College football teams off a bye week often provide a solid situational edge
Early season college football continues in September, and we now start to see teams with bye weeks on the schedule. I've outlined the September bye week schedule below, with each teams' pre and post bye opponents and recent results against the post-bye opponents. In college football, this can be a real benefit to the rested and prepared team, especially later in the season as teams deal with more fatigue, injuries and pressure to perform in a conference title run or bowl game bid.
When playing at home off a bye, there is a solid situational edge when playing an opponent that is not off a bye, and usually a motivational edge especially if a quality or capable team is off a loss. Redemption can also factor in, but the linemakers and sportsbooks factor these situations into the line. Still, this late season bye situation from Bet Labs database should not be ignored. Home teams with at least 13 days rest playing a conference game past November 1st are 38-21-2 ATS (64%) since 2015. There is an especially strong situation supporting Pac 12 and Mountain West home teams off a bye in November, and we'll review that more in our November bye weeks update.
Some coaches just prepare their players better during a bye week. They game plan and strategize for an opponent better, and add additional plays and insight to assist players in preparation.
These coaches and teams are ones to watch, as the coaches ATS record off a regular season bye is noteworthy.
Gary Patterson, TCU (10-3 ATS) - TCU off bye at Purdue Sept 14
Justin Fuente, Virginia Tech (6-1 ATS) - VT off a bye vs Duke Sept 27
Matt Wells, Texas Tech (6-1 ATS) - TT off a bye at Oklahoma Sept 28
A little more on Matt Wells and his intensity taking over Texas Tech this year after success at Utah State.
Meanwhile second-year Arizona head coach Kevin Sumlin is just 2-8 ATS off a bye in his career. Arizona is off a bye when the Wildcats hosts UCLA on Sept. 28.
Other bad situational spots include teams playing back-to-back road games against home teams off a bye. This is a positive and profitable profile for the rested and ready home team.
That puts Southern Miss in a bad spot at Troy (-2.5) on Sept. 14.
Same with these three conference road teams in back-to-back road games against teams off a bye Sept. 28.
Louisiana at Georgia Southern
UCLA at Arizona
SMU at South Florida
Plenty of situations and profiles to consider as you evaluate these teams off a bye, and we’ll review more as the season moves along. But recognize scheduling situations and take note of teams off a bye, and those playing at home that may also have additional motivation that includes significant redemption (Arizona Sept. 28).
These are additional pieces to add to your handicapping arsenal, but know that you still must evaluate the match-ups, motivation, injuries, statistical profiles and betting lines at the sportsbooks. The linemaker makes adjustments to early season results, power ratings and to the bye week situation, and especially to rested and ready teams playing with redemption.
|Bye||Team||Conference||Pre Bye||Post Bye||Notes|
|Sept 14||Vanderbilt||SEC||at Purdue||LSU||7 str losses to LSU|
|Sept 14||Michigan||Big Ten||Army||at Wisconsin||Beat #15 WISC 38-13 LY|
|Sept 14||Rutgers||Big Ten||at Iowa||Boston College||13 str losses vs BC|
|Sept 14||Wisconsin||Big Ten||Central Michigan||Michigan||Lost to ##12 MICH 38-13 LY|
|Sept 14||Baylor||Big 12||UTSA||at Rice||Did not play LY|
|Sept 14||Connecticut||AAC||Illinois||at Indiana||Did not play LY|
|Sept 14||Utah State||Mountain West||Stony Brook||at San Diego State||10 str losses vs SDSU|
|Sept 14||Fresno State||Mountain West||Minnesota||Sacramento State||Did not play LY|
|Sept 14||San Jose State||Mountain West||Tulsa||at Arkansas||First meeting|
|Sept 14||Marshall||Conf USA||Ohio||Cincinnati||Did not play|
|Sept 14||Old Dominion||Conf USA||at Virginia Tech||at Virginia||First meeting|
|Sept 14||UAB||Conf USA||at Akron||South Alabama||Did not play|
|Sept 14||UTEP||Conf USA||at Texas Tech||Nevada||Did not play|
|Sept 14||Appalachian State||Sun Belt||Charlotte||at North Carolina||Did not play|
|Sept 14||Louisiana Monroe||Sun Belt||at Florida State||at Iowa State||Did not play|
|Sept 21||Penn State||Big Ten||Pittsburgh||at Maryland (Fri)||Beat MD 38-3 & 66-3 L2 yrs|
|Sept 21||Maryland||Big Ten||at Temple||Penn State (Fri)||Lost to PS 28-3 & 66-3|
|Sept 21||Iowa||Big Ten||at Iowa State||MTSU||Did not play|
|Sept 21||Minnesota||Big Ten||Georgia Southern||at Purdue||Beat Purdue 41-10|
|Sept 21||Purdue||Big Ten||TCU||Minnesota||Lost to MN 41-10|
|Sept 21||Virginia Tech||ACC||Furman||Duke (Fri)||Beat Duke 31-14|
|Sept 21||Duke||ACC||at MTSU||at Virginia Tech-Fri||Lost to VT 31-14|
|Sept 21||Georgia Tech||ACC||The Citadel||at Temple||First meeting|
|Sept 21||Oklahoma||Big 12||at UCLA||Texas Tech||Beat TT 51-46|
|Sept 21||Kansas State||Big 12||at Mississippi State||at Oklahoma State||Beat OKL St 31-12|
|Sept 21||Texas Tech||Big 12||at Arizona||at Oklahoma||Lost to OKL 51-46|
|Sept 21||Arizona||Pac 12||Texas Tech||UCLA||Lost to UCLA 31-30|
|Sept 21||Oregon State||Pac 12||Cal Poly||Stanford||9 str losses to Stanford, 48-17|
|Sept 21||Cincinnati||AAC||Miami, OH||at Marshall||Did not play|
|Sept 21||USF||AAC||South Carolina St||SMU||Did not play|
|Sept 21||Memphis||AAC||at South Alabama||Navy (Thurs)||Lost to Navy 22-21|
|Sept 21||Navy||AAC||East Carolina||at Memphis (Thurs)||Beat Memphis 22-21|
|Sept 21||UNLV||Mountain West||at Northwestern||at Wyoming||Did not play|
|Sept 21||MTSU||Conf USA||Duke||at Iowa||Did not play|
|Sept 21||Western Kentucky||Conf USA||Louisville||UAB||Did not play|
|Sept 21||Northern Illinois||MAC||at Nebraska||at Vanderbilt||Did not play|
|Sept 21||Georgia State||Sun Belt||at Minnesota||Louisiana||Did not play|
|Sept 28||LSU||SEC||at Vanderbilt||Utah State||Did not play|
|Sept 28||Georgia||SEC||Notre Dame||at Tennessee||Beat TEN 38-12|
|Sept 28||Missouri||SEC||South Carolina||Troy||Did not play|
|Sept 28||Tennessee||SEC||at Florida||Georgia||Lost to #2 Georgia 38-12|
|Sept 28||Illinois||Big Ten||Nebraska||at Minnesota||Lost to MN 55-31|
|Sept 28||Louisville||ACC||at Florida State||Boston College||Lost to BC 38-20|
|Sept 28||Miami||ACC||Central Michigan||Virginia Tech||Beat VT 38-14|
|Sept 28||Texas||Big 12||Oklahoma State||at West Virginia||Lost to WV 42-41|
|Sept 28||West Virginia||Big 12||at Kansas||Texas||Beat #15 Texas 42-41|
|Sept 28||Colorado||Pac 12||at Arizona State||Arizona||Lost to AZ 42-34|
|Sept 28||Oregon||Pac 12||at Stanford||California||Beat Cal 42-24|
|Sept 28||Tulane||AAC||Houston||at Army||Did not play|
|Sept 28||Tulsa||AAC||Wyoming||at SMU||Beat SMU 27-24|
|Sept 28||Boise State||Mountain West||Air Force||at UNLV||Did not play|
|Sept 28||San Diego State||Mountain West||Utah State||at Colorado State||Did not play|
|Sept 28||Florida International||Conf USA||at Louisiana Tech||Massachusetts||Beat UMASS 63-24|
|Sept 28||UTSA||Conf USA||at North Texas||at UTEP||Beat UTEP 30-21|
|Sept 28||Ohio||MAC||Louisiana||at Buffalo||Beat BUF 52-17|
|Sept 28||Kent State||MAC||Bowling Green||at Wisconsin||First meeting|
|Sept 28||Bowling Green||MAC||at Kent State||at Notre Dame||Did not play|
|Sept 28||Eastern Michigan||MAC||Central Conn State||at Central Michigan||Beat CMU 17-7|
|Sept 28||Ball State||MAC||at NC State||at Northern Illinois||Lost to NIU 24-16|
|Sept 28||Georgia State||Sun Belt||at Texas State||Arkansas State||Lost Ark St 51-35|
For games on Sept 14, the following teams in bold play off a bye:
Northwestern vs UNLV
TCU at Purdue
Iowa State vs Iowa
Notre Dame vs New Mexico
Temple vs Maryland
Navy vs East Carolina
Air Force at Colorado
Troy vs Southern Miss
Toledo vs Murray State
FairwayJay is a leading national sports handicapper and is recognized as one of the sports industry's most insightful analysts. Read more great insights from Jay here and follow him on Twitter: @FairwayJay