by The Team at SportsInsights.com
Welcome to the 2009-10 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 Marketplace – NCAA Week 2
Recapping Week 1
Marketwatch got off to a very solid start last week, taking two of its first three games of the season. Boise State easily covered the 2.5-point spread in a memorable game against Oregon, while Missouri pounded Illinois on the road. Our one loss came at the hands of Dez Bryant and Oklahoma State, who covered the spread against Georgia.
Overall Record = 2-1 (66.7%)
Warning to all new readers of the NCAA Football Sports Marketwatch column: in order to follow our selections, you’ll need ice running through your veins. Be prepared to take up meditation or acupuncture to calm the nerves. 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. The underlining theme every week is line value. You’ll consistently need the worst teams on the board to come through. We typically buy on bad news and sell on good.
NCAA Sports MarketWatch Week 2 – Games to Watch
Notre Dame vs. Michigan (9/12 – 3:30 p.m. EST)
With a weak schedule and loads of upperclassmen, Notre Dame came into this season with as a trendy pick to make a BCS bowl. The Golden Domers got off to a great start last week, hammering Nevada 35-0. Quarterback Jimmy Clausen carved up the Wolf Pack secondary, connecting on 15 of 18 passes for 315 yards and four touchdowns. Michigan looked just as impressive, kicking off year two of the Rich Rodriguez era with a 31-7 victory over Western Michigan.
Notre Dame opened as 4.5-point favorites at Pinnacle and has been solidly backed by the public, garnering 69% of spread bets, 56% of moneyline bets and 71% of parlay bets. Even though the public is in their corner, the Irish have shrunk to 3-point favorites. We’ve seen reverse-line movement at many of the sportsbooks tracked by SportsInsights, suggesting there is sharp money behind the Wolverines. BetJamaica (7-5, +1.4 units) triggered a Steam Move on Michigan, and after finishing the 2008 season +15.03 units, is a sportsbook we have confidence following. As a result, we like Michigan and the points in our first game.
East Carolina vs. West Virginia (9/12 – 3:30 p.m. EST)
West Virginia moved the ball at will against Liberty last week, racking up 438 yards of total offense in a 33-20 victory. However, the Mountaineers struggled getting the ball into the end zone, settling for four field goals in the game. East Carolina had its own trouble finding the end zone Saturday. After scoring 27 first-half points against FCS opponent Appalachian State, ECU’s offense was shut out in the final two quarters of the game. Appalachian State pulled within five points late in the fourth quarter, but the Pirates were able to force a turnover on downs and held on to win 29-24.
West Virginia opened as 7-point favorites at CRIS and we have seen little line movement in this game. The line shrunk to -6.5 at CRIS, but has stayed relatively stable across the board. The public is behind the home team, with 55% of spread bets and 68% of parlay bets on the Mountaineers. Marketwatch consistently goes against the public, so we’re taking East Carolina this game.
East Carolina +6.5
UCLA vs. Tennessee (9/12 – 4 p.m EST)
With new Head Coach Lane Kiffin at the helm, Tennessee’s offense exploded last week, scoring 63 points in a blowout win over Western Kentucky. Quarterback Jonathan Crompton completed 75 percent of his passes for 233 yards and five touchdowns en route to a 56-point victory. UCLA got off to a slow start in its season opener, trailing San Diego State 14-10 at the end of the first quarter. But the Bruins shook off the cobwebs and outscored the Aztecs 23-0 the rest of the way.
Tennessee opened as 9-point home favorites at Pinnacle and has grown slightly to -10 The public is behind the Volunteers, with 60% of spread bets and 79% parlay bets backing the favorites, yet the line has seen little movement at many sportsbooks tracked by SportsInsights. Several Smart Money Plays on UCLA have been triggered, including one at BetJamaica, who have gotten off to a solid start his season (4-2, +1.64 units), after finishing +9.49 units in 2008.
So, here’s a wrap-up of SportsInsights.com analysis for this week’s Games to Watch for NCAA Football Week 2.
Games to Watch (2-1)
East Carolina +6.5
It should be another exciting week for NCAA Football. Keep Sports Marketplace Games to Watch picks 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 the NCAA Football Sports Marketwatch.
Enjoy the games!
The Team at Sports Insights
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