Stanford vs Colorado Odds, Picks, and Predictions: Cardinal Come Out of the Gates Swinging

In a Friday night Pac-12 showdown, the Buffs aim to edge closer to securing a spot in a bowl game, while Stanford is in dire need of a morale-boosting victory. Our college football predictions anticipate a quick start from the Cardinal.

Andrew Caley - Senior Betting Analyst at
Andrew Caley • Senior Betting Analyst
Oct 13, 2023 • 20:02 ET • 4 min read

Well, if nothing else, you can’t say Deion Sanders and the Colorado Buffaloes haven’t been entertaining.

After last week’s nail-biter against Arizona State, Prime and the Buffs improved to 4-2 on the season and have already hit the Over on their regular season win total of 3.5. Next up, getting a win against Stanford and coming one step closer to bowl eligibility in Sanders’ debut season.

Colorado comes into tonight's Pac-12 matchup as double-digit home chalk on the college football odds board, but the last time the Buffs were big favorites they almost choked against rival Colorado State.

Is this the week the Buffaloes play the way a double-digit favorite should? Or will the Cardinal halt the stampede? I break down the college football odds and bring you my best bet in college football picks and predictions Stanford vs. Colorado on October 13. 

If you're looking for a different angle, be sure to check out our Stanford vs. Colorado prop picks

Stanford vs Colorado best odds

Stanford vs Colorado picks and predictions

The Prime Time experience at Colorado has been every bit as thrilling as you would expect throughout the team’s first six games of the season. But after playing six games in a row, it looks like this thrill ride is starting to wear on the Buffaloes. 

Yes, Colorado was able to secure a 3-point win as 3-point road favorites at Arizona State last week, but the Buffs were soundly outgained in that matchup and needed some late Shedeur Sanders magic and a last-second field goal to secure the win.

The Buffaloes' offensive line is still a mess. This means they can’t run the ball and have been basically been relying on Sanders’ arm to bail them out. Which granted, he is pretty good at. But it’s not a recipe for success. 

Then there is the defense which leaks like a sieve. Colorado ranks 101st in the country in opponent yards per play (6.1) when facing FBS opponents this season and is surrendering nearly five yards per carry. They also regularly get burned by big plays, ranking 96th in plays allowed of 20+ yards this season.

And while Stanford has admittedly not played well heading into this matchup, I think things are setting up well for them here. At least early on. For starters, that’s because the Cardinal have guys who can get to the second level of the Buffs' defense. Running backs Casey Filkins and E.J. Smith both average over six yards per carry this season. Quarterback Justin Lamson is also more of a threat with his legs.

Stanford also enters this game with an extra week to prepare for this matchup, while Colorado will be playing its seventh game in a row. I’m betting the Cardinal used that extra prep time to set up a solid game plan to attack the Buffs’ gassed defense. 

A defense always seems to take a little while to settle in (if they ever do). Colorado ranks 110th in the country in first-quarter points allowed per game. Bet on Stanford to lean on those backs early to orchestrate at least one extended first-quarter drive and find the end zone.

The cherry on top? You can get Stanford to go Over 6.5 first-quarter points at plus money.

My best bet: Stanford Over 6.5 1st Quarter Points (+145 at bet365)
Picks made at time of writing may not reflect live odds.

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Stanford vs Colorado same-game parlay

Stanford Over 6.5 1Q points

E.J Smith First TD

Shedeur Sanders 300+ passing yards

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Our same game parlay, as always, starts off with our best bet. For this Pac-12 matchup, it is Stanford to go Over 6.5 points in the first quarter. Basically, will the Cardinal score a first-quarter touchdown? I am saying yes and it’s nice to start off this parlay with a nice plus-money prop.

Let’s take a real stab and say running back E.J. Smith is that guy who finds the end zone first. He seems to be the Stanford back getting the most love in the last couple of games. 

But while I think Stanford has a great chance to strike early, it doesn’t mean it’s going to be all sunshine and roses for the Cardinal. This is a team that is just 1-4 which includes a loss to FCS Sacramento State. And the Stanford defense is just as bad if not worse than Colorado’s. So, let’s focus on a Sanders prop. 

Sanders should sling it against a Stanford pass defense that has allowed the fourth most passing yards per game in the country. I’m taking him to hit the milestone of 300+ yards passing in this one. A mark he has hit in four of his six games. This long-shot SGP pays out at +3,000.

Learn how to bet a same-game parlay with these helpful tips and strategies.

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Stanford vs Colorado spread and Over/Under analysis

Colorado opened this Pac-12 matchup as 11-point home favorites and the Buffaloes have seen the early action, moving the line to 11.5 as of Wednesday evening. And rightfully so.

Despite the Buffs' issues, they still enter this game at 4-2 and they have a quarterback with an elite arm. Stanford is just 1-4, which includes a loss to an FCS opponent, inconsistent quarterback play, and a defense that might be worse than Colorado’s. So, the line makes sense.

But that doesn’t mean I’m running out to lay all these points with the Buffs here.

On top of the idea that Colorado could be running out of gas, the last time they were double-digit favorites was when it was three touchdown chalk against rival Colorado State. The Buffs needed a last-minute touchdown before winning that game in overtime.

And the last time Stanford was an underdog in this range was two games ago when they were 13-point pups vs. Arizona. The Cardinals were competitive in that game losing 21-20. 

With Stanford coming off a bye I expect them to come in with a solid game plan and attempt to shorten this game with their rushing attack. I would have a slight lean toward the underdog here but due to Colorado’s popularity, I would wait to see if you can get a better number closer to kickoff.

When it comes to the total, it hit the board at 59.5 and is up slightly, now sitting at 60 as of writing this. This number still feels a little inflated due to the perception of this Colorado team. They’ve gone Over this number just twice this season. One in the “defense is optional” matchup vs. USC. And the other was the overtime matchup vs. CSU.

The Under has also hit in four straight Stanford games and since I expect them to rely on their running game a lean toward the Under feels like the right side.

Stanford vs Colorado betting trend to know

Stanford has hit the 1st quarter moneyline in four of its last six road games for +6.45 units. Find more college football betting trends for Stanford vs Colorado.

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Stanford vs Colorado game info

Location: Folsom Field, Boulder, CO
Date: Friday, October 13, 2023
Kickoff: 10:00 p.m. ET

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