When you bet on NCAA Football, you should know all about the numbers. Numbers for stats, numbers for trends, numbers for betting lines, numbers for ‘totals’ – You should know it all. Here at Bang the Book, we are set to talk about the NCAA football betting lines for Week 9. Here are the most important numbers that you need to remember for the week!
0 – The number of points that the USC Trojans scored in their three drives that they had that started in plus territory in the second half against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Is there a more bipolar team in America than USC? The Trojans put up 41 and got killed by the Arizona State Sun Devils, and they held down the Golden Domers and the Washington State Cougars to a combined 24 points and lost both games as well. We just don’t know what to make of this team at this point, and this game against the Utah Utes this week could be yet another ugly one.
2 – The number of massive wins that the UCF Knights have scored over the course of this season. Many thought that the win on the road against the Penn State Nittany Lions might have been the most impressive victory in the history of the football program at UCF, but coming back just a few weeks late to beat the Louisville Cardinals clearly trumped all. There have been so many near misses for this program – not the least of which was a few weeks ago against the South Carolina Gamecocks. It’s a miracle that college football in Orlando has finally thrived. Now, the team gets to come home to host its third game ever against a major conference school, and it is likely to be the very first win as well, as the Connecticut Huskies come to town on Saturday.
3 – The number of teams that still have yet to be beaten this year from an ATS standpoint. There is only one team that walks alone as a perfect club both SU and ATS, and that’s the 7-0 SU and ATS Missouri Tigers (more on them in just a bit). However, the Houston Cougars are 6-0 ATS and only once beaten SU with the loss coming last week against the BYU Cougars, while the Wisconsin Badgers are surprisingly 6-0-1 ATS and 5-2 SU, and they have really exceeded the oddsmakers’ expectations over the course of the first two months of the season.
4 – The number of consecutive covers that the Washington Huskies have against the Cal Golden Bears. This year, the Golden Bears are a nightmare for bettors, as they have yet to cover a spread. This doesn’t feel like a game where a lot of that is going to change, especially knowing that U-Dub is coming off of that horrendous three-game stretch against the Oregon Ducks, the Stanford Cardinal, and the Arizona State Sun Devils. The Huskies need a win in the worst way, and there is no better time than right now to see California come up on the schedule. About the only team you’d rather see more is the Colorado Buffaloes, and that’s only a maybe at this point.
4 – The number of consecutive covers for the Mississippi State Bulldogs against the Kentucky Wildcats. This matchup this weekend is going to be one of the undercard games in the SEC, but it is a really important one for MSU. The Bulldogs aren’t nearly guaranteed a spot in a bowl game at this point in the year, and in fact, they would probably end up falling off of the map in terms of a bowl game if they were to lose this game. If you want to talk about teams to feel sorry for though, look at this Kentucky schedule of late. Like this team ever had a chance! It has had to take on the Louisville Cardinals, the Florida Gators, the South Carolina Gamecocks, and the Alabama Crimson Tide over the course of the last four weeks. Thanks for playing.
6 – The number of teams that were ranked in the Top 11 in the land that were beaten last week. It was definitely a catastrophic week for so many of the top teams, and we aren’t even going to include the fact that the 10th ranked Miami Hurricanes needed a last second touchdown to beat the North Carolina Tar Heels to start the week on Thursday. On Friday, the Louisville Cardinals were dropped for the first time this year by the UCF Knights, and that set the stage for one of the wildest Saturdays of college football that we remember in quite some time. The #3 Clemson Tigers, #6 LSU Tigers, #7 Texas A&M Aggies, #9 UCLA Bruins, and the #11 South Carolina Gamecocks were all beaten on the same day, and that’s just stuff that you don’t see happen on a regular basis. Seven of the Top 15 were beaten (Georgia Bulldogs), and nine of the Top 25 went down (Washington Huskies and Florida Gators). What’s left is a Top 25 that features a Missouri Tigers team that wasn’t even ranked three weeks ago getting up to the #5 slot in the country, and the Baylor Bears and the aforementioned Canes being right in the thick of the fight for the National Championship as well.
7 – The number of SU wins and ATS wins for the Missouri Tigers thus far this season. Where in the heck did this team come from? It’s not like Head Coach Gary Pinkel had this amazing recruiting class that he brought in this year to change the fortunes of a team that went 5-7 last year and didn’t make a bowl game. Heck, even with QB James Franklin sitting on the sidelines for the first of at least four games that he is going to miss, the ‘Zou managed to beat the Florida Gators last week and beat that team down. Now all of a sudden, Mizzou went from a team that was probably going to be a 10-point underdog against the South Carolina Gamecocks at the start of the year, if not a heck of a lot more, to a team that is -2 and favored to essentially lock up the SEC East title.
29 – The number of passing touchdowns that QB Sean Mannion of the Oregon State Beavers has right now. Is there a team that deserves more respect and gets less of it than Oregon State? The penalty for losing to an FCS team should always be steep, but what needs to be recognized is that the Eastern Washington Eagles right now would be a middle of the road team in the FBS. We’d take EWU against the likes of the Colorado Buffaloes or the Cal Golden Bears right now. However, because of that bias against FCS teams, the Beavs are being punished, likely not fairly. We’re going to find out this weekend when a team that was once in the Top 5 in the land, the Stanford Cardinal come to town to test an OSU team that has a quarterback who is on the verge of already having 30 TD tosses just halfway through the campaign.
31 – The number representing the exact margin of victory for the Alabama Crimson Tide over the Tennessee Volunteers in each of the last three seasons. It’s amazing that UT lobbied to keep this series going, knowing just how badly the Tide have dominated it over the years, but that’s the case in this cross-divisional battle. This year, at least the Vols are coming off of a huge victory over the South Carolina Gamecocks before they head to Bryant Denny Stadium, but it’s not like the outcome is going to be all that much different. This is going to be yet another blowout, and the hope is that it won’t be quite as bad as they 31 point margin of defeat that we have seen over the last three campaigns.
41 – The number of points that the Ole Miss Rebels are favored by over the Idaho Vandals. The poor Vandals know that they are going to get clocked in this game, and the only question left is whether it is going to come by more than or less than six touchdowns. The only hope for Idaho? Ole Miss is coming off of that huge win at home over the LSU Tigers last week, and there is going to have to be a sense of this being a letdown game after playing four straight against massive competition. There’s no doubt that QB Bo Wallace and the gang are winning this one going away, though.
46 – The number representing the lowest ‘total’ on the board this weekend. The Western Michigan Broncos and the Massachusetts Minutemen have to beat this pathetically low number, and there is a great chance that they aren’t going to do it. Western Michigan is an 0-8 team this year with just two covers on the season, and it is averaging just 13.4 points per game. UMass has a 1-6 team that is averaging 7.9 points per game and is averaging 276.7 total yards per game. There hasn’t been a game all season long in which the Minutemen have scored more than 17 points, and amazingly, they have a win to show for it. That just shows how pathetic the Miami Redhawks really are this year.
71 – The number representing the highest ‘total’ on the board this weekend. Ironically, it isn’t the Oregon Ducks or the Baylor Bears or any of those teams that you would normally think about leading the charge this weekend for ‘over’ bettors, but it is the Wyoming Cowboys and the San Jose State Spartans instead. After a slow start to the season, San Jose State has scored 34 and 37 points over the course of its last two games, but the real kicker here is what the Cowboys have done. Their average game comes in at 64.3 points per game and 944.7 yards per game, and the offense is one of the best that the Mountain West really has to offer this year.
115 – The number of plays that the BYU Cougars ran last week against the Houston Cougars. What a wild game that was! These two teams went back and forth at each other, and QB Taysom Hill finally got the last laugh, proving that he indeed can throw the pill, throwing for over 400 yards in the game. The 115 snaps that were had tied an FBS record. Don’t figure to see BYU running that many plays this time around against the Boise State Broncos on Friday night, but this is still a neat little stat to take a look back at from Week 8.
196 – The number of yards that the Duke Blue Devils were outgained by when they took on the Virginia Tech Hokies last season. If you remember correctly, last season’s dud game for the Dookies was the beginning of the end of their statement to the rest of the ACC. Oh sure, the Blue Devils made it to a bowl game, and there is a good chance that they are going to do so once again, but in the end, they are likely to get punished in this one as well. Virginia Tech has far more class and talent that Duke has had at its program in quite some time, and though Head Coach David Cutcliffe is getting this team there, it isn’t quite there yet, and by the time it does get there, he’ll have probably left for a more lucrative job.
316 – The number of rushing yards that QB Jordan Lynch had last week for the Northern Illinois Huskies against the Central Michigan Chippewas. Yes, it was a game against Central Michigan, and a win over the Chippies isn’t exactly a game to rest your laurels on. However, when you go back and look at it, that 316 rushing yards was an FBS record for rushing yards by a quarterback in a game. Last week, we highlighted just how many rushing yards the Huskies had against CMU in 2012, and it’s not surprising that they managed to get over 400 yards once again on the ground when the toe met the leather last week.
Andrew Ryan has been in the sportswriting biz since the late-90s, and he has worked side by side with some of the best and brightest in sports gambling. Always searching for the best trends in sports, Andrew uses his brilliant math mind to his advantage to beat the books.