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  #76  
Old 12-14-2018, 10:20 PM
goldengreek goldengreek is offline
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College Football Bowl Game Injuries, Players Sitting Out: An Updating List


Offensive Players Sitting Out

Memphis RB Darrell Henderson: The Tigers’ leading rusher reportedly won’t play against Wake Forest in the Birmingham Bowl. He ran for 1,909 yards on 8.9 yards per carry with 22 touchdowns and finished 10th in Heisman voting.

West Virginia QB Will Grier: By far the most meaningful player sitting out for bettors — the line for the Camping World Bowl against Syracuse dropped from -7.5 to -3.5 with the news. Jack Allison, who began his career at Miami but has been with WVU for two years, will likely start. He’s thrown 10 career passes but was a top-200 recruit out of high school. WVU’s left tackle, Yodny Cajuste, will also skip the game.


South Carolina WR Deebo Samuel: A big-play threat on offense and special teams, Samuel caught 11 touchdowns this season and led the Gamecocks in targets (97) and catches (62).

Arizona State WR N’Keal Harry: Harry has been as consistent as any wide receiver in the country, catching 213 passes for 2,889 yards in the last three seasons. The Sun Devils are 3-point underdogs to Fresno State in the Las Vegas Bowl.

Oklahoma State RB Justice Hill: Hill has been the Cowboys’ starter for three years and averaged at least 5.5 yards per carry in each of them. He missed the last two games because of injury and will sit out OK State’s bowl game against Missouri.

Iowa TE Noah Fant: Perhaps the top tight end in this draft class, Fant will be missed against an aggressive and physical Mississippi State defense in the Outback Bowl.

N.C. State WR Kelvin Harmon: Harmon led the ACC in receiving yards and was a reliable target for quarterback Ryan Finley and the Wolfpack’s excellent passing game. They play Texas A&M in the Gator Bowl.



Defensive Players Sitting Out

Houston DL Ed Oliver: Considered one of the top prospects in the 2019 NFL Draft, Oliver will skip Houston’s bowl game against Army. The Cougars were average against the run this season (63rd in yards per carry allowed) but got gashed by Navy, another triple-option team, for 349 yards and 36 points earlier this season with Oliver healthy.

Michigan DL Rashan Gary: The No. 1 recruit in the Class of 2016 is NFL bound and will miss the Peach Bowl vs. Florida. Gary has 3.5 sacks and 38 tackles in nine games this season.

LSU DB Greedy Williams: Another likely first-round pick, Williams played just two seasons for the Tigers but had eight interceptions and 19 passes defended in his career. He’ll sit out the Fiesta Bowl against UCF.



Key Bowl Game Injuries
There are way too many injuries to cover in one post, so I’ll direct you to Sports Insights’ page that tracks all college football injuries.

Here are some important ones that happened late in the year you need to be aware of if you’re betting bowl games. We’ve mainly included players we know are out for the season — we’ll update with questionable players as their statuses get more clarity.




UCF QB McKenzie Milton: The dynamic quarterback suffered a gruesome leg injury two weeks ago, but Darriel Mack Jr. looked good in his place against Memphis. The Knights are 7-point underdogs to LSU in the Fiesta Bowl.

Houston QB D’Eriq King: King was lost for the season in mid-November. Clayton Tune went 18 of 43 for 256 yards against Memphis to end the year.

Miami WRs Jeff Thomas and Ahmmon Richards: The Canes’ anemic passing game needs all the help it can get, but is without two of its best receivers against Wisconsin. Thomas left the team a few weeks ago, and Richards suffered a career-ending neck injury in October.

Utah RB Zack Moss and QB Tyler Huntley: Utah’s backfield starters missed the final four games, and the offense felt the effects in a 10-3 loss to Washington in the Pac-12 Championship Game. The Utes are -6.5 against Northwestern in the Holiday Bowl.

Last edited by goldengreek; 12-14-2018 at 10:21 PM.
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:23 PM
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College Football Betting Tips: 3 Profitable Strategies for Bowl Season


Fade Ranked Teams


What do recreational bettors know about the Servpro First Responder Bowl between No. 25 Boise State and Boston College? Not much, other than the Broncos being ranked. Top 25 teams will receive a disproportionate number of bets from the public just because they are ranked.

In early betting (see live odds here) a majority of spread tickets are on Boise State. Oddsmakers know casual bettors will wager on Top 25 teams and inflate their lines accordingly.

In bowl games, betting against ranked teams has gone 165-155-3 (51.6%) against the spread (ATS) since 2005. It has been more profitable to fade ranked team when they face an unranked opponent: 49-39-1 (55.7%) ATS.

Games that match (based on the AP Poll):

Arizona State (+4) vs. No. 19 Fresno State – Dec. 15
Houston (+3) vs. No. 22 Army – Dec. 22
Boston College (+2.5) vs. No. 23 Boise State – Dec. 26
Northwestern (+7) vs. No. 20 Utah – Dec. 31
Oklahoma State (+7.5) vs. No. 24 Missouri – Dec. 31
NC State (+4.5) vs. No. 21 Texas A&M – Dec. 31
Iowa (+6.5) vs. No. 18 Mississippi State – Jan. 1




Bad ATS Teams Are Good Bets

Washington State (10-2 ATS), Georgia Southern (9-3 ATS) and Florida International (9-3 ATS) were three of eight teams to cover the spread in nine or more games this season. Each is receiving a majority of spread tickets in their respective bowl games.

Casual bettors remember the teams that consistently covered and chase those results. Unfortunately, teams that have covered the spread in 70% or more of their games have gone 53-66-2 (44.5%) ATS in the postseason.

Instead of wagering on teams that have covered, bettors should target bad ATS teams. Teams that have struggled to cash tickets during the regular season usually receive little public support, and that is a mistake. In bowl games, it has been profitable to bet on teams with a bad ATS record in the regular season.



This system is more profitable when the opponent has a .500 or better ATS record. Since 2005, bad ATS teams have gone 22-12-1 (64.7%) ATS when facing a team that has covered the spread in at least 50% of their games.

Games that match:

North Texas (4-8 ATS) +8.5 vs. Utah State (9-3 ATS) – Dec. 15
San Diego State (3-8 ATS) +3 vs. Ohio (7-5 ATS) – Dec. 19
Western Michigan (4-8 ATS) +12 vs. BYU (8-4 ATS) – Dec. 21
Wake Forest (4-8 ATS) +5 vs. Memphis (8-5 ATS) – Dec. 22
TCU (4-8 ATS) pick’em vs. Cal (6-5-1 ATS) – Dec. 26





Unpopular Underdogs

Casual fans like wagering on favorites. In bowls games, the chalk has received a majority of spread tickets in 351 of 463 (75.8%) games since 2005. Oddsmakers anticipate this and will shade the line leading to value on underdogs.

All underdogs have gone 239-218-6 (52.3%) ATS in bowl games since 2005 and dogs receiving less than 50% of bets have gone 187-160-4 (53.9%) ATS. In lopsided bet games, when the public loads up on a favorite, it has been even more profitable to wager on the underdog:


Since 2005, underdogs receiving less than 30% of spread tickets have covered the spread 64.8% of the time (35-19-1 ATS). Seven dogs are currently receiving less than 30% of bets this bowl season (get live percentages here).

Games that match:

Northern Illinois (+2.5) vs. UAB – Dec. 18
Houston (+3) vs. Army – Dec. 22
Minnesota (+3.5) vs. Georgia Tech – Dec. 26
Michigan State (+3) vs. Oregon – Dec. 31
Iowa (+6.5) vs. Mississippi State – Jan. 1
Kentucky (+6.5) vs. Penn State – Jan. 1
Texas (+11.5) vs. Georgia – Jan. 1
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  #78  
Old 12-14-2018, 10:26 PM
goldengreek goldengreek is offline
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Why the Point Spread Hasn’t Mattered When Betting Bowl Game Underdogs


Bowl season (most of it, anyway) pits college football’s best teams against one another. It seems like the perfect time to take underdogs with the points, figuring the dog can keep it close given the relative talent and ability of each team is pretty even.

But that just hasn’t been the case during bowl season. Underdogs usually win outright, or lose and don’t cover the spread. Let me explain.




The Four Results of a College Football Bet

There are four possible results when betting college football games against the spread.

The favorite wins and covers the spread

The favorite wins, but doesn’t cover the spread

The underdog wins the game outright (which means it also covers the spread)

A push (favorite wins by the exact point spread)


During the regular season, underdogs win 24% of games outright. In bowl season, they win about 37% of the time.

We have 457 bowl games in our Bet Labs database, which goes back to 2005. In those games…

171 underdogs won outright (37.4%)
68 underdogs covered but lost the game (14.8%)
218 favorites won and covered (47.7%)
6 games pushed



Since 1980, using KillerSports.com, the results from 784 bowl games are similar (excluding pick’ems and pushes):

303 underdogs won outright (38.7%)
127 underdogs covered but lost the game (16.1%)
354 favorites won and covered (45.2%)



In 25,371 regular season games since 1980 (excluding pick’ems and pushes)…

5,553 underdogs won outright (22.8%)
6,241 underdogs won but lost the game (25.6%)
11,806 favorites have won and covered (48.6%)
In bowl games, the point spread comes into play (the underdog covering but losing) about one in every seven games. During the regular season, it’s about one in four.




But the Teams Are Better and the Spreads Are Smaller … Right?

You can’t just use winning percentages in this exercise, because there are more 20-plus-point underdogs during the regular season that have little chance of winning outright. You rarely see a bowl game spread that high.

It still works, even with a betting spin. Betting moneyline underdogs has been profitable in the past 13 years. (For those unfamiliar, you’ll get a bigger payout if you bet an underdog to win outright. Oklahoma beating Alabama straight-up pays 4-1 — $100 to win $400 — while betting the Sooners +14.5 is around even money — $110 to win $100.)


Blindly betting every dog straight-up in a bowl game since 2005 has yielded a 6.8% ROI and +31.4 units.

But this trend isn’t reliable every year. It’s had good ones and bad. And it in part relies on one or two big underdogs to cash each year to be profitable.


Why Does This Happen?

The easiest explanation is motivation, but I don’t know if it’s the complete one.

Point spreads are largely derived from power ratings based on a team’s entire body of work. They don’t fully account for whether or not a team wants to be in Shreveport, La., the day after Christmas.

If a big favorite just doesn’t show up mentally, it can easily lose outright.

But the fact that the numbers look similar from 1980 and from 2005 make the motivation argument shakier.

When there were just 15 bowl games in 1980, every team should have been motivated. It was a big deal to play in the postseason, much different from today, with 40 bowl games on the slate.



Are There Specific Types of Dogs to Target?
Yes and no. You can cherry pick more profitable trends by moving the spread by half a point or a point.

Generally, betting Group of 5 teams in this spot has been successful, and even more successful when they play a Power 5 team.

But the real money has been made with big underdogs.


The units are buoyed by some big underdogs cashing — Oklahoma over Alabama in 2014, UCF over Auburn last season and Baylor in 2014, Louisville over Florida in 2013. They were all 4-1 or better to win outright.

What Should I Take Away From This?

Like I mentioned, this trend has had good and bad years. It’s been profitable in three of the four College Football Playoff years, since the playoff has created a perceived lack of emphasis on other bowl games. But here are some key takeaways:

1. No favorite moneyline parlays. Tying a handful of big favorites in a moneyline parlay for an even-money payout is becoming an increasingly popular betting option, but it doesn’t make sense in bowl season. If you really like the favorite, bet on it to cover.

2. No teasers. You should never tease college games anyway because of the scoring variance, but especially during bowl season. You need to hit 72.3% of legs with a 6-point teaser to be profitable, and bowl underdogs have only hit 67.7% of the time since 1980. Favorites hit at 68%.

3. Sprinkle some Christmas cash on an underdog moneyline. That’s the point of all this, right?

If you like an underdog this bowl season, don’t be afraid to throw some change on that team to win outright.
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  #79  
Old 12-14-2018, 10:32 PM
goldengreek goldengreek is offline
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3 College Football Moneyline Underdogs to Bet for Bowl Season


fter a successful regular season, it’s time for one final installment in 2018 of our college football money line underdogs piece. For the finale, we will each select our favorite dog for the entire bowl season. Bet one that catches your eye, throw all three in a longshot parlay or just absorb some additional insight ahead of bowl season.


If you’re feeling lucky, a moneyline parlay of all three pays slightly over 13-1. Let’s get started with two post-Christmas Big 12 underdogs — before finishing up with a Big Ten-Pac 12 showdown on New Year’s Eve.


Stuckey: Baylor +150
Spread: Vanderbilt -3.5
Over/Under: 55
Bowl: Texas
Location: Houston, Texas
Date: Thursday, Dec. 27
Time: 9 p.m. ET
TV: ESPN
I’m still livid that Miami Ohio didn’t get invited to a bowl, as the Redhawks would have been one of the teams at the top of my “motivated” list.

That said, there are still a number of teams that have a little extra bowl motivation in 2018. A Group of 5 team like UAB, which is searching for the program’s first ever bowl victory, is up there. From the Power 5, I’d look at Kentucky, which is seeking its first bowl win since 2008.


There are many others that we will cover throughout our bowl previews — one of which is Baylor — a team we backed on the moneyline to get bowl eligible in its final game of the season. After reaching the team goal of bowl eligibility, I think head coach Matt Rhule will have his team fully motivated, as a bowl victory one year removed from a 1-11 season would mean a lot for the program.

From an X’s and O’s standpoint, I think Baylor can not only attack Vanderbilt on the ground, but it should also have some success through the air – even without the services of wide receiver Jalen Hurd. For once, quarterback Charlie Brewer should have plenty of time to make plays behind an offensive line that has struggled to protect him all season.


Baylor’s offensive front allowed a league-high 37 sacks and ranks 98th in Adjusted Sack Rate on Passing Downs. However, that is not Vanderbilt’s strong suit, as the Commodores ranked dead last in the SEC in sacks and rank a putrid 114th in Adjusted Sack Rate on Passing Downs.

Trust in Rhule and Brewer to get this done in Texas.







Locky: Iowa State +150
Spread: Washington State -3.5
Over/Under: 55
Bowl: Alamo
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Date: Friday, Dec. 28
Time: 9 p.m. ET
TV: ESPN
Why yes, I would love the chance to get plus-money against the least-profitable coach of the entire bowl season, thanks!

Washington State head coach Mike Leach is just 1-7 against the spread in bowl games. That includes a loss last year in close to a pick-em situation, when his team got absolutely blasted by Michigan State.

Leach has many crazy theories about moon landings and animal behavior, but he clearly hasn’t thought much about properly preparing a team for a bowl game. He has had similar problems after bye weeks, so one logical theory is that the Air Raid offense gets out of rhythm with extended breaks.

On the other hand, while Iowa State head coach Matt Campbell is just 2-2 ATS in bowl games, he did a an outstanding job prepping Iowa State last bowl season for a very good Memphis team, who the Cyclones beat in dramatic fashion.



Coaching trends aside, Washington State was the “horseshoe” team all season, covering every Pinnacle closing number for 11 straight games leading up to the Apple Cup. But from all we’ve learned about the Pac-12 this season, just how good are the Cougars? On a neutral field in Texas, should they even be favored here?

I think this line reflects a slight overreaction to Iowa State’s last game — the oddly re-scheduled narrow victory over lowly Drake. The Cyclones looked bad on a light slate, so everyone took notice and came away shocked. However, does that game actually have any real predictive impact on this one? No, probably not.

The situations couldn’t be more different, yet maybe we’re getting a little value on Iowa State here as a result of that poor outing in a meaningless game.

I’ll fade Mike Leach in bowl games until given a reason not to do so.





Collin Wilson: Michigan State +130
Spread: Oregon -3
Over/Under: 48
Bowl: Redbox
Location: Santa Clara, Calif.
Date: Monday, Dec. 31
Time: 3 p.m. ET
TV: FOX
As of now, potential first round NFL draft pick Justin Herbert is slated to start at quarterback for Oregon in the RedBox Bowl. However, it wouldn’t shock me if the junior quarterback decided to sit out to avoid any potential injury on Dec. 31. If that’s the case, both Michigan State +3 and +135 would quickly evaporate in the market.

But even if he does suit up, I still see a few reasons why Sparty has value as an underdog in this matchup. Under Herbert, the Ducks offense thrives on passing downs, ranking 11th overall in S&P+. However, that plays right into the hands of a Michigan State defense that excels on passing downs, ranking fourth in S&P+.

The Spartans also boast the sixth-best Havoc Rate in the nation, so you can expect Herbert and his targets to be under constant pressure on New Year’s Eve.

I trust Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio, who has enjoyed plenty of bowl success in recent years. Dantonio has won five of his past six bowl contests, including a perfect 2-0 record against the Pac 12:

2017, beat Washington State in the San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl
2014, Rose Bowl outright win as a 6.5-point underdog over Stanford


Additionally, there are discrepancies in Strength of Schedule and Special Teams S&P+ — both of which favor Michigan State. Oregon has a strength of schedule of 65th and a Special Teams S&P+ rank of 103rd, while the Spartans rank 23rd and 53rd in those respective categories.

Oregon blamed the early signing deadline and Willie Taggert’s departure for its struggles in last year’s Las Vegas Bowl, but I still don’t trust new head coach Mario Cristobal in a big game away from Eugene.
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:35 PM
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UL Lafayette-Tulane Betting Guide: Will Green Wave Offense Struggle in 2018 Cure Bowl?

Action Network Staff
Dec 14, 2018 10:10 PM EST


Cure Bowl Betting Odds: UL Lafayette vs. Tulane
Odds: Tulane -3.5
Over/Under: 59
Date: Saturday, Dec. 15
Time: 1:30 p.m. ET
TV: CBS Sports Network


Two Louisiana schools will head down I-10 to Orlando to meet in the Cure Bowl to kick off the 2018-19 FBS postseason.

UL Lafayette has been tested this season against Alabama, Mississippi State and Appalachian State twice, while Tulane finished strong under a new quarterback and became bowl eligible on a successful do-or-die 2-point conversion to end the season.

ULL ranks 12th nationally in yards per play on offense but 96th on defense, while Tulane ranks 64th on offense and 57th on defense.




Odds Movement for Tulane-UL Lafayette
By Danny Donahue

Tulane has drawn the slight majority of bets (57%) and an even higher percentage of actual money (70%), but this line is sitting in the same spot at which it opened. A few books did drop the line to -3 for brief moments during the past week, but ultimately oddsmakers have felt more comfortably listing the line with a hook at +3.5.




The market activity relating to the total has arguably been even more of a yawn. Many books have yet to budge the number from its opener of 59. Those that have though, have done so by dropping the number to 58.5 despite a significant majority of bettors (67%) playing the over (see live betting data here).

Cure Bowl Trends to Know
By John Ewing

Since 2005, underdogs in bowl games have gone 239-218-6 (52%) against the spread. Dogs of more than field goal have gone 163-136-2 (55%) ATS.

By Evan Abrams

Tulane enters bowl season on a three-game ATS losing streak. Over the last five years, teams who are listed as the favorite on at least a three-game ATS losing streak entering bowl season are only 4-8 straight-up and against the spread, failing to cover the spread by 4.1 PPG, including losing four of the last five outright.

Bowl Motivated?
By Stuckey

Both teams should be happy to be here, as neither made a bowl last season.

However, I think Tulane will have a slight motivational edge here, as this will be the first bowl appearance for its 20 seniors who locked up their first and only bowl spot in the final game of the season in dramatic fashion over Navy. Lafayette played in a bowl two years ago.



Look Out for Big Plays
By Steve Petrella

This game pits two of the country’s most explosive offenses against each other. And neither team contains big plays all that well. Here’s how each unit ranks in S&P+’s explosiveness measure:

ULL Offense: 7
Tulane Offense: 5
ULL Defense: 85
Tulane Defense: 113
Both teams rank in the top 20 in percentage of touchdowns that come from 20-plus yards, as well, per CFBAnalytics.com.


But Tulane and ULL do run the ball way more than the national average. That helped Tulane, along with its excellent defense, go under the betting total in nine of 12 games this season. ULL went 6-6-1 to the under.

How Improved Is Tulane’s Offense?
By Steve Petrella

Tulane in its first four games with Jonathan Banks as the starter: 5.81 yards per play.
Tulane’s last eight games, with Justin McMillan as the starter: 5.83 yards per play.
The Green Wave offense has had some monster rushing performances with 300-plus yards against Memphis, Tulsa and South Florida, but hasn’t been consistent week to week. And it hasn’t been consistent in the passing game even with McMillan, who has topped a 50% completion rate or 150 yards in just two of his eight starts. It’s been the defense that’s carried the Green Wave.

Tulane is also breaking in a new play caller in Alex Atkins, who has never held that role before.

ULL is better against the run (78th per S&P+ than the pass (113th). While the Tulane offense has seemed better in the last month, I don’t think it can exploit ULL like some teams have this season.

Bet to Watch for Tulane-UL-Lafayette
By Ken Barkley

The decision for Tulane to start and continue to play Justin McMillan at quarterback proved to be the right one, and really turned its season around. Against poor defenses like East Carolina and Navy, he played well enough, and Tulane somehow got to six wins.

Well, guess who has a defense nearly as bad as Navy, and worse than East Carolina? That’s right, the Ragin’ Cajuns!

Statistically, this will be one of the worst defenses Tulane has played all year. Tulane has a small talent edge overall, as well. The Green Wave are basically dropping down a weight-class for this game, and this line appears to be handicapping their recent play with McMillan, as opposed to the season as a whole.



Still, strength-of-schedule aside, from a metric standpoint, I struggle to see where the major advantages for Tulane are in this game that would make them more than a 3-point favorite.

If you look at the S&P+ statistical profiles, the unit mismatches that stand out are both in favor of the Ragin’ Cajuns — their offense is reasonably better than Tulane’s defense, and they have an advantage in special teams.

Tulane has also been awful as a short-favorite all season against teams in this talent range. They lost outright to UAB (Green Wave -4), lost outright at home to SMU (Wave -7), and almost lost the finale to Navy were it not for a courageous 2-point call late in the game (Tulane closed -6 in that game, and again didn’t cover).

Neither head coach has prepped for a bowl as the main guy, but Billy Napier comes with the best kind of experience, being on Nick Saban’s staff during a couple title runs. I think on a neutral field, getting more than a field goal with two teams that really appear even on paper, I would take the Cajuns getting more than 3.

Tulane hasn’t justified favoritism in this type of situation all season, even if it is a little more talented.

Barkley’s Pick: ULL +3.5
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:37 PM
goldengreek goldengreek is offline
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tah State-North Texas Betting Guide: Aggies Staff Depleted for 2018 New Mexico Bowl


New Mexico Bowl Betting Odds: Utah State-North Texas
Odds: Utah State -7.5
Over/Under: 67.5
Date: Saturday, Dec. 15
Time: 2 p.m. ET
TV: ESPN


One of the best early matchups in the 2018-19 bowl season was tampered a bit when Utah State coach Matt Wells took the Texas Tech job. But the Aggies are one of the five best Group of 5 teams in the country and there’s still a lot to like on both sides of the ball.

North Texas fell short of expectations by missing out on the Conference USA title game when the league was wide open. The Mean Green also went under in all but two games this year despite having an excellent quarterback in junior Mason Fine.




Odds Movement for Utah State-North Texas
By Danny Donahue

Bettors are evenly split on this matchup, with each side drawing 50% of tickets. The line movement wouldn’t serve as an indication of that, however. Utah State has fallen from -11 to -7.5 as 61% of actual dollars wagered have landed on North Texas as news swirls about Utah State’s departures on its coaching staff.

The over/under has also seen some significant movement since opening. After beginning the week at 64.5, it’s risen to 67.5 behind 92% of money on 68% of bets.

Trends to Know for 2018 New Mexico Bowl
By Steve Petrella

North Texas went 1-10-1 to the under this season, while Utah State went 9-3 to the over.

When a team that hit the under in at least two-thirds of its games meets a team that went over in at least two-thirds of its games, the under is 23-13-1 (63.9%) in bowl season since 2005.




By John Ewing

North Texas went 4-8 against the spread this season, so a majority of bettors are laying the points with Utah State. But bad ATS teams (covered in 33% or fewer of games) have been good bets in bowl season: 35-23-1 (60%) ATS since 2005.

Coaching Problems for Utah State?
By Steve Petrella

Utah State coach Matt Wells is off to Texas Tech, and he’s bringing both coordinators and six other assistants with him.

But Utah State’s AD insists Wells will be involved in the game planning for the New Mexico Bowl and that Wells be on the sidelines during the game, though he won’t coach. He expects both coordinators to be involved in game planning, as well.




That’s a really weird situation, especially with the early recruiting signing period deadline on Wednesday. I just don’t see how Wells will have his staff focused on this game while trying to recruit for Texas Tech — obviously the much bigger priority for him now — and it might create even more problems if they’re involved in game planning at all.

Teams lose coaches during bowl season all the time, and interim coaches cover about 50% of games against the spread. But losing so much — basically 80% of your full-time coaches — is concerning.

By Stuckey

On the flip side, I think North Texas will come in fully motivated, as the seniors look to secure their first and only bowl win after losing each of the past two years — including one in blowout fashion last year, 50-30 to Troy.

North Texas Holds Special Teams Edge
By Stuckey

The Mean Green rank No. 5 in S&P+ Special Teams, while Utah State is very average, ranking 66th. Utah State’s punting has been particularly dreadful, which is why it has continued to use two punters, neither of whom has been effective.

As a result, the Aggies rank 114th nationally in net punting average at 34.63 yards. And while kicker Dominic Eberle has a big leg, he has struggled at times, including a 2 for 6 field goal performance in last year’s bowl loss to New Mexico State.


On the other hand, North Texas has done almost everything well on special teams, starting with Arkansas cast-off kicker Cole Hedlund, who has had a fantastic season. The Mean Green’s punting and return units have been strong, too.

If you’re looking for a game changing play on special teams, expect it from the Mean Green. The punting woes in particular could really cause Utah State issues; it almost cost them the game at Colorado State. North Texas will capitalize where the Rams couldn’t.

Neither Team Has Been Tested
By Steve Petrella

These two teams had among the worst strength of schedules in the country this season. Per the Sagarin Ratings, North Texas ranked 139 — it had an easier schedule than nine FCS teams! Utah State wasn’t much better. The Aggies ranked 114th in those same ratings, boosted by losses against Boise State and Michigan State.

Utah State took care of business against a weak schedule, scoring at least 40 points in eight of its other 10 games.

There’s no talent edge (North Texas ranks 101st, Utah State 103rd, per 247Sports) or strength of schedule mismatch that might be creating a difference in perception of these teams, so I’d value them as our ratings do (Utah State -9) before factoring in motivation and coaching.

Bet to Watch
By Ken Barkley

There are a few things I like about North Texas in this spot. First off, whatever value you assign to Matt Wells and almost his entire staff moving from one job to another, it has to be value that benefits North Texas, even if only minimal. While there’s just no way that type of disunity is quantifiable, we can just call it a nice, added bonus.

The unit matchups aren’t terribly uneven, and as you’ve read, both teams strength of schedule was pretty poor. Between all the units, Utah State’s offense has an advantage over North Texas’ defense for sure (48th in S&P+ vs 20th for the Aggies O), but North Texas has a very large edge in special teams.



A couple things stand out in addition to Wells’ quasi-departure: North Texas had a monster losing ATS margin in its final game that stuck in the market’s memory, and that could help explain the inflated number here. But keep in mind, that was against UTSA, one of the worst teams in the conference, with bowl eligibility already secured, on the road. Not exactly a monster motivational spot.

Much like with a few other teams in bowl season (Iowa State, most notably), a very lackluster finish may be stretching this line a little further than it can be. Bowl time generally brings a lot of uncertainty, with coaching staffs, player futures and the like in flux. When that uncertainty seeps into a game, the underdog always deserves a more serious look, and this is one that I think is really live. I’d lean North Texas at the current numbers.

A Moneyline Spot for North Texas?
By Steve Petrella

We’ve shoved it down your throat plenty, but it bears repeating for this game — underdogs win outright much more often in bowl season than they do in the regular season. And it’s been profitable for bettors. Only five or six times this bowl season, based on historical averages, will the favorite win the game but not cover.



Why the Point Spread Hasn’t Mattered When Betting Bowl Game Underdogs
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We don’t know how Utah State’s coaching uncertainty will affect the Aggies. But this feels like a game that could go very south for Utah State if that does have a big impact. At better than +250, I think North Texas moneyline makes sense here.
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:39 PM
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2018 Las Vegas Bowl Betting Guide: Who Has Motivational Edge in Arizona State-Fresno State?




2018 Las Vegas Bowl Betting Odds: Arizona State-Fresno State
Odds: Fresno State -5
Over/Under: 52.5
Date: Saturday, Dec. 15
Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
TV: ABC


Herm Edwards is looking to cap a surprisingly successful first year in Tempe with a bowl victory, but he’ll have to go through Fresno State.

The Bulldogs have proven themselves as a truly elite Group of 5 team after winning the Mountain West title on the road at Boise State to end the year. Fresno State ranks 33rd in our power ratings (tied for the top G5 spot) and No. 10 in S&P+. It has an excellent quarterback in Marcus McMaryion, who ranks 12th nationally in yards per pass attempt.

Since 2006, the Mountain West has sent its winner to the Las Vegas Bowl to play the Pac-12’s sixth-best team, which has created the narrative that Fresno State should care a lot more. But that hasn’t led to any motivational problems for either conference — the Mountain West is 6-6 against the spread in this game since 2005.

Will Arizona State’s talent edge and body of work against a tough schedule win out, or does Fresno deserve the credit its getting in the market? Let’s dive in.

Odds Movement for 2018 Las Vegas Bowl
By Danny Donahue

As of Wednesday afternoon, this game is on pace to see more bets than any other bowl on Saturday. Of those bets, 64% are playing the favorite, which have accounted for 68% of the money wagered. That support has brought Fresno from -3.5 to as high as -5 around the market.


Early betting action on the total brought the number down from 52.5 to 51.5, but by Tuesday, it had shot back up to 52.5, where it sits now. Fifty-five percent of bettors have taken the under and they’ve accounted for 64% of money wagered.

Key Trend: Fresno Defense Stood Tall on the Road
By Evan Abrams

One of the biggest keys to this game will be Fresno State’s defense, which has allowed just 13.7 points per game this season, tied for the second-lowest mark in the country with Clemson. This season, Fresno State has played seven games away from home and the under is 6-1 in those games, going under the total by 13.6 points per game.

When Fresno is on the road, none of its opponents have scored more than 24 points, with five of the seven scoring fewer than 20 points.


Arizona State Missing Top Target
By Steve Petrella

Arizona State will be without star receiver N’Keal Harry as he prepares for the NFL Draft. That could be a problem against Fresno State’s excellent pass defense. The Bulldogs rank 13th in passing S&P+ defense and 18th in yards per pass attempt allowed.

Mismatch: Fresno Secondary vs. ASU Passing Attack
By Stuckey

Steve already mentioned how the loss of Harry will hurt Arizona State’s passing attack against a very stout Fresno pass defense. (His absence will also hurt in the return game).

That pain will especially be felt on third downs against a Fresno defense that ranks in the top 25 in third-down conversion rate (.33). While ASU’s offense ranked a respectable 49th on third downs (.414), Harry was by far Manny Wilkins’ favorite target when the ASU quarterback looked to extend drives.



Harry had 46 of his 73 receptions go for first downs this season. To put that into perspective, without Harry, the Sun Devils won’t have a receiver suit up who had more than 40 total catches on the season.

Sun Devils Played Tight Games
By Stuckey

Arizona State finished 7-5, but the Sun Devils were in almost every game this season. Their five losses (at Washington, at San Diego State, Stanford, at Colorado, at Oregon) came by a combined 30 points, all within one possession, with four on the road.

By Steve Petrella

It’s insane how close Arizona State games were this season. Nine of its 12 finished by a margin of seven points or fewer. The last three games were decided by a total of six points.

The Sun Devils fared much better as an underdog, too. They were 5-2 against the spread when getting points and 2-3 as a favorite.

Who’s More Motivated?
By Stuckey

I think you have to give a slight edge to Fresno in the motivation department. The Bulldogs are seeking their first ever 12-win season and should want to cap off this great year with a win over a Power 5 team.

Meanwhile, even though some of the Arizona State seniors may be motivated by two bowl losses in the past two seasons, head coach Herm Edwards has hinted that he would rather use this as a development opportunity for his very young team.

While a bunch of freshmen already play on the ASU defense, expect to see a few freshmen get some playing time at some of the skill positions on offense — even potentially at quarterback.




“We’re going forward for setting the schedule for the spring and watching some guys that maybe didn’t get a lot of reps on both sides of the ball, putting them in a position where they can play the game,” Edwards said. “It’s going to be kind of interesting.”

Also, remember that this is Las Vegas, which has no shortage of distractions. I think the very young Sun Devils are at a much higher risk for lacking focus ahead of this bowl, especially since Fresno has already traveled to Vegas this year for a game against UNLV. The Bulldogs won that with ease, 48-3.

Bet to Watch
By Stuckey

Not only do I think Fresno will have more motivation to win and have more familiarity with Las Vegas, it will also recognize Arizona State’s unique 3-3-5 defense, which can really stump opposing offenses when seeing that scheme for the first time.

Arizona State defensive coordinator Danny Gonzales is a disciple of San Diego State coach Rocky Long, and ASU runs a 3-3-5 defense that is very similar to SDSU’s, which Fresno State sees each year in conference play. The blitzes won’t catch them off guard as they do most other teams (it helps to have an offensive line that ranks in the top 10 in Adjusted Sack Rate).

Look for Fresno quarterback Marcus McMaryion to take advantage of the aggressive Arizona State defense with some deep shots to stud receivers KeeSean Johnson and Jamire Jordan — much like Fresno did in wins over SDSU the past two seasons. This is a very vulnerable ASU defense on the back end, as evidenced by its rank of 89th in Passing S&P+.



And on the other side of the ball, ASU will have to rely on third-team AP All-American running back back Enjo Benjamin and a veteran offensive line. However, the Fresno defense excels at stopping the run, thanks to a superb defensive front. The Bulldogs allow a stingy 3.6 yards per carry and rank No. 5 overall in Rushing S&P+ defense.

I know Arizona State has found ways to hang around all year, but four of their five losses have come by seven points, which is where I think this line should be.

Stuckey’s Pick: I like Fresno State and the under.



A Case for the Under
By Steve Petrella

I think the total is right, but based on each team’s profile, I’d lean under.

ASU plays a bend-don’t-break defense that really limits total possessions in a game. The Sun Devils rank bottom 25 in both offensive drives and opponent’s drives per game. That’s in part because ASU gives up chunk yardage (104th in efficiency), but limits big plays (27th in explosiveness).

ASU is sixth nationally in opponent’s plays per drive at 5.85 — it forces teams to march down the field methodically and drain the clock. Expect Fresno State to move the ball, but not all at once. The Bulldogs are 100th in plays per minute.

On the other side, Fresno’s defense is elite in pretty much every way — top 11 in efficiency, explosiveness, finishing drives and average field position. Without Harry, like we’ve mentioned, the Bulldogs should limit ASU in a lot of ways.
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:40 PM
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Georgia Southern-Eastern Michigan Betting Guide: Triple Option Will Rule 2018 Camellia Bowl



2018 Camellia Betting Odds: Georgia Southern-Eastern Michigan
Odds: Georgia Southern -2.5
Over/Under: 47.5
Date: Saturday, Dec. 15
Time: 5:30 p.m. ET


Eastern Michigan was likely one of the last teams selected for bowl eligibility and will face a tricky test in Georgia Southern’s triple-option offense in the Camellia Bowl.

Georgia Southern went 9-3 after re-discovering its option identity following a 2-10 season in 2017. The Eagles have attempted just 109 passes all year and have five players with at least 300 yards rushing.

EMU had a weird year, all considered. It somehow beat Purdue, then lost four straight games by a total of 16 points, then rebounded to win five of their final six. These Eagles have been to three bowl games in their history — 1971, 1987 and 2016.

Odds Movement for 2018 Camellia Bowl
By Danny Donahue

After opening this game at a pick’em, oddsmakers are now listing Georgia Southern as a 2.5-point favorite. Sixty-five percent of bettors and 73% of money playing the Eagles have been behind the line movement.

Perhaps as a result of the low overall ticket count on this game, the total hasn’t seen much significant movement. But 99% of money — a figure that should drop as kickoff approaches — on 54% of bets behind the under have caused the number to fall from 48 to 47.5.




Trends to Know
By John Ewing

It has been profitable to bet underdogs in bowl games. It is more profitable to do so in low-total games since they often feature fewer possessions and thus limits the opportunities for the better team (usually the favorite) to pull away.

Underdogs in games with over/under of less than 55 points have gone 123-102-1 (55%) ATS since 2005.

By Evan Abrams

In 2014, Georgia Southern transitioned from the FCS level to FBS, joining the Sun Belt. Since then, Georgia Southern is 34-27 ATS (55.7%), covering the spread by 2.1 PPG.

In the Camellia Bowl, Georgia Southern is currently receiving over 60% of spread tickets. Since 2014, Georgia Southern is 21-14 ATS (60%) when receiving the majority of tickets.

By Stuckey

MAC teams have struggled in bowls: They’re 23-37-3 ATS (38.3%) since 2005, failing to cover by almost five points (-4.68) per game on average. That 23.7% ROI is the lowest among any conference in our database.

MAC teams are 12-16 ATS in the last five years, 9-9 in the last three and went 1-4 last year.





Georgia Southern Has Special Teams Edge
By Stuckey

Georgia Southern has the much more reliable kicker, as Tyler Bass has been steady all season (16-18 FG, 43-43 PAT). Meanwhile, kicking has been an absolute nightmare for EMU, as freshman kicker Chad Ryland is just 12 of 20 on field goal attempts.

Per S&P’s FG value rankings, GSU sits at No. 2 in the country, while EMU comes in at 121. EMU also holds a significant overall special teams rankings advantage of 14 to 107.

Georgia Southern Has Short-Yardage Edge
By Stuckey

Georgia Southern has a big edge in opportunity rate on offense (top 25) vs. EMU defensive opportunity rate (114th). That metric tells you how often a team gains at least four yards on a carry, or holds the opposition to fewer than four yards on defense.



How to Bet on College Football: Using Advanced Stats to Handicap Games
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It’s going to be tough for EMU to stop Georgia Southern in short yardage situations, much like it was for them against Army’s triple option attack (10-19 on third down and 4-4 on fourth down).

Meanwhile, EMU should struggle to convert on their third and fourth and shorts, which are just drive and momentum killers. EMU ranks DEAD LAST in the nation on Third and Short Success Rate, while GSU’s defense ranks 11th.

Who Is More Motivated?
By Stuckey

EMU is looking for its first bowl win since the California Bowl in 1987 (its only program bowl win). The Eagles did make a bowl two years ago (their first in nearly 30 years) but came up short against Old Dominion.

After this football program was close to folding at EMU, head coach Chris Creighton has done a remarkable job turning around this team and even secured funding for facilities upgrades. A bowl win will be another step in the right direction in turning around football in Ypsilanti.




Meanwhile, six-time FCS national champion Georgia Southern will make its second ever bowl appearance. It won its first in 2015 against another MAC opponent: Bowling Green — in a 58-27 rout in which the Eagles ran for 452 yards on 68 carries.

Ultimately, I don’t think either team will have a motivational edge. These two teams should want to be here.

Why I’m Betting Georgia Southern
By Collin Wilson

Eastern Michigan brings a great pass defense, which has no value in a game against Georgia Southern’s triple-option attack. Although Eastern Michigan is 14-3 against the spread in non-conference play in recent years and has two weeks to prepare for the option, don’t read into it too much.

Army put up 289 yards of rushing in a game earlier this season and had the ball for 45-plus minutes. Eastern Michigan defensively is 114th in opportunity rate and 88th in stuff rate, indicating there will be issues stopping the Georgia Southern rush attack.

There are other key areas to watch, as both teams excel in limiting big plays. Georgia Southern is 15th defensively in overall IsoPPP, with Eastern Michigan coming in at No. 7 in the same category.



But the biggest matchup is Georgia Southern in Eastern Michigan territory, as the GSU is 12th in finishing drives to an EMU defense that is 16th in finishing drives.

The total is in line with The Action Network projections of 47.5, so no value play can be recommended on the total.

However, with Eastern Michigan having issues all season with teams that excel in rushing the ball, it’s hard to ignore a wager on the Eagles of Georgia Southern from the Sun Belt.
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:41 PM
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Appalachian State-Middle Tennessee Betting Guide: A Clear Motivated Side in New Orleans Bowl


2018 New Orleans Bowl Betting Odds: Appalachian State-Middle Tennessee
Odds: Appalachian State -6.5
Over/Under: 50.5
Date: Saturday, Dec. 15
Time: 9 p.m. ET
TV: ESPN


Appalachian State won the first ever Sun Belt Championship to earn a spot in the New Orleans Bowl, where it will take on a senior-laden Middle Tennessee State.

App State had a 2.11 yards-per-play differential during the regular season, the sixth-best mark in the country. The Mountaineers didn’t miss a beat under new quarterback Zac Thomas, but did lose star back Jalin Moore for the season in October.

MTSU has been known for offense in the past, but the 46th-ranked defense per S&P+ helped the Blue Raiders go 8-5 against the spread this season. They had covered five straight before losing to UAB in the Conference USA Championship Game.




Odds Movement for Appalachian State-Middle Tennessee
By Danny Donahue

Bets on this game are split exactly 50-50 at the time of writing. And with 54% of the money on Middle Tennessee, this line has fallen off the key number of 7 down to 6.5.

The total features a much more significant bet vs. dollar discrepancy, as the over has drawn 58% of bettors but just 33% of money wagered. With two-thirds of the cash landing on the under, this number has fallen from 50.5 to 50.

Trends to Know
By John Ewing

It pays to be contrarian in bowl games. Bettors willing to take unpopular underdogs, like Middle Tennessee State, have returned a profit of +33.76 units since 2005.



By Evan Abrams

There are two types of college football bowl games played at Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans. There is the December bowl game, which is usually two non-Power 5 schools, and then there is the big New Year’s Six game.

Since 2005, when a bowl game in December is played at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, the over is 9-3 (75%), profiting bettors 5.5 units, making the Superdome the most profitable stadium for December bowl overs in this span.

Stockstill Should Have Time to Throw
By Stuckey

MTSU quarterback Brent Stockstill will have time to throw the ball, which at times has been an issue this year for an offensive line that ranks 99th in Adjusted Sack Rate (112th on Passing Downs).




App State is not the team that will exploit that deficiency, as the Mountaineers rank 118th in that same category on Passing Downs.

The main question: Can MTSU hit any explosive plays in the passing game against a defense that just doesn’t give up any (rank No. 2 defending passing explosiveness).

Who’s More Motivated?
By Stuckey

If anybody watched the MTSU postgame press conference after their conference title loss, you know the Raiders will be fired up for this game.



Stockstill is 2-5 in bowls since his arrival in Murfreesboro in 2006; one of those wins came at this same bowl in 2009. The Blue Raiders will appear in a bowl for the fourth straight year.

I certainly give the motivational edge to MTSU here against an App State team that lost its head coach and has won bowl games in each of the past three seasons.

By Steve Petrella

App State lost coach Scott Satterfield to Louisville last week, and longtime defensive line coach Mark Ivey will take over for the New Orleans Bowl.

Satterfield’s took coordinators Bryan Brown and Frank Ponce to get a head start on recruiting for the Dec. 19 early signing deadline. Co-offensive coordinator Shawn Clark may call plays and is candidate for the head coaching job.

Satterfield had previously called plays, so this will be Clark’s debut in that regard.

Bet to Watch
By Collin Wilson

This is the first Middle Tennessee senior class to play in four straight bowl games, making this an emotional motivator for a roster full of seniors.

Stockstill is making his second trip to the New Orleans Bowl, previously coaching Middle Tennessee in a 2009 victory over Southern Miss. This is the Blue Raiders’ 10th bowl in program history, starting with the Refrigerator Bowl in 1956.

You may hear that Stockstill is 2-5 against the spread in bowl games, but none of them have been as important as this one.

This will be the last game Stockstill will coach his son, senior quarterback Brent Stockstill. Four of the top six wide receivers are also seniors, so this offense should be very motivated.



Why the Point Spread Hasn’t Mattered When Betting Bowl Game Underdogs
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Expect plenty of passing in this game, as Middle Tennessee is 111th in standard downs run rate. The key matchup is passing down situations where Middle Tennessee is 10th in explosiveness and the Appalachian State defense is No. 1 in the nation against explosiveness.

The Blue Raiders defense may be able to cause a little havoc, ranking 30th overall in the category and fifth in passing downs sack rate.

Appalachian State has not played a schedule similar to Middle Tennessee, as the Mountaineers schedule ranks 112th, compared to 79th for the Blue Raiders.

Zac Thomas has not seen a defense ranked higher in S&P+ than 46th (where MTSU ranks) since App State’s first game against Penn State.

Collin’s Bet: The wager here is Middle Tennessee State. Appalachian State is missing an entire coaching staff and this is the team’s first trip to New Orleans.

The Blue Raiders have an experienced bowl coach, motivation for plenty of seniors, and enough defense to slow down the Mountaineers offense.

As a bonus bet, look to bet Middle Tennessee at halftime. Stockstill should be able to coach circles around the makeshift staff of Appalachian State.
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:45 PM
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College Football Sharp Report: Wiseguys Betting 3 Saturday Bowl Games

Danny Donahue
6 hours ago


A few of Saturday’s five bowl games have seen some significant line movement, but with that movement often moving to the popular side, it’s been a little tougher to gauge which, if any, sides sharps are playing.

Some games have drawn smart money to both sides, and some have seen little to no wiseguy activity at all.

There is one matchup where sharps have made their opinion clear, however, so let’s start there.




New Mexico Bowl: North Texas vs. Utah State
2 p.m. ET | ESPN | Albuquerque, N.M.

Sharp angle: North Texas (moved from +11 to +7.5)

Sure, North Texas may be drawing the majority of bets in this game, but 54% of tickets isn’t dropping a line by more than three points if it’s made up of bets by Joe down the street.

Instead, it has been sharps among that 54% who have caused oddsmakers to significantly shift this number.

Two Sports Insights Bet Signals — in the form of steam moves — have hit North Texas since opening, indicating at least two instances of sudden, market-wide line movement caused by sharp action.


On top of that, the 54% of bettors behind North Texas have generated 72% of the actual money being wagered on the matchup. That means bigger bets — the ones more likely to be made by sharps — are taking the points.

Together, those factors have put too much liability on North Texas, causing oddsmakers to lower the spread in an attempt to draw Utah State bets.







Camellia Bowl: Eastern Michigan vs. Georgia Southern
5:30 p.m. ET | ESPN | Montgomery, Ala.

Sharp angle: Georgia Southern (moved from PK to -3)

As I mentioned, the sharp action that has hit Saturday’s slate thus far hasn’t been as clear as what we’d find during a typical regular season slate of games.

Both this and the next bowl listed on the report have seen either a hint of sharp action, or action to both sides. This one fits the latter of those descriptions.

As was the case with North Texas, Georgia Southern has drawn a majority of bets (59%), a higher percentage of dollars (72%) and had the line move in its direction since opening.

Also like UNT, Georgia Southern has triggered two Sports Insights Bet Signals.

In this case, though, the opposing side has drawn two signals of its own, which makes it important to check when the sharp moves actually took place.

Both signals on Eastern Michigan came 10 days ago when the line was still listed at a pick’em.

If wiseguys really did like EMU at that number, why have none of them caused a line move since then, especially now that they can grab a free field goal?

The most recent Georgia Southern steam move, on the other hand, came at -1.5, which, combined with the bets vs. money discrepancy and overall line movement, suggests a bit more sharp activity on the favorite.





New Orleans Bowl: Middle Tennessee State vs. Appalachian State
9 p.m. ET | ESPN | New Orleans, La.

Sharp angle: Under (moved from 50.5 to 47.5)

Most bettors are in agreement on this total. Sixty percent have placed their bets on the under, and the total has dropped three points from its opening number.

As with the games above, the line movement toward the public side can make it difficult to confirm just how sharp a play is, but there are a few indications leading to a conclusion that the line move is a result of sharp action.


Two Sports Insights Bet Signals have hit the under, the most recent of which occurred on Thursday with a listed total of 50, and played a major role in the line fall.

No signals have landed on the over.

On top of that, like the other plays listed, the under has attracted a higher percentage of money than bets. In this case, the 60% of bets have accounted for 83% of dollars, meaning the bigger, probably sharper, bettors are expecting a low-scoring game.
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:49 PM
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1. Rudder-less Ships Go Aground

I like boats, so if you didn’t get that analogy let me explain. If there’s no one to captain the ship it usually crashes into stuff, to be blunt.

Where does this apply to college football? coaches, of course. Bowls are one of the hardest things to handicap because there’s just so many unknown factors. Motivation, effort, injuries, the location, coaching changes, which players aren’t playing-you get the picture.

Coaches often times leave programs for brighter lights and the results in bowls show it’s quite detrimental to the schools success.

Last season, out of the six schools who had their head coach leave who were in pre-New Years Eve Bowls (Dec 31), went 1-5 straight up. Those schools were Texas A&M, Oregon, UCLA, Arizona State, FSU, and SMU.

This year: Utah State, Appalachian State, and Temple are all without their head coach in their bowl game prior to December 31st. This benchmark date is used due to less time for step-in coaches to prepare.

Utah State -7.5 Vs North Texas

Appalachian State -7 Vs. Middle Tennessee

Temple -3.5 Vs. Duke
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:49 PM
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The MAC May Be Fun, But That Doesn’t Mean They’re Profitable

Who doesn’t love some MACtion on a Tuesday night? Well, what makes the MAC on Tuesdays so great is that it’s MAC Vs. MAC. To put it nicely, the MAC isn’t exactly the greatest conference especially when they play out of their own conference.

In the last 11 bowls, MAC teams are 1-10 straight up.

In the last five years, the MAC is 6-22 straight up.

This Bowl Season (MAC teams on left)

Eastern Michigan +3 Vs. Georgia Southern

Northern Illinois +2.5 Vs. UAB

Ohio -3 Vs. San Diego State

Toledo -5.5 Vs. FIU

Western Michigan +12 Vs. BYU

Buffalo -2 Vs. Troy
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:50 PM
goldengreek goldengreek is offline
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Fade The Public

Keep it simple. Much like the trend I’m going to show you below, there is value in betting against the public for a variety of reasons in bowl season, the biggest is that most un-seasoned handicappers just look at who is the better team without factoring in any of the other factors that come along with bowl season, especially with underdogs.

Since 2005:

Underdogs receiving less than 50%: 187-160 (+17)

Underdogs receiving less than 40%: 123-88 (+28)

Underdogs receiving less than 30%: 35-19 (+14.4
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:51 PM
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Fade That Little Number To The Left Of Teams

That’s the teams season ranking for the regular season, which truthfully we care nothing about when it comes to bowl season, especially if the other team doesn’t have one.

Since 2005, Betting against ranked teams was 165-155-3 ATS which isn’t going to yield much return.

The key is when an unranked team faces a ranked team: 49-39-1 (55.7%) ATS.

This Bowl season:

Iowa +6.5 vs. 18 Mississippi State

Northwestern +7 vs. 20 Utah

Boston College +2.5 vs. 23 Boise State

Arizona State +4 vs. 19 Fresno State

Oklahoma State +7.5 vs. 24 Missouri

Houston +3 vs. 22 Army

NC State +4.5 vs. 21 Texas A&M
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goldengreek View Post
College Football Bowl Game Injuries, Players Sitting Out: An Updating List


Offensive Players Sitting Out

Memphis RB Darrell Henderson: The Tigers’ leading rusher reportedly won’t play against Wake Forest in the Birmingham Bowl. He ran for 1,909 yards on 8.9 yards per carry with 22 touchdowns and finished 10th in Heisman voting.

West Virginia QB Will Grier: By far the most meaningful player sitting out for bettors — the line for the Camping World Bowl against Syracuse dropped from -7.5 to -3.5 with the news. Jack Allison, who began his career at Miami but has been with WVU for two years, will likely start. He’s thrown 10 career passes but was a top-200 recruit out of high school. WVU’s left tackle, Yodny Cajuste, will also skip the game.


South Carolina WR Deebo Samuel: A big-play threat on offense and special teams, Samuel caught 11 touchdowns this season and led the Gamecocks in targets (97) and catches (62).

Arizona State WR N’Keal Harry: Harry has been as consistent as any wide receiver in the country, catching 213 passes for 2,889 yards in the last three seasons. The Sun Devils are 3-point underdogs to Fresno State in the Las Vegas Bowl.

Oklahoma State RB Justice Hill: Hill has been the Cowboys’ starter for three years and averaged at least 5.5 yards per carry in each of them. He missed the last two games because of injury and will sit out OK State’s bowl game against Missouri.

Iowa TE Noah Fant: Perhaps the top tight end in this draft class, Fant will be missed against an aggressive and physical Mississippi State defense in the Outback Bowl.

N.C. State WR Kelvin Harmon: Harmon led the ACC in receiving yards and was a reliable target for quarterback Ryan Finley and the Wolfpack’s excellent passing game. They play Texas A&M in the Gator Bowl.



Defensive Players Sitting Out

Houston DL Ed Oliver: Considered one of the top prospects in the 2019 NFL Draft, Oliver will skip Houston’s bowl game against Army. The Cougars were average against the run this season (63rd in yards per carry allowed) but got gashed by Navy, another triple-option team, for 349 yards and 36 points earlier this season with Oliver healthy.

Michigan DL Rashan Gary: The No. 1 recruit in the Class of 2016 is NFL bound and will miss the Peach Bowl vs. Florida. Gary has 3.5 sacks and 38 tackles in nine games this season.

LSU DB Greedy Williams: Another likely first-round pick, Williams played just two seasons for the Tigers but had eight interceptions and 19 passes defended in his career. He’ll sit out the Fiesta Bowl against UCF.



Key Bowl Game Injuries
There are way too many injuries to cover in one post, so I’ll direct you to Sports Insights’ page that tracks all college football injuries.

Here are some important ones that happened late in the year you need to be aware of if you’re betting bowl games. We’ve mainly included players we know are out for the season — we’ll update with questionable players as their statuses get more clarity.




UCF QB McKenzie Milton: The dynamic quarterback suffered a gruesome leg injury two weeks ago, but Darriel Mack Jr. looked good in his place against Memphis. The Knights are 7-point underdogs to LSU in the Fiesta Bowl.

Houston QB D’Eriq King: King was lost for the season in mid-November. Clayton Tune went 18 of 43 for 256 yards against Memphis to end the year.

Miami WRs Jeff Thomas and Ahmmon Richards: The Canes’ anemic passing game needs all the help it can get, but is without two of its best receivers against Wisconsin. Thomas left the team a few weeks ago, and Richards suffered a career-ending neck injury in October.

Utah RB Zack Moss and QB Tyler Huntley: Utah’s backfield starters missed the final four games, and the offense felt the effects in a 10-3 loss to Washington in the Pac-12 Championship Game. The Utes are -6.5 against Northwestern in the Holiday Bowl.

Impact players sitting out / injured:
• West Virginia QB Will Grier
• West Virginia OT Yodny Cajuste
• Michigan DL Rashan Gary
• Minnesota OT Donnell Greene
• Houston DL Ed Oliver
• Houston QB D'Eriq King
• Oklahoma State RB Justice Hill
• Oklahoma State OG Larry Williams
• South Carolina WR Deebo Samuel
• Iowa TE Noah Fant
• LSU DB Greedy Williams
• NC State WR Kelvin Harmon
• NC State LB Germaine Pratt
• Arizona State WR N'Keal Harry
• BYU DL Corbin Kaufusi
• BYU RB Matt Hadley
• Baylor WR Jalen Hurd



njury notes:
• The St. Paul Pioneer Press reported Wednesday that "several" Minnesota players are expected to be suspended for the Gophers' bowl game against Georgia Tech. The names of the players had not been identified as of Dec. 12.

• Houston starting QB D'Eriq King was lost for the season with a knee injury during a mid-season loss to Tulane. King was leading the FBS with 50 touchdowns before the injury. Freshman Clayton Tune started in place of King in a 52-31 loss to Memphis. Tune completed 18 of 43 passes for 256 yards with three touchdowns and an interception against Memphis.


• Tulane senior QB Justin McMillan took over the starting role in late October and led the Green Wave to a 4-1 mark to finish the season. Four of his five starts went under the total. Tulane is a 3.5-point favorite over Louisiana in the AutoNation Cure Bowl on Dec. 15.

• Western Michigan starting QB Jon Wassink missed the past four games due to an ankle injury. Freshman backup Kaleb Eleby was forced into duty. The Broncos went 1-3 straight-up and against the spread with Eleby under center. All four of his starts went over the total. Western Michigan is a 12.5-point underdog to BYU in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl on Dec. 21.
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Old 12-14-2018, 11:07 PM
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DECEMBER 15

Louisiana-Lafayette 8-2.

North Texas UNDER 11-1. Utah St 9-3.

Fresno St 20-6. Fresno St UNDER 20-6.

E Mich non-conf 11-2. E Mich road 20-6-1.


DECEMBER 19

Ohio 7-3.


DECEMBER 21

BYU UNDER 9-3.


DECEMBER 22

Houston as underdog 13-3.

Louisiana Tech road 37-17-1. Hawaii home 5-22-1. Hawaii home off conf game 2-18-1.


DECEMBER 27

Duke 1H non-conf 14-0-1.

Wisconsin 3-9.


DECEMBER 28

Wash St 10-2.


DECEMBER 29

Alabama 1H 0-3.


DECEMBER 31

Northwestern 1H as underdog 14-2. Northwestern road 14-4-1.


JANUARY 1

Penn St. 24-9-1.

Tom Herman career OC/Head Coach as underdog (currently at Texas) 17-2.

UCF 8-2.
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Old 12-15-2018, 01:09 PM
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interim head coaches

Quote:
Originally Posted by goldengreek View Post
1. Rudder-less Ships Go Aground

I like boats, so if you didn’t get that analogy let me explain. If there’s no one to captain the ship it usually crashes into stuff, to be blunt.

Where does this apply to college football? coaches, of course. Bowls are one of the hardest things to handicap because there’s just so many unknown factors. Motivation, effort, injuries, the location, coaching changes, which players aren’t playing-you get the picture.

Coaches often times leave programs for brighter lights and the results in bowls show it’s quite detrimental to the schools success.

Last season, out of the six schools who had their head coach leave who were in pre-New Years Eve Bowls (Dec 31), went 1-5 straight up. Those schools were Texas A&M, Oregon, UCLA, Arizona State, FSU, and SMU.

This year: Utah State, Appalachian State, and Temple are all without their head coach in their bowl game prior to December 31st. This benchmark date is used due to less time for step-in coaches to prepare.

Utah State -7.5 Vs North Texas

Appalachian State -7 Vs. Middle Tennessee

Temple -3.5 Vs. Duke
Interim Bowl coaches 32-35-1 ATS doesn't matter
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Old 12-15-2018, 01:13 PM
MREAST MREAST is offline
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be careful

Saw this in a post:
It has been profitable to bet underdogs in bowl games. It is more profitable to do so in low-total games since they often feature fewer possessions and thus limits the opportunities for the better team (usually the favorite) to pull away.

Underdogs in games with over/under of less than 55 points have gone 123-102-1 (55%) ATS since 2005.

My records show: 94-91-5 ATS...one of us is wrong!
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Old 12-15-2018, 01:19 PM
MREAST MREAST is offline
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rank v no rank

Quote:
Originally Posted by goldengreek View Post
Fade That Little Number To The Left Of Teams

That’s the teams season ranking for the regular season, which truthfully we care nothing about when it comes to bowl season, especially if the other team doesn’t have one.

Since 2005, Betting against ranked teams was 165-155-3 ATS which isn’t going to yield much return.

The key is when an unranked team faces a ranked team: 49-39-1 (55.7%) ATS.

This Bowl season:

Iowa +6.5 vs. 18 Mississippi State

Northwestern +7 vs. 20 Utah

Boston College +2.5 vs. 23 Boise State

Arizona State +4 vs. 19 Fresno State

Oklahoma State +7.5 vs. 24 Missouri

Houston +3 vs. 22 Army

NC State +4.5 vs. 21 Texas A&M
This is true but has been no good since the start of the 2011 season just 25-24 ATS
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Old 12-15-2018, 11:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goldengreek View Post
DECEMBER 15

Louisiana-Lafayette 8-2.

North Texas UNDER 11-1. Utah St 9-3.

Fresno St 20-6. Fresno St UNDER 20-6.

E Mich non-conf 11-2. E Mich road 20-6-1.


DECEMBER 19

Ohio 7-3.


DECEMBER 21

BYU UNDER 9-3.


DECEMBER 22

Houston as underdog 13-3.

Louisiana Tech road 37-17-1. Hawaii home 5-22-1. Hawaii home off conf game 2-18-1.


DECEMBER 27

Duke 1H non-conf 14-0-1.

Wisconsin 3-9.


DECEMBER 28

Wash St 10-2.


DECEMBER 29

Alabama 1H 0-3.


DECEMBER 31

Northwestern 1H as underdog 14-2. Northwestern road 14-4-1.


JANUARY 1

Penn St. 24-9-1.

Tom Herman career OC/Head Coach as underdog (currently at Texas) 17-2.

UCF 8-2.
..Nice start there
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  #96  
Old 12-15-2018, 11:38 PM
goldengreek goldengreek is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goldengreek View Post
Fresno St 3rd Q(12-0-1)ATS +129 Point Differential with 10 shutouts.

[email protected] (W)
14-0vsSJSU (W)
7-0vsSDSU (W)
[email protected] (P)
10-0vsHawaii (W)
[email protected] Mexico (W)
14-0vsWyoming (W)
[email protected] (W)
21-0vsToledo (W)
[email protected] (W)
[email protected] (W)
14-7vsIdaho (W)
[email protected] (W)
winner
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Old 12-16-2018, 03:27 PM
duckster duckster is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MREAST View Post
Here is one that has performed well, but beware, the sample size as is the case with a lot of Bowl situations is very small, so could just be variance.

p:game type = CH and game type = BG and p:F and p:W and line < -2 and rest < 29
SU: 19-2-0 (17.24, 90.5%)
ATS: 19-2-0 (9.50, 90.5%) avg line: -7.7

ENGLISH:

Play on a Bowl team that won their Conference Championship game as a favorite if the line in their Bowl game is -2.5 or more, and off less than 29 days of rest.

ACTIVE ON: Appalachian St.

Best of luck!
Ohio St? no because its not less than 29 days

Last edited by duckster; 12-16-2018 at 03:30 PM.
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Old 12-16-2018, 09:55 PM
Floppies Floppies is offline
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Sys#15 - Play on any bowl team that enters their bowl game .500 or less, if they are a dog of +2 to +10.5 (36-10 ATS, 7-0 ATS 2YRAGO, 4-3 SU, 4-2 ATS LY)
Tulane Wake Forest Minnesota Baylor Purdue Virginia Tech Oklahoma St
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Old 12-18-2018, 03:37 PM
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Sports Insights Contributing Books

Boca Raton Bowl

59% of Spread bets on UAB -1.5
59% of ML bets on UAB
55% of Total bets on over 42.5
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Old 12-18-2018, 03:44 PM
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Both UAB and NIU are strong teams defensively with limited passing games. The Huskies offense has struggled early with just 2.8 points scored in the first quarter, 123rd in the FBS.

UAB usually gets out to much better starts, averaging eight points per game in the opening quarter, but that number has dipped to 4.3 over their last three games and they could have trouble against a Huskies defense that holds opponents to 3.9 first-quarter points per game.


The Huskies have made a habit out of having to dig themselves out of holes late in games. Even in big wins against conference rivals Ohio and Buffalo, they trailed by 12 points heading into the the fourth quarter.

UAB averages 16.7 points scored during the first half, while NIU puts up just 9.1.


You're probably seeing a common theme in this preview: defense, defense, and more defense. That continues here. Neither team produces many explosive plays; UAB ranks 95th in the FBS in IsoPPP+, a metric used to track explosiveness, while Northern Illinois ranks 125th.

When it comes to their defenses preventing big plays, these two sides are among the best. NIU allows only 4.4 yards per play, eighth-best in Div. 1, and UAB ranks 22nd with 4.7 opponent yards per play. While big plays might be exciting for sports fans, don't bet on them for tonight's matchup.
The total for this game is set at 42.5, the lowest of every bowl game matchup this year except for the Cheez-It bowl between TCU and Cal.

Both sides are reliant on their running games to sustain drives but both defenses are terrific against the run, ranking in the top 20 in rushing yards allowed per game. NIU allows just 2.7 yards per rush, good for third-best in Division 1, while UAB isn't too far behind allowing 3.5 yards per carry.

UAB ranks 27th in the FBS in defensive S&P and Northern Illinois has played three teams within the top-30 of that metric: Iowa, Utah and BYU. The Huskies averaged just under seven points per game in those three contests.

Neither of these sides have passing attacks to be feared, and their running games could find it tougher to run than usual. Even with the low total, there's a good chance this game goes Under.


While both teams have similar strengths, the Blazers solid running game led by powerful sophomore RB Spencer Brown. makes their offense somewhat respectable. UAB averages 29.3 points per game, which isn't particularily impressive but is still good enough for 62nd in the country. The Huskies, on the other hand, score only 20.7 points per game, 120th in the FBS.

Another area where UAB has an advantage is third down conversions. The Huskies are 91st in Div. 1 in third down conversion rate at 36.1 percent. UAB is second in the FBS in defensive third down conversions, allowing opponents to convert just 26.3 percent of third downs. The Huskies could struggle to convert on third down, and for an offense that doesn't generate many big plays that would be a recipe for disaster.

Northern Illinois is used to starting slow and relying on come-from-behind wins during the fourth quarter. However, UAB has a stronger defense than Ohio and Buffalo. If Northern Illinois trails in this one, they are going to have a much harder time getting back in.

UAB is an impressive 9-4 ATS this season, while NIU is 1-5 ATS over its last six games against Conference USA schools.
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