Nick: Poor Results for the Big 10
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ONLY OHIO STATE LOOKING LIKE A NATIONAL POWER
Entering the season, the betting markets were expecting an exciting race in the Big 10 this season. Ohio State was the clear favorite. But, many transported Midwesterners in Las Vegas (and to a lesser extent Nevada) were talking up the chances of teams like Iowa or Wisconsin to make a run at the conference title. Penn State was part of the discussions, though everyone new they'd be young.
After the first two weeks of action, Penn State had fallen out of the discussions because of their poor performance at Alabama. But, Michigan had jumped into the mix after defeating UCONN easily and upsetting Notre Dame in South Bend.
It looked like the top teams in the Big Ten were going to be a big part of the national scene. That's good news for Nevada sportsbooks because Big Ten teams are on TV all the time. We want squares (the general public) coming in on Saturdays to bet TV games they're excited about.
- Iowa didn't look very good at all most of the night in their loss at Arizona. This was a big play for me. In fact, Arizona was my BLOWOUT OF THE MONTH as advertised online and in national publications. I had a blowout lead in the second half before Arizona decided to give us all a thrill. The Wildcats did put together a great drive to finish off the game. I didn't think Iowa was ready to play in the desert. And, I believe the Hawkeyes are much more dangerous when they're catching teams by surprise rather than coming in highly regarded. Iowa isn't so highly regarded at the moment.
- Wisconsin barely survived an Arizona State team they were supposed to dominate at the line of scrimmage. In fact, if not for a blocked extra point that game might have gone overtime. And, if Wisconsin hadn't made a valiant tackle on a kick return as time was running out in the first half, ASU may not have needed overtime to win the game. Given a non-cover against a very bad San Jose State team (just a 27-14 win as 38-point favorites), and this double digit failure against the spread, Wisconsin isn't seen as a national power right now either.
- Michigan struggled with UMASS, who's not even on the regular board. And, this game happened so early in the day that the media had all afternoon to talk about the shocking 42-37 final score (Michigan was roughly a 30-point favorite on the outlaw line). Now everyone's remembering how soft this defense is, rather than marveling at the electric quarterback.
- Michigan State was hoping to join the fun. They needed overtime to survive Notre Dame, and they didn't cover a 3.5-point spread. Note that the Spartans needed a trick play to win the game because they didn't have the expected edge at the point of attack. It was a memorable win. But...considering that Notre Dame looked shaky at Purdue, then lost to the Michigan team that didn't impress against UMASS...Michigan State didn't make a very good case for itself.
Now...Ohio State played well. They've been very good this year, and are certainly in the national championship discussion along with Alabama, Texas, and the traditional powers. The rest of the Big Ten may be further behind the Buckeyes than originally expected.
I'm glad I won my big play against a Big Ten team this past week. I may be going against a few more in the very near future. I strongly encourage you to pay attention to the dynamics in this conference. The media hype often doesn't match up with on field performance. Since the public often bets on media hype, this is something smart bettors can take advantage of.
This week in the Big Ten (in rotation order):
Northwestern (-7) hosts Central Michigan
Purdue (-13) hosts Toledo
Michigan (-25) hosts Bowling Green
Iowa (-28) hosts a very bad Ball State team
Ohio State (-42) hosts Eastern Michigan
Penn State (-16.5) hosts Temple
Indiana (-21) hosts Akron
Minnesota (-4) hosts Northern Illinois
In non-board games, Michigan State hosts Northern Colorado, and Wisconsin hosts Austin Peay. Illinois has a bye week.
Is that too much chalk for an overrated conference? Or, not enough chalk for a group that's fired up after a bad start?
Understanding how the market overrates or underrates conferences is an important key to beating the line. I can't give away too many of my secrects here in my web articles. But, I can tell you that conference strengths and weaknesses will be playing a very big role in my selection process coming up this weekend. It's still mostly interconference action on the board...and I've now had three weeks to evaluate how the leagues stack up this year.
You can sign up for my college and pro service online. Don't forget that I also won a GOM in the pro's when Denver flattened Seattle in my NFL INTERCONFERENCE GAME OF THE MONTH, then came back and won Monday night with the 49'ers (+5.5) in their 22-25 cover against the Saints. Game day releases are always available a few hours before kickoff. You can also sign up for seasonal service here at the website, or by calling 1-877-822-2276.
Sport by sport...conference by conference...team by team...the best information will always come to you DIRECT FROM NEVADA!
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