It’s been a good bowl SZN although it’s been disrupted a good bit by COVID. Not the end of the world as long as it doesn’t mess with the playoffs but it has killed a couple of great CLV plays like Memphis that we had ready to go. The 28th starts a big run of bowl games through New Years so even with a small deficit we have plenty of time to secure a decent profit. We still have two MLPs pending with UNC and Miss State so if those two cash then we’ll have a small profit to work with. I’m covering the 28th and 29th games here and then will cover the 30th and 31st games in the next preview. Let’s do it.
Bowl SZN: 9-10 -1.18u
CFB YTD: 145-127-5 +6.61
Houston vs. Auburn (-2) o/u 51.5
This is one of the games I have the least of an angle on but I’m not gonna NOT bet on every game. This is a noon local kickoff and neither of these teams should be particularly motivated. Auburn lost four straight to end the season including getting upset by Miss State and South Carolina and losing a heartbreaker in their Super Bowl against Alabama. Bo Nix is transferring and Auburn has multiple other starters out due to injuries/opt-outs/transfers. Houston on the other hand just lost in their conference championship game and Dana Holgerson famously doesn’t give a shit about bowl games. I think we see a lackluster mediocre effort from both teams and the defenses show up stronger than the offenses.
Pick: 1u u52.5 (like to 50)
Air Force vs. Louisville (-1.5) o/u 55
I’m rolling with the service academy bowl game auto-play here. I think Malik Cunningham is a tough matchup for them but Air Force should be able to swarm on him effectively. Overall, I think Louisville will struggle against the triple option and Air Force will be aggressive on fourth downs as always and be successful here.
Pick: 1.5u Air Force ML (+100)
Miss State vs. Texas Tech (+9.5) o/u 58.5
I think Mississippi State rolls her. This is a massive talent gap between these two teams and Cowbell had a nice season that I think they would love to top off with a win. Mike Leach is also going against his former school that according to Mike Leach still owes him a BAG from his old contract that they never paid him. I think Leach airs it out and Will Rogers lights up this Tech secondary. I like Miss State as a MLP piece but if I had to bet I think they cover the 10. I may add some on the spread later on but I currently have them in an MLP with GA State and another with Wisconsin.
UCLA vs. NC State (-2) o/u 60
Devin Leary was one of the most underrated players in college football this year. He put up massive numbers and had NC State exceed expectations- they were a coinflip game win against Wake away from playing for an ACC Championship Game. NC State has a really tough, well-rounded defense and UCLA has some major turnover regression they are due for. I’m calling my shot on a key UCLA turnover swinging this game. UCLA’s defense is much better against the rush than the pass which is a bad matchup for them against the Pack.
Pick: 1.5u NC State -1
WVU vs. Minnesota (-4.5) o/u 45
This is one of the worst bowl games of the whole SZN. Minnesota is a snooze fest of a team and WVU was an incredibly unmemorable, middle-of-the-road Big 12 team. I don’t have too much on this game other than the fact that the B1G is the far superior conference and motivation should be equal here so I like the Gophers to roll. Their defense was so solid to end the year and I think they use their experience to get a W here.
Pick: 1u Minnesota -4
Maryland vs. Va Tech (+3) o/u 54.5
I got the Terps early here so hopefully you did too. VA Tech is in flux after the firing of Justin Fuente and they will have a broken coaching staff along with holes across the team with guys transferring out. Maryland was a weird team this year but they seemed to handle their business against teams they should have, winning all 3 games they were favored in. VT has some major holes in the secondary that Taulia should exploit heavily.
Pick: 1.5u Maryland ML (-110) (I would pair them with a big fav ((UNC)) in a MLP if you can’t get them 3 or better)
Clemson vs. Iowa State (+1.5) o/u 44
Despite their stronger end of the season, let’s not forget how historically awful this Clemson offense was and how horrific this team was ATS. They finished 4-8 ATS but two of their covers (all 4 were in last 5 weeks) were all-time flukes, particularly against FSU. This team was dismal compared to expectations and I don’t think they have any positive momentum to win this one. Brent Venables has been such an essential part of this team (and maybe more significant than Dabo in terms of in-game coaching) and has left for OK. I think that will hurt this Clemson defense. OC Tony Elliot has also left Clemson along with a handful of players in the transfer portal. Star WR Justyn Ross is going to be out for this game and their #2 WR is questionable. For an offense that already struggled that’s bad news. I think Iowa State takes their loads of experience and takes care of business under Matt Campbell who decided to stay with the Cyclones despite all the big job openings this year.
Pick: 2u Iowa State ML (+100)
Oregon vs. Oklahoma (-4.5) o/u 60.5
Another gross one here. These are two major programs that had their head coach leave them pretty high and dry after really disappointing ends to their respective seasons. I think we see a lackluster effort from both teams so I’m just betting an under and hoping Caleb Williams does some cool stuff.
Pick: 1u u61
That’s it! Things are changing fast with these teams dropping out and bowl games getting canceled so I’ll update if any of these games change and hopefully we still get as many games in as possible because we will dearly miss CFB when it’s gone!