Week 4 of the college football season begins with a three-game slate Thursday. Here are our picks for the nationally televised game between West Virginia and Virginia Tech.
West Virginia claimed its first win of the season last week by routing Towson 65-7. That snapped an 0-2 start with both defeats coming by seven points. Virginia Tech started the campaign with a 20-17 loss to Old Dominion but has gotten on track with wins over Boston College and Wofford, by margins of 17 and 20 points, respectively.
WVU won last year's head-to-head showdown 27-21 at home as a 1.5-point favorite.
Here are our college football betting picks for the Week 4 matchup between West Virginia and Virginia Tech (odds via PointsBet, BetRivers, DraftKings Sportsbook; pick confidence based on a 1-to-5 star scale).
West Virginia vs. Virginia Tech Game Info
Date/Time: Thursday, Sept. 22, 7:30 p.m. ET
Location: Lane Stadium, Blacksburg, VA
Weather: 60℉, 19.0% chance of precipitation, 9-13-mph winds (blowing northwest)
West Virginia vs. Virginia Tech Odds Analysis
The spread has come down from West Virginia -3 to -2 with 56% of the tickets accounting for 60% of the handle on Virginia Tech. The total has fallen from 53.5 to a consensus line of 50 as of Thursday morning.
While 55% of the bets placed are on the Over, those account for just 45% of the handle as the sharp money seems to be on the Under.
West Virginia vs. Virginia Tech Picks
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West Virginia vs. Virginia Tech ATS Pick
West Virginia -1.5 (-107) ★★
While winning a rivalry game on the road is never easy, it’s pretty tough to pick against West Virginia in this spot, especially given the line move back down towards a pick’em.
Through the first three weeks of the season, the Mountaineers have gotten a much greater test overall than Virginia Tech. West Virginia could very well be coming into this game with a 3-0 record if not for a late pick-six against a ranked Pittsburgh team and a double-overtime loss to Kansas. The fact that WVU played so well on the road against Pitt suggests that Neal Brown’s team is also capable of doing so against a lesser Virginia Tech squad.
The Mountaineers also boast a pretty significant advantage at the quarterback position. Georgia transfer J.T. Daniels has shown improvement on a weekly basis. He has clearly developed a strong rapport with receiver Bryce Ford-Wheaton.
Virginia Tech’s Grant Wells has been shaky out of the gates. He has been turnover-prone in the past and certainly was in Week 1 when he threw four interceptions. Considering that the betting odds are pricing this game as a virtual toss-up, the turnover battle could prove to be extremely critical to the outcome.
West Virginia vs. Virginia Tech O/U Pick
Under 51.5 (-109) ★★★
It’s impossible not to align with the line move and de facto sharp side when it comes to the total for Thursday’s game. With several prominent sportsbooks having already adjusted down to 50.5, bettors are advised to target the extra point of value and optimal odds that are available at BetRivers.
Considering that all three of West Virginia’s games to date have flown over this betting total, it's no surprise that so many public bettors are on that side of the coin. On the contrary, Virginia Tech is yet to take part in a game that has featured more than 37 total points. Something has to give on Thursday night, and it will likely be at the expense of the scoreboard.
With Daniels transferring the Morgantown, the Mountaineers’ offense was fully expected to improve relative to a year ago. The trouble is that Virginia Tech’s defense comes into Week 4 having allowed a grand total of 608 yards to its previous three opponents.
Meanwhile, VA Tech’s offense is clearly still a work in progress. Not only did the Hokies have to replace their QB and top three skill position players from a year ago, but they also lack depth along the offensive line. Recall that the Mountaineers were able to generate enough pressure against Pitt to record five sacks as a team.
West Virginia vs. Virginia Tech Prop Pick
Mathis Over 70.5 rushing yards (-115) ★★★
Based on the fact that Virginia Tech has allowed rushing yardage totals of 80, 4, and 38 so far this season, it may seem counterproductive to play over 70.5 yards for West Virginia’s Tony Mathis. However, the Hokies have yet to face a team with an offense as capable as WVU’s.
In the season opener against a Pittsburgh defensive front that is regarded as one of the best in the country, Mathis turned 16 carries into 71 yards. Considering that the front seven is the weak point defensively of the Hokies’ defense, it seems likely that the Mountaineers will lean on the run game early and often.
Mathis may only be a redshirt freshman, but he is locked into plenty of carries on a weekly basis.
Where to Bet on West Virginia vs. Virginia Tech Picks
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West Virginia-Virginia Tech picks made 9/21/2022 at 12:45 a.m. ET