Your weekly round up of sports betting tips and news, every Saturday morning at 10am Eastern.
Heisman Watch – Here are the latest Heisman odds on FanDuel.
- Ohio State QB C.J. Stroud: +150
- Alabama QB Bryce Young: +200
- Michigan State RB Kenneth Walker III: +450
- Ole Miss QB Matt Corral: +750
Everyone else is +4000 or longer.
As I advised on The Football Analytics Show podcast to start the season, never bet the Heisman favorite. Spencer Rattler is not on this list, as it’s difficult to win the Heisman from the bench.
Another point made in the episode was to consider players from teams favored to win the National Championship, which puts Ole Miss and Michigan State’s representatives in a major disadvantage.
The edge belongs to Stroud, and rightfully so. According to cfb-graphs.com, Ohio State ranks 4th in the country in EPA/Pass (0.434) while Alabama is 19th (0.299). However, Young could make up ground with a big win over top ranked Georgia in the SEC championship game.
Analytics and Film – Nate Tice grew up in a football family as the son of former NFL head coach Mike Tice. However, he didn’t only get an education about X’s and O’s.
His father gave him a copy of Moneyball as a child, and it has helped Nate become equally qualified to use numbers and film in his NFL betting analysis. On an episode of Covering the Spread, he had some interesting insights on Minnesota and New Orleans in particular.
Nate also instigated an interesting conversation on running the ball in the NFL. His section on Covering the Spread starts at 11:21.
Injuries – These were double checked with the ESPN NFL injuries page.
- Arizona QB Kyler Murray is out against Seattle due to an ankle injury. Backup Colt McCoy will play despite a pectoral issue. The third string QB is Chris Streveler, a player who spent the past two seasons with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the CFL.
- Carolina QB Sam Darnold is likely to miss the remainder of the season with a shoulder injury. Cam Newton has returned to Carolina and will start against Washington.
- Detroit QB Jared Goff is out against Cleveland due to an oblique injury. The Lions will start Tim Boyle, who spent the last 3 seasons with Green Bay.
- New York Jets QB Zach Wilson is listed has doubtful, and the Jets will start veteran Joe Flacco.
- Pittsburgh QB Ben Roethlisberger will play against the Los Angeles Chargers.
College basketball predictions – These predictions are available for members of The Power Rank the day before games, and they have gone 52.4% ATS against the opening line this season.
- Purdue will beat North Carolina by 8.5 at a neutral site – Purdue get back key contributors Trevion Williams and Jaden Ivey on what should be a strong Big Ten contender. North Carolina starts their first year under Herbert Davis after the retirement of legend Roy Williams.
- Villanova will beat Tennessee by 0.9 points on the road – Senior guard Collin Gillespie got hurt before the NCAA tournament last season but has returned to lead Villanova this season.
- Baylor will beat Stanford by 14.1 points at home – Baylor lost stars Jared Butler and Davion Mitchell to the NBA, but the metrics don’t expect a drop out of the top 10 this season for the Bears.
Outliers – On the PFF Forecast podcast, Dr. Eric Eager brought up an interesting thought experiment: when analyzing a specific team, many of us are willing to throw away an exceptionally bad loss as an outlier, but how many of us are willing to do the same for an exceptionally good win, also calling it an outlier?
The example he brought up was the Cincinnati Bengals at 5-4. Aside from dominating Baltimore, the other victories have come against the Vikings, Steelers, Jaguars and Lions, only one of whom have a winning record.
The biggest game of the weekend is easily Dallas at Kansas City. Is it possible this strength of schedule adjustment should also apply to the Chiefs?
Last week the Chiefs dominated Las Vegas, but the other victories have come against the Aaron Rodgers-less Green Bay, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Washington and the New York Giants. Those last four would miss the playoffs if they started today. It is important to note the Power Rank does favor the Chiefs by 4.1 points over the Cowboys.
Regardless, if outlier control is applicable to that game, legendary baseball manager Buck Showalter once said (and this is paraphrased) that baseball teams win 54 games, lose 54 games and have their seasons decided in the remaining 54. Perhaps there should be a football equivalent.
How to Find an Advantage – Sportsbooks make mistakes, and professional bettors find these mistakes to make a profit.
Jack Andrews of Unabated wrote about how he used grade school education to find an edge in reverse teasers on FanDuel. That’s right, FanDuel, not DraftKings.
Despite the lack of a happy ending, this story is a fantastic look at how a professional finds edges in the markets less traveled.
At the Expense of Texas – The Longhorns are one of college football’s favorite teams to hate, and their loss to Kansas as a 31-point underdog brought out the best in humor.
With the impending arrival of Texas in the SEC, YouTube comedy channel SEC Shorts took full aim at the Longhorns as part of a sketch about an SEC loss claims department.
Another swipe at Texas on Twitter was both incendiary and educational.
At the other end of the spectrum, Florida celebrated its victory over Samford (not Stanford). The exuberance is comical given that the Gators were 30.5-point favorites.
Data driven betting information
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