Welcome back to our weekly college football gambling column. It's called COLLEGE FOOTBALL GAMBLING. Today, let's talk about the fourth of five power conferences: the Pac-12.
Season-long props and futures require a bettor to lay his or her money for the entire year. Because of the uncertainty involved, and the time for which the money is unavailable to the bettor, it's very important to practice restraint.
Win total wagers are based solely on the regular season. No championship games, bowl games, or Playoff games. If I don't mention a team, it means that I feel Vegas has the number pegged relatively well or I don't have a great feel for the team. If you want to discuss other teams, let's do so in the comment section.
I liked season win totals on some of the league's lesser teams, and think that the bigger schools are pegged more accurately.
Missouri Over 7.5 Wins (-120, Olympic): Missouri did lose a lot, but I have a feeling that some just expect the Tigers to fall back to the level at which they played during their inaugural SEC year. Maty Mauk can play, and the offensive line should make the running game even stronger.
Tennessee Under 6 Wins (-115, Bet US): Tennessee lost every starter on the offensive and defensive line. The receivers should be very good and the Volunteers actually have a decent chance of getting to six wins, but the chance that they win only five is much greater than the chance that they get to seven, which creates value in this wager with push protection. This has the makings of an excellent team come 2015 under Butch Jones.
Vanderbilt Over 5.5 Wins (+110, Sportsbook): Vanderbilt's long-term outlook is not great now that Tennessee has cranked its recruiting machine into overdrive and Kentucky seems to have its act together a bit more than it did under Joker Phillips, but Vanderbilt's defense should be enough for it to get to a bowl against the likes of Temple, Ole Miss, UMass, Charleston Southern, at Kentucky, at Missouri, Florida, Old Dominion, and Tennesse.
Ole Miss Under 8.5 Wins (-115, Bet US): Ole Miss has a nasty defense and Hugh Freeze has really upped the talent level in Oxford, but it is hard to trust Bo Wallace, and the offensive line situation (particularly the depth) is quite shaky. Ole Miss needs no major letdowns and four wins against the likes of of Boise State, Vanderbilt, Alabama, at Texas A&M, at LSU, Auburn, and Mississippi State to get to nine wins.
Alabama Over 10.5 Wins (-132, Pinnacle): The Tide recruits better than any team in the country, and by a sizable margin. Jacob Coker not pulling away from Blake Sims is scary after seeing how poor Sims was in the spring, but Alabama has a very favorable schedule, avoiding Georgia and South Carolina from the East. The Tide will be favored in all games, and by double digits with the possible exception of three: at Ole Miss after a bye, at LSU after a bye, and hosting Auburn. If Alabama can avoid any huge upsets, and go 2-1 in that trio, it will cash this bet.
The SEC Megapreview
Every year, I try to introduce readers to different gambling concepts. Here, I'll explain what scalping is, though it would be unfair to count this toward my record.
Scalping is when a bet is placed on both sides of an event at odds that guarantee the bettor cannot lose money regardless of result. The variance in SEC lines and odds at multiple books gives me a great opportunity to show how it is done. Observe.
South Carolina Under 9.5 Wins (-115, 5Dimes) and Over 9.5 Wins (+120, Sportsbook): Here, if South Carolina wins 10 or more games, the gambler wins $5 (winning $120 and losing $115), and if the Gamecocks win nine or fewer games, the bettor loses nothing (winning $100 and losing $100).
Vanderbilt Under 6 Wins (-160, Bovada) and Over 6 Wins (+168, 5Dimes): If Vanderbilt wins seven games, the gambler nets $8, and if Vanderbilt wins six or fewer, the bettor loses nothing.
Auburn Under 9 Wins (+110, Bet US) and Under 9 Wins (+100, Olympic): If Auburn wins eight or fewer, the gambler nets $10, and if Auburn wins nine or more, the bettor loses nothing.
Texas A&M Under 7 Wins (+120, Bookmaker) and Over 7 Wins (+100, Bovada): If Texas A&M wins six or fewer, the gambler nets $20, and if the Aggies win seven or more, the bettor loses nothing.
Ole Miss Under 8.5 Wins (-115, Bet US) and Over 8.5 Wins (+165, 5Dimes): This is a big one. If Ole Miss wins nine or more games, the gambler nets $50, and if it wins eight or fewer, the bettor loses nothing.
Mississippi State Under 7.5 Wins (-106, Pinnacle) and Over 7.5 Wins (+120, 5Dimes): If The Bulldogs win eight or more games, the gambler nets $14, and if State wins seven or fewer, the bettor loses nothing.
Overall, the gambler stands to gain a potential $107, and can lose a maximum of $0. Having multiple books is important, because it allows the bettor to get the best price.
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