Smart Box Series: High Expectations
By Marc Lawrence
When Alabama defeated Florida, 28-21, to win the first ever SEC championship game in 1992, it signaled the start of Division-1 college football conference title games.
This week finds a total of six FBS conference championship games on tap, with no less than four teams each owning one loss on the season.
Satisfyingly enough, these four one-time losers – all 11-1 on the year - find themselves paired against one another as upstart Kent State squares off against Northern Illinois in the MAC title game, while Alabama meets Georgia in the SEC championship game.
In addition to the pressure of being a defending national champion looking to get back to the BCS Championship Game, Alabama must also overcome exceedingly high expectations of its own.
The staggering effect of what happens in conference championship games with teams who have dominated on the playing field the last two seasons is eye-opening, to say the least.
Our database confirms the notion, finding that teams in conference title games who managed to win 19 or more of their last 22 games are just 6-15-2 ATS when installed as favorites in these games.
Worse, when favored by 21 or less points, and playing off a win of 3 or more points, these ’pips’ dip to 1-14-1 ATS in these title game roles.
The Tide may be high in Tuscaloosa these days but expectancy of rewarding their backers is low this week.
- O (SD at PHI)
- AAA Sports
- August 30, 2015 - 1:35 PM
- Offered at:
- betonline @ Over 8 100
1* Free Play OVER Padres/Phillies.
The visitors hand the ball to James Shields (9-5, 3.74 ERA) who was shelled for five runs off eight hits over just 5 2/3's innings in a setback to the Nationals on Tuesday; Shields would strike out only two, while issuing four walks in the 8-3 setback. Shields has regressed as the season has progressed, having now given up five runs in two of his last three starts. And unfortunately for Shields and the Friars, a date on the road is not what the doctor ordered at all for the veteran to get back on track as he's a poor 4-4 with a ballooned 4.97 ERA away from friendly confines to date. The home side counters with Alec Asher (0-0, 0.00 ERA) who makes his debut at the major league level, the 23-year old was a poor 6-10 with a pedestrian 3.97 ERA and 137 hits allowed in 133 2/3's innings in Triple-A Lehigh Valley. With more questions than answers surrounding these two starters, the OVER does indeed become a very legitimate option in this particular matchup.
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