Although not a hugely popular market, the Heisman seems to offer some value right now if you can pick two or three Offensive Skill Position players. Let’s look at the college football odds.
Silver State Sportsbooks Put Heisman Trophy Award Winner on Betting Boards for a Second Year
Last year, the Nevada Gaming Commission approved Futures Book betting on the NCAA College Football’s Heisman Trophy winner and this year we have college football odds up for the prestigious annual award at Station Casinos properties. Here are the opening odds for the players from this new, and unique College Football marketplace. And never forget the potential value of a good ”Field” (10/1, Station Casinos) bet amidst the din in a new niche market here in the Silver State.
Odds to Win 2016 Heisman Trophy Award—Station Casinos
Christian McCaffrey (Stanford, RB) 5/1
DeShaun Watson (Clemson, QB) 7/1
Baker Mayfield (Oklahoma, QB) 10/1
Leonard Fournette (LSU, RB) 10/1
Dalvin Cook (Florida State, RB) 10/1
Chad Kelly (Mississippi, QB) 12/1
JT Barrett (Ohio State, QB) 14/1
Nick Chubb (Georgia, RB) 16/1
Jarrett Stidham (Baylor, QB) 18/1
Seth Russell, (Baylor, QB) 18/1
Royce Freeman, (Oregon, RB) 18/1
Samaje Perine (Oklahoma, RB) 18/1
Bo Scarbrough (Alabama, RB) 20/1
Calvin Ridley (Alabama, WR) 20/1
Josh Rosen, (UCLA, QB) 20/1
Malik Zaire (Notre Dame, QB) 22/1
DeShone Kizer (Notre Dame, QB) 22/1
Joshua Dobbs (Tennessee, QB) 22/1
Brad Kaaya (Miami-Florida, QB) 28/1
Luke Falk (Washington St., QB) 28/1
Elijah Hood (North Carolina, RB) 28/1
Jalen Hurd (Tennessee, RB) 30/1
Jabrill Peppers (Michigan, S) 35/1
Greg Ward Jr. (Houston, QB) 40/1
Dakota Prukop (Oregon, QB) 40/1
Mason Rudolph (Oklahoma State, QB) 40/1
Corey Clement (Wisconsin, RB) 40/1
Christian Kirk (Texas A&M, WR) 50/1
Juju Smith-Schuster (USC, WR) 50/1
Saquon Barkley, (Penn State, RB) 50/1
Field (All others not listed) 10/1
Conclusions: A Long Wait For a Potential Payday and a Pretty Boring Marketplace and Three Sexy RB Picks
As you can see, as usual, the perceived race for the 2016 Heisman Trophy is primarily between Offensive Skill Position players—mostly QBs, RBs and WRs—although one Defensive player, University of Michigan Safety Jabrill Peppers (35/1 to win Heisman Trophy, Station Casinos) has odds posted for him from the Sin City sportsbook which used to be the Bingo Palace in 1977 and whose Vice President of Sportsbook Operations, Art Manteris, first placed those niche NCAAF Props Futures Book marketplace odds on his company’s sportsbooks’ betting boards on Oct. 5, 2015.
Ohio State RB Ezekiel Elliott and LSU’s Fournette reportedly got much money in the first year (last year) wagering on this niche but fun and long-term Prop which basically lasts from August to December but is was Alabama RB Derrick Henry (opened 16/1 in June 2015 at Bovada) who took home the award (and the money at the betting windows) this past season from the Downtown Athletic Club in New York City on Dec. 12. Roll tide?
And who exactly votes for the Heisman Trophy, a big reason why there wasn’t legalized betting on this Award until last year—because there is voting involved and because somebody will ultimately know the winner ahead of time? Well, the 50 US states are split up into six Regions (Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Midwest, South, Southwest and Far West) and six Regional Representatives are chosen to appoint voters in their respective states.
The six Regions each have 145 Media votes for a grand total of 840 votes. Also, all previous Heisman Trophy winners are allowed to vote and there’s one final ballot representing us, the Public. Heisman Trophy ballots are made up of a 3-2-1 point system, with the voter’s top choice receiving 3 points. The points are then all added up, and the player with the most points (obviously) wins the award. In betting markets, should there be a tie, the pot is split between the winners but with this 3-2-1 point system and 840 regional voters with former winner tossed in, the randomness dictates that there will probably never be a tie. Never, ever ever.
And it always seems that the best route here is to pick an Offensive Skill Position player, so one of, or all these three RBs at their current odds seem worth a shot. And then you wait. And wait. Odds will definitely fluctuate once the NCAA Football season kicks off, and Injuries can play a big part of in who wins. Last year 5-10, 210-pound Georgia RB Nick Chubb (16/1 to win Heisman Trophy, Station Casinos) looked like he had an outside shot, but like former Bulldogs teammate and now NFL Rookie Todd Gurley (Rams), he suffered a Knee Injury which sidelined him.
Expect Chubb to be back with a passion this season for the Dawgs, but he and fellow SEC RB Leonard Fournette (10/1 to win Heisman Trophy, Station Casinos) of LSU could split the votes in many Regions unless one has a distinctly better season than the other or if one gets hurt like Chubb did last year. Football’s a violent game. If forced to pick just one, the speedy Fournette (300 rushes, 1,953 yards, 22 TDs) as would be the call although the Tigers and the 6-1, 230-pound will face some tough tests, per usual, in the best conference in NCAAF. Expect Fournette to put up some sick numbers (again) and shoot for that gaudy 2,000-yard rushing mark. And to also try win the Heisman, something on his radar (and voter’s) last season.
And a nice longshot-type college football pick is Oregon RB Royce Freeman (18/1 to win Heisman Trophy, Station Casinos). The 5-11, 230-pound sophomore from Imperial, Calif. rushed 283 times for 1,836 yards and 17 TDs for the Ducks last season and with that sturdy, compact size and a 4.58 40-Yard Dash time, Freeman may be worth a shot although voters from the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and South may not see enough of Oregon or be so SEC- or South-biased to not give Freeman (or others) his fair shake should he ultimately deserve it.
And when you’re betting on even weird things like the Heisman Trophy, it’s good to think about little things like that. And remember that Michigan CB/KR Charles Woodson—20 years ago in 1997—was the last non-QB or RB to win this coveted award. Clemson QB DeShaun Watson (7/1 to win Heisman Trophy, Station Casinos), Stanford RB and odds favorite Christian McCaffrey (5/1 to win Heisman Trophy, Station Casinos) and Florida State RB Dalvin Cook (10/1 to win Heisman Trophy, Station Casinos) should all receive heavy wagering in this entertaining market at Station Casinos here in Las Vegas in which betting closes on Nov. 20, 2016.
NCAAF HEISMAN TROPHY WINNER FUTURES BOOK PICKS: Leonard Fournette, LSU, 10/1; Nick Chubb, Georgia, 16/1; Royce Freeman, Oregon 18/1 (Station Casinos)