Inflated Betting Odds for Week 7 College Football Picks

Willie Bee

Monday, October 6, 2014 4:22 PM GMT

Monday, Oct. 6, 2014 4:22 PM GMT

How will the college football oddsmakers respond to a huge week of upsets like we just saw? Better yet, how will bettors react to the early numbers on the betting board?

Washington State Cougars vs. Stanford Cardinal
If you believe ESPN's Travis Haney, the Pac-12 isn't going to be part of the first playoff at the Division I level. He may be right, and my crystal ball doesn't have a firm forecast to make a bold counterargument to Haney's prediction, but my question is if he's so smart, why did he wait until after Week 6 on the College Football betting schedule to tell us this?

Speaking of the Pac-12, if you believe the early College Football odds, the Stanford Cardinal are 17.5 points better than the Washington State Cougars. The West Coast rivals  meet for the 20th consecutive season -- and 63rd time overall -- this Friday night (9 PM ET) in a game that can be seen on ESPN.

One thing I will agree with Haney on is the notion that we will not see any 2-loss teams in the gridiron version of the Final Four...unless, of course, there aren't four unbeatens or 1-loss squads for the selection committee to choose from. That's possible, I guess, but highly unlikely, so Stanford is out of the playoff picture after dropping its second game of 2014 last week at Notre Dame.

Once again, it was a very weak offense that did the Cardinal in, though we do have to acknowledge they were facing a pretty stout defense in South Bend. Stanford is taking on a much easier group of defenders in the Cougars, who lost their fourth game in six tries, allowing California to put up 60 points on them at home where Wazzu was favored by 4.5.

The Stanford defense, ranked first in the country allowing 8.6 points per game and second in total yards (232.4 ypg), is also going to be facing a more prolific offense, the Cougars fifth nationally (579.5 ypg) after Connor Halliday threw for a Div. I record 734 yards in the setback to Cal.

This will be your proverbial unstoppable force meets immoveable object matchup, and Stanford should come out on top. But by 17.5 points? I don't think so, and believe this spread is inflated by about a field goal.

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Texas Longhorns vs. Oklahoma Sooners
Some of the sheen is off the Red River Rivalry after the Oklahoma Sooners fell from the ranks of the undefeated in Week 6. Oklahoma shot itself in the foot with a couple of turnovers that directly led to 13 TCU points, but the Sooners remain very much alive in the playoff chase assuming they can win out and someone else can trip up the Horned Frogs.

Texas was really never in the hunt for either the playoffs or even the Big 12 title, and the numbers for this week's high noon (ET) showdown suggest the Longhorns won't be much of a challenge for OU. The spread started with the Sooners laying 14.5 points, and it hasn't budged a bit in early action.

I have to admit to being tempted to take the points and Texas since this rivalry has produced its fair share of close scores and upset winners over the years. The 'Horns looked pretty good for the most part on defense in the 28-7 loss to Baylor last Saturday, but Charlie Strong's offensive unit is P-U stinky and will be facing an even better defense in this tilt than what the Bears showed. No, a 2-TD margin on the NCAA odds sounds about right, and it's the total we should all be anticipating for a possible play on the 'under' as a College Football pick.

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Mississippi Rebels vs. Texas A&M Aggies
I haven't looked at every scenario to determine if it's even possible, but after this past Saturday in the SEC, it's not difficult to imagine this bunch taking turns beating each other up to leave a pair of 2-loss teams for the conference championship. Short of that, it's very hard to think anyone runs through the SEC unbeaten, with no more than two remaining on that list once Week 7 is in the record books.

Among the three that are still undefeated, the Mississippi Rebels put their 5-0 mark on the line with a tough road trip to Texas A&M on Saturday (9 PM ET), and the opening odds favored the Aggies by 2, the spread quickly moving to -2.5.

There's no doubt that it's tough to win at Kyle Field, and I do not expect Aggie receivers to mistake butter for stickum like they did in the embarrassing 48-31 defeat at Mississippi State a few days ago. But the Aggies are going to be up against a very good Ole Miss defense, and while they won't have to worry about Rebel QB Bo Wallace beating them with his legs like the Bulldogs' Dak Prescott, I'm convinced any offense can look good against the A&M stop unit.

These College Football odds are all wrong, and it's Mississippi that should be laying 2.5 points.

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Willie Bee's College Football Season of Handicapping: 29-21-1 (+5.90) at YouWager

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