Georgia a Safe Bet in Las Vegas According to This

As I’ve mentioned before, the benefit to the somewhat advanced scoring analysis that I conduct (the Normalized Scoring Models explained here) is to analyze the previous performance of two teams and draw conclusions by putting them on an equal (normal/average) playing fields with regard to competition.  Stats can be used to draw conclusions from the past, but they are not necessarily indicative of what will happen next – especially not in a game like football with some many variables at hand on each and every play.

For instance, I can use previous statistics to learn that Florida has a very good defense and that Louisville has an above average offense, but I can’t use those statistics to show that Florida’s defense will play well against an above average Louisville offense.  And I can’t use those statistics to show what type of success Louisville’s offense will have against an elite defense.  All I can do is say, “if both teams play the way they have been playing on both offense and defense, then then a score like X – Y would be realistic.”  That’s a lot of ifs.

Conditional statements notwithstanding, I went ahead and used the advanced scoring metrics to analyze every potential matchup using the following statistical matchups:

  • Team A Scoring: Average of Team A’s Offense vs. Team B’s Defensive Coefficient, Team B’s Defense vs. Team A’s Offensive Coefficient 
  • Team B Scoring: Average of Team B’s Offense vs. Team A’s Defensive Coefficient, Team A’s Defense vs. Team B’s Defensive Coefficient


In each game Team A was the team favored by Las Vegas (courtesy of  As a test of the betting odds and the accuracy of this process (which again, is not designed to predict games, but rather to analyze teams) I charted the lines relative to what the model showed about the two teams by subtracting Team B’s score from Team A’s and comparing it to the spread.  I then took hypothetical (only bet where it is legal and do so responsibly knowing that I don’t even endorse this method…yet) action based on the line and the model results.  Here is what I found.


Favorite Underdog Spread Normalized Scoring Differential Hypothetical Bet
Arizona Nevada



Nevada   +7

Utah State Toledo



Utah State   -7.5




BYU   -2.5

UCF Ball State



UCF   -7

LA-Lafayette E. Carolina



LA-la   -4.5

Boise State Washington



Boise State   -7.5

Fresno State SMU



Fresno State   -11.5

W. Kentucky Central Michigan



C. Michigan   +6

San Jose State Bowling Green



BGSU   +7.5

Cincinnati Duke



Cincinnati   -11

Baylor UCLA



UCLA   +1

LA-Mo Ohio



Ohio   +6

VA Tech Rutgers



Rutgers   +1

Texas Tech Minnesota



Minnesota   +13

Rice Air Force



Rice   -1

AZ State Navy



Navy   +14.5

West VA Syracuse



Syracuse   +3.5

Oregon State Texas



Oregon State   -1

TCU Michigan State



Michigan St   +1

Vandy NC State



Vandy   -5

Southern Cal Georgia Tech



USC   -10.5

Tulsa Iowa State



Tulsa   -3

LSU Clemson



Clemson   +3

OK State Purdue



Purdue   +17.5

Mississippi State Northwestern



N’Western   +2

South Carolina Michigan



Michigan   +4.5

Georgia Nebraska



Georgia   -8.5

Stanford Wisconsin



Wiscy   +6.5

Florida State NIU



NIU   +14

Florida Louisville



Louisville   +15

Oregon K-State



K-State   +8.5

Texas A&M Oklahoma



Texas A&M   -3

Ole Miss Pittsburgh



Pitt   +2

Arkansas State Kent State



Arkansas St   -4

Alabama Notre Dame



ND   +9.5

A few notes:

  • These formulas still don’t account for schedule strength, so dominant small conference schools seem artificially propped (like Northern Illinois).  But, then again we’re supposed to believe that NIU is a great team and to the Huskies credit they have consistently been at the top of these ratings since I started them in early November.
  • Twenty of the thirty-six matchups (55.56%) favored the underdog.  I don’t think that we can safely conclude that this attests to the accuracy of the betting lines or the strength of this process, but I would feel a lot worse if it was an 80/20 split towards the underdog – or vice versa.
  • The formula actually picked eight favorites to lose outright.  The listed lines on those games were: 1, 1, 1, 2, 2, 3.5, 7.5 and 14.5.  The two largest spreads that might lose outright were Arizona State (-14.5) against Navy and Arizona (-7) against Nevada.  This doesn’t bode well for teams from Arizona taking on schools that start with the letter “N,” but I’m not sure how the formula knew that.


Games that seem odd:

  • Bettors must expect the same Baylor team that beat the tar out of Kansas State to show up this Bowl Season.  I do not, and the numbers do not.  I think UCLA is a better team and it is surprising to me that this spread is so small and that Baylor is favored at all.  We’ll see if the formula gets it right as it picked the Bears.
  • I think a similar situation exists in the VA Tech / Rutgers game.  The Big East is sneaky good in these numbers, and it’s not like Virginia Tech plays in a conference that is anymore challenging.  Tech is getting “historical” value built in to their program’s tradition.  But Rutgers – in my opinion – is the better team.
  • The USC/GT math was surprisingly close.  But I agree with the ultimate conclusion.
  • These numbers show Wisconsin and Stanford to be almost identical.  I think that might be the case – when Wisonsin is good.  But the Badgers need to show and play to their potential, which may be hard without the lead Badger.
  • The NIU / FSU game is also dead-even.  This is either indicative of the formula’s inability to account for differing schedule strengths and conferences or of my inability to accept the numbers and ignore personal biases.


Georgia vs. Nebraska 

This analysis seems to support everything that scared Cornhuskers believe to be true.  The 8.5 spread, according to this data, is much too small as it projects Georgia to be 16 point superior.  That 16 point differential is the third largest of the 36 bowls trailing only Fresno State over SMU and Cincinnati over Duke (both of which opened with 11+ point spreads).



Again, these are not necessarily my picks, but I’ll continue to keep tabs on them as Bowl Season progresses.  I’ll also offer more insight as I preview every single Bowl game, so check back for more learning and fun!


That’s all I got/





About dudeyoucrazy

College Football Writer

Posted on December 11, 2012, in Blog, Georgia Bulldogs, SEC and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. Seems like your model suggests betting on Notre Dame vs. Alabama. Is this correct?

  2. So far so good. I just took out a second mortgage and am putting it all on LAL tonight!

  1. Pingback: Good Sign in Georgia Bowl Prep and a Preview of the New Mexico Bowl and the Spud Bowl « DudeYouCrazy

  2. Pingback: The Moment (none of) You All Have Been Waiting For: The Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl Preview « DudeYouCrazy

  3. Pingback: Forced Christmas Traditions and the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl « DudeYouCrazy

  4. Pingback: Want Pizza? Go to Little Caesars. Want good football? Don’t watch the Little Caesars Bowl. « DudeYouCrazy

  5. Pingback: Garbage à Trois: Previewing the Three Best College Football Bowl Games on ESPN on Thursday, December 27, 2012 « DudeYouCrazy

  6. Pingback: The Russell Advocare Athletic Meineke V100 Independence Bowl of Texas Preview « DudeYouCrazy

  7. Pingback: Bowl Games of December 29th: You have a full starting lineup, just hope nobody gets tired. « DudeYouCrazy

  8. Pingback: From the Dark Side: A Florida Fan Breaks Down the Sugar Bowl and the Gators Odds Against the Spread « DudeYouCrazy

  9. Pingback: Old Man Football Revisited, the Gators’ Loss and the Tostitos’ Party Bowl « DudeYouCrazy

  10. Pingback: Cotton Bowl Preview: More SEC Winning « DudeYouCrazy

  11. Pingback: National Championship Preview: This Dawg Says Roll Tide…Just for a Night « DudeYouCrazy

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: