Capper Sticks With Canes Pick Over Mountaineers In Russell Athletic Bowl

Miami Hurricanes

Ross Benjamin

Friday, December 23, 2016 4:24 PM GMT

SBR college football analyst Ross Benjamin updates us on his previous Russell Athletic Bowl betting preview. Find out what’s changed since his original article was written on this contest. This is a must read before making a wager on this game.

Ross Benjamin’s SBR 2016 College Football Record: 48-24 (66.7%) ATS

 

Russell Athletic Bowl Updated Odds: Miami-Fla. vs West Virginia

My original Russell Athletic Bowl betting preview article was published on Saturday 12/10. At that time, Miami was a 3.0-point favorite and there was a posted total of 56.0 per college football betting odds at Intertops.com. As of this writing (12/22), Miami is now a 2.5-point favorite and the total is 57.0 via Bookmaker.com.

 

Betting Patterns

Currently, 53.2% of point spread wager have gone on West Virginia, thus prompting a small line move from 3.0 to 2.5. There’s been a hint of sharp money going on West Virginia since I last previewed this contest. However, I’m not buying it, and the numbers don’t add up in that regard. If anything, my professional intuition leads me to believe the opposite may indeed be the case. Nevertheless, I know one sharp bettor who won’t be wagering on West Virginia, and his name is Ross Benjamin.

 

Head Coaching Edge to Miami

Miami head coach Mark Richt spent the previous 15 seasons in the same capacity at Georgia. During his tenure in Athens, his teams were 9-4 straight up and 8-5 ATS during 13 bowl games. Richt’s teams at Georgia frequently improved as the season wore on, and peaked at an optimum time.

I’ve never been crazy about West Virginia head coach Dana Holgorsen. Prior to going 10-2 this season, his previous 5 West Virginia teams were just a combined 36-28 (.563), and that includes 2-2 in bowl games. One thing that specifically concerns me in regards to Holgorsen is how his teams have faded down the stretch during 4 of the past 5 seasons. This season, West Virginia started 6-0, and then suffered blowout losses to Oklahoma and Oklahoma State. Furthermore, in their regular season finale they escaped with a narrow 3-point home win as a 17.0-point favorite against a Baylor team which had lost 5 in a row.

 Final Thought

At the end of the day, I respect the best sportsbooks abilities to set an accurate line. Miami opened as a 3.0-point favorite despite their inferior 8-4 record compared to West Virginia’s 10-2 mark. I’m staying with one of my early college football bowl game predictions in this specific instance.

Free College Football Pick: Miami Fla. -2.5Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker

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