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.
- March 10, 2014 - 10:00 PM
- Art Aronson
- Offered at:
- pinnacle @ -164 Vancouver
This is a 1* Free Play on the Vancouver Canucks
The Vancouver Canucks squeaked out a massive win on Saturday and while it is still a long road to the playoffs for the team the win did a lot to the mental psyche and I think it makes it two in row with a very beatable opponent in the Islanders visiting. The Islanders are not a very good squad right now with injuries and deadline moves killing the team’s chances of really competing on a nightly basis. The Islanders blew two third period leads already on back to back nights coming into this game against two of the western conferences’ worst teams in Edmonton and Calgary and should find it just as hard here against a desperate Canucks team. "We needed to play,” Vancouver coach John Tortorella said after Saturday's 2-1 home win over Calgary. "We have to scratch, claw and grind and find points anyway possible." Vancouver has at least been beating most of the teams it should be this season with a 19-12 record versus teams with a losing record. This is the last game of three game western road trip for New York and you can bet the team is ready to head back home. Consider laying the decent price to get the home team in Vancouver here.