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College Football Betting: Regular Season Win Total Outliers

CFB

Photo Credit: Omaha.com

The college football futures betting market is starting to mature with regular season win totals available at a number of offshore and Las Vegas sportsbooks. Today let’s analyze this season’s biggest “gainers” and “decliners” (2.5 wins ore more) based on last year’s regular season win total and this year’s current number according to 5Dimes.

Buffalo Bulls
2018 Reg. Season Wins: 10
2019 Reg. Season Wins: 6ov-145
Quick Take: The Bulls won two games in head coach Lance Leipold’s first season, six in his second, and despite dropping the MAC Championship and bowl game, popped for 10 wins in 2018. A handful of key players departed but the offensive line and run game should be a strength. The schedule is also manageable with MAC contenders Ohio and Toledo at home and only one “paycheck” road game at Penn State.

Cincinnati Bearcats
2018 Reg. Season Wins: 10
2019 Reg. Season Wins: 7.5ov-115
Quick Take: Cinci’s projected “decline” appears schedule-based. The Bearcats open the season vs. UCLA, at Ohio State, vs. Miami-OH, at Marshall, vs. UCF, and at Houston. Houston and Memphis were added to the slate and both are road tilts. The question is do you want to go against head coach Luke Fickell who with a frosh quarterback and what was supposed to be a rebuilding year went 11-2?

Florida State Seminoles
2018 Reg. Season Wins: 5
2019 Reg. Season Wins: 7.5ov-115
Quick Take: Nothing went right in Willie Taggart’s first season in Tallahassee. A 36-consecutive bowl game streak was snapped and in four games against top 25 teams, the Seminoles were outscored 172-44. Offensive guru Kendal Briles was brought in to attempt to turn things around — his biggest task is shoring up one of the worst o-lines in the ACC. FSU’s Week 1 game vs. Boise State (at Jacksonville) will tell us a lot and go a long ways in determining an over or under win total. The Seminoles are currently -4 chalk.


Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

2018 Reg. Season Wins: 7
2019 Reg. Season Wins: 4un-145
Quick Take: With Paul Johnson gone and Temple’s Geoff Collins and a new offense in, oddsmakers were quick to project a steep decline. Johnson spent over a decade in Atlanta recruiting and teaching the option. Collins was a good hire but this is a potential take-a-knee type of situation in Year 1. It’s conceivable the Yellow Jackets won’t be favored in a single game against a FBS opponent.

Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders
2018 Reg. Season Wins: 8
2019 Reg. Season Wins: 5.5un-125
Quick Take: The focus this offseason is the loss of quarterback Brent Stockstill who spent seemingly eight years in Murfreesboro. It’s an interesting situation because replacing Stockstill’s production will be impossible but there’s some talent returning and most important, defensive coordinator Scott Shafer is back as well. Shafer has quietly turned the Blue Raiders into a defense-first program — look to bet the under early and often with this year’s squad. The schedule is tough. At Michigan, vs. Duke, and at Iowa out of conference and a brutal C-USA stretch: vs. Marshall, at FAU, at North Texas, vs. FIU. A 2-6 or even 1-7 start is possible putting pressure on MTSU to finish 4-0 in order to cash an over.

Nebraska Cornhuskers
2018 Reg. Season Wins: 4
2019 Reg. Season Wins: 8.5un-130
Quick Take: Here’s a boilerplate “gainer.” Well respected Scott Frost starts first season in Lincoln 0-6 but rallied to finish a respectable 4-8 — including two losses at Ohio State and Iowa that the Cornhuskers could have won. And they outgained Big Ten foes on a yards per play basis (6.31-6.13) despite going 3-6. Toss in a favorable schedule with key games vs. Ohio State, Wisconsin, and Iowa at home and boom, a projected 4.5-win improvement. Buyer beware: Nebraska is pegged to be in as many as five games lined a field goal or less. Bowl game? Very attainable. Nine wins? Tricky.

UCLA Bruins
2018 Reg. Season Wins: 3
2019 Reg. Season Wins: 6ov-120
Quick Take: Another ballyhooed head coach expected to make waves in his second season. This is a critical year for Chip Kelly; what happens if he suffers another down season? Plenty of preseason prognosticators see the Bruins as a year or two away from really competing. Will Kelly see it through? Like Nebraska, there were some late season signs of hope including a win over rival USC. But even accounting for the natural Year 1 to Year 2 improvement, the Bruins were done no scheduling favors with a very realistic chance of opening 0-5 (at Cincinnati, vs. San Diego State, vs. Oklahoma, at Washington State, and at Arizona). Pretty crazy to see a team lined at 6 wins despite being more than a touchdown favorite in as few as one game.

Utah State Aggies
2018 Reg. Season Wins: 10
2019 Reg. Season Wins: 6.5ov-130
Quick Take: Everything broke right for the Aggies last season including a +14 turnover margin. Make no mistake; this was a fantastic football team but head coach Matt Wells and his staff parlayed it into a gig at Texas Tech. Bringing back Gary Andersen was a questionable move at best; why not try to find the next David Yost? And the schedule is far tougher with road games at Wake Forest, San Diego State, LSU, and Fresno State. Wins to be had in the Mountain West but the quality of play in Logan should be far lower in 2019.

West Virginia Mountaineers
2018 Reg. Season Wins: 8
2019 Reg. Season Wins: 5.5un-135
Quick Take: Neal Brown was a home run hire; the Mountaineers may actually play some defense at some point! But with a new coaching staff, starting quarterback Will Grier and four other draft picks gone, regression is the safe pick. Be careful however to peg Brown’s first season as a total wash. They’ll need a game or two to bounce their way but six wins is attainable. If anything, only a trip to Norman will the Mountaineers be a prohibited underdog.

Andrew Lange

With significant market influence, Andrew Lange has produced a decade-long 58% winning rate on over 750 selections in college basketball. Using a low volume, high return approach, Lange's results in the NFL have been equally impressive with a 61% mark and over +49 units of profit on a 1, 1.5, and 2-unit scale since 2012.