Bowl season in Vegas: It's the most wonderful time of the year!

Dec 10, 2017 |
Bowl season in Vegas: It's the most wonderful time of the year!
College football bowl season kicks off on December 16 with the Las Vegas Bowl and five other games.
College football bowl season kicks off on December 16 with the Las Vegas Bowl and five other games.

College football bowl season is here! For many of you, this is the most wonderful time of the year. Bowl season kicks off on December 16 with the Las Vegas Bowl and five other games. With the exception of Christmas, there are bowl games every day beginning December 19 - I miss days when the Hawai'i Bowl was played on Christmas, but that's another story.

While most football fans are just looking forward to the College Football Playoff games on New Year’s Day, sports bettors are eagerly anticipating the first game of the new season. The first day of bowl season this year has six games beginning with the Celebration Bowl between Grambling vs. North Carolina A&T at 9 am Pacific on December 16. Depending on the sportsbook, that 1st day 6-team parlay could pay 40-1.

My excitement as a college football fan and bettor continues to grow. https://www.covers.com/editorial/Article/5b95b48e-969b-11e7-a97e-125516351e3a/One-sports-bettors-conversion-from-NFL-to-college-football-betting-odds-las-vegas While I love a data-driven approach to betting baseball and basketball, college football is largely the opposite. I often start selecting games to handicap based just the emotion of the game.

I use data, statistics, and trends in my weekly handicapping, but everything begins with the emotion. That usually helps me narrow the day of games to a manageable number for research. Bowl season is no different. In fact, I’ve heard many handicappers say that emotion is more important for bowl games. I just say that the emotion is just different. Instead of handicapping a "blackout" game for Ohio State at Iowa we look at other emotional factors. For example, how will Oregon play against Boise State at the Las Vegas Bowl without head coach Willie Taggart? Boise State is +8 as I write this. I’ll look more in depth into this game later.

Best Time Of The Year In The Sportsbook?

More than a few people have told me over the past week that this is their favorite time of the year in the sportsbook. Daily and nightly bowl games, basketball and hockey games throughout the month, and NFL games on Sunday, Monday and Thursday provide plenty of action. Add the Christmas music creeping into the sportsbook and you have a very merry sports betting season.

While I enjoy bowl season, I prefer the dog days of summer to this time of year in the sportsbook. My preference is definitely an exception and not the rule. The first weekend of March Madness is probably my favorite time of the year to be in the sportsbook. There are so many games, so much action, plenty of games to bet and more emotion for a longer period than any other days of the year. The conference tournaments before The Big Dance are even better for serious college hoops bettors.

Any Sunday morning of the NFL is a blast in the sportsbook but that only lasts a few hours. The excitement dissipates a little after the 10 am games are over. Saturday night college football in a sportsbook is also a fun time. Bettors are usually a little buzzed and saucy for the late games. Pac-12 After Dark is real and fantastic.

Kentucky Derby weekend is one of the sneaky best times to be in a Las Vegas sportsbook. There's a full day of major horse races, NBA and NHL playoff games and a full day and night of MLB regular season games. The night is capped off with a big fight. Next year we should see a rematch between Canelo and GGG.

Bowl season is a great time to be in the sportsbook. Let’s be real though, there’s really no bad time to be in a book. I don’t even mind watching PTI for a little while during a midweek afternoon. Just get me a cup of coffee or a beer and call it an afternoon break.


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