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Submitted by Kelso Sturgeon on Monday, November 10, 2014 at 1:00 PM

We’re at the point in the season now where many mid-level college football teams start thinking about bowl eligibility. The superpowers don’t really care about that. They entered the season dreaming bigger dreams, and barely celebrate at all once they’re assured of at least playing in a bowl. But, there’s a certain class of team that will crank up THE MOTIVATION FACTOR when trying to clinch a bowl. Students here in my College of Advanced Sports Betting and handicapping need to weigh that in their process from this point forward.

What kind of teams are we talking about?

*Programs who have struggled in recent years, but are now starting to play well in 2014. Maybe a new coach has generated enthusiasm with the players and the fans. Maybe a new star has lifted the program from doormat status. Whatever. Teams who are NEW to the bowl picture (in terms of recent history, not past history with other players and coaches) will be very excited when it’s time to clinch postseason eligibility. They will get fired up for the game. They will stay fired up through the game. They will run up the score if they have a chance because it’s a statement-making atmosphere.

*Programs who had low Preseason expectations, but have gelled in a way that will launch them into the postseason. Look, college kids know then they’re getting disrespected! If the summer publications kept saying they’d finish 3-9 with no chance to compete, they will put those articles on the bulletin board when they’re closing in on a sixth victory. These athletes know they still don’t have a chance to win their conference or play in a major bowl. But, ANY bowl is worth celebrating when you were supposed to be bad. It means a free trip to a city that will be treating them like kings for a few days, and then a national TV appearance around the holidays.

*Programs who struggled in September but are now playing well. We have quite a few of those out there in the middle of the national Power Ratings. Things looked bleak at first. Players were afraid they weren’t going to go bowling this year. But, a mid-season winning streak, has put them in position…and now they can save the day by qualifying for a bid. These teams will play hard and celebrate.

It’s easy for handicappers to lose sight of won-lost records amidst all the Power Ratings, computer ratings, stats, trends, and angles that come into play when studying college football. Some of you are probably more familiar with records against the spread than you are with straight up records. Be sure you spend some time this week studying the STANDINGS! Which programs are closing in on a sixth win? Make a list, and then isolate nominees from the bullet points listed above. Each week from this point forward, there will be great opportunities where THE MOTIVATION FACTOR for bowl eligibility will inspire teams to play one or two touchdowns better than their recent form. Possibly MORE if they’ve run into a towel-tosser who’s already given up on their season and is waiting for their rivalry game to give them something to play for.

I’m not going to get specific myself here in the coursework because I have to keep that information private for my paying customers. I’m confident that you hardworking students can uncover these possibilities with research and tenacity.

If you’d like some help finding the best bets on the board each and every day, my BEST BETS can always be purchased right here at this very website with your major credit card. Questions about full season packages can be answered personally by one of my representatives in the Vegas-Sports-Masters office at 1-888-777-4155. Be sure to ask about combination packages that include football and basketball.

I’ll be back with you again later this week to talk about the NFL. We’ll adjust the lens on our microscopes a few turns as we discuss how the playoff picture can influence the performance of professional teams at this stage of the season. Early next week, look for a special report on college basketball. Yes, the college hoops season is imminent! I know there are few games this weekend…but the big game schedule explodes on Tuesday November 18, so I’ll get you geared up for that one day earlier.

The Dean of Sports Handicapping appreciates your continuing attendance. This web project has grown by leaps and bounds since it started many seasons ago. Social media is only helping the word spread. Tell your friends! But, first…I’ve given you some homework for this weekend…so get busy!


Be sure to follow:

Kelso Sturgeon on twitter @vsm_sturgeon

Vegas-Sports-Masters on twitter @vsmasters

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