USA Today Sports

Exposing the Top 25: Where the polls went wrong

Each week throughout the college football season, Covers Expert Jesse Schule will dissect the new Top 25 rankings, looking for betting value. He'll showcase the most overrated team, along with the most underrated ranked team, and an unranked squad that he feels should be in the Top 25.

Most underrated Top 25 team: Michigan State Spartans (8-1 SU, 5-3-1 ATS)

The Spartans defeated their rivals Michigan in East Lansing by a score of 29-6 Saturday. They own the nation's third-ranked defense, allowing just 11.6 points per game. Connor Cook has settled in at quarterback and, while he doesn't put up impressive numbers, he's doing enough to give them a chance to win.

The Spartans close out the season with games against Nebraska, Northwestern and Minnesota, and all of those are very winnable games. Michigan State might just have a shot at the Big Ten title.

Most overrated Top 25 team: Texas Tech Red Raiders (7-2 SU, 5-4 ATS)


The Red Raiders have made my list before, as the most overrated team in the Top 25. After starting the season with seven straight wins, they've now dropped back-to-back games against ranked opponents (Oklahoma and Oklahoma State).

They host Kansas State this week, and the Wildcats defense has really been impressive lately. Only a fourth-quarter fumble deep in their own territory prevented them from pitching a shutout over Iowa State last week. It figures to be a tough game for the Red Raiders and a loss will surely see them drop outside the Top 25.

Unranked team that should be ranked: Mississippi Rebels (5-3 SU, 5-3 ATS)

The Rebels have lost three games to Alabama, Auburn and Texas A&M. Two of those losses came in close games, and all three of those teams are near the top of the rankings.

This week they host Arkansas and the Razorbacks have collapsed, losing six in a row. They'll face Troy the following week and if they can put together back-to-back wins, they should get back into the rankings.

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Posted by warcameagle56
1 year ago

Johnny,I think your MichSt ticket is a winner too .Sparty will get the love it deserves as long as they keep winning.
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Posted by JohnnyJet0023
1 year ago

Sitting on a nice ticket with Michigan State to win Big Ten Championship game from pre-season. They haven't locked up a birth in the game yet, but looking ahead, Ohio State appears to be the obstacle of concern.
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Posted by Absolutxedge22
1 year ago

Who cares? Michigan State is better when flying under the radar. Let them play with an extra chip on their shoulder. Keep their mouth shut, and then let the lion out when it is game time. Go Green!
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Top Response

Posted by JohnnyJet0023
1 year ago

"Sitting on a nice ticket with Michigan State to win Big Ten Championship game from pre-season. They haven't locked up a birth in the game yet, but looking ahead, Ohio State appears to be the obstacle of concern."