Five Conference Championship Tips
LAS VEGAS, NV (TheSpread) - With the conference championship games starting this weekend in college football, here are some key betting tips and trends to consider before placing your wagers.
Marshall @ Rice----This game is being played at Rice Stadium and Rice is playing with double revenge. I have to think initially that this veteran Rice team comes to play this afternoon. They are 5-0 SU playing at home this year. Marshall tends to struggle on the road, especially in conference games. Rice is playing their best ball of the season currently having outgained their last 6 opponents and I like the momentum they bring into this game.
· Marshall is 0-6 ATS their last tries in conference road games when playing an opponent with a winning percentage of > 70%.
· Rice is 11-0-1 ATS their last 12 tries as a conference home dog coming off a win.
"X Factor" : Rice brought back a FBS leading 233 returning starts from last year's team and the leadership is showing down the stretch
Missouri vs. Auburn----Both teams are covering machines (20-3-1- ATS combined) and have been great to our bankroll this season. Missouri is a blocked field away vs. South Carolina from being undefeated more than likely. Missouri has a 4 headed monster in the backfield (yes, I am including QB Franklin). Missouri also has 3 receivers that all 6'4" or taller. I saw the corners of Auburn get torched by Alabama's Amari Cooper last week and should be a weakness that Mizzou can exploit. Missouri has the situational advantage with Auburn coming off their biggest win of the season last week.
"X Factor" : Missouri's run defense (allowing only 3.6 yards per carry) vs. Auburns rushing attack (6.3 yards per carry)
Duke vs. Florida State----FSU made me a believer early on this season and the off-field distraction with Winston has not been an issue. But laying 29 points in a conf. championship game that is played on a neutral in Charlotte, North Carolina?? My initial reaction is too grab the 4 touchdowns with Duke, but FSU is averaging 53 points a game while their defense is only giving up 11 points a game. That is a +42 point differential. The Duke run defense is a concern for me as they are giving up 170 yards a game. I have the feeling that it will be too much Seminoles down the stretch and a 56-20 score would not surprise me. This is a tricky game and one I might revisit closer to game time...Stay tuned.
Stanford @ Arizona State-----This game is being played in Tempe, Arizona at Sun Devil Stadium. Arizona State is 5-2 ATS at home this year, but a perfect 2-0 ATS as a -3.5 point home favorite. They waxed Washington 53-24 then gave Lane Kiffin a nice going out of town present with a 62-41 beatdown. Stanford won the matchup earlier this year, 42-28. That game was played over 2 months ago and I feel that Arizona State is playing better football currently while I feel that Stanford has not progressed very much. Stanford relies on their stout run defense, but Arizona State has an offensive genius in HC Todd Graham and I'll give Arizona State an initial lean as they are winning at home this year by an average score of 49-20.
"X Factor" : Arizona is ranked 10th in Takeaways this season while Stanford is ranked 96th.
Ohio State vs. Michigan State-----Pressure is mounting for Ohio State and is obvious as they are 0-3 ATS their last 3 games. Michigan also outgained them by 77 yards last week. Michigan State has the #1 overall defense in the nation and I hope Ohio State doesn't think that they be rushing for 379 yards on them this week like they did on Michigan. The last two meetings have been decided by 3 points or less and this is a revenge game for Michigan State. The Spartans are 4-0 ATS their last 4 road games. The Spartans have only gotten outgained ONCE this year and that was only by 31 yards @ Nebraska but still won the game 41-28.
Ohio State is 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 games on fieldturf.
Michigan State is 6-0 ATS their last 6 games on fieldturf.