by The Team at SportsInsights.com
Welcome to the 2010-11 edition of NCAA Football Marketwatch. The team at Sports Insights gives sports fans unprecedented insight into the NCAA Football point-spread market. If you ever wanted to know what was really happening on the sportsbook side, you now have an all-access pass with Sports Marketwatch!
Every week we speak directly with the line managers at some of the sports betting industry’s largest sportsbooks about which games the public is chasing and the Sharps are pounding. Let’s take a look at what’s in store for this week in College Football.
Sports Marketwatch – NCAA Week 1
Last season, NCAA Football Markewatch had a very good year, posting a 28-22-1 record for an overall winning percentage (including the postseason) of 56%. If you’re new to our NCAA Football Marketwatch column, make sure to signup for our Articles Newsletter and receive every Marketwatch article up to one day in advance of publication.
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The goal of this weekly column is to highlight games that offer true “line value.” Often, if a line looks too go to be true, there is a reason. You’ll occasionally need the worst teams on the board to come through. We typically buy on bad news and sell on good.
NCAA Sports Marketwatch Week 1 – Games to Watch
Connecticut vs. Michigan (9/4 – 3:30 p.m EST)
The 2010 season will be a crucial one for coach Rich Rodriguez and his Michigan Wolverines. Rich Rod is a combined 8-16 in his first two seasons at Michigan and, needless to say, the Wolverine fan base is getting restless. Lloyd Carr got fired for not being able to beat Ohio State, Rodriguez can’t beat anybody.
In order to quiet the doubters, Rodriguez will have to find a way to beat Connecticut, a sexy preseason pick to win the Big East among many college football experts. UConn finished 2009 with four straight victories, capped by a 20-7 win against South Carolina in the PapaJohns.com Bowl.
Michigan opened as a 3-point favorite at Olympic and the public is backing the Wolverines at the Big House. Fifty-eight percent of spread bets have come down on Michigan, yet the line dropped to -2.5. A Steam Move at ABC, one of our most consistent sportbooks over the past three seasons, was triggered on UConn, convincing us there is value with the Huskies. (To learn more about Sports Insights’ NCAA Football Betting Systems, make sure to check out our 2010-11 NCAA Football Betting Systems Preview.) The majority of books are offering this game at -2.5, but a handful still have it at -3. Do some line-shopping and grab UConn plus the three.
Washington vs. BYU (9/4 – 3:30 p.m. EST)
After a disappointing 5-7 season in 2009, Washington will look to Heisman hopeful Jake Locker to guide them up the Pac-10 standings and into bowl contention in 2010. Locker, who is already being mentioned as the possible #1 pick in April’s NFL draft, threw for 2800 yards and 21 touchdowns last season.
BYU used a 14-13 upset of, then #3-ranked, Oklahoma in their 2009 opener as a springboard to asuccessful 11-2 season, capped off with a 44-20 throttling of Oregon State in the Maaco Bowl.
With all the preseason love for Locker floating around, it’s not surprising to see 60% of spread and 83% of moneyline wagers backing Washington. BYU opened as a 3.5-point favorite at CRIS, but the public percentages have shrunk the line down to -2. There are even a few sportsbooks offering this game at -1.5, which we’ll gladly take while it’s available.
SMU vs. Texas Tech (9/5 – 3:30 p.m. EST)
Under new head coach June Jones, Southern Methodist had quite the turnaround last season, posting a record of 8-5 after scoring only one victory in 2008. SMU concluded their 2009 season in grand fashion, blowing out Nevada, 45-10, in Jones’ triumphant return to the state of Hawaii.
Texas Tech will undoubtedly go as far as their high-flying spread offense will take them this season. The Red Raiders lit up opponents through the air in 2009, racking up 386.8 passing yards/game (2nd overall in FBS), en route to a scoring average of 37.0 points/game (8th overall in FBS).
Texas Tech opened as a 10.5-point favorite at Pinnacle and is currently receiving 71% of spread bets. This overwhelming public support has pushed the line up to -13.5 and Sports Insights’ Betting Systems have found value on the big road underdog. Eight Smart Money Plays have been triggered on SMU, including one at Matchbook, our #2 ranked sportsbook (+15.04 units) in 2009. We’ll follow the Smart Money and take the 14-point dog.
So, here’s a wrap-up of Sports Insights’ analysis of this week’s Games to Watch for NCAA Football Week 1.
Games to Watch (0-0)
It should be another exciting week of NCAA Football. Keep Sports Marketwatch handy and your browser pointed to SportsInsights.com for the latest real-time updates, using our exclusive Sports Investing tools. We’ll be back next Friday with the new edition of NCAA Football Sports Marketwatch.
Enjoy the games!
The Team at Sports Insights