Oregon Opens as Early 7.5-Point Favorite in National Championship Game

The first ever College Football Playoff had its opening games on January 1 with the Oregon Ducks routing the Florida State Seminoles, and the Ohio State Buckeyes outscoring the Alabama Crimson Tide.

The final for the national championship will be played on January 12 and Oregon has opened on Bovada and topbet as a 7-point favorite.

After the spread was posted, the Ducks were quickly bet up on betonline and sportsbook.com to -7.5 points and it looks to go even higher.

The moneyline has Oregon at -290 and Ohio State at +245, while the over/under point total opened with 70.5, but was bet up quickly to 73.5.

Oregon reached the national championship game with is rout of 59-20 over FSU on Thursday in the Rose Bowl.

Oregon, led by quarterback Marcus Mariota, the 2014 Heisman Trophy winner, is 9-0 ATS in its past 9 games overall.

This will be the third consecutive game that Ohio State has been an underdog. The Buckeyes were an underdog against Wisconsin for the Big 10 championship and to Alabama in Thursday’s Sugar Bowl.

Ohio State routed the Badgers and upset Alabama 42-35 behind Cardale Jones its third string quarterback.

Urban Meyer the Ohio State head coach was startled when he heard that Oregon had won by 39 points. He quickly left the news conference in jest after hearing of Oregon’s routs saying they need to get going to prepare for the Ducks.

Both Ohio State and Oregon were amongst the favorites during the preseason to win the inaugural College Football Playoff.

Oregon lost to Arizona October 2, but won 9 straight to reach this point, for the second time in the past 4 seasons.

Oregon was beaten by Auburn 22-19 in the 2011 National Championship game.

Ohio State lost to the Virginia Tech Hokies at home on September 6 as underdogs by 10 points. The loss was just one of numerous roadblocks Meyer’s team was able to overcome to make it to the championship game.

This past August, Braxton Miller the starting quarterback was lost for the entire season with an injury to his shoulder.

The odds on many futures boards dropped for Ohio State to 50 to 1 after Miller was hurt.

Money continued flowing in on Ohio State. In fact, more bets at season’s end had been placed on the Buckeyes winning the national championship that with any other team.

Even though Florida State ended its season 13-1 SU the Seminoles were just 3-11 ATS. Alabama was just 4-9-1 ATS this past season.

The line will move up and down for the next 10 days until kickoff of the national championship game. Early betting however shows great support for the Oregon Ducks.

NFL Has Weekend Betting Spotlight as College Football Takes a Breather

It is Week 15 of the NFL and the public is heavy into teasers with their same teams.

After 15 straight weeks of college football, this Saturday saw just the Army vs. Navy classic filling the scorecard in college football.

On Saturday morning, betting on Bovada and betonline for football was quiet, or worse than quiet, it was dead.

With the bowl season a week away from kickoff and college basketball still not in the mindset of bettors, the boards were quiet Saturday.

However, that will quickly change as football will reheat on Saturday’s starting next week and basketball will carry on through March Madness.

According to topbet and sportsbook.com, during the next four weeks there will be college football bowl games and NFL Saturday games that will keep the public bettors on their toes and at the betting cage.

By then, the college basketball season will start capturing the attention of even the casual bettor.

However, by late Saturday bettors were beginning to make their first bets for Sunday’s NFL lineup.

Many books saw a great deal of straight bets on the Minnesota Vikings and New York Jets game with a number of big bets for Minnesota on the money line and at +8.

A number of sports books have said this week there is not any one big action game that has taken the betting world. However, with the high volume that comes each week from locals who are regular bettors on the NFL, there is plenty of risk out there on some teams with teasers and parlays.

Four big teams have seen a great deal of action on teasers. The four – Broncos, Colts, Lions and Patriots – will be key to the public or the books winning this week.

On the parlays side, the action is on the Lions, Broncos, Packers, Patriots and Colts.

Despite Denver only covering in 2 of its past 6 games and looking for a running game heading towards the postseason, the public loves the team each week at the betting window.

The big NFC games pits Dallas against Philadelphia and action has been on the Cowboys at +3.5 and on the Eagles at -3.

With a number of parlays and teasers on the board, the late Sunday game will be an important one for both the books and the public.

Regardless of how the day works out, the slow Saturday gave the bookmakers a short respite from what is to come with bowls games, the NFL postseason and college basketball.

College Football Conference Championships – Lines, Looks and Trends

College football this weekend has conference championships and other games that could have postseason implications. The season has winded down and teams know that with each game their hopes of playing for the national championship will continue or be extinguished.

Missouri has played well this season as the underdog with a 5-1 SU and ATS record. The Tigers are 8-1 SU in their past 9 games as dogs.

Last week the Tigers were dogs and won outright after rallying in the final quarter to defeat Arkansas 21-14 and take the SEC East title for the second consecutive year.

On Saturday, the Tigers will face Alabama as 14.5-point dogs in the SEC Championship game.

This season Alabama was just 3-5-1 ATS for the 9 games the Tide was a favorite by double-digits. However, if you count the last four games of last season, the Tide was 3-9-1 ATS over its past 13 games favored by double-digits.

Missouri is No. 13 in the nation in scoring defense allowing just less than 20 points per game. Missouri has thrived for the past few years as an underdog. Alabama is likely to win outright, but the Tigers will be a solid choice ATS.

Since losing to Arizona 31-24 on October 2, Oregon is 7-0 SU and ATS.

The Ducks have won each game by 12 or more points. Oregon is sitting as the 14.5-point favorite at this time for Friday’s Pac-12 Championship game.

As a dog, Arizona is 2-1 SU and ATS this season. Arizona defeated both Oregon and Utah, as an underdog, but lost SU and ATS against UCLA as the dog.

Baylor meets Kansas State on Saturday with both teams hoping to make the inaugural College Football Playoff. No line has been opened as, books wait to see if Bryce Petty the talented quarterback for Baylor can play after suffering a concussion last weekend.

Kansas State is 9-5 ATS in its past 24 games played as an underdog on the road.

This year the Wildcats won the game outright in two games in that situation against West Virginia and Oklahoma. However, they also were resoundingly beat by TCU in that same situation as a road dog 41-20.

Georgia Tech will not have two top playmakers on Saturday against Florida State in the ACC Championship. DeAndre Smelter has a torn ACL and Broderick Snoddy has an injured leg. Both account for a great deal of offense for the Ramblin’ Wreck.

Ohio State will be without starting quarterback J.T. Barrett in their Big 10 Championship Game against the Wisconsin Badgers. Cardale Jones a sophomore will start in Barrett’s place. The Buckeyes are currently an underdog by 4 points to Wisconsin according to Bovada and topbet.

College Football Playoff Selection Committee Leapfrogs TCU over FSU

The selection committee for the inaugural College Football Playoff released its next to last rankings of the season on Tuesday. At the top Alabama and Oregon remained No. 1 and No. 2 respectively. However, the TCU Horned Frogs not only entered the top four, but also leapfrogged the Florida State Seminoles to No. 3, pushing the Seminoles back to No. 4.

Odds makers according to Bovada and betonline also shorten the odds of TCU and moved the Horned Frogs in front of the Seminoles in the futures for the national championship.

At this point, no one including bettors, bookmakers or the selection committee is impressed with the way Florida State is playing.

The Seminoles might be undefeated, but continue to play Houdini by escaping with last minute or very narrow victories. The team this season lacks in style points and that has caused them be pushed down to No. 4 in the current playoff rankings.

Nevertheless, the Seminoles still are part of the top four, which is all that matters at this point.

According to topbet and sportsbook.com, Florida State is being offered at 10 to 1, which for many will be a great offer for the reigning national champions. The 10 to 1 was lengthened from last week’s 7 to 1 despite the Seminoles winning against Florida 24-19.

During the summer, FSU was the overwhelming favorite on the futures boards and even were double-digit point favorites in all their regular season games.

Some observers feel with the double-digit odds on Florida State to win the national championship that a lot of action would arrive, but that is not the case.

Many odds makers have simply said very little action is on the Seminoles.

This weekend, Florida State will play the ACC Championship game against Georgia Tech. The Seminoles are favored by just 3.5 points against a formidable opponent in Georgia Tech.

Should the Seminoles prevail it likely will be their last game as a favorite, as odds maker would give them the underdog role if they stay in the top 4.

If the top 4 stayed the way it is after next week, then Florida State would face Alabama and is assured to be a double-digit dog.

Current Odds for College Football National Champions

ALABAMA CRIMSON TIDE 5 to 4
OREGON DUCKS 5 to 2
TCU HORNED FROGS 4 to 1
BAYLOR BEARS 8 to 1
FLORIDA ST SEMINOLES 10 to 1
OHIO ST BUCKEYES 15 to 1
MISSOURI TIGERS 25 to 1
WISCONSIN BADGERS 30 to 1
GEORGIA TECH YELLOW JACKETS 40 to 1
ARIZONA WILDCATS 40 to 1
KANSAS ST WILDCATS 40 to 1
MISSISSIPPI ST BULLDOGS 100 to 1

College Football Conference Championship Lines and Trends

This is championship week in college football with a number of conferences playing their conference championship games.

MAC – Northern Illinois vs. Bowling Green

Northern Illinois is 10-2 and 6-6 ATS, while Bowling Green is 7-5 SU and 4-7-1 ATS.

Friday night, the two will face off in Detroit, Michigan. NIU has opened as a 3-point favorite.

This is the fifth consecutive season Northern Illinois will be vying for the trophy. The Huskies are 2-2 in the previous four.

The two teams played in last year’s MAC Championship with Bowling Green winning 47-27.

The underdog is 5-1 ATS over the past 6 championship games.

Pac-12 – Arizona vs. Oregon

Arizona is 10-2 SU and 5-7 ATS, while Oregon is 11-1 SU and 8-4 ATS.

The two will meet on Friday at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California.

Oregon has opened as a favorite by 13.5 points.

This is the fourth championship game for the Pac-12. The favorite is 2-1 SU and 0-3 ATS in the first three Pac-12 championship games.

The Pac-12 North is 3-0 SU in the first three championships.

Arizona was a road dog by 21.5 points in October and defeated Oregon 31-21.

SEC – Alabama vs. Missouri

Alabama is 11-1 SU and 4-8 ATS, while Missouri is 10-2 SU and 8-4 ATS.

Alabama meets Missouri for the SEC championship at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Georgia.

Alabama opened as the favorite by 10.5 points but that has increased already to 13 points.

In the SEC championship, the underdog is 11-10-1 ATS.

The SEC West is 5-0 SU in the past 5 SEC championship games. Missouri lost in last year’s championship to Auburn by 17 points as a favorite by 2.5 points.

The teams last met in 2012 with Alabama winning 42-10.

ACC – Florida State vs. Georgia Tech

Florida State is undefeated at 12-0 SU and 3-9 ATS, while Georgia Tech is 10-2 SU and 5-1 ATS.

Florida State will defend its ACC title against Georgia Tech at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Florida State was a 5.5-point favorite to open but it is now just 4 points.

FSU is 3-1 SU and 2-2 ATS in its four prior trips to the ACC Championship. Georgia Tech is 1-2 SU in its three trips.

The two played in the ACC Championship in 2012 with FSU winning 21-15.

Big 10 – Ohio State vs. Wisconsin

Ohio State is 11-1 SU and 7-5 ATS, while Wisconsin is 10-2 SU and 7-5 ATS.

Ohio State plays Wisconsin for the Big 10 title in Indianapolis at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Wisconsin is favored by 4 points.

The underdog is 1-2 SU in the 3 prior Big 10 championship games.

Wisconsin is 2-0 SU in two Big 10 title games and Ohio State is 0-1 SU.

T.J. Barrett the OSU quarterback is out with broken ankle.

Ohio State is 4-1 SU in its past 5 games head to head with Wisconsin.

Baylor Bears Need to Impress CFP Committee against Texas Tech

College football’s weekend of rivalries continues on Saturday with a number of great betting choices.

On such game features, the Baylor Bears against the Texas Tech Red Raiders.

The Bears are ranked No. 7 in the country and need a huge showing today to help their chances of landing one of the four spots in the College Football Playoff.

Bettors have noticed the importance of a huge game by Baylor after TCU routed Texas.

The Bears opened as 23-point chalk but that has grown to 27 points.

Baylor could leapfrog TCU with strong wins in its last two regular season games versus Texas Tech and next week Kansas State.

Baylor defeated TCU October 11 by a score of 61-58 staging a huge comeback. Both teams might have to enlist the help of Ole Miss and the winner of the Big 10 game on Saturday between Wisconsin and Minnesota to reach the final four.

Ole Miss hosts Mississippi State Saturday in the annual Egg Bowl. The Badgers or Golden Gophers will play Ohio State in the Big 10 Championship.

Baylor needs the No. 6 Buckeyes to lose one of their final two games.

Ohio State is on the outside looking in and needs to impress the CFP selection committee. The Buckeyes host Michigan Saturday as 20.5-point chalk.

Ohio State is expected to be a strong favorite against either Wisconsin or Minnesota but defeating Michigan and either team after that will not mean the same as Baylor winning its last two games.

Mississippi State is in the No. 4 spot in the CFP rankings and could drop out even with a win over Ole Miss due to the way TCU manhandled Texas.

Baylor will also have work to do and it will not be easy. The Bears have to impress against Texas Tech. If they play well and cover the spread the Bears could pass Ohio State if the Buckeyes struggle against Michigan or lose.

Big Line Moves

Cincinnati went from a -4 to -7 versus Temple.

Wisconsin is up to -14 after opening at -11.5 versus Minnesota.

Tennessee has seen its line increased from -14.5 to -17 on the road at Vanderbilt.

Arkansas State opened at -21 but has been bet up to -23.5 at home to New Mexico State.

The point spread and over/under total points are constantly changing and one much always be on the lookout leading up to the games. Bovada, betonline, topbet and sportsbook.com are all legitimate and reputable companies in the sports betting realm.

Rivalries, Injuries and Iron Bowl Highlight Holiday Weekend Action

Thanksgiving weekend marks one of rivalries and this weekend will have also have games with implications for the inaugural College Football Playoff.

One big game pits the Florida Gators against the Florida State Seminoles. Florida has won 4 of its past 5 games played at Florida State, including handing Florida State its last loss two seasons ago in Tallahassee.

In 2004, Ron Zook led Florida to victory over FSU 20-3 after being fired at UF. Will Muschamp hopes for the same type of success this weekend in what will be his last game coaching Florida.

Florida State is 1-8 ATS in its past 9 games as a favorite by 7 or more points this year. In this matchup, the Seminoles are 7.5-point chalk at home.

Auburn wide receiver Duke Williams missed two straight games since his leg injury November 8. However, he likely will play in the Iron Bowl on Saturday on the road at Alabama. Williams has 38 receptions to lead the team and 5 touchdowns. However, Nick Marshall the Auburn quarterback might have a hard time finding Williams due to the pressure he could receive from the Alabama defense.

Stanford will be without Ty Montgomery its best playmaker when they meet UCLA on Friday. He has an injured shoulder and cannot play.

Stanford is 6-0 SU in its past 6 games against UCLA.

Brandon Allen the Arkansas quarterback injured a hip last week in the Razorbacks win against Ole Miss. He is questionable for Friday’s matchup with Missouri.

Anu Solomon the starting quarterback for Arizona sprained his ankle against Utah last week and sat out the second half. He remains questionable for the Wildcats game at home against rival Arizona State.

Clint Trickett the starting quarterback for West Virginia is questionable for the Mountaineers game on Saturday against Iowa State.

The game featuring South Carolina against Clemson has not been on the board this week due to the uncertainty of Deshaun Watson the quarterback of Clemson who is questionable and his status will be determined at game time.

Iron Bowl: Auburn vs. Alabama

The Crimson Tide is favored at home by 9.5 points. Alabama must take advantage of an Auburn defense that has had more holes than Swiss cheese of late. Auburn has allowed 31 or more points in five straight SEC games.

Alabama has won 5 of its 6 games at home this season by 21 or more points.

Pick: Take the Tide to Roll in this game 35-17.

Tennessee Suspensions and Weekend Trends

This week’s college football lineup has some interesting storylines. One of those involves the Tennessee Volunteers. Just when Butch Jones the head coach seemed to have his team headed in the right direction with two consecutive wins against Kentucky and South Carolina, bad news arrived earlier in the week.

A.J. Johnson the team’s star linebacker and Michael Williams the talented sophomore cornerback  were indefinitely suspended from all activities related to the team pending a police investigation.

Williams and Johnson are involved in allegations of sexual assault stemming from a Sunday morning incident in Knoxville.

Johnson is the SEC leader with 101 tackles, while Williams has 23 tackles and has started five games.

The Volunteers through early Friday were still favored on Bovada and topbet by 3.5 points over Missouri their opponent on Saturday.

Missouri, after defeating Texas A&M 34-27 as a 3.5-point road dog, has cashed in 8 straight road games. Dating back as far as 2007, Missouri is 25-9 against the number in their past 34 games on the road, according to betonline and sportsbook.com.

 Quick Tips

  • Notre Dame has two linemen on defense out for their Louisville game at home. Both Daniel Cage and Sheldon Day will be sidelined with injuries to their knees. Everett Golson at quarterback is probable with a shoulder injury. The Irish are favored by 3.
  • Marshawn Williams the running back from Virginia Tech has an ACL tear. The top three rushers for VT have gone down injured this season. Virginia Tech is favored on Saturday over Wake Forest by 15 points, but is 1-7 ATS over their past 8 games as a favorite on the road.
  • Arkansas defeated LSU last week 17-0 for its first SEC victory under Bret Bielema. The Razorbacks are 8-1 ATS in their past 9 games. This weekend they are 3-point home dogs against Ole Miss. As a favorite on the road under Huge Freeze, Ole Miss is 3-3 ATS. The Razorbacks are 2-3 ATS playing as a dog at home during Bielema’s tenure there.
  • Daxx Garman the quarterback at Oklahoma State is questionable for the Cowboys games against Baylor on Saturday.
  • Cody Thomas will start at Oklahoma under center for the second consecutive game. Trevor Knight is out after suffering a concussion in the Sooners loss at home to Baylor.
  • Connecticut is 1-3 ATS as a dog at home this season, but 20-7 ATS since 2005 as home dogs.

Mariota Leads Race for Heisman, Gordon Inches Closers

The Heisman Trophy race heated up over the weekend as last week’s leader Marcus Mariota had the week off and Melvin Gordon set a new all time single game record with 408 yards rushing.

The game by Gordon improved his chances for the trophy by light years. It also has helped Gordon’s cause that his team, the Wisconsin Badgers was victorious in an important Big 10 conference game and look to be in position to win their division.

While Mariota was resting over the weekend, another top contender Dak Prescott suffered through a subpar game as Mississippi State lost to Alabama.

Mariota still remains a big distance out in front from the other contenders, but the appearance of Wisconsin in the championship game of the Big 10 will provide Gordon the opportunity to increase his stock.

Heisman Trophy Odds

Marcus Mariota on Bovada and betonline is -500 chalk to win the trophy. Mariota should have huge numbers this Saturday at home versus the Colorado Buffaloes. However, the finale of the regular season against Oregon State on the road could be a challenge. Oregon State was 1-5 in the Pac-12 before beating Arizona State last weekend. Mariota will not have Hroniss Grasu his All-American center or Pharaoh Brown his tight end. Regardless, his ratio of touchdown to interception of 29 to 2 is daunting. Then add in another 8 touchdowns rushing and that makes him look unbeatable.

Melvin Gordon is now 3 to 1 to win the coveted Heisman. He exploded against Nebraska last Saturday for 408 yard on the ground and 4 touchdowns. The running back, who is just a junior, ran the ball just 25 times on the night over three quarters to set the record. The Badgers have now won 5 straight and covered four straight, according to topbet and sportsbook.com. Gordon is the nation’s leader with 1,908 yards on the ground and 23 touchdowns.

J.T. Barrett is now 10 to 1 to win the Heisman. Barrett helped lead the Ohio State Buckeyes to their eight straight win. He amassed 389 total yards and 4 touchdowns. He passed for 200 yards and ran for 189. On the season, the freshman has 29 touchdown passes and 8 interceptions. He has also rushed for 9 touchdowns.

Dak Prescott dropped to 20 to 1. He had 3 interceptions against Alabama in Mississippi State’s 25-20 loss. Prescott now has 20 touchdown passes and 10 interceptions. He has rushed for 11 touchdowns.

Other possibilities but nevertheless long shots are Amari Cooper the wide receiver for Alabama at 40 to 1 and Trevone Boykin the quarterback for TCU at 35 to 1.

One Game Headlines Saturday College Football Schedule

College Football enters week 12 with a number of good matchups, but one is the clear headliner, when it comes to the national championship.

However, any game that has a point spread and an over/under point total is interesting.

The headliner between Alabama, which is No. 5 in the last College Football Playoff off rankings, will host Mississippi State, which is No. 1.

Nearly all the action is on Alabama, which Bovada and betonline, say has driven up the line to nearly a 10 point spread with Alabama favored at home.

Florida State enters the weekend at No. 3 in the CFP rankings and must visit arch rival Miami. The Seminoles are favored by just 2.5 points, according to topbet and sportsbook com. Do you remember prior to the start of the season, when Florida State was a double –digit favorite on the futures board for every game?

Other Saturday Games

Ohio State at Minnesota

The Buckeyes are favored by 13.5 points. In the 9 Ohio State games this season, 8 have cashed on the OVER. The Buckeyes must avoid a letdown after defeating Michigan State last week.

TCU enters the game favored by 28 points. The Horned Frogs are 8-1 against the number this season. The Kansas offense and defense are poor and that should help TCU to easily cover.

Nebraska at Wisconsin

The OVER has cashed in three straight games between the two schools. That trend will likely continue in this matchup, with both schools having a superior running attack that will continue moving the chains.

Mississippi State at Alabama

The Crimson Tide is favored by 9.5 points. Many believe Alabama is far superior and that the line will be up to 10.5 or 11 before the kickoff Saturday afternoon.

Auburn at Georgia

Georgia has a number of weapons offensively now that running back Todd Gurley was reinstated. Auburn faces a letdown after its loss last week. This could be an even better matchup than Mississippi State and Alabama.

LSU at Arkansas

LSU could see a letdown after suffering a heartbreaking loss last week. However, with that in mind, many are surprised to see Arkansas favored after losing 17 consecutive games against SEC opponents.

Florida State at Miami

This matchup throws out regular season records. The bitter rivalry will be a close battle. Miami has Duke Johnson one of the best running backs in college football, while Florida State has Jameis Winston to guide its potent offense.

Arizona State at Oregon State

Arizona State is in a tough spot laying 7.5 points on the road. ASU is winless at Reser Stadium since 2005. The point total in only 2 of the past 10 games has reached a combined 60 points.