That’s a wrap. It is that time of the year where we find out who amongst the 6+ win teams will be bowling this college football postseason. The 16th of December marks the start of “bowl season” with ten teams, five games, on display. If you are like me, then you love filling out your bowl pick em’ sheets each and every year. However, I like to partake in the point spread pick em’ pools. In my opinion, the point spread factor facilitates the more skillful sports nuts (sharps).
The information that I will share with you will assist you in your bowl pick em’ pool, regardless of the pools’ format. Before I share, I would like to point out that “bowl season” is slightly different than the regular season. You must keep in mind, and this is a big one, that some teams do not want to be playing in the bowl that they have been selected to play in. Hence, this team in particular may not show up that game (figuratively speaking). Now for the meat a potatoes of this discussion!
So, what is the first thing we are looking for when deciding which team to choose? What makes this team a better pick than the other team? As I stated above, you must use common intuition to distinguish a teams’ motivation level. For example, do you really think that the Ohio State Buckeyes want to play in the Cotton Bowl after being left out of the College Football Playoff? Look for the USC Trojans (+7.5) to put up the better fight in this match-up on December 29th.
This next tidbit, I must give all of the credit to FishyFive’s Pat Hagerty. Hagerty believes that picking teams that are aware of their coaches dismissal at the conclusion of the season are big no-no’s when it comes to your bowl winners. Here is a list of bowl teams that have lost their head coaches, or will lose their head coaches following the conclusion of their bowl game. Arizona State, Central Florida, Mississippi State, Oregon, Southern Methodist, and Texas A&M. If you wish to pick these particular programs in your pool, then pick at your own risk. You’ve been warned! For the full list of coaching changes in college football this season, CLICK HERE.
Next, it is never a bad idea to keep the age old saying in the back of your head, “defense wins championships.” Last year, 59% of the bowl games resulted in the UNDER. Those are odds that will beat the vig/juice (52.4% win rate to break even, typically at a -110) more times than not! “ Scoring points is cool, winning is cooler.” – Pat Hagerty.
Here are some bowl statistics of the win percentages for the power five conferences since 1990, you’re welcome!
PAC 12: 53%
BIG 10: 47%
BIG 12: 41%
For the record, on the first day of bowl mania, I like the Broncos of Boise State as 7.5 underdogs against the Ducks of Oregon.
Good luck this bowl season betters!