Note: I use this column to examine the college football landscape and the weekend ahead. The use of gambling numbers helps to show the public perception of a team and of their respective conferences. Even if you don't gamble, or are against gambling, this is worth a read solely because it will keep you informed of the happenings with many of college football's teams. Think of this as your weekend primer!
Welcome to another edition of For Entertainment Purposes Only! Last year, this rather informal column went 251-190 (57%) +41.0 That's 251 wins and 190 losses for a winning percentage of 57%. If you were wagering $100 fake dollars per game, you would have netted $4100 at season's end. But since these are fake wagers, I refer to our wager amount as "units." First though, a disclaimer:
I want to emphasize that I don't endorse gambling, and anything on here is for entertainment purposes only. Always check with your local, state, or federal laws to determine the legality of wagering.
First I discussed some wagers for conference and division winners. Then I went over season win totals. Vegas set the number, I called it over or under! In Week 1 I went 20-24 (45%), -6.3 Units. Week 2 I went 42-25 (63%), +16.32 Units. Week 3 was 34-27. +4.50 (+5.7 College, -1.2 NFL). Week 4 was 50-34, +13.62 Week 5 I went 50-33 (60%) for +17.48 Units (25-31, -4.42 College, and 24-2, +21.9 Units in the NFL). Last week I went 27-21 (56%) +4.23 For the season, I sit at 223- 163 (58%), +49.85 If I finish at 56% over 500 selections, I'll be absolutely elated. I like to play a lot of games to grind out the variance. The swings over 500 games aren't nearly as dramatic as they are over 100. It's as simple as grinding out the sample set.
This week, I'll discuss which games I bet on Sunday night when the opening lines come out, and which games I decided to wait out in pursuit of a more favorable line.
As always, anything I bet before this article runs is put in the comment section of the previous week.
- I lead off with Boise State -9.5, which was a loser last night. Figured the Broncos would climb to 11 or 12, and planned to play the Bulldogs. Didn't happen. Why? Probably because most of the public doesn't bet early enough in the week to give the extra push.
- But for tonight's game I did better, grabbing Cinci -1. The Bearcats are very public. Tuesday night I grabbed South Florida +3.5 I could have waited for +4 or bigger, but being a weeknight game, and didn't want to risk losing the +3.5 in order to get something bigger.
- Sticking in the Big East, I felt that Rutgers should be favored over Pittsburgh, so I played Rutgers +3.
- In the Red River Shootout, I have Texas -2.5. I believe both defenses are underrated, so I played Texas Under 51. Texas now sits at -4 at some places, so I have to decide whether I will middle. If I do, you'll find it in the comment section of course.
- Could there be a better time for the public to overreact than when a team loses at home against Duke by a bunch? I'll say no, and said yes to NC State +3.5. Boston College is pretty public here, and while the line is now down to +2.5, I'll probably not middle. Haven't decided on the total yes.
- This next team is one of the most underrated in the country. Purdue +14 was the opener and my line was Ohio State -10, so grabbing Purdue was natural. Wish this was a look ahead for Ohio State. Doubt they will be fired up though to play a Noon game in Indiana.
- Sometimes I really nail an opener. Sometimes I blow my opportunity. Sometimes I make a horrible misread. Iowa -1.5 @ Wisconsin was one of those misreads. I thought "ok", let me take this before it hits -3. Well it hit 3 alright, Wisconsin by three! Needless to say, I am eating this one.
- The Terps actually opened at +4 but I wasn't fast enough. Did grab Maryland +3.5 at home against an improving Virginia team.
- Everyone forgets the Tigers have the 3rd best defense in the country. OK, maybe top 5. But still, Clemson -6.5 was easy money. I actually had them at -11 in my projections.
- Sometimes I miss on the openers, but I have to stay true to my system. Iowa State -3 fits that mold, even though they are now only favored by 2.5 I have no idea why Baylor isn't at least a Touchdown favorite.
- Counting on a hangover form the Bama game, I took UAB +22 @ Memphis. It hasn't moved, and I don't wanna be holding the bag with UAB. But right now, I have no choice.
- Some sharp dogs here now, including Vandy +7.5 hosting a demoralized UGA squad.
- Auburn -13 was a good opening play and I expect it to hit +14.5, and then I'll play Kentucky.
- Temple -9.5 is a non-public favorite. My best type play. Army is a bit overrated after last week.
- WMU +7.5 is another sharp dog. If I can middle with CMU and anything less than -6+100 I will, but that will come later. Feel good about the movement there.
- Wyoming +11.5 was a misread that I can't ditch.
- Ohio -11.5 was a great opening get, and it has since shot up to +14, meaning I am now adding Miami(OH) +14 -105, playing for the middle.
- Utah State +10 I knew it would move and still hated to play it as Nevada is a pretty good team. If this hits +7, I am middling and ditching this.
- I misread Minnesota +15, figured it would dip under 2TD's, and it just hasn't.
- I don't want to see like a homer here, but Alabama -17 is too low. South Carolina is overrated and hasn't had to travel much. Bama by 21+, beware the backdoor.
- Cal -3 was something I thought would skyrocket, but I guess folks are down on Cal. Gonna eat it, but don't like it.
- I screwed up Houston -20. I figured that Tulane is terrible (they are), and the line would leap 21. But instead it is down at 17.
- Virginia Tech -3 is another I misread, though it hasn't moved much. Don't play VT if you already haven't.
- Enough misreads. TCU -20 was too low and I pounced. Colorado State is decent though, so I will hit them if they hit 23ish.
- La Tech -17 was a good hit, and I'll now counter with New Mexico State +20 -105
- EMU +3.5 didn't work out how I thought it would. Eating it.
- Hawaii +11.5 was a good hit, as Idaho is a tad overrated now. I will play the Vandals at 8, but not more.
- BYU is overrated so SDSU +18 was the play.
- Ugh, I don't get this. Arizona -6.5 over Stanford looked good to me. Arizona is good, Stanford is overrated. Don't get what happened to this line and you can get it at -4 if you want. Needless to say, I am eating it.
- Indiana +3 works well. Illinois has quit on Zook, I believe.
- So. Miss -10. Let's call this a hit. Memphis +14 will be the counter, and is also a play (obviously, as it is in bold).
- Louisville +12 I accidentally bet this, meant to take UConn. Oh well, coin flip at best?
- Kansas -9.5 @ Colorado seems like a good play, so why does this seem like a trap?
- Miami -15 Feel like I am in for a beating this week, I am way too public. It's now only -14 and everyone loves it. I figured it would climb. This has disaster written all over it, but I can't take -15 and +14.
- Florida -24 Here's one I do like. People don't realize just how bad Arkansas' defense is, or how good UF's D is.
- A public service academy? Whatever. Navy is now overrated. Officially. SMU +7.5 was and is the play.
- Arizona State -3 Arizona State -3 That's not a double take. It is a double play. Rarely do I do that, but I felt this line was way off. It's now -6.5, and will hit -7 soon.
- FAU -2. I have no idea what everyone sees in North Texas, but they do, so this is a misread.
- Mississippi State -4. Well now MTSU looks like the play but I will have to wait and see what happens. Until then I am stuck with the bulldogs.
- I am also now on board with Michigan State -13.5 even though I really don't like that half point. Northwestern isn't great. I'm also playing Michigan State Under 52.5 here.
- Ball State +3 -105 looks right and Bowling Green now appears to be overrated once again.
- Adding Maryland Under 50
- Adding Rutgers Over 45
- Wake's defense is not great, so Clemson Over 49
- Ball State Over 54
- Ole Miss Under 53.5
- Auburn Over 57
- Western Michigan Under 58.5
- Marshall +21 & West Virginia Under 53
- USC -10 -105 & Notre Dame Under 49
- Kansas State +185
- Missouri +7 +100 & Under 57
- Rice +18 -105
- UF Under 56
- MTSU +4.5 +100
- CLE +14.5 +100
- Houston +4.5 +100
- Wash -6 -105
- Bal +3
- New Orleans -3
- Tampa Bay +3 +100
- Green Bay -13
- Oakland +14.5 -105
- Seattle -3 +100
- Buffalo +10 +100
- Tennessee +10 -115
- San Diego -3 -115
More to come in the comment section, including NFL