Submitted by Kelso Sturgeon on Monday, June 30, 2014 at 7:00 PM
As all of you regular students here in my College of Advanced Sports Betting and Sports Handicapping prepare for the 2014 college football season…you’re going to notice something right off the bat.
There are going to be a few superpowers who will be running up the score week after week. It’s a case of “the rich stayed rich” for a few teams who were blessed with stellar quarterback play in 2013, and see their stars return to play again in 2014.
I’m referring specifically to:
*Jameis Winston of Florida State: The Heisman Trophy winner on the national champion will get to face a very easy schedule in 2014. Perhaps off-the-field issues or other headaches will make the season interesting for the Seminoles. Handicappers trying to pick their games will be dealing with the constant issue of garbage time.
*Marcus Mariota of Oregon: The Ducks never stop trying to pile up the points with their first unit. Mariota was injured part of last season, which kept Oregon from reaching its full potential. This team definitely has its eyes on a championship run in 2014.
*Braxton Miller of Ohio State: I think the media tends to get too excited about Miller in terms of true stars at the position. But, there’s no arguing that he’s a high impact player within the construct of the slow-footed Big 10. Ohio State is a heavy favorite to win the league, and will once again be largely facing an outmatched schedule.
*Bryce Petty of Baylor: the Bears put up huge numbers because of their aggressive fast break football approach and their ability to recruit quarterbacks who make good decisions running the system. The Big 12, the media, and many in Vegas were caught by surprise last year when Petty was so good so fast. This year, their pointspreads will be very high, and they may cover them anyway!
I’m afraid that many football fans here in Las Vegas have been tuning out the colleges because of all the blowouts involving high profile teams and stars. The NFL has always been king here. Squares love betting on the best teams…but they don’t like laying 42 points then rooting for backups to get or protect the money in the fourth quarter.
Here’s a listing of all games that the four teams listed above will play against opponents ranked in the Top 20 in the Preseason Athlon newsstand annual.
*Florida State: NOBODY!
That’s right, Florida State only plays one team in the Preseason top 20. And, that's a home game against Notre Dame...where early Las Vegas lines are suggesting the Seminoles will be favored by at least THREE touchdowns. Clemson may sneak in there by the time that game is played. Would it matter? FSU crushed Clemson last year in Death Valley.
*Oregon: vs. Michigan State on September 6, at UCLA on October 11, vs. Stanford on November 1
That’s one tough game a month…which is at least more challenging that what Florida State or Ohio State will be facing. Most of Oregon’s schedule will probably feature the 70-30 games we’ve grown accustomed to seeing…or to tuning out midway through the second quarter.
*Ohio State: at Michigan State on November 8
Maybe Penn State will be a top 20 team by the time the Buckeyes face them in late October. Or, maybe they won’t be top 40! Right now, the rematch of the last season’s Big 10 Championship game (won by the Spartans) is the only serious challenge on the Ohio State schedule.
*Baylor: at Texas on October 4, at Oklahoma on November 8, vs. Kansas State on December 6
Well, this might be challenging…or it might be a case of Athlon significantly overrating both Texas and Kansas State. Heck, Oklahoma is often overrated! I’m sure I’ll be talking more about the new look at Texas in the coming months. I’m not ready to say the Longhorns are a threat to Baylor just yet. Baylor is the Oregon of the Big 12.
If you’re thinking about handicapping games involving these four teams, you better spend a lot of time looking at third and fourth stringers. Personally, I’ll be focused more on teams who will likely be in “starter vs. starter” situations for the full four quarters. And, I’ll be paying particular attention to PLAYMAKERS and GAMEBREAKERS in those manageable games with manageable pointspreads.
Hopefully you’ve already made a trip or two to your local newsstand or bookstore to purchase this summer’s college annuals. You should already be logging returning starters, and researching the high impact quarterbacks, wide receivers, and running backs who will be helping you cash tickets this Fall.
Between now and the start of football, I’ll be winning money for my clients in daily baseball. You can join the fun by purchasing my BEST BETS right here at this very website with your major credit card. If you have any questions about early-bird football or summer baseball packages, please talk to one of my representatives in the Vegas-Sports-Masters office at 1-888-777-4155.
We’ll continue with our mix of “read and react” baseball analysis with football preparation through the summer. The Dean of Sports Handicapping greatly appreciates your attendance and hard work!