NCAA Football 2012 Conference Betting Previews- Big East
The Big East enters the 2012 football season with eight teams in the conference, but one of its perennial powers, West Virginia is now a member of the Big 12 and its place is the MAC’s Temple Owls. The following is a betting preview for a few of the top contenders in the Big East this season along with each team’s current odds to win the conference as provided by Bookmaker.
The Mountaineers exit paved the way for the Louisville Cardinals to become the favorite at 9/4 to win the conference title. The basketball-centric Cardinals have been diligently working to upgrade their football program of the past few seasons and they finally started to reap some dividends. Louisville only managed to go 7-6 overall but it earned a three-way share of the Big East title with a 5-2 record in conference play. It now returns 17 starters from last year’s team including nine starters from a defense that finished 17th in the nation in points allowed; giving-up an average of 20.1 points a game.
Along with West Virginia, the other team to finish with a 5-2 record in the Big East last season was the Cincinnati Bearcats. They finished 10-3 overall after beating Vanderbilt in the Liberty Bowl, which was a huge improvement from a disappointing 4-8 campaign in 2010. The Bearcats lost two huge weapons on offense in quarterback Zack Collaros and running back Isaiah Pead, but they do return seven starters from a defense that was almost as stingy as Louisville; giving-up an average of 20.3 points a game.
The third-favorite to win the Big East this season at 7/2 is the South Florida Bulls. This appeared to be one of the better up-and-coming programs in the country with an 8-5 record and win over Clemson in the Meineke Car Care Bowl in 2010, but it took a major turn in the wrong direction last season with an overall record of 5-7 and a dismal 1-6 record in conference play. In an effort to right the ship, the Bulls will look to a number of new faces on both sides of the ball in addition to bringing back 16 starters for last year. BJ Daniels is once again expected to be South Florida’s starting quarterback and remains a double-threat with both his arm and legs.
The Pittsburgh Panthers fall from grace has been swift; going from a perennial national power to the being just the fourth-favorite at 13/2 to win the Big East. The Panthers went 10-3 in 2009 before falling to 8-5 in 2010. They could never climb out of the hole created by a 3-4 start last season and ended-up 6-7 on the year. Even with all of that, Pitt was just one win away from tying for the conference title with a 4-3 record in Big East play. Back for one more season at quarterback is Tino Sunseri. He did manage to complete over 64 percent of his attempts in 2011 but only threw for 2,433 yards and had one more interception (11) than touchdown passes (10). It is little wonder that the Panthers were ranked 77th in the country in passing yards per game.
The odds for the other four teams to win the Big East Conference title are Rutgers at 13/2, Syracuse and Temple at 20/1, and Connecticut bringing up the rear at 25/1.
DJ is a freelance writer that concentrates on his true passion in life; the world of sports. He produces a number of articles each week for BangTheBook.com as well as a select group of other websites that specialize in providing the most up-to-date information for the sports gaming industry. His goal is to write insightful articles on a wide variety of sporting topics that can provide an edge to today's sophisticated online player.