Betting Turf Bowl Season Football: January Edition

UCF College Football

Betting Turf, By Ts - Bowl Season: January Edition

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, we will not be shopping around for our lines here. And, probably more unfortunate is the fact that I'm no sharp.

With that in mind, The Betting Turf will aim for 53% on College Football betting. 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.


Bowl Season: January Edition

2013 Regular Season Record ATS: 41-39


When predicting bowl games, there are a few important factors to consider that make the matchup itself a little bit different than if the same two teams faced off against each other during the regular season. Also, there are no (for the most part) home teams in bowl games; everyone is playing in a neutral location.

  • *Although the game is at a neutral site, does the location favor one team?
  • *Is one team more likely to scoop up the majority of tickets available, and thus turn it into a home game for their boys?
  • *Is a team "just happy to be there" because they are satisfied with how their regular season turned out?
  • *Is a team disgusted by their bowl draw and may not play up to their abilities?
  • *Does a team feel the need to prove something based on the bowl/matchup they were given?

All of these things factor into bowl results and why some teams show better or worse than you would ordinarily expect.


Wednesday, January 1 Gator Bowl

Nebraska +9

Georgia -9

For two teams that finished the year with dueling 8-4, 5-3 records, expectations were higher than the Gator Bowl they have been relegated to. And the game itself should be a shell of what the matchup could have been. Both teams' starting quarterback, Aaron Murray for Georgia and Taylor Martinez for Nebraska, are out with injuries. Georgia also has numerous other players missing the game. The safe bet seems to be to take the points, especially when this line seems too high.


Tostitos Fiesta Bowl

Central Florida +16.5

Baylor -16.5

Still after all these weeks and all these games, Central Florida is getting no respect. The Knights finished undefeated in the American conference and earned their trip to a BCS bowl, yet Baylor is still a two-plus touchdown favorite in the Fiesta Bowl. Baylor, of course, looked like the most dominant team in the country for much of the season, but UCF has a stout defense and a quarterback of its own to match Bryce Petty.


Friday, January 3


AT&T Cotton Bowl

Oklahoma State +1

Missouri -1

Both of these teams finished the season in debilitating fashion. Oklahoma State got handled by Oklahoma in its final game of the regular season, where a win would have pushed them into a BCS bowl. The same goes for Missouri, when the Tigers lost to Auburn in the SEC Championship game. So with no momentum on either side and good wins on the resume of both schools, the edge has to go to the team that was just a little bit better all year long. A one-point spread means you are simply picking a winner (with the worst case scenario being your team winning by one and resulting in a push). I like Missouri.


Saturday, January 4


BBVA Compass Bowl

Vanderbilt -2.5

Houston +2.5

This line doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Vanderbilt finished the year playing well, winning its last four contests, but they secured only one solid win all season. There was very little the Commodores excelled at. Meanwhile, Houston stumbled to the finish line, losing three of its final four games. But those three losses came at the hands of the three best teams in the AAC. Houston was squarely and comfortably the fourth best team the new conference had to offer. The Cougars also had a stellar passing offense and good scoring defense all season long. Each of those three losses came by just one score, and no Houston opponent since October 19 topped 24 points in a game.