As the 2022 college football season heads into Week 6 and the second weekend of October, we're now getting more data and a better statistical profile on how teams are performing on offense. As I've done in past seasons, I provide an update on college football's most balanced offenses. Often these teams are more efficient, and the stats show which teams have more balance by both running and passing for an average at least 200 yards per game.
These "200 Club" offenses provide another handicapping tool to use moving forward while updating the stats weekly and noting strength of schedule and how teams performed on offense against stronger defensive teams and position units.
So in an effort to assist you in your handicapping and lead you to more winners whether betting sides, totals or potentially team totals and props, check out the information and guide to these stronger, balanced teams on offense.
These teams should be especially profitable the rest of the season and allow you to isolate more match-up advantages. When these teams are in the underdog role, and especially when they also have a stronger or more capable defense, you'll have an even better or stronger bet.
I used this as a guide and wrote about it in Forbes for the 2019 national championship game when Clemson (+6) beat Alabama outright 44-16 with their elite statistical profile balancing a potent, balanced offense led by QB Trevor Lawrence with a dominating Tigers defense.
Match-ups are always key, as is isolating value in the betting line when shopping at the leading online sportsbooks. We should improve on our ATS performance the second half of the season utilizing not only some of these offensive stat profiles, but also the strongest defensive teams which I will provide in the weeks ahead as well.
As NCAA football teams now play more conference games, you should be able to compare performances and evaluate strength of schedule as a key factor in your handicapping approach. We can now use more realistic numbers and stats from selected opponents and those moving forward. That includes for the Top 25 teams, where much of the focus seems to be as the sportsbooks take more betting action on those top-ranked teams and match-ups.
Offensive Balance and Point of Attack Play
While total yards gained, yard per play and rushing and passing numbers are worthy statistics to evaluate, the way in which teams accumulate those yards is significant. In college football, it’s important to control or dominate the line of scrimmage. And teams that can balance their offense and attack are usually more efficient and make it more difficult for opposing defenses and coordinators to defend and prepare.
The ability to run the football effectively also helps on the defensive side of the ball by keeping a defense fresh. When a defense is on the field for more plays per game and facing a hurry-up and spread passing attack, it can wear them out. But clearly if a team struggles at the point of attack and cannot stop or slow an opponent’s running game, it will affect more areas of the game including ball control and the clock. So that’s why having a balanced offensive attack is more effective and efficient and can be counted on when an opposing team does slow one facet of the offense.
Pay attention to on-field performance, especially vs. quality opponents. Yards-per-play differential is something to incorporate into your weekly handicap and match-up analysis. Also note turnovers, special team’s scores and turnover margin when evaluating box scores and not just the final score and result.
200 Club Teams
Through Week 5 and games completed on October 2, 2022 there are 15 teams that both run and pass for at least 200 yards per game (against FBS opponents only - stats don't include FCS opponents).
But there are 7 other teams are on the cusp of 200 Club status with higher offensive efficiency and rushing for at least 190 yards per game. We're including them as efficient offenses and notable teams to watch - Duke, Florida, Georgia, North Texas, Penn State, Tennessee and Utah.
|Team||Rush Yards||Pass Yards||Total Yards||Yards Per Play||Points|
Currently there are 21 teams that rush for at least 200 yards per game (16% of the 131 FBS teams). And 75% of college FBS teams are passing for an average of at least 200 yards per game. About 50%, or 53 teams pass for at least 250 yards per game thus far this season.
We note that teams like Illinois are not as efficient on offense, and Kentucky just makes the criteria cut, but they are still improved and fit the balanced offense profile as provided. Currently, 22 teams in the chart below fit the criteria used for stronger, balanced offenses and include those seven teams just below 200 rushing yards who are still very efficient with a few teams like Tennessee and Georgia possessing elite passing attacks.
Additional Stats and Situations
However, this exercise and statistical profile also notes that there are some stronger and efficient offensive teams that are not on the list. That includes Maryland, USC, Western Kentucky, North Carolina, BYU, Texas, Florida State and Washington, who is pass heavy. All those teams are top-20 in the country averaging at least 6.5 yards per play against FBS opponents. However, all those teams rush for less than 185 yards per game with undefeated USC the closest to cracking the criteria used as the Trojans average 183 rushing yards per game. None of the other teams are rushing for more than 160 yards per game.
So there are other ways to be productive, but when a balanced offensive team lines up against a stronger defensive team, they are more likely to have some success on offense. Likewise, a stronger, balanced attack can tear apart a weaker defensive team.
As you evaluate these teams and update the stats weekly, recognize that statistical profiles are just one way of handicapping games and match-ups. Fundamental (match-ups), situational (scheduling, look ahead, letdown) and a blend of meaningful technical parameters (patterns, ATS systems) complete the process and profiles. You must also understand the emotional and motivational components of college football teams.
Coaching, cohesiveness, injuries and weather become a bigger factor as teams push towards a strong finish the second half of the season. And of course, using every available advantage, including shopping numbers, odds using reduced juice sportsbooks as available increases your bottom line and ensures that you’re staying on top of your game and putting yourself in the best position to win more close contests when betting.
You’ll be laying a pretty big price with some of these power teams in the weeks ahead, so continue to evaluate on-field performance and dig deep into the injury reports, box scores and stats. Pay attention to key losses and how a team performs so you can project letdown and motivational situations, and recognize when a team has more key factors in their favor. As you become more proficient in evaluating team’s strengths and weaknesses, and use stats, match-ups and situations to your advantage, you’ll find yourself with more tap-in birdies, and profit from the experience.
You can bet on it.
FairwayJay is a proven sports handicapper and is recognized as one of the sports industry's most insightful analysts. He chips in additional sports betting coverage and reporting on industry news and events. Follow FairayJay here at OSGA.com and on Twitter @FairwayJay for more sports and betting insights.