NCAA Football Opening Line Report – Week 12

Every Tuesday, we take a look at the early line movement and college football betting trends for the 15 most heavily bet games, in terms of the number of total bets.

Team Betting % Current Open Notes
Ball State 37% 17.0 18.5 Lone Tuesday night matchup pits two of the top three teams in the MAC West against each other on ESPNU. Despite coming off a thrilling 33-31 road victory against Eastern Michigan last week, the 6-4 Cardinals continue to give up lots of points and find themselves ranked near the bottom of the nation in overall defense. In turn, the home favorite Huskies have won five in a row, boast an impressive 7-3 record and own the 9th best scoring offense in the country. With the sportsbooks adjusting their lines to take a pivotal 1.5 points away from road dog Ball State, more than six out of ten spread bets are confident the high-flying Huskies can get it done in front of their home crowd and win by at least 18 points.
Northern Illinois 63% -17.0 -18.5
Western Michigan 51% 1.5 2.0 This Wednesday night matchup presents great value to the betting public in yet another MAC early week showdown. With such a small spread resulting in a virtual pick-em scenario, spread bettors are nearly split down the middle as to who to take. With both teams coming off 3-point losses to division rivals, the betting public is giving the slight edge to the visiting Broncos who put up 63 big points last week against Toledo only to lose by a field goal in the final minute.
Miami (Ohio) 49% -1.5 -2.0
North Carolina 20% 10.5 10.5 The 9-1 Hokies have vaulted all the way to 8th overall in the rankings after their convincing 37-26 road victory last week against then #21 Georgia Tech. In turn, the unranked Tar Heels are coming off a disappointing 13-0 shutout against rival NC State and own one of the worst rushing attacks in the nation. As a result, the betting public is hammering Virginia Tech at home, with eight out of ten spread bets confident in an 11-point or more Hokie victory at Lane Stadium.
Virginia Tech 80% -10.5 -10.5
Oklahoma State 89% -26.5 -24.5 In one of the largest spreads of the week, #2 Oklahoma State invades Jack Trice Stadium in this Friday night showdown on ESPN. While it’s true that Iowa State has won two in a row, the 5-4 Cyclones find themselves huge home underdogs against one of the last undefeated teams in the nation. Despite the sportsbooks adjusting their lines to give Iowa State two additional points, the betting public is overwhelmingly in favor of Brandon Weeden, Justin Blackmon and the 10-0 Cowboys picking up a 27-point win or more on the road leading up to their epic clash with Oklahoma on Dec. 3.
Iowa State 11% 26.5 24.5
Oklahoma 93% -15.5 -14.5 By far and away the most lopsided game of the week. Despite boasting a 6-3 record and 22nd overall ranking, Robert Griffin III and Baylor have struggled all year against ranked teams and barely beat lowly Kansas 31-30 (OT) last week. Meanwhile, the 8-1 Sooners have rebounded to win two in a row after a heartbreaking defeat against Texas Tech in late October, the sole blemish on their impressive 8-1 record. With Landy Jones and Co. fighting for a spot in the BCS title game, more than 9 out of 10 spread bets are confident Bob Stoops’ team will win by at least 16 against a Bears club who has yet to lose at home this season.
Baylor 7% 15.5 14.5
Kansas State 76% 9.5 9.0 After starting off the year 4-0, the #23 Longhorns have now lost three of their last five games. In turn, Colin Klein and the Wildcats sit at 8-2 and are coming off a thrilling 53-50 victory over Texas A&M in four overtimes. With the sportsbooks adjusting their lines to give an additional half point to road dog Kansas State, nearly eight out of ten spread bets are going with the #13 Wildcats to either win straight up or lose by single digits at Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium.
Texas 24% -9.5 -9.0
Mississippi State 10% 13.0 13.0 The 9-1 Razorbacks have won six in a row and enter this SEC matchup as huge home favorites. Despite unranked Mississippi State owning the 17th best scoring defense in the country, nine out of ten spread bets are confident in #6 Arkansas winning by at least 14 points in Little Rock in front of their home crowd, especially after coming off a 49-7 blowout of Tennessee last week.
Arkansas 90% -13.0 -13.0
USC 50% 15.5 15.0 Thanks to their 53-30 spanking of Andrew Luck and then #4 Stanford last week, the 9-1 Ducks vaulted all the way to #4 in the standings and now find themselves back in the national title conversation. However, at 8-2, Matt Barkley and USC are no slouch and have outscored their opponents by a combined score of 82-34 the past two weeks. Despite the sportsbooks adjusting their lines to give an additional half point to the road dog Trojans, the betting public remains split down the middle as to who to take in this Pac 12 grudge match.
Oregon 50% -15.5 -15.0
Wisconsin 90% -14.0 -14.0 While the #17 Badgers have two losses on their record and no longer have a shot at the BCS title game, at 8-2 they remain a formidable opponent. In turn, after starting off 6-0, the unranked Fighting Illini have hit the skids and lost four straight. As a result, the betting public is hammering Wisconsin on the road, with nine out of ten spread bets confident in Russell Wilson engineering at least a 15-point victory at Memorial Stadium.
Illinois 10% 14.0 14.0
Nebraska 52% 3.5 2.0 One of the marquee games of the week right here, with #16 Nebraska facing #18 Michigan on the road. Both teams boast identical 8-2 records and rank very similar in all major statistical categories. With the sportsbooks adjusting their lines to give road dog Nebraska an additional 1.5 points, the betting public is giving the slight edge to the Cornhuskers, who are 2-1 this year against ranked teams.
Michigan 48% -3.5 -2.0
California 14% 18.5 20.0 Despite suffering their first loss of the season last week against LaMichael James and Oregon, #9 Stanford remains a public favorite thanks to the continued stellar play of quarterback Andrew Luck. With the 6-4 Golden Bears coming to town, the betting public is back on the Cardinal bandwagon, with nearly nine out of ten spread bets confident in Stanford bouncing back and winning by at least 19 in front of their home crowd in what could be Luck’s second to last home game.
Stanford 86% -18.5 -20.0
Boise State 73% -18.0 -16.5 Like Stanford, Boise State saw their undefeated record go up in flames last week when TCU pulled off a thrilling 36-35 upset at Bronco Stadium. Nevertheless, the public remains in favor of Kellen Moore and Co. bouncing back in a big way, with just over seven out of ten spread bets in favor of Boise posting a 19 point victory or more on the road against the Mountain West rival Aztecs.
San Diego State 27% 18.0 16.5
Clemson 75% -7.5 -8.5 The 7th ranked Tigers rallied from 14 points down to win 31-28 against Wake Forest last week on a last second field goal. Meanwhile, after shutting out North Carolina 13-0 two weeks ago, the Wolfpack lost 14-10 to a Boston College team who entered the game with an embarrassing 2-7 overall record. As a result, three out of four spread bets are going with Tajh Boyd and 9-1 Clemson to win by at least eight points on the road.
NC State 25% 7.5 8.5
SMU 12% 19.5 19.5 Case Keenum is the best college quarterback you probably know next to nothing about. The senior signal-caller has ridiculous numbers (37 TDs, 3 INTs, 3951 passing yards) and has carried little-known Houston all the way to 10-0 and an 11th overall ranking. Meanwhile, after starting off 5-1, Southern Methodist has lost three of their last four. With no line movement thus far, the betting public is hammering the Cougars at home, with nearly nine out of ten spread bets confident Keenum and Co. can win by at least 20 points at Robertson Stadium.
Houston 88% -19.5 -19.5
Penn State 33% 6.5 7.0 With the Jerry Sandusky sex-abuse scandal getting more and more disturbing with each passing day, the 8-2 Nittany Lions head to Ohio Stadium looking to uplift the spirits of their beleaguered fan base. However, with the sportsbooks adjusting their lines to take a pivotal half point away from road dog Penn State, nearly seven out of ten spread bets are taking the 6-4 Buckeyes to win by at least 7 points in front of their home crowd and keep the Nittany Lions winless under interim Head Coach Tom Bradley.
Ohio State 67% -6.5 -7.0

* Betting Percentages reflect Sports Insights’ Spread Betting Trends Data
** Opening and Current Lines from Pinnacle

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