Smart Box Series: As The Noose Tightens
By Marc Lawrence
November is, unquestionably, the best time of the season for sports fans. The NFL enters its second-half race, College Football concludes with teams scurrying for bowl bids while the NBA and College Basketball tips off a new campaign. It’s also a great time for handicappers as value aplenty abounds.
Our focus in the world of College Football begins to center around postseason bowl games during turkey month. In particular, we like to zero in on undefeated teams at this stage of the season. That’s because the deeper they get into the season, the more pressure there is on them to remain unbeaten. As a result, the noose certainly gets tighter and tighter each week, especially when these perfect teams take to the road.
This is confirmed by the fact that, since 1980, undefeated College Football teams playing on the regular season road from Game Ten on out are 96-35-1 SU and 54-66-2 ATS. Hence, these teams tend to suffer their first loss of the season nearly one-third of the time. A warning signal has been sounded for Kansas State, Louisville, Notre Dame and Oregon this week.
Pair them up against an opponent that has some semblance of a defense (allows 24 or fewer PPG on the season) and the shiver in their boots, going 42-31-1 SU and 24-45-1 ATS. The Cardinals and Wildcats will be showing signs of trembling this Saturday.
Bring them in as a favorite or dog of less than 4 points off a SUATS win and it’s time for blindfolds, as these guys are 11-26 ATS.
The bottom line is these teams are at their absolute worst in these games when they take to the road off a SUATS conference win from Game 10 out with a perfect record as a favorite or dog of 4 or less points against a foe that allows 24 or fewer PPG provided they’ve won 20 or less of their previous 28 road games. These teams tend to die hard, going 9-9 SU and 2-16 ATS.
Both Kansas State and Louisville look to meet their maker this week. Gentlemen, mount your horses.
- April 23, 2014 - 7:05 PM
- Doc's Sports
- Offered at:
- betonline @ -135 Cleveland
Doc's Sports Wednesday MLB Free Play!
Wednesday MLB Free Play from Doc’s Sports Take #972 Cleveland Indians (-135) over Kansas City Royals (Wednesday, 7:05pm EST) The Cleveland Indians and Kansas City Royals both exceeded expectations in a big way last year. The Indians grabbed a wild card berth with 92 wins while the Royals were in the race most of the way with 86. They were two of the best stories in baseball last season, but only one of those teams has a realistic shot of doing it once again. The Royals were successful in 2013 due to a dynamite bullpen and superb defense. Good bullpens are very hard to maintain from year-to-year as they are already finding out. Their bullpen ERA is over a full run higher than last season and two of their top guys are on the disabled on top of it. The Royals had unbelievable defensive metrics last season, and those will also be hard to repeat. The Indians, on the other hand, were successful last year mainly due to a well-balanced offense and good starting pitching numbers. Those variables are much more consistent from season-to-season, so I think the Tribe has a good chance to be in the thick of things again in 2014. Team ace Justin Masterson takes the ball for Cleveland on Wednesday, and he looked good last time out after a couple of shaky outings. On the other side is Jason Vargas for Kansas City – a guy who generally keeps his team in the game but won’t dominate the opposition. Big edge to the Indians there. Add in the home field advantage and the fact that Cleveland has the better overall team, and it all adds up to a play on the Indians here.