where you lose me.

LSU looks every bit the part of your standard LSU team - huddling up, running the ball effectively, mixing in some throwing here and there, and relying on defense. It's been the blueprint for years. At 2-0, including a double-digit win over Miami, you'd be hard-pressed to complain about the results.

If I can chip in my two cents, though, LSU's forced five turnovers without committing one itself and has been terrible on third downs (7-for-27) so far. The offensive game plan is too stale and obvious to get by a stout Auburn defense. Unless LSU can throw the ball and keep the other Tigers off balance, I'd recommend the home side in a rout.

UMass at Florida International

Recommended Pick: UMass +4

You have to hand it to Florida International: The offense has done a great job of benefiting from penalties to extend drives. Good on the Panthers for cashing in, but they've been fortunate

As for FIU's defense, any sort of passing offense is the ammonia to this cockroach of a secondary.

Unleash the ZooMass!

Top plays: 5-6
Overall record: 7-13

Alex Kolodziej is theScore's betting writer. He's a graduate of Eastern Illinois who has been involved in the sports betting industry for 11 years. He can quote every line from "Rounders" and appreciates franchises that regularly wear alternate jerseys. Find him on Twitter @AlexKoIodziej.

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The top 10 bets for Week 3 of the college football season
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