Rivalry Weekend 2019 was disappointing. The Palmetto Bowl, The Game, Bedlam, The Civil War, GEO-GT, WISC-MINN, BAY-KAN, ND-STAN, LSU-A&M, UF-FSU … all blowouts and 0 upsets.
The only close game that meant something last weekend was the Iron Bowl – Bama-Auburn. A discouraged Michigan fan, I didn’t even feel like watching another football game Saturday, but I tuned in once I realized Bama had a chance of going down.
OFF THE IRON! NO GOOD. pic.twitter.com/kkfxgchwLV
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) December 1, 2019
The entire nation is celebrating today as Auburn’s victory guarantees Alabama will miss the College Football Playoff for the first time ever. Finally!
There are 7 teams in legitimate contention for the 4-team Playoff. LSU and Ohio State are locks. Clemson and Georgia are in with wins. If Clemson or Georgia loses, the door swings wide open for Utah or Oklahoma/Baylor to grab the 4th spot.
I was asking for too much last week. I wanted to see some major upsets and extreme shake-up in the top-5. That didn’t happen. This week, I just want to see some close games.
LSU, OSU, Clemson, UGA, Utah, Oklahoma, Baylor. Pick any combination of 4 teams and we are in for an awesome playoff.
We have 8 conference championship games on tap this weekend. All 8 feature at least one ranked team. 6 are ranked vs ranked showdowns. 3 feature 2 top-10 teams. This is going to be great. Here are some numbers for the 3 biggest matchups.
Saturday 12/7 – Noon ET
9.5 The Sooners are currently -9.5 (-110) on Bovada. This line is obviously subject to change, but it shows consistency from Vegas. In Game 1 between OU and Baylor, the Sooners closed at 10.5-point favorites. Not much has changed in 3 weeks. We can expect a similar game in Round 2.
24 The number of unanswered points scored by OU in the second half of the first game. Down 31-10 at halftime, Jalen Hurts and the Sooners stormed back to win 34-31.
2 Since we have data, teams are 0-2 both ATS and SU when meeting a team in the postseason that they trailed by at least 24 points at halftime in their previous meeting. For what it’s worth – the under also hit in both of these games.
Saturday 12/7 – 4pm ET
8 It has been 8 years since the LSU Tigers have appeared in an SEC Championship game. As the #1 seed, the Tigers routed – who else – Georgia 42-10 back in 2011. Tyrann Mathieu won POTG honors.
4 LSU has won ATS in each of their 4 previous matchups with UGA. Dating back to 1986, LSU is 10-5 ATS (66.7%) against UGA. Bovada currently has LSU -7 (-110).
2 Kirby Smart and UGA have appeared in 2 SEC Championship games and have covered the spread in each. In 2017, UGA demolished Auburn 28-7 and were only favored by 2 points. Last season, Alabama dealt Georgia a 35-28 loss but the Bulldogs were +11.5.
Saturday 12/7 – 8pm ET
11 The combined number of B10 title game appearances by OSU and WISC. 2019 will be the Badgers’ conference-leading 6th appearance. It will be the 5th time Ohio State has played in this game. The Buckeyes lead all B10 teams with 3 B10 title game victories.
7 In the past 7 meetings between Ohio State and Wisconsin, the Badgers have only won ATS once. The Buckeyes have won all 7 of these contests SU. The last time Wisconsin beat OSU was October 16, 2010.
I’m excited for this weekend. Plenty of betting opportunities are present. See you on top!