College Football Rankings: Introducing The Dimers ATS Top 25Aug 3, 2022, 3:54PM
You've probably seen preseason college football rankings just about everywhere, with the Alabama Crimson Tide sitting atop the Top 25 in all of them. However, Nick Saban's team is only 16th in our first-ever Dimers ATS Top 25, which ranks teams based on cumulative against-the-spread records over the last four years.
With this being a betting website, we felt it was fitting to provide college football fans and bettors around the world with something they can look back on to figure out which teams have been trustworthy for bettors in recent years. So, without further ado, here's a list of the college football programs that have been the most profitable dating back to the start of the 2018 season.
1. Oklahoma State Cowboys (32-18-1 ATS)
Thanks to two years in which the Cowboys covered in 10 games, head coach Mike Gundy's team finds itself at the top of this list. Last year, Oklahoma State surprised many with its stifling defense, which was a big change from the high-flying offenses of Stillwater's past. The Cowboys will likely be a Top 25 team in the regular polls to start the 2022 season, as well. You'll want to keep this ranking in mind when betting Oklahoma State games next year, as a good against-the-spread record is the sign of a well-coached football team.
2. Virginia Cavaliers (30-18-1 ATS)
Virginia's 9-4 against-the-spread record in 2018 is a big part of the reason the Cavaliers find themselves this high on the list, but the team also had winning ATS marks in each of the last three years. The one issue here is that head coach Bronco Mendenhall is no longer with the program, and his ability to prepare on a week-to-week basis will be missed. However, new head coach Tony Elliott has been with the Clemson Tigers since 2011, and the Tigers will appear on this list. With that in mind, he's no stranger to helping bettors cash in.
3. Minnesota Golden Gophers (27-16-3 ATS)
Head coach P.J. Fleck turned the Western Michigan Broncos into covering machines before he took the Minnesota job, and the Golden Gophers are now one of the better teams to bet in all of college football. They've covered in at least eight games in two of the last four years, and they even had a winning ATS record in their losing season in 2020. This is expected to be a competitive team once again in 2022, so don't be afraid to "row the boat."
4. Notre Dame Fighting Irish (31-19-1 ATS)
Head coach Brian Kelly is a big part of the reason that Notre Dame has been such a profitable program in recent years, and the team has had two years in which it covered in nine games over the last four seasons. Losing Kelly to the LSU Tigers is going to hurt a bit, but expectations are high with former defensive coordinator Marcus Freeman taking over what is a very talented team. The Fighting Irish's strong history of covering might be worth remembering when they take on the Ohio State Buckeyes in Week 1. The Buckeyes are just 10-10-1 ATS over the last two seasons.
5. Kansas State Wildcats (29-18-1 ATS)
Bill Snyder was one of the best coaches in college football and he passed the baton to Chris Klieman, who built FCS North Dakota State into a powerhouse. Considering how great the leadership has been in Manhattan, it should come as no surprise that Kansas State has had a winning ATS record in each of the seasons we used to come up with these rankings. The Wildcats also happen to be returning 14 starters in 2022, so don't be surprised if this is a competitive football team once again.
6. Liberty Flames (29-18-2 ATS)
Since going 5-5-2 ATS in 2018, the Flames are 23-13 ATS over the last three years. Head coach Hugh Freeze will have his work cut out for him in replacing star quarterback Malik Willis, but he's one of the brightest offensive coaches in all of college football. He'll find a way to make things work and this Flames team will continue to blow out opponents as favorites while keeping games close as underdogs. And for what it's worth, the offense will now be led by quarterback Charlie Brewer, who was with the Utah Utes last year after spending four years with the Baylor Bears. To say he's experienced would be an understatement, and he has a good chance of putting up big numbers.
7. UAB Blazers (30-19-1 ATS)
Due to chronic back issues, head coach Bill Clark was forced to step down as the leader of this football program. It's a huge blow to the Blazers, as Clark proved to be one of the best coaches in the nation in his time in Birmingham. UAB was 49-26 overall under Clark and he also led them to a 9-3-1 ATS season last year. You'll want to treat this team a little differently than the others on this list, as it's going to be tough for interim head coach Bryant Vincent to fill Clark's shoes.
8. Utah State Aggies (28-18 ATS)
If you throw out a year in which the Aggies went 1-5 both straight-up and ATS in 2020, this team would actually have an ATS mark of 27-13 over this stretch. Last year was head coach Blake Anderson's first with the program, and Utah State ended up going 11-3 SU and 10-4 ATS. Expectations are going to be a bit higher than they were last year, and that might not be fair given the talent on this roster. But Anderson is a very good coach and generally gets a lot out of very little. This will all be put to the ultimate test in a meeting with Alabama in the season opener.
9. Texas A&M Aggies (29-19 ATS)
Being ninth in these rankings is wildly impressive for an SEC program, and this should give you a good idea of how great Jimbo Fisher has been since arriving in College Station. Look for the Aggies to be a legitimate contender to reach the College Football Playoff in 2022, and they should continue to cover spreads on their way to doing that. Fisher has always been a great coach, but he's finally starting to really nail the recruiting side of things in his new home. Texas A&M actually has the fifth-best chance of winning it all this year, according to the DimersBOT.
10. Air Force Falcons (25-17-2 ATS)
Playing good defense and running the football effectively is a sound formula for keeping games close, so it should come as no surprise that Air Force's triple-option offense has produced good results for bettors over the years — and the Navy Midshipmen and Army Golden Knights, who both run the same offense, narrowly missed out on being on this list. This should continue to be a profitable football team for bettors as long as head coach Troy Calhoun is around.
11. Baylor Bears (28-19-3 ATS)
Baylor won the Big 12 last year and the team is one of our favorite bets to win the conference again in 2022. Head coach Dave Aranda has turned the Bears into one of the stronger programs in the nation, and the team's 10-4 ATS record in 2021 should give you an idea of how impressive Baylor is. The team had low expectations heading into last season but continued to play great football every week.
BAYLOR STOPS OKLAHOMA STATE ON 4TH DOWN 😱 pic.twitter.com/9JlKW4ZLrv— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) December 4, 2021
12. Cincinnati Bearcats (30-21 ATS)
Cincinnati is 22-2 overall over the last two seasons, and head coach Luke Fickell has turned the Bearcats into the class of the American Athletic Conference. Star quarterback Desmond Ridder is off to the NFL, along with a number of talented defensive players, but Cincinnati will be expected to retool quickly and remain a force. The Bearcats will likely remain a strong bet next year.
13. Tulsa Golden Hurricane (27-19 ATS)
Tulsa is one of the more surprising teams to appear on this list, as Philip Montgomery's program is just 20-26 SU over the last four years. The Golden Hurricane are, however, 22-12 ATS over the last three seasons, and this team is heading in the right direction altogether. Perhaps they'll continue to be a good team to bet in 2022.
14. Pittsburgh Panthers (30-21-1 ATS)
Last year, Kenny Pickett led the Panthers to an 11-3 season and the team was 10-4 ATS on the year. Pickett is now spending his Sundays with the Pittsburgh Steelers and it'll be hard to replace his production under center. Pittsburgh did, however, bring in USC Trojans transfer Kedon Slovis, and he should help the Panthers offense quite a bit. That'll go a long way in head coach Pat Narduzzi's team continuing to be a good spread beater.
15. Nevada Wolf Pack (27-19-2 ATS)
A team that covers the spread in Nevada is almost poetic given the fact that Las Vegas is the gambling capital of the world. It will, however, be interesting to see whether or not the Wolf Pack continue to cover at a high clip, as Jay Norvell is no longer the head coach of this program. He took the open job with the Colorado State Rams after leading Nevada to an 8-5 season (8-4-1 ATS) last year.
16. Alabama Crimson Tide (32-23-1 ATS)
Alabama might not be the top-ranked team in this Top 25, but the fact that Saban's squad still finds itself on this list is rather impressive when you consider how many games the Crimson Tide play as double-digit favorites. They also have to play tough competition in the SEC, and they get everybody's best shot every week. Alabama should be dominant once again this year, so expect the team to continue covering spreads. At the very least, the below late-game brilliance from Bryce Young makes the Tide a great moneyline parlay anchor:
17. LSU Tigers (28-20-3 ATS)
LSU was just 5-7-1 ATS last season, but the Tigers were 23-13-2 ATS in the previous three years. Now, the team brings in Brian Kelly, who had his Notre Dame program in the Top 5 of these rankings. LSU might not be a powerhouse right away under Kelly, but the team should be competitive. Perhaps Kelly's presence will mean another year full of covers for the Tigers.
18. Central Michigan Chippewas (26-19 ATS)
It's always nice to get a MAC team in the mix, as #MACtion holds a special place in the hearts of all college football fans. Over the last three years, the Chippewas are 21-12 ATS and head coach Jim McElwain brings back 11 key starters from last year's team. Central Michigan should contend for the MAC title this year, so tune in on Tuesdays and Wednesdays and hope this team continues to win you money.
19. Miami Ohio RedHawks (24-18 ATS)
The RedHawks were just 6-7 ATS last season, but they were 18-11 ATS in the previous three seasons. Head coach Chuck Martin's group also brings back 14 starters from a year ago, so this will be one of the more experienced groups in the MAC. With that experience should come some competitive fire, so look for Miami Ohio to get back over .500 ATS in 2022.
20. Kentucky Wildcats (28-21-1 ATS)
Kentucky is coming off a 10-3 season overall and the Wildcats went 8-4-1 ATS in those games. When you combine that with 2019's 8-5 SU and 10-3 ATS records, it's easy to see why Kentucky is on this list. Mark Stoops has fully turned the Wildcats into a competitive football team, even in a daunting conference. He'll have one of the best quarterbacks in the nation in Will Levis this year, so this could be another season full of ATS wins.
21. San Jose State Spartans (24-18-2 ATS)
Even after a year in which the Spartans went 5-7 both SU and ATS, the team finds itself in these rankings because of its 19-11-2 ATS record in the previous three years. Look for San Jose State to rebound a bit this season, as the team still has head coach Brent Brennan running the show and he's one of the more well-respected minds in the game. The team returns eight starters on defense and Hawaii transfer Chevan Cordeiro brings some excitement as a dual-threat quarterback.
22. Fresno State Bulldogs (25-19-1 ATS)
The Bulldogs return 13 starters from a team that went 10-3 SU and 8-5 ATS in 2021. One of those returners is quarterback Jake Haener, who is one of the best signal-callers in the country — and one of the toughest. He's exactly the type of guy you want under center when you're betting on some late-night Mountain West action.
Fresno State’s Jake Haener, who was dealing with hip pain all night, threw the game-winning TD against No. 13 UCLA with 14 seconds left.— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) September 19, 2021
He finished with 455 passing yards, two TDs and the W 😤
(via @MountainWest) pic.twitter.com/r5CgI9ihnZ
23. Georgia Bulldogs (30-23 ATS)
The Bulldogs are the defending national champions after a year in which they went 14-1 SU and 10-5 ATS. It was the true breakthrough for head coach Kirby Smart, who had his Georgia team knocking on the door for years. Now, the Bulldogs are truly on Alabama's level, and this should be yet another great year for Smart's group. Seven starters are back from last year's ninth-ranked scoring offense nationally, and the defense will always be good as long as Smart is around.
24. Clemson Tigers (31-24 ATS)
Clemson is just 10-15 ATS over the last two seasons, but the team was 21-9 ATS in the previous two years. This season, the Tigers are expected to make their return to national prominence, but this is definitely more of a wait-and-see team when it comes to betting this year. Head coach Dabo Swinney is excellent at leading his program, but the Tigers lost both of their coordinators (Tony Elliott and Brent Venables) and they'll each be hard to replace.
25. Iowa Hawkeyes (26-20-2 ATS)
The Hawkeyes and Syracuse Orange actually had the same winning percentage, but we gave the nod to Iowa because the team has been better overall in this four-year stretch. The Hawkeyes will never be able to keep up with the recruiting of some of college football's bigger fish, but head coach Kirk Ferentz consistently puts winning teams on the field. He's one of the best coaches in the world when it comes to preparation, and not many programs develop players as well as Iowa. With 14 returning starters coming back, look for this to be another very good Hawkeyes group. With that, there should be plenty of ATS wins on deck in 2022.