Betting Turf - Week 6 Football

UCLA College Football

Betting Turf - Week 6 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...


Sometimes a failed cover is painful. You had everything figured out perfectly. In taking an underdog, that team hangs with the heavy favorite all game long, proving the spread was too high. And yet, a late flurry or late fumble gives the favorite the cover anyway. Or, going with a favorite to win big, the underdog is outmatched but scores a garbage-time touchdown that matters to no one but gamblers.

Other times, a failed cover is okay because you had the game wrong anyway! Florida State’s week five win over NC State looks painful on the surface. The spread was FSU -19. The Seminoles won comfortably but only by 15. One more score! But, following the game a bit closer you realize Florida State was lucky to win at all, let alone by two scores. The Noles were down 17-0 to start this contest and 24-7 at the end of the first quarter. If not for five second-half touchdowns, FSU’s playoff hopes would have been dashed, let alone a measly September cover.

So even though the final score makes it seem like an ATS win was so close, in actuality, I was just plain wrong here, and FSU came out super flat. We still don’t quite know if the Seminoles are one of the four best teams in the country.


Utah +13

UCLA -13

Brett Hundley is back behind center for the UCLA Bruins. Enough of these Jerry Neuheisel spreads. To be fair, Neuheisel still hasn’t started any games; he finished the Texas win when Hundley went out, but the projected first-round NFL draft pick was back the following game. UCLA’s early-season scuffles were with Hundley in at quarterback, but the ship seemed righted last game against Arizona State. Look for the ball to keep rolling and the Bruins to get back near the top of the national discussion.


Vanderbilt +34

Georgia -34

This is entirely a pick against Georgia. I wanted to do it last week but needed one more week of confirmation that the Bulldogs have an atrocious defensive team. It also doesn’t help that the passing game is sputtering under first-year starter Hutson Mason. At this point, Georgia cannot beat any conference foe by 34 points, which is a good thing because Vandy is perhaps the worst team in the SEC.


SMU +41

East Carolina -41

This is one of those games that seems so obvious it’s sure to backfire. East Carolina is rolling people, coming off a 70-point barrage against North Carolina. The Pirates have one of the best offenses in the country, especially through the air. Hosting SMU could be the biggest blowout of the season, and that’s saying something. Here are SMU’s five game results thus far this season: lost 45-0, lost 43-6, lost 58-6, lost 56-0. Something painful is going on at Southern Methodist, and as easy as it is to win by a whopping 41 points, ECU should do it.


As for the SEC powerhouse jamboree this weekend with six ranked teams playing each other, the Betting Turf is staying away. I could talk myself into either side of all three games. Instead, go ahead and read William Scott’s This Week in the SEC. Or, do a three-team teaser with Alabama slid down to a pick’em, LSU +14 and MSU +4. Either one of those options is fine.


2014 Record Against the Spread: 11-7