Heisman Trophy Odds for Week 3: A Tiger Leads the Chase

By: Travis Pulver

Even though we are only two weeks in, college football seems to have figured out how to keep the season moving forward. It will look unlike any other season with one major conference not active and another not starting until late October.

But that means other, smaller schools will get a chance to be in the national spotlight like never before. It also means there is a distinct possibility someone at a school that usually gets little to no national attention has a shot at the Heisman Trophy this year. 

However, until every Big 12, ACC, and SEC team plays, the picture will remain a little muddy. But since we have seen most ACC teams and some of the Big 12, there are a few players worth talking about.

Heisman Trophy Odds: Trevor Lawrence’s to Lose?

Preseason favorites rarely win, but in this case, with the talent pool being smaller, it would not be shocking if that rule did not apply. Of course, it helps that Trevor Lawrence (+300; odds via BetMGM) got off to such a strong start with a 350+ yard, three-touchdown game against Wake Forest.

This would be a perfect season for a running back to steal the show, and Lawrence has one of the best in the country in the Clemson backfield with him in Travis Etienne (+2000). His day against Wake Forest will undoubtedly keep him in the hunt (17 carries, 102 yards, and a touchdown). But he’ll need to have a few ‘wow’ days to overtake Lawrence.

Miami’s D’Eriq King has the second-best odds (+700) and is considered a serious candidate with how his career at Houston unfolded. While he led the Hurricanes to a win over UAB last week and accounted for 223 total yards of offense and two touchdowns, voters will want to see a better passing game (144 yards) to take him seriously.

Oklahoma’s Spencer Rattler (+900) showed voters the kind of day they’d like, 14-17 for 290 yards and four touchdowns against Missouri State. If he can keep that kind of production up when Big 12 play starts, he could give Lawrence a run for his money.

The same could be said for Texas quarterback Sam Ehlinger (+1200), who had 426 yards and five touchdowns against UTEP. Notre Dame’s Ian Book (+3000) didn’t have a bad day against Duke (19-31 for 263 yards, one touchdown, and an interception). But Heisman voters are going to want to see better.

Micale Cunningham should be on every voter’s radar after his 343-yard, four total touchdown day against Western Kentucky. If he can have a similar kind of day against Miami’s defense this week, his odds will probably shorten quite a bit.

Sam Howell (+5000) got off to a slow start against Syracuse last week but still ended the day with a good stat line (25-34, 295 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions). North Carolina didn’t play well until the fourth quarter in that game, so we probably haven’t seen his best yet.

The Rest of the Pack’s Heisman Trophy Odds

Of course, many guys have yet to play that could very well work their way into the Heisman race. Some of them have great odds already; some not so much. Once they start playing, we’ll get an idea of who has a real shot and who doesn’t.

The following are just a handful of the guys fans should keep an eye on as the rest of the active college football teams start to play:

  • Racey McMath +1000
  • JT Daniels           +1400
  • Kellen Mond     +1600
  • Mac Jones          +2500
  • K.J. Costello       +2500
  • Kyle Trask           +2500
  • Chuba Hubbard                +3000

Memphis quarterback Brady White (+10000) had a good day in a win over Arkansas State (280 yards, four touchdowns, and one interception. Grant Wells (no odds) had a great day in Marshall’s season opener (307 yards and four touchdowns).

But a few small school players even have odds. Since they do not play the best competition, it will be harder for them to garner enough attention to be given odds.

So—who’s going to win?

That is a great question. However, it is one we can’t even begin to answer until we hear how the Heisman Trust wants to deal with the Big Ten starting in October now. That decision will add several good candidates to the race, but they will not play as many games as the rest.

If allowed in, that could give those candidates an unfair advantage. So, will the Trust exclude them or possibly push the award date back?

Only time will tell.

Big 12 Championship Odds Preview

By: Travis Pulver 

Big 12 Championship Odds Revisited: Has Anything Really Changed for The Big 12? 

With all the chaos and confusion surrounding the college football season for a while, it seemed like it may not happen for a while. It may not look like your typical season, but there will be football. It will be different. But different can be good, right? 

However, are things really going to be all that different for the Big 12? 

Since they only have ten teams in the conference, they already play everyone in the conference. The only difference is the non-conference slate—which has been reduced to one game. Teams will typically have three giving them plenty of time to work the kinks out before the conference slate starts. But this year, there will only be one.  

So, when the conference slate starts, teams could very well still be trying to figure things out. Because of that, there could be a few early upsets that end up impacting the final standings. 

Should that possibility impact how you bet, though? 

Big 12 Championship Odds Revisited: Conference Still Oklahoma’s To Lose

When preseason odds were first released months ago, Oklahoma was considered the favorite to win the Big 12—and nothing has changed. DraftKings still has the Sooners listed as the favorite (-125) followed closely by Texas (+175). 

Odds for the rest of the conference are as follows: 

  • Oklahoma State (+650) 
  • Iowa State (+1000) 
  • TCU (+1600) 
  • West Virginia (+2500) 
  • Baylor (+3300) 
  • Kansas State (+4000) 
  • Texas Tech (+6600) 
  • Kansas (+10000) 

Oklahoma has been the class of the conference, having won the championship for five years in a row. But if they were ever going to get knocked off, this could be the year. They lost a lot of key players off last year’s good-but-not-great defense that will need to be replaced. 

While the passing game rules in the Big 12, you still need a run game. But with Kennedy Brooks out and Trey Sermon now calling Ohio State home, there is no telling what the Sooners run game will look like.  If the running game struggles, it may be harder for their new quarterback, Spencer Rattler, to acclimate to the college game. 

Once the Sooners play a game, we will know what to expect from them going forward, but there are plenty of questions about the team for now. But there are even more about Baylor. 

Should You Follow the Matt Rhule Rule Like the Oddsmakers?

It seems as if oddsmakers are down on the Bears because Matt Rhule left. But the Bears are still a very good team. While losing Denzel Mimms to the NFL hurts, the Bears have a good offense coming back, led by quarterback Charlie Brewer. However, they may be in trouble on defense, with only two starters coming back. But with a defensive-minded head coach in Dave Aranda, they could surprise people with a quick rebuild. 

As usual, expectations are high for Texas. With the talent coming back on offense, that is not hard to understand. However, Texas could have used the additional non-conference games this season with new coordinators on both sides of the ball. 

Should either side struggle with their new playbooks, the Longhorns could find themselves on the outside looking in for the playoffs early in the season. They have two relatively easy games in September, but then face TCU, Oklahoma, Baylor, and Oklahoma State in October. 

Texas could be out of the running heading into November. 

Iowa State is not going to be an easy win with much of last year’s defense coming back and a talented trio on offense at quarterback (Brock Purdy), Breece Hall (running back), and wide receiver (Tariq Milton). But the offense has to be rebuilt with only one starter coming back—which could mean trouble early in the year. 

Oklahoma State will get a lot of attention early on with Heisman hopeful Chuba Hubbard leading the way coming out of the backfield. As a team, they have 19 starters coming back, which could lead to high expectations or a faster start than anyone else in the conference. 

As for the rest of the conference, TCU will likely be a better team than it was last year. But it may be asking too much to think they could compete for the conference title. The same could be said for Kansas State. 

West Virginia will still be rebuilding this season, and Texas Tech has a lot of work to do, which leaves Kansas. Les Miles has his work cut out for him there. 

So—who’s going to win? 

That’s a good question, which is also why college football is so great. There is a world of potential ready for each team to tap into. Whoever does the better job will come out ahead in the end. But who that will be right now is hard to say.

NCAA Betting: ACC Conference Odds: The Fight Comes to the ACC

By: Travis Pulver

Clemson has owned the Atlantic Coast Conference in recent years. They’ve won the conference title in each of the last five seasons. With how the rest of the conference looks, they will probably make it six in a row this year. 

But due to circumstances, the conference will include a new team this year, Notre Dame. 

As one of the few FBS teams without a conference affiliation for football, the Fighting Irish have watched their schedule disappear. With most of the Power Five deciding to go with an all-conference schedule this year, they need opponents. 

Since Notre Dame has a preexisting relationship with the ACC in every sport other than football, joining up with them just made sense. To make the temporary marriage a little more exciting, the Fighting Irish will be eligible for the ACC title game. 

Clemson is still the top dog, of course. But while the rest of the pack is quietly sitting at the bottom of the porch stairs, Notre Dame is more than capable of running with the big dog. But that doesn’t necessarily mean Clemson has anything to fear. 

Or does it….    

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ACC Conference Odds: The Competition Has Now Become Real  

Let’s not waste time or mince words here. No one in the ACC is ready to step up and take down the mighty Clemson Tigers. Yes, Clemson will have to rebuild its offensive line this year and replace a few guys on defense. But when you win as they have been, it is not hard to attract top-notch recruits. 

From those recruits, they should not have a hard time finding guys where they need them. 

So, yeah—Clemson is going to be tough this year and quite possibly one of the best teams in the country, again. If we are being real, then anyone in the conference could beat the Tigers; you know, that ‘any given Saturday’ logic. Theoretically, it is true. Miami has a lot of potential, after all. 

According to the odds at FoxBet.com, so does North Carolina, Virginia Tech, and Florida State: 

  • Atlantic Coast Conference Winner 
  • Clemson             -300 
  • Miami (FL)          +1200 
  • North Carolina +1400 
  • Virginia Tech    +2000 
  • Florida State      +2500 
  • Louisville   +3300 
  • Virginia                +4500 
  • Pittsburgh          +5000 
  • NC State             +7500 
  • Wake Forest, Duke         +10000 
  • Boston College, Syracuse, Georgia Tech +20000 

But honestly— no one inside the conference has much of a chance of pulling off the upset. It would take another team widely considered to be one of the best in the country. 

Enter Notre Dame (+350). 

Unlike every other team in the ACC, the Fighting Irish are actually good. The NCAA’s latest top-25 has them listed as the No.11 team in the country. With a Heisman contender at quarterback, Ian Book, and a veteran offensive line, the offense will be as good as ever. While the defense lost a couple of guys, they have enough coming back to hit the ground running. 

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Answering the Biggest ACC Odds Question

Can they beat Clemson, though? 

The Tigers will have Trevor Lawrence back at quarterback and Travis Etienne back at running back. Lawrence lost some great receivers to the NFL, but he’ll still have Justyn Ross to work with. However, the offensive line will have to be rebuilt. But with how well Dabo Swinney recruits, that shouldn’t be a problem.    

On the defensive side, last year’s unit was outstanding. But many of those guys are now in the NFL, leaving the Clemson defense full of holes. However, the Tigers have arguably the best defensive coordinator in the nation, Brent Venables. 

If anyone can figure out how to make a young group of relatively inexperienced guys play like a top-20 unit, he can. 

Okay—but can Notre Dame beat them? 

The odds still heavily favor Clemson, but Notre Dame should not be ignored. Can the Fighting Irish win against Clemson? Of course! 

After all, any team can win on any given Saturday. 

PAC-12 And Big Ten Cancel Non-Conference Games For 2020 Fall Sports

Big Ten announced schedule change Thursday, PAC-12 on Friday

It looks like the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic will have an impact on the upcoming college football season. On Thursday, the Big Ten Conference announced it will not allow teams to participate in non-conference games in football as well as several other Fall sports. Yesterday, the PAC-12 followed suit and voted to move to a conference-only schedule for all Fall sports this year as well. The organizations hope that limiting travel will reduce the risk of spreading or potentially catching COVID-19.

Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren said it is “much easier if we’re just working with our Big Ten institutions…” Warren is uncertain about the future of this upcoming football season. He told the Big Ten Network, “We may not have sports in the fall… We may not have a college football season in the Big Ten.”

“We may not have sports in the fall… We may not have a college football season in the Big Ten.”

Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren to the Big Ten Network

Yesterday, the PAC-12 followed the Big Ten’s example and also switched over to a conference-only schedule for all Fall sports. The decision was made during a virtual meeting held on Friday between PAC-12 athletic directors, university presidents, and conference officials. ESPN is reporting that the decision will delay the start of Fall sports, including football. USC was scheduled to open its season against Alabama at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

Schools and Collegiate Conferences are still figuring out ways to deal with the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic. This now makes three D-I Conferences that have had to make changes to their Fall Sports schedule due to Coronavirus. On Wednesday, the Ivy League became the first Division I Conference to suspend all Fall Sports due to the ongoing health crisis.

Different Prop Bets on the NCAAF National Championship: Big Ten vs. the Field

By: Travis Pulver 

Different Prop Bets on the NCAAF National Championship Odds: Big Ten vs. the Field

Anyone that put money down on the college football national championship is looking to do one thing—win money. Yes, it is nice to have bragging rights with your friends because you backed the champ, but money is a lot nicer. 

That is why we don’t mind putting money down on teams like Penn State, even though their odds are a little on the high side at +4000. The Nittany Lions are one of the better teams in the country, and should things go right for them, they could win it all. 

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Should they do so, the payout is going to be rather nice at those odds. However, should they not finish the season on top, then you lose. If only there were a way to put money down while also increasing your chances of winning… 

Instead of betting on one team, why not bet on a conference like the Big Ten? That way, if any team wins, you win. Now you will not win as much as if you bet just on Ohio State or Penn State, and they won, but you don’t lose.    

In the end, winning a little is better than losing anything. But does the Big ten have a chance? 

NCAAF National Championship Odds Pro Bet: Is There More To The Big Ten Than Ohio State?

Ohio State gives the Big Ten one of the top two contenders in the country. So, there is an excellent chance that the national champion will come from the Big Ten. But the oddsmakers at BetMGM.com are not too confident: 

  • Any Big Ten team to win the National Title           +270 
  • Any non-Big Ten team to win the National Title   -371 

Ohio State will undoubtedly be in the national title conversation this season with the team that the Buckeyes have returning. But for it to be worthwhile to bet on the Big Ten rather than just Ohio State, a few other teams need to have a shot. 

The odds for the rest of the conference (minus Rutgers) are as follows: 

  • Penn State         +4000 
  • Michigan             +4000 
  • Indiana                +25000 
  • Michigan State  +20000 
  • Maryland            +50000 
  • Wisconsin           +4000 
  • Minnesota          +15000 
  • Iowa                     +8000 
  • Illinois                  +50000 
  • Purdue                +40000 
  • Nebraska            +10000 
  • Northwestern +40000 

Some crazy things would have to happen for Northwestern, Purdue, Illinois, or Maryland to become contenders. But there is hope for several other Big Ten teams. 

Different Ways to Bet on NCAAF National Championship Futures: How Much Fight do the Nittany Lions Have

A case could certainly be made for Penn State. The Nittany Lions have a good core coming back on offense led by quarterback Sean Clifford. The offense as a whole will need to be better and more consistent than it was last year— which is entirely possible. 

Where Penn State may have trouble is on defense. They had a phenomenal unit last season, but that unit lost most of its top tacklers. But if whoever James Franklin plugs in can step up, then the Nittany Lions could make some noise. 

Michigan will always be on the radar of the national title conversation. But for them to become part of it, they are going to have to find a playmaker at quarterback. Whoever it is will also need the offensive line to be rebuilt after losing four starters. 

The Wolverines defense appears to be in good shape, so Michigan will absolutely be tough to beat. 

Wisconsin has been in the conversation in recent years, and very well could be again this year. However, for that to happen, they will need to find the next Jonathan Taylor, a few new offensive linemen, and a little more productivity on offense. 

With most of last year’s stellar defense coming back, the Badgers can make a run if the offense comes together. 

Iowa was a very good team last year losing close games to Wisconsin, Penn State, and Michigan. The Hawkeyes have a great core coming back. But they will need new starters to step up at a few key positions—like at quarterback.   

Minnesota burst on the scene last year with an 11-2 season, including wins over Penn State and Auburn (in the Outback Bowl). With the talent coming back on offense, they could definitely keep that momentum going this year—but only if they can replace a lot of talent on the defensive side of the ball. 

Nebraska has been getting some attention as a possible dark horse contender. For that to happen, the offense is going to need to gel and become as productive as fans have expected it to be under Scott Frost. A lot of talent needs to be replaced on defense as well. 

Conclusion 

Is this a bet you should take? The payout would be less than if you just put your money on the obvious contender, Ohio State. But the last time a Big Ten team won the national championship (Ohio State in 2014), their preseason title odds were +4000—just like Penn State, Wisconsin, and Michigan. 

Why should that matter? Because it is proof that while +4000 odds may look long, those teams should not be ruled out too quickly.

Alternate NCAAF National Championship Bets: State of Winning Team

By: Travis Pulver 

Alternate NCAAF National Championship Bets: State of Winning Team

Ask most college football fans in Texas what state has the best teams, and they will be quick to say the Lone Star State does. Fans in Florida would probably say the same about their teams as would fans in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and even California. 

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But things get tricky when you ask if they would be willing to bet on one of the teams from their state to win the national championship. They say the football in their state is the best, but will they put their money where their mouth is? 

Some would, without a doubt. As often as Texas fans like to claim the Longhorns are ‘back’ and the pride Texas A&M fans have in their Aggies, many Texas football fans in Texas would probably do it. Yes, even though no Texas-based team was anywhere near the national championship conversation last season.    

But that is what fans do. They back their team even when they should know better. However, at the same time, depending on the state, betting on a team from the state could be a wager worth taking.      

A Different Type of NCAAF National Championship Bet: Is There A State Worth Betting On? 

The appeal is not hard to understand. If you can place a single wager on several teams, your chances of winning are better. The odds may be lower and subsequently, the payout as well, but winning something is always better than losing everything. 

BetMGM.com is offering odds on several states: 

  • Alabama             +390 
  • California           +3500 
  • Florida                +1200 
  • Georgia              +850 
  • Indiana               +1800 
  • Louisiana            +1400 
  • Michigan             +3500 
  • Mississippi          +10000 
  • New York            +20000 
  • North Carolina   +9000 
  • Ohio                     +310 
  • Oklahoma           +2200 
  • Pennsylvania      +3500 
  • Texas                    +1800 
  • Any Other State  +175 

So, which states are worth betting on? 

If you think there is safety in numbers, then betting on states like California, Florida, North Carolina, and Texas with numerous programs would be the way to go. However, while they may have several FBS programs (seven, seven, seven, and 12 respectively), they don’t have too many teams viewed as legitimate contenders.   

California has USC and UCLA. While USC has decent odds (+4000), UCLA does not (+20000). Florida has the Gators (University of Florida) and Miami (and technically, Florida State who is far from ready to contend). While North Carolina has several programs, none are considered contenders. 

Texas has several good teams, but the best odds among them are +4000 (Texas), followed by Texas A&M at +5000. Now, there is always the ever-present possibility that an underdog explodes and comes out of nowhere. But is that a good reason to put money down on a state? 

If you think a state with more quality teams is the way to go, there are several states with at least two contending teams. Alabama has the Crimson Tide and Auburn among its five FBS programs. California does have USC and UCLA. In Florida, the Gators and Hurricanes are considered contenders. 

Fans in Texas would say their state belongs under that umbrella as well.  There are states like Georgia, Indiana, Louisiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Ohio, with multiple teams but only one real contender. 

However, several good teams also fall under the ‘any other state’ umbrella, like Clemson, Oregon, Wisconsin, and Iowa (to name a few). 

Conclusion 

So, how should you bet? It all depends on what sort of strategy you want to take. There are several states a good argument could be made for if you prefer to go with more schools. At the same time, if you like to put quality before quantity, some states fit that bill, as well. 

Just like in life, there is no easy answer here. 

Different Ways to Bet on the NCAAF National Championship: ACC vs. the Field

By: Travis Pulver

As the beginning of the college football season draws near, the debate over who will win the national championship this season will take over the media and social media. Every sports journalist is going to want to give his/her two cents on who will win, as will most college football fans on Twitter. 

Emotion will control the logic of many when it comes to choosing a team. But for some, especially gamblers, emotions will not factor in. They will try their best to make a fact-based decision on who will win the national championship. 

However, since there wasn’t any spring football this year, thanks to the coronavirus, we have no idea what many teams are going to be like. Yes, we know how many starters are returning. But we don’t know who will fill the roster holes left by guys that left for the NFL or that graduated. 

So, it may not be a bad idea to consider an alternative way of betting on the national championship this year. Why not go with an option that allows you to pick several teams to bet on with one wager? 

Like maybe a whole conference? 

The odds will be shorter, and the payout will not be as much if you put your money down on one team. But it isn’t just the act of betting that makes watching games more fun—it’s the thought of winning money. 

More money is always better than less, of course. However, winning a little is better than losing.   

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Different Ways to Bet on the CFB National Championship: Anyone Other Than Clemson Have A Shot in the ACC?

BetMGM.com is giving fans a chance to bet on conferences to produce the national champion this season. Since the ACC has had someone play in four of the last five championship games, it only makes sense that they offer odds on the ACC:

  • Any ACC team to win the National Title                  +245 
  • Any non-ACC team to win the National Title        -334 

With two title game wins in the last five years, the ACC looks like a good conference to bet on. However, both wins and all four appearances were made by the same team, Clemson. So far, it appears Clemson will be the favorite heading into the regular season (+250). 

But does anyone else in the ACC have a chance? The odds are certainly a lot higher for every other team in the conference: 

  • Louisville             +30000 
  • Wake Forest      +40000 
  • Florida State       +12500 
  • Boston College  +40000 
  • Syracuse              +20000 
  • NC State              +30000 
  • Virginia                +25000 
  • Virginia Tech      +20000 
  • Miami                  +5000 
  • Pitt                       +30000 
  • North Carolina   +10000 
  • Duke                    +25000 
  • Georgia Tech      +20000 

For anyone to have a shot, they are going to have to beat Clemson. Last season, the Tigers destroyed every team in the ACC except North Carolina; they beat the Tar Heels by just one point, 21-20. On the offensive side, the Tar Heels look like they could be competitive. But their defense is going to need some work. 

However, with former national champion Mack Brown as the head coach, they could have an outside shot if everything can come together for them this year. 

Georgia Tech has the fourth toughest schedule in the nation this year with Clemson to start the season and Georgia to finish it (both teams clobbered the Yellow Jackets last season). So, if they can run the table, they absolutely deserve to be in the playoff conversation.       

But for a team that was 3-9 last season, that would require an incredible turn-around. 

Miami could be an intriguing dark horse title contender. They already have a competitive defense. However, unless former Houston quarterback D’Eriq King can electrify what was a lackluster offense last season, they don’t stand a chance. 

Even if he does, with their schedule, they will have to run the table and hope a few contenders falter to have a shot. 

Conclusion 

Should you take the bet? That is something each individual gambler is going to have to decide for him/herself. Betting on 14 teams theoretically improves your odds of winning. But Clemson is the only team in the ACC with a legitimate shot at the national championship. 

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Alternative Ways to Bet on the NCAAF National Championship: SEC vs. the Field

By: Travis Pulver 

Anyone who says that betting on games does nothing for their viewing experience has yet to actually place a wager. When a game doesn’t involve your favorite team, it can be a little harder to get invested in the contest. However, when you have money on the game, even the dullest of games become must-see-TV. 

There is one game that is must-see-TV no matter who is playing; the national championship. If you happen to have money on the winner, the viewing experience is even better… obviously. But picking one team from the many potential contenders can be a daunting task. 

Should you put money down on a team that stumbles out of the gate, your money is lost before the season is even half over. If only you did not have to choose just one (without splitting your money into multiple bets). Hmmm… 

What if you could choose a whole conference? The odds will not be too long, of course. But you get the benefit of winning something if any team from your chosen conference takes the title. Winning something is always better than losing anything.  

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Alternate Ways to Bet on the CFB National Championship: Can You Go Wrong with the SEC? 

BetMGM.com is taking wagers for teams to win the national championship like every other sportsbook. But they are also letting fans bet on any team to win from particular conferences. The SEC, of course, has pretty good odds: 

  • Any SEC team to win the National Championship Odds: +170 
  • Any non-SEC team to win the National Championship Odds: -223 

Ask most fans which conference is the best in college football, and most will say without hesitation the SEC. In the six seasons the national champion has been decided by the playoffs, an SEC team has played in the title game five times—and there is also the Alabama Factor. 

The Crimson Tide has played in four of the last five title games and won twice. The one they did not play in (last season), another SEC team did (LSU) and won. So, from a historical perspective, the SEC is the conference to bet on. 

Is there any reason to think an SEC team is going to win it all this year, though?     

An ACC team has the shortest odds (Clemson, +250), followed by a Big Ten team (Ohio State, +320). The first SEC team comes next, Alabama (+400), followed by three more SEC teams (Georgia, +1200; LSU, +1400; Florida, +1400). 

But then the next best odds for an SEC team is +5000 (Texas A&M, Auburn). 

Since 2001, there has not been a team with preseason odds longer than +5000 that went on to win the national championship. Most of the eventual champs had three-digit odds during the preseason (11 of 19 ranging from +250 to +800). Eight had odds from +1000 on up to +5000. 

Last year’s champ, LSU, had +2500 odds in the preseason. 

So, the winner is not necessarily going to be the team with the shortest odds. But it will likely be a team with +5000 odds or better. An SEC team doesn’t have the best odds. However, six of the SEC’s 14 teams have odds of +5000 or better; four have odds of +1400 or better. 

No other conference has as many teams with similar or better odds. 

Conclusion 

Does this mean the SEC is the conference to bet on to win the national championship this season? Many bettors will likely find it easy to say ‘yes.’ The reputation of the conference will be enough to convince some. 

Reputations do not win titles, though.

CFB National Championship Odds: Longshots Edition

By: Travis Pulver

Everyone loves a good underdog. We love to see one of college football’s big dogs get taken down a peg by someone that wasn’t supposed to put up a fight. But what is even better is when an underdog takes down all the big dogs and wins the national championship.

It makes for a more entertaining season for the fans, and a more profitable one any gamblers that chose the right longshot during the preseason. The hard part, of course, is figuring out which longshots might have a real shot.

What qualities should you look for?

There must be some talent on the team, but not too much and few (if any) superstars. Too many star players will mean fans will have expectations for the team resulting in shorter odds. But their need to be enough potential stars to warrant thinking a team could win it all.

Does anyone fit the bill in college football this season?

National Championship Odds: Are Any Longshots Worth Betting On?

Before going further, it may be necessary to discuss how to identify a longshot team.

Their schedule must be a tough one, too. Since the team will not be on the radar of voters and the public in the preseason, they will need a chance to prove their worth by taking down multiple top 25 (preferably top ten) teams.

Their odds are going to be longer, of course. But how long do the odds need to be to make the team a ‘longshot?’

If you are looking for an exact number, it will likely vary from one person to the next. Some would say odds need to at least +2000, which would make most college football teams longshots (all but six according to the odds at (DraftKings).

That would also mean LSU was a longshot last season with +2500 odds in the preseason. If that is as long as you want to go, then give Notre Dame (+2800), Texas A&M (+3300), and Oklahoma (+3300) some serious consideration. However, each team has its faults.

Notre Dame’s offense should be fine, but the defense only has five returning starters. For the Aggies to do it, Kellen Mond will have to be this year’s Joe Burrow. The Sooners lot their best defensive players to the NFL. It remains to be seen who they will have at quarterback this season— or if he’ll be good enough to make Oklahoma contender.

So, how high should you aim? The higher, the better, of course, because everyone wants to win more while risking less. But realistically? The biggest longshot to win it all this millennium was Auburn in 2010 (+5000), followed by Ohio State (+4000) in 2014.

There are certainly a handful of teams with similar odds this season that may be worth betting on:

Auburn Tigers +5000

Oregon Ducks +5000

Penn State +5000

USC Trojans +5000

All four have talented rosters and tough schedules, but not so tough that they have any room for error. However, should they win out and go through the regular season undefeated, they could make it into the conversation.

If you are interested more in a team with really long odds:

Michigan Wolverines +6600

The defense should be in good shape this season with a lot of veteran talent coming back. But the offense is going to need to do some work. It needs a new quarterback, and Jim Harbaugh has struggled to find a good one while at Michigan, and four of five offensive line starters. But if they can win out and be undefeated heading into the Ohio State game, should they beat the Buckeyes, they could have a resume worthy of a title shot.

Giddy Up! What Cowboys and Rebels Can Make an Impact on the National Championship Odds

Oklahoma State Cowboys +10000

The offense could be one of the most explosive in college football this season. They will need a couple of guys to step on the offensive line, but the skill position guys are among the best at what they do. As for the defense, it was good-but-not-great by Big 12 standards last season, but it will need to be better for the Cowboy to have a shot.

It would help if their non-conference schedule were tougher. As is, the Cowboys will likely need a dominant, undefeated season to have a shot at the playoffs and the national title.

Ole Miss Rebels +15000

What makes these guys interesting is new head coach Lane Kiffin. If he can add an efficient and productive passing game to what was already an excellent run game, the Ole Miss offense could be fun to watch– and tough to beat this season.

There is talent on both sides of the ball. If Kiffin can work his magic on the offense, with a loaded SEC-West schedule, if they can win games, they will be in the conversation.

TCU Horned Frogs +25000

Had TCU gone 6-1 instead of 1-6 in games decided by a touchdown or less, their preseason odds would be drastically different. But while freshman Max Duggan showed a ton of potential at quarterback, he made lots of mistakes. He has to take a giant leap forward if TCU is going to have a chance.

But his rebuilt offensive line will need to be better than last season’s group. A running back will need to step up and become the go-to guy for the offense. As for the defense, despite losing a few guys to the NFL, this season’s unit should be solid.

NCAA Betting on the National Championship Conclusion

So—who should you bet on?

If you are asking who you ‘should’ bet, on the answer is easy—no one. None of these longshot teams are expected to be in their conference championship picture, let alone the national one. But longshots have been known to emerge and surprise the masses from time to time.

If Lady Luck were to smile down on any of these teams, it would sure be nice to get money down while the odds are as long as they are.

2020 NCAA Football Betting Win Totals: Will your Favorite Team Cover the Over?

It was disappointing enough when the coronavirus brought the NBA, NHL, MLB, and XFL seasons to a screeching halt. But real sadness hit sports fans everywhere when it looked like the college football season could be in danger. 

However, as more and more schools announce dates, teams can begin holding voluntary workouts, the likelihood we will have college football this year becomes stronger and stronger. 

With spring workouts lost, teams will have to hope the quality of their practices will matter more than the quantity leading into the season. Bowl projections and playoff hopes can be dashed early if teams stumble hard out of the gate. 

Betting on win totals can become harrowing as well. 

Bowl projections and playoff hopes can survive one loss and, in some cases, two losses (not playoff hopes, of course). But win totals cannot recover. Some teams can’t lose a game if the over is to be covered. For others, the margin of error disappears. 

So, because of the virus, should fans be wary of betting on high profile teams to cover the over when it comes to their win total? 

2020 NCAA Football Betting Win Totals: Will This Be the Year of the Under?

If the loss of spring workouts has you concerned about your team’s ability to cover the over on their win total than maybe you should go with the under. But since everyone is going to be on the same boat, does that mean it will be business as usual? 

The best way to answer that question may be to examine the win totals (via PointsBet.com) of some of the more prominent teams in college football: 

  • Clemson Tigers 
  • Over 11.5 -115 
  • Under 11.5 -105 

The only way they can cover the over is if they go undefeated during the regular season. Clemson has not lost a regular-season game since 2017 and has only lost two since 2015. With the team they have coming back, it is not hard to imagine them running the table again. 

But Louisville, Virginia, and Notre Dame will not go down without a fight. 

  • Ohio State 
  • Over 11 -135 
  • Under 11 +110 

Like Clemson, the Buckeyes will have to go undefeated to cover the over. Last season they got the job done but will face some stiff competition from Penn State and Oregon. However, they are favored to win both games according to the early lines posted at DraftKings

Michigan will not be a pushover, but the Buckeyes are heavy favorites in that game, too. 

Will the Irish Have Enough Fight to Bet on the Over for Their NCAA Football Win Totals

  • Notre Dame 
  • Over 9.5 -105 
  • Under 9.5 -115       

Last season’s excellent defense only has five starters coming back, but the offense should be good enough to keep the team winning in the first half of the season. Ian Book is not going to have too much trouble scoring points behind his five returning offensive linemen.   

While they do have some easy games on the schedule, the Fighting Irish have quite a few tough ones as well. Wisconsin will not go down easy, then there’s Clemson, expectations are high for Louisville this year, and USC has a talented squad. 

  • Oklahoma 
  • Over 10 +120 
  • Under 10 -145 

Oklahoma hasn’t lost two regular-season games since dropping two of their first three back in 2016. It may be a little harder to keep that streak going without a superstar at quarterback. Spencer Rattler could end up being that guy, but there is no way of knowing until the season starts. 

However, several games could trip the Sooners up. Texas always plays hard, it took an epic comeback to survive Baylor during the regular season, and Oklahoma State is expected to be an excellent team this year. 

  • Alabama 
  • Over 10.5 -145 
  • Under 10.5 +120 

Last season was the first time the Crimson Tide lost two games in the regular season since they lost three back in 2010. They do play some good team this season, but most of their potentially challenging games are going to be at home (Georgia, Texas A&M, and Auburn). 

LSU could put up a good fight, but the Tigers are going to look nothing like last year’s squad. 

  • Florida 
  • Over 10 -135 
  • Under 10 +110 

With the progress the Gators have been making under Dan Mullen, many believe this could be the year for them. However, to cover the over, they can only lose one game. The last time they only lost one regular-season game was back in 2012. 

But Mullen has a good team coming back. As long as they don’t get upset by anyone, it will come down to whether they can beat LSU and/or Georgia.   

  • LSU 
  • Over 9 +110 
  • Under 9 -135 

All eyes will be on the defending national champions to start the season, but it is not clear how long they will remain. LSU will only have eight returning starters, three on offense and five on defense, and lost passing game coordinator Joe Brady to the NFL.      

So, the Tigers are going to be a different team. But with the talent on the roster, it is hard to say how good/bad they will be. There is a reason for optimism. But when you lose so many pieces to the puzzle, a dip is bound to happen. 

They do have several games that could prove to be challenging like Texas, Florida, Alabama, Auburn, and Texas A&M. 

Way Too Early NCAAF Betting on Rivalry Game Odds

At this point in the offseason, most fans are just going to be excited to see a college football game this season. But once the season gets rolling and the coronavirus does not reassert its dominance over the sports world, fans will start looking to their favorite games of the year—the rivalries. 

Why? 

Because there is only one way a team can call a season’ successful’ regardless of how many games they won; they must beat their rival. 

Since these games are often among the hardest fought and most competitive of the season, they can be difficult to bet on. Fans must resist the urge to let their bias towards or against a team impact their decisions, which is often easier said than done. 

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Betting on College Football Rivalry Game Odds: Could You Bet Against Your Favorite Team? 

As dedicated as fans can be, there is one thing most like as much, if not more, than their favorite team—money. However, it can be difficult to analyze a game if your heart keeps getting in the way of your mind.   

But it can help if someone else analyzes the games for you (you’re welcome; odds via DraftKings). 

  • Georgia (+7.5) vs. Alabama, September 19 

Moneyline: Georgia +245; Alabama -315 

When these two usually meet, the SEC Championship is on the line, or they are facing off in the College Football Playoffs. Since the SEC split into two divisions, they only meet in the regular season twice every 12 years. This year, that game is taking place in Week Three. 

Alabama has won the last five, and by the point spread, it appears oddsmakers believe it will be six in a row this season. With Alabama’s reputation, it is not hard to understand why. No one restocks his starting lineup quite like Nick Saban does every year. 

So, while the Crimson Tide lost a lot of talent to the NFL, there is no reason to think they will not have talent ready to fill the void. 

As for Georgia, they are going to have an incredibly tough defense once again this season. Should Jamie Newman live up to the hype, they will have an even better playmaker at quarterback than last year. 

Good enough to hang with Alabama? He hasn’t faced a defense quite like what he is going to see against the Crimson Tide.    

Red River Rivalry Odds

  • Red River Rivalry: Texas (+2.5) vs. Oklahoma, October 10 

Moneyline: Texas +116; Oklahoma -139 

With Texas A&M in the SEC, the annual game between these two teams has become the premier rivalry game in the Big 12. For the last three seasons, Oklahoma has come into the game ranked inside the top ten and with a Heisman hopeful at quarterback. 

Texas has come into the game with high hopes and enormous expectations. While they have played well in all three, they lost the last two. But this time, Texas will be the one with the veteran, Heisman-hopeful at quarterback. 

However, while the Longhorns will have 16 returning starters, the offense will be thin on talent at wide receiver. With two new coordinators to break in, Texas will be leaning heavily on Ehlinger and the other veterans early in the season. 

If Spencer Rattler lives up to his reputation, Lincoln Riley could have another Heisman-hopeful on his hands (Rattler’s odds are already better than Ehlinger’s). But there isn’t an apparent superstar receiver ready to step up and fill the shoes of CeeDee Lamb. 

The World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party Odds: Florida vs. Georgia Odds

  • Florida (+3.5) vs, Georgia, October 31 

Moneyline: Florida +140; Georgia -175 

It is no longer officially known as the ‘World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party,’ but this is still one of the better rivalry games every year. With control of the SEC East on the line, the stakes are going to be higher than ever. 

Georgia has owned the SEC East division in recent years, but Dan Mullen has Florida ready to compete. Florida had one of the best offenses and defenses in the SEC last season and should once again this season. The emergence of Kyle Trask was a pleasant surprise last season, and expectations are high for him this season. 

However, the Georgia defense was one of the toughest in the country last season and has a lot of veteran talent coming back. But on offense, they will need many guys to step up—including Wake Forest transfer, Jamie Newman at quarterback. 

Expectations are sky-high for Newman, but facing SEC defenses is not going to be the same as ACC defenses. 

Michigan vs. Ohio State Odds

  • The Game: Michigan (+11.5) vs. Ohio State, November 28 

Moneyline: Michigan +390; Ohio State -530 

Michigan has struggled in recent years against Ohio State, and it is hard to say this year is going to be any different. According to the point spread and moneyline, it doesn’t look like oddsmakers think this year will be any different. 

Yes, the Buckeyes have some holes to fill on both sides of the ball. The running game will miss JK Dobbins, and the passing game lost two excellent receivers. But with the talent at both positions and Justin Fields, the offense will be just fine. 

Ohio State will not be able to replace Chase Young and the other defensive line losses. But who they have will certainly be battle-tested by the time ‘The Game’ rolls around. 

As for Michigan, the offensive line lost a lot of guys, but hopes are high for the run game, anyway. The mistake-prone Shea Patterson is gone, but it is not clear who the starter will be—Dylan McCaffrey or Joe Milton. It remains to be seen if either has the ‘it’ factor that can take the offense to the next level. 

Defensively, the Wolverines have enough returning talent that new starters will not have much expected of them too soon. By the end of the season, Michigan could have a top ten defense with the potential to give Justin Fields a lot of trouble.     

Early On Iron Bowl Odds

  • The Iron Bowl: Auburn (+14) vs. Alabama, November 28 

Moneyline: Auburn +510; Alabama -770 

Some may find it odd that Auburn is such a big underdog in this game. After all, the Tigers have a lot of veteran talent coming back on offense. The offensive line will likely be better with some experience under its belt as will quarterback Bo Nix. Nix will have some quality receivers to work with and a great run game backing him up. 

Will his defense be able to slow the Alabama offensive machine down, though? The Crimson Tide have four offensive line starters coming back and an excellent running back in Najee Harris. However, while Mac Jones played well in the few games he started, he had two outstanding receivers helping him look great. 

But if there is anyone that knows how to make the most of his team’s strengths, it is Nick Saban—whose defense will not give up 48 points to Auburn or anyone else this year.  

Five Games to Get You Started on NCAA Football Betting for 2020

By: Travis Pulver 

For fans, a can’t-miss game is going to be a close, hard-fought, entertaining contest. However, for gamblers, the concept is a little different. They are a bit more concerned with games they feel confident they are going to win money on. 

Easy enough, right? All you have to do is pick Alabama to beat whatever FCS school they are facing this week. If not Alabama, then take Clemson. They typically don’t face a real challenge until the College Football Playoffs. 

Without a spring to discover who was going to fill the roster holes left by graduation and the NFL, the big dogs (like Alabama and Clemson) could find it a little more challenging to get off on the right foot this season. 

Consequently, some of the can’t-miss games of the season may be some of the early games. The big dogs will likely still win the games they are supposed to win but don’t be shocked if they fail to cover the spread. 

Betting on NCAAF Underdogs: They May Not Win, But They May Not Lose Too Badly Either  

The following are a few games that could play out in just such a fashion (odds via DraftKings unless otherwise noted): 

  • Indiana (+13.5) at Wisconsin, September 4 (odds via FanDuel) 

Wisconsin has some big shoes to fill heading into this season. The lifeblood of the offense, running back Jonathan Taylor, has moved on to the NFL. Some work will need to be done on the interior of the offensive line as well (need three new starters). They don’t have much of a passing game, so if they can’t run the ball, they are in trouble. 

In so much trouble that the Hoosiers could win? Maybe. 

Indiana’s defense could be good enough to frustrate a Wisconsin offense that is rebuilding. As for the Hoosier offense, it was one of the best offenses in the Big Ten last season (No.3) and could be even better with the veteran talent they have coming back. 

Of course, gaining ground on Wisconsin’s defense will not be easy. But Indiana could definitely play well enough to cover the spread. 

  • Alabama (-14) vs. USC at AT&T Stadium, September 5 

If there is one thing that can always be said about a Nick Saban-coached team, it will be ready to win. Saban will find a way to get the best possible version of his team prepared for Week One. He has done it time and time again. So, why should this season be any different? 

Yes, Alabama is still Alabama, but Mac Jones is not a superstar, he lost two excellent wide receivers, and his defense (which wasn’t great last season) needs a lot of new parts. Maybe this is the year where the shine starts to come off the Alabama hallo. 

USC, on the other hand, does not need a lot of new parts. The Trojans have 19 starters coming back, which could make it easier to see USC playing well to start the season. Kedon Slovis was a welcome surprise last season and should be even better this year. But the hard part for USC will be slowing down Najee Harris. 

  • Georgia (-17.5) vs. Virginia, September 7 (odds via FanDuel) 

Both teams are going to have enough talent coming back on defense for that side of the ball to be in good shape early on. All the question marks are going to be on the offensive side of the ball. 

Virginia has a good offensive line coming back and should have a good passing game despite losing Bryce Perkins to the NFL. But they were not good at running the ball, and it is hard to say if they are going to be any better at it this year. With the defense Georgia is going to have, just throwing the ball may not be enough. 

As for Georgia, replacing a starting quarterback and running back is never easy. But the expectations are sky high for former Wake Forest QB, Jamie Newman. While he did not face Virginia in the ACC last season, he played and lost to lesser teams.      

Betting on the Big Boys in NCAA Football

  • Ohio State (-9.5) at Oregon, September 12 

Many fans are going to look at this game and think there is no way Oregon can handle Ohio State QB Justin Fields. But the Ducks had one of the best defenses in the country last season and have a lot of guys coming back. They could give Fields a lot of trouble as he gets accustomed to all the new bodies on offense. 

Oregon, however, is going to have some struggles of its own on offense. Along with having a new starting quarterback, they are replacing most of the offensive line. While they will have the best offensive lineman in the country returning, Penei Sewell can only block one guy. 

But expectations are high for the Oregon offense and new quarterback Tyler Shough. They could do some damage against a rebuilding Ohio State defense, but Justin Fields will not be easy to defeat (covering the spread, though). 

  • Clemson (-23.5) at Louisville, September 12 

With how Clemson has bulldozed its way through the rest of the ACC in recent years, it is hard to imagine them struggling against anyone. But Trevor Lawrence has gotten off to a slow start every year of his young career—which could make the Tigers ripe for an upset against the right team. 

Is Louisville that team? Could the Cardinals beat the Tigers for the first time in program history (six previous meetings)? 

The Cardinal offensive line has to be better, but the Louisville offense will see a lot of talent returning this season. They could easily come out of the gate in Week One, scoring a lot of points. However, where they could struggle is keeping Clemson from scoring just as much. 

Even if Lawrence struggles behind his rebuilt offensive line, the Tigers may just feed Travis Etienne all day long effectively keeping the high-powered Cardinals offense off the field. But the Louisville offense could still do enough damage to keep this one interesting. 

Conclusion 

Does this mean you should go all-in on the underdogs? 

Not at all. But thanks to the coronavirus, the door could be wide open for some early dogs to put up a much better fight than expected. With the spreads on some of these games, the team could lose– but not gamblers.   

NCAA Supports Player Payment Plan

NCAA’s highest governing body says it supports a proposal to allow athletes to profit off their image

Earlier today, the NCAA’s top governing body said it supports a proposed plan that would allow student-athletes to sign endorsement contracts and receive compensation for other types of work. The NCAA did specify the schools that players attend cannot be involved in the players’ payments. The Board of Governors said that student-athletes can benefit and profit from third-party endorsements, social media campaigns, and personal appearances at events.

The organization originally launched a group to help the NCAA modernize its rules regarding players profiting off their image. The working groups devised this proposal and presented it to the NCAA during its Board of Governors meeting yesterday afternoon.

According to the NCAA’s news release, players are allowed to appear in advertisements. They are also allowed to reference their particular sport and/or school. However, the NCAA said that student-athletes are prohibited from using School or Conference logos.

The NCAA’s three rule-making divisions will now take the proposal into further consideration. The groups are expected to adopt the new name, image, and likeness rules by January. The rules will come into effect at the start of the 2021-22 academic year.

College Football Playoff Odds: The Way-Too-Early Edition

The Way Too Early Edition of the College Football Playoff Odds

Travis Pulver 

The college football season is still a few months off, and that’s a good thing since there is no end in sight yet for the quarantine. Whether or not there is going to be a season is going to be up for debate soon if things do not get better.

To some, that means we shouldn’t waste time thinking about something like who will make the college football playoffs since there might not be one this year. But why have such a pessimistic outlook? Why not think like Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney? 

Why not hold out hope that the season will start on time? 

Of course, it is not hard to understand why Swinney is so confident. His team has been one of four teams in the college football playoffs in each of the last five seasons. Clemson has only missed out on one playoff, the first one. 

So, of course, he is going to be uber-confident the season will start as it should. He knows he has another great team that will dominate a lackluster conference and will likely earn a spot in the College Football Playoffs for a record-setting sixth season. 

But who else is going to make it? 

 College Football Playoffs Odds: Old Faces Remain the Favored Faces 

The critical thing to remember here is that the wager is for the four teams that will make the playoffs—so there are four right answers. It is safe to say that Clemson (-500), Alabama (-200), and Ohio State (-200) are going to be in the conversation (odds via FoxBet.com). 

Favorites fall from grace all the time, but for the time being, there is no reason to think they are going to do so. But who will be the fourth team? Should one of the bluebloods falter, who is going to take their place? 

Lincoln Riley has proved his worth at Oklahoma (NCAAF Playoff Odds: +105). But this will be the first season he does not have a bonafide superstar at quarterback. Spencer Rattler or Tanner Mordecai could become one, but he’ll need a running back and No. 1 wide receiver to emerge as well.   

Then there will still be the ever-present question of his questionable defense. 

Hopes are high for Georgia (College Football Playoff Odds: +175) once again. But it is not hard to wonder if that is because they always are. Dan Mullen has Florida (+300) in a position to pounce, and while they have some serious reloading to do, it is always a mistake to overlook defending champs (LSU; +350). 

But those are all teams that fans and betters are already aware of when it comes to the CFP. Which teams could emerge and find their way to the top four by the end of the regular season? 

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Going Big on the Back End for the Way Too Early College Football Playoff Odds

A case could certainly be made for Notre Dame (NCAAF Playoff Odds: +450). A solid offensive line will protect quarterback Ian Book. But the key will be whether he can establish a relationship quickly with his young wide receivers (assuming they can live up to their hype). 

Texas (+500), Oregon (+500), and Michigan (+550) all have decent odds, but you have to wonder why. The Longhorns will need several guys to step up and for nothing to go wrong to get in the conversation—but something always does go wrong for them. Oregon has a massive question mark at quarterback, and Michigan is the third-best team in their division (at best). 

Penn State (at +700 for their College Football Playoff Odds), however, could work its way into the conversation. With a solid, veteran offensive line protecting Sean Clifford, chances are good the offense is going to be just fine this season. The key to success will be defensive coordinator Brent Pry filling the gaps in a unit that allowed only 16 points a game last season. 

With the schedule they have this season, it is not going to be as easy for Texas A&M (+750) to look CFP-worthy. While the defense is solid and the offense talented, Kellen Mond is, at best, a future XFL quarterback. Unless he can guide the Aggies past Alabama, they don’t stand a chance. 

Giving USC good odds (+750) may be giving quarterback Kedon Slovis too much credit and/or assuming he is going to develop quite a bit. He could, of course, but it is going to take wins over Alabama and Notre Dame to get them into the conversation. 

Good arguments could also be made for Auburn (+800) and Wisconsin (+1000), but who wants to hear about those guys at this time of year? No, it is much more interesting to talk about the longshots. You know, teams like Oklahoma State (+1200) and Miami (+1500). 

Mike Gundy is going to have the best running back in college football next season in Chuba Hubbard. If he can get his quarterback, Spencer Sanders, to take the next step and get his defense to slow a few people down, the Cowboys could be legit contenders. 

The key for Miami will, of course, be defeating Clemson in the ACC title game. To make it to the game, the Hurricanes are going to need Houston-transfer D’Eriq King to live up to the hype. His elusiveness and instincts will lead the Hurricanes into the ACC title game where Clemson has been virtually untouchable. 

But if they take Clemson down, they will be in the conversation. 

Other teams worth keeping an eye on for now include Baylor (+5000), UCLA (+5000), Minnesota (+3000), and Arizona State (+3300). But don’t just ‘keep an eye on them’ for too long because the moment they start to look legit, their odds are going to shrink.   

Putting money down on a longshot is only cool when their odds are still long.