Looking at college football trends | NevadaAppeal.com

Looking at college football trends

by Joe Ellison
Nevada appeal betting columnist

College football’s regular season has hit the home stretch. In the coming weeks dozens of important games including rivalries will be played. It won’t be long before it’s December 2, the day we all find out for sure who will be playing for the Bowl Championship Series title.

So, now seems like as good a time as any to review which teams have been the best moneymakers for handicappers so far this year. According to my numbers:

Surprising Kansas is not only undefeated at 8-0, the Jayhawks are the only team in the country that has covered the point spread in each of its games. It makes sense that the only four teams to have one loss against the spread (ATS) , Oregon (8-1), Connecticut (7-1), Missouri (6-1-1), and going into last night’s game West Virginia (6-1-1), all also had only one loss straight up.

The teams that have been the worst against the spread are ones that have experienced some success in recent years, but are falling on hard times during this campaign. They are Minnesota (1-6-2), Western Michigan (1-6-2), Northern Illinois (1-6-1) and Nebraska (2-8).

The schools that are currently the hottest ATS, besides Kansas, are Connecticut with six consecutive covers, Air Force with five, and North Carolina State, Utah, and Oregon with four.

The teams to bet against lately have been led, remarkably, by Louisiana State. Although the Tigers have just one loss and are in position to play for the BCS Championship, they have failed to cover the point spread in six straight games. Wyoming is on a 0-5-1 stretch and Northern Illinois is 0-4-1. California and Kent have not covered four in a row.

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Note – Those were not necessarily predictions for upcoming games, but they are trends that I wouldn’t want to go against right now.

NOTHING SACRED

There have been some awkward moments and strange occurrences during this year’s college football season, but so far ESPN television is the “worldwide leader” when it comes to being rude.

When Southern Mississippi played at Boise State, during the game ESPN’s cameras followed Boise star running back Ian Johnson as he hastily entered and left a port-a-toilet.

Yes, it is cable television, but isn’t there anything sacred anymore? The ESPN announcers were describing and laughing about the situation Johnson needed to take care of.

What’s next for modern television? A stopwatch to keep track of how much time Johnson spent off the field. Perhaps a microphone and camera inside the port-a-toilet? Maybe a close-up to see if he went on the field without washing his hands? Or possibly an on-field interview with Johnson giving a blow-by-blow description of what he did?

Obviously, it is none of our business how long a player is in a port-a-toilet and what he’s doing in there.

COLLEGE HOOPS

The 2007-08 college basketball season began this week, and most everyone would say that it is way too early to be paying attention. Try telling that to Ohio State, Michigan State and Kentucky.

Already Kentucky lost a game to Gardner-Webb, Michigan State was beaten by Grand Valley State, and Ohio State fell to Findlay. Although two of those games were exhibitions, the Kentucky loss counts in the standings. It should be a wild and wacky year in college hoops.

National Champion – A simple look at the top of the polls tells you who the favorites are. The pick here is Memphis.

CANADIAN FOOTBALL

We must not forget about our good neighbors to the north who begin their Canadian Football League playoffs on Sunday. Wagering is available on games that can be watched on channels such as Comcast SportsNet and Altitude Sports and Entertainment.