Are These Teams as Good/Bad as Their 2022 Records Suggest?

jatavion sanders xavier worthy texas longhorns ncaaf
Ja’Tavion Sanders #0 of the Texas Longhorns celebrates with Xavier Worthy #8 after a second quarter touchdown against the Iowa State Cyclones at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium. Tim Warner/Getty Images/AFP

Here we are at the two-thirds mark of the 2022-23 college football season – more or less. Most of the FBS teams have eight games under their collective belt, with four games left to go before the regular season wraps up. We know pretty much what each of these programs can do for our college football picks.

Or do we? Eight games would be a tiny sample size in baseball or even basketball. There are bound to be some FBS teams whose records don’t accurately indicate their true performance level.

Regression to the mean is lurking around the corner, so here are three teams who are in danger of falling off the pace, and three more with some clandestine betting value on the NCAAF odds board.

Three Overvalued Teams

1. Tennessee Volunteers

We start at the top, where the Volunteers (8-0 SU, 7-1 ATS) have snagged the No. 1 spot in the first College Football Playoff rankings.

Nice, but the F+ Ratings at Football Outsiders have Tennessee fifth overall, with just the No. 29-ranked defense in the nation.

2. Clemson Tigers

Those two national championships under Dabo Swinney were well deserved, and the No. 4 Tigers (8-0 SU, 4-4 ATS) have bounced back from last year’s rebuild, but their 8-0 record was built on a very soft ACC schedule.

The Clemson Tigers check in at No. 14 overall (and No. 31 on offense) on the F+ charts.

3. North Carolina

Tar Heels Kudos to Mack Brown for reviving this program in his second go-around at Chapel Hill.

However, the No. 17 Tar Heels (7-1 SU, 5-3 ATS) also benefit from the soft ACC, and they’re way down at No. 42 on the F+ rankings, with an incredibly bad defense, at No. 110 among the 131 FBS members.

Three Undervalued Teams

1. Texas Longhorns

Brown’s former team is barely in the CFP rankings at No. 24, but the Longhorns (5-3 SU and ATS) have performed well enough to rate sixth overall, according to F+.

That 20-19 loss to Alabama in Week 2 as 21-point home dogs speaks volumes.

2. Baylor Bears

You’ll find the Bears (5-3 SU and ATS) at No. 45 on the College Football News rankings, well behind their No. 20 spot on the F+ charts.

Again, losing 26-20 in overtime to BYU (–2.5 at home) in Week 2 was nothing to be ashamed of.

3. Iowa State Cyclones

The results haven’t been there lately for the Cyclones (3-5 SU, 3-4-1 ATS), who find themselves stuck at No. 52 on the CFN rankings – but a more competitive No. 35 according to F+, fuelled by the No. 8 defense in college.

Iowa State almost beat Texas (–16 at home) in Week 7 before falling 24-21.