Pro Betting Tips For College Football Rivalry Games
College football rivalry games are all about over-the-top emotions, exaggerated hype and spotlight from the media, and a soldier-like devotion from the players to give their all for the honor of their schools. And with all that comes a lot of confusion to college football betting lines enthusiasts, considering we have 10 NCAAF conferences along with a number of Independent schools that play week-in, week-out in rivalry games. To stay ahead of other bettors when betting on rivalries, it is therefore well worth your effort to primarily familiarize yourself with the best sportsbetting tips for the college rivalry games. And that’s exactly what we’ll be doing in this article, as we shed light on some elemental pro betting tips for the NCAA Football rivalry games, which so often have a large bearing on divisional championships and national title contention as well.
Analyzing The Pro Betting Tips For College Football Rivalry Games
Betting on the Home Underdog
Placing a bet on home underdog in a rivalry game, especially a small underdog, is possibly the sharpest betting angle to use when betting on rivalry games. For instance, if USC is favored on the road against UCLA Bruins, they the best bet in this spot. Even if the Trojans manage to win the game, chances are that UCLA will at least cover the spread, making the hosts a good value bet.
Betting Against Ranked Teams in the ATS Lines
At the beginning of the season, big public football programs like Alabama, Florida, USC, Texas and Ohio State are often overhyped and voted highly by the media and the coaches in preseason rankings even when the reality is that they are not that good. When you find teams that fit such a bill, like those that have an erratic quarterback or a poor defense, it could be greatly rewarding to you if you bet against them in the ATS lines more so in games when they run into a solid opponent. A good example is the 2015 Auburn Tigers team that was popularly hyped in the preseason polls and ranked at No. 7 in the USA Today Poll, only for them to disappoint mightily in the course of the season with cheap straight up losses and surprising ATS non-covers. In the just-began 2016 season, this trend is perfectly exemplified by the Appalachian State at No. 9 Tennessee Week 1 encounter, where the extremely hyped Vols were favored by 20-plus points over the solid—and underrated—App. State team. The result? Not only did the visitors dominate the Vols for most of the game, but Tennessee had to struggle mightily to take the game to OT, where the Vols won via 7 points on a luckily recovered fumble in the end zone. Needless to say, the 7-point Tennessee victory was nowhere close to covering the 23-point spread over App. State. In that sense, don’t buy too much into the rankings. But if you do, then use professional discretion to judge the teams rather than just basing your entire NCAA Football betting strategy on the rankings
Be on the Lookout for Excessively Trimmed-down Spreads
While it is true that rivalry games come with a lot of surprises from the underdogs, it is important to remember that the value is NOT ALWAYS on the puppies’ side. And knowing that bettors often gravitate towards betting on the underdogs, the Oddsmakers sometimes misappropriate the value of the favorites by placing a pretty low point spread to trick the underdog bettors into thinking that the favored team is vulnerable. My favorite example of this is the 1996 Arizona State at Arizona rivalry game. At the time, Arizona State Sun Devils was ranked at No.3 in the nation and was playing great football as a possible national contender while Arizona had barely won 5 games. But to my surprise, Arizona State was favored by just 7 points, rather than 20-plus points over the then-hapless Arizona team. Come the end of the game, Arizona State routed Arizona to the tune of 56-14. The lesson? Be on the lookout for this type of trap and be careful not to fall for it. Yes, most rivalry games tend to be real close, but that is not always the case.
Shy Away From Big Road Underdogs
Players and coaches don’t admit it too often, but the truth is that playing as a big road underdog has a way of affecting team performances. For the big home favorites, they often come into the game very motivated to prove their worth. For the underdogs, most of them are usually beaten psychologically even before the game, and resultantly, their performance is affected in a negative way. So while there are instances that the big road dogs will cover, the majority of such games end up with wins for the home team in the SU and ATS lines. Rather than gamble with such games by betting on the underdog, it is advisable to keep away from such lines altogether as they present too many betting downsides than upsides.