Welcome to the 2012-13 edition of NCAA Football Marketwatch, where the team at Sports Insights gives sports fans unprecedented insight into the NCAA Football point-spread market.
Every week we analyze the sports betting marketplace to pinpoint which games the public is chasing and which the sharps are pounding.
Overall Record: 0-3
The goal of this weekly column is to highlight games that offer true line value. Often, if a line looks too good 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.
Missouri vs. Alabama (10/13 – 3:30 p.m. ET)
After winning the BCS championship last season, many wondered whether or not Alabama would be able to duplicate their success this year. After all, the team lost a number of key players on both sides of the ball including, first round draft picks RB Trent Richardson, S Mark Barron, CB Dre Kirkpatrick and LB Dont’a Hightower.
Nonetheless, coach Nick Saban has this team running on all cylinders — averaging over 40 points per game and holding opponents to a NCAA-best 7.0 ppg. With a 5-0 record, led by arguably the greatest defense of this decade, Alabama looks like an early favorite to repeat.
For Missouri (3-3), their first season in the SEC has not gone according to plan. With losses to Georgia, South Carolina and Vanderbilt, the team currently boasts an 0-3 conference record after going 8-5 during their last season in the Big 12. What’s worse? The Tigers will likely be without several key players for Saturday’s matchup including, quarterback James Franklin (amassed nearly 4,000 total yards in 2011), who will be out indefinitely with a knee injury. Henry Josey, who rushed for over 1,100 yards last year, is out for the season after tearing his ACL and MCL in his knee.
Alabama opened as a 17.5-point favorite at CRIS and, according to our College Football betting trends, is currently receiving a whopping 82% of spread bets and 86% of parlay bets. This heavily lopsided betting moved the line 4 points to 21.5 before we saw some buyback — dropping the line back to 21.
The table below shows a breakdown of the spread betting percentages from our seven contributing sportsbooks.
A number of betting systems have also been triggered on this game, indicating that sharp money seriously likes Missouri this week. So far, seven betting systems have been triggered on the Tigers, including our top-performing smart money move from Carib Sports (21-9 +10.45 units).
The line history chart below shows that the public have been pounding the Crimson Tide, which pushed the line to 21.
This season, our marketwatch selections have gotten off to a slow start, but the contrarian approach has been highly effective as evidenced by our 37-25 combined record Against the Spread (ATS) with square plays and best bets. The line movement in this game appears to be driven completely by public betting, so we’ll jump on the free points and take the home underdog.
Game to Watch (0-3)
It should be another exciting week of NCAA Football action. Keep Marketwatch handy and your browser pointed to SportsInsights.com for the latest real-time updates.
Enjoy the games!