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Submitted by SportsMasters Consensus on Friday, January 04, 2013 at 12:17 PM

One of the most anticipated bowl matchups of the college football postseason for fans and sports bettors is a game that will have little meaningful bearing on the national rankings. Sharps pay particular attention to emotion and preparation when dealing with such a matchup. Let’s see what they’ve been betting so far in Friday Night’s Cotton Bowl featuring former Big 12 rivals Oklahoma and Texas A&M.

COTTON BOWL

TEXAS A&M vs. OKLAHOMA

Opening Line: Texas A&M by 4, total of 72

Peak Line: Texas A&M by 5.5

Peak Total: 73.5

Current Line: Texas A&M by 3, total of 72.5

We believe the key words up above were “emotion” and “preparation” because those were the major influences in both directional moves you see above.

*Texas A&M has been the best prepared team of any this football season. They’ve consistently had great first quarters no matter where or who they were playing. Sharps noticed this early, and took full advantage with big bets that created major line moves on a variety of occasions. Sharps saw an opener of A&M -4, and believed they would have an energy and preparation advantage with the Aggies' steamroller facing the often questionable coaching of OU's Bob Stoops.

*When Texas A&M offensive coordinator Kliff Kingsbury was hired away by Texas Tech during the build-up to the bowl, that sentiment changed completely. Sharp money started coming in on Oklahoma because the Wise Guys believed A&M would be much less well-prepared without him…and that the offense would be down emotionally with his loss.

*It didn’t hurt that “The Heisman Jinx” was in play here regarding the dog move. Sharps don’t believe in jinxes or superstition. But, they know that history shows countless flat performances by teams whose star player own the Heisman Trophy. It’s not a jinx, but a natural letdown because of distractions, celebrations, and often overconfidence. The loss of the offensive coordinator AND the potential flat spot for the Aggies brought in enough Oklahoma money to drive the line all the way down to the key number of three.

So, in essence, sharps who liked A&M even with the Heisman issue bet the favorite at the opener, but then got off their bet when Kingsbury was hired away. Sharps who liked Oklahoma waited to see the highest number they could get…bet the apex on the Kingsbury news…then kept betting at +5, +4.5, +4, and +3.5.

Things have largely solidified at the key number of three. But, it’s worth noting that there wasn’t any buyback on the Aggies at that number. And, we are hearing that there’s still sharp interest on the Sooners that may influence juice in some places. You may have to lay -120 to get the trey on the dog before kickoff. That will depend on how the public bets the game.

The total has been hopping between its opener of 72 and its peak of 73.5. That’s a fairly tight range for an indoor bowl with a very high number like this. There’s not clear passion for either option, with various factions stepping in on their preference when they think they see the best they’re going to get.

This sets up pretty solid numbers for you and our VegasSportsMasters to shoot at Friday. Several are stepping out with big plays in this matchup. Complete details on A&M-Oklahoma and Friday basketball are available on our “buy picks” page here at the website. Remember, our handicapping legends made their names by beating game day lines for their clients!

We will have a couple of sharp reports coming up in shorter order late Friday. We’ll run our usual Friday NFL report that will cover all four Wildcard games. We’ll also have a special minor bowl edition that will outline early sharp tendencies in Saturday’s BBVA Compass Bowl matching Pittsburgh and Ole Miss, as well as Sunday’s Go-Daddy Bowl featuring Arkansas State and Kent State. Our look at how sharps are betting the BCS Championship game between Notre Dame and Alabama will run on Monday.

Be sure you visit VSM every day to get the best in Las Vegas sports betting information!


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