Betting Turf - Week 9 Football

Ohio State College Football

Betting Turf - Week 9 Football

Gambling sharps (the best gamblers around) are right roughly 57% of the time. That figure sounds low to most. But, in fact, it is a high enough figure to make a living off of. The key to being a sharp is not only picking more winners than losers, but also finding the best lines and odds for your bets. An extra half point here, an extra point there makes a huge difference over the course of a season. Unfortunately, shopping for lines is a lengthy process that takes time all week right up until kickoffs in some cases. And probably more unfortunate is the fact that I'm no sharp.

With that in mind, here on The Betting Turf, I will be aiming for 53%. If I am right more than I am wrong, I should stay in the black. This should hopefully factor in the vig as well. Oddsmakers take a percentage of all bets, meaning nailing exactly half your bets (assuming equal money is laid down) will not result in the gambler breaking even. They must also cover the juice taken away from each wager. Without further ado...


Roughly halfway through the college football year, four teams remain undefeated, but only two teams nationally are spotless against the spread. TCU (5-1 record, 6-0 ATS) and Mississippi (7-0 record, 6-0-1 ATS) are the remaining unbeatens. This makes sense. Few thought either TCU or Ole Miss would be as great as they’ve shown, and lines have been slow to react, let alone overreact.

On the other end of the spectrum are some teams in very, very different circumstances but who all have failed to live up to expectations. Florida State (7-0, 1-6) actually has one of the worst records ATS in the entire country. People expected them to blow everyone out, especially because of their weak schedule, and it hasn’t happened. The same goes for UCLA (5-2, 1-6). Then there is SMU, who has somehow managed to go 0-6 on the year and just 1-5 against the spread, both losing considerably week after week but still failing to generate even the slightest bit of underdog mojo as the lines rise.

That lone SMU win ATS was the one time I selected its opponent on the Betting Turf. Go figure.


Texas +10

Kansas State -10

Much like Missouri being a touchdown underdog last week, this spread is attempting to cover a storyline too quickly. Is Kansas State really the 11th-best team in the nation, or have more talented clubs simply fallen on their faces? The Oklahoma win was a fluke, and KSU shouldn’t expect to be in sole possession of first place in the Big 12 for long. Not that Texas is going to take it from them, but the Longhorns are good enough to keep this game in single digits regardless of what ranking K-State currently holds.


South Carolina +17.5

Auburn -17.5

I haven’t had a great feel for the SEC recently other than betting against Florida. I expected huge spreads to be covered all over the Southeastern Conference last week, and it didn’t happen. Instead, blowouts ran rampant. I am going back to the well one more time for the Gamecocks. A nearly three-touchdown deficit seems hard to fathom against South Carolina. While it hasn’t been capable of slowing anyone down on the defensive end, most notably allowing 34 points and 45 points to Vanderbilt and Kentucky respectively, USC’s offense has always kept pace. That’s what I am banking on here.


Ohio State -13.5

Penn State +13.5

Ever since that Virginia Tech loss back on September 6th, the Buckeyes have been rolling. They’ve scored at least 50 points in all four games since. More importantly, quarterback J.T. Barrett has looked fantastic. He was admittedly atrocious against VT, but that was just his second career game, and the Hokies have a formidable defense. Since week two, Barrett has thrown 17 touchdowns to just one interception. Last week, he completed 61 percent of his passes; the other prior games, he was well over 70 percent in each. And he is a force on the ground. I don’t see how Penn State stays within two scores of Ohio State with the way its offense is trending.


2014 Record Against the Spread:  14-14