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How to handicap the craziest football season in CFB history

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Posted: #1

So, I typically only bet college football, which allows me to put in the work to get a better sense of teams, conferences, and coaching staffs.  Bc of the amount of work, and time it takes to study 130 teams, most who are relying on players that were back ups a season ago.  So when a pandemic shut down all US sports (Including CFB spring football) It was really hard to put in the same amount of work as usual.  I've still been able to isolate several bets that I really like.  

 

So obviously the biggest issue is will there be a CFB season, and if there is what will the rosters look like?  Clemson already lost Justyn Ross, and then had +20 players with Covid. Bc of Covid being a medical issue, the media doesnt announce which players had the illness.  On top of the Covid issue, weve heard 3 superstars talk about not playing this season, including FSU DT superstar Marvin Wilson, RB Chubba Hubbard, and RB Kylin Hill.  There teammates have been supporting teammates, and alluded to skipping the season as well... Fortunately I think those players are going to play.  

 

Betting season win totals requires looking into what the sportsbooks policy is for cancelled games.  Depending on the team, I would feel way better taking a team to win a division/conference rather than exceeding win total.  A few yrs back the state of Florida had those devastating hurricanes, and all of the Florida schools missed at least one game.  Instead of taking Clemson over 11.5 wins, it might make more sense to take them to win the ACC, or make the playoffs (I could def imagine a situation where teams cancel their FCS games.) 

 

 I will be looking to bet on teams that return their entire coaching staff, a high level QB, teams with both experience, as well as returning production.  It's also critical to look at the past 2-3 recruiting classes, including transfers.  I also give teams that made a bowl game the previous season a bonus, especially if it was a new years bowl, and allowed the team to have those 15 extra practices.  This is even more benefical to the teams that recruited at a high level, since their freshman early enrollees were able to practice with the team.  In the case of Clemson, most of their FREAK top recruits enrolled early, and not only practiced with the team during their playoff run, they also began working w strength coach. Their season went until the mid of January, and their spring fball started earlier than most schools.  Their freshman were also able to participate in 11 spring practices, which is a huge advantage.  No other power 5 school other than Louisville had any spring practices.  Clemsons Freshman were essentially with the team from mid december to middle of march.  

 

If you're going to bet futures, its crucial that you look at which programs could overcome loss of starting QB.  Some of the teams i'd focus on are, Clemson, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Tenn, SC, UNC, Texas, Tx AM, USC, Ohio State, Miami, ND, etc..

 

Im sorry if this doesnt make sense, but i havent slept in like 36 hrs

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Posted: #2

So alopez - do you think there will be a season...I have already received Lindy's, Athlon, and Street and Smith rags, but its hard to really dive in, not knowing if it will be for not...

 
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Posted: #3

I think the approach this year is to just focus on the more predictable teams with a predictable direction and have an easier time assessing covid / protest risks ... Service academies come to mind.. very consistent, same coaches, no protest risk (that im aware of) and will be following every covid rule to a T...

So with that let's take Navy's profile ..... zero spring practices... no voluntary workouts and reporting July 6th and everyone's quarantining for 2 weeks... so really late start.. first team practice not scheduled until first week of August and training up a new QB replacing 3k yd Malcolm Perry, the options look like are Soph WR Warren (likely more explosive) or Soph QB Olson (1 yr in the system 10 pass att's)  ..  Comparing to '18 Conf play the O ran roughly same number of plays but a pace and explosiveness surge led to 1.2 more O drives, scoring +18 PPG, +2 yards per play, 20% more TD drives, 11 more TD's from outside the RZ... on and on you get it... super surge in speed and explosiveness = 9-3 ATS, 7-5 O/U, 9-3 TT-Over... I still need to do the D-stat changes but they were much improved LY and bringing key folks back, would expect improvement... 

 

I'd expect this O to regresses way back in tempo/drives and efficiency early on maybe under the '18 numbers which were not good  ...likely see multiple QB's trying out vs ND week 1 since only 4 weeks of practice going in ... obvi we can't benchmark the ND game to LY for the O, I think we want to see which if any QB's actually have some timing down if any ... will be looking more to see if the D doesn't get obliterated again because Book crushed them through the air LY even when they were not bad vs the ND run.... 

 

Once everyone digests that likely disaster it's onto an FCS game (maybe cancelled?) and then 2 more weeks before a Tulane roadie and I think they'll be a reallllly strong D front this year I don't think they'll get ~400 yds rushing 7/att this time ... AF roadie the next week maybe another slug fest and then another bye.... I'd expect reallllly great coach Ken has the team especially the O much improved by then ... hopefully with a perception that the O has totally fallen apart as we head into heavier passing teams ECU, HOU, SMU, Tulsa.. If the O is at least controlling drives by then we expect Navy to start chewing up alot of clock vs these defenses.... so maybe see if we like them as a decent sized dog?... Unders?.. opponent team total unders?.... if we're not sure by then just enjoy the games... 

Run that diagnostic on each team and we'll find a few teams worth tracking and have a baseline knowledge of their opponents situations... Like Tulane kinda same situation... fast tempo LY but QB gone and we expect to see at least a strong aggressive D front, shouldn't be hard to read a few reports on the changes and worry more about covid / protest risks ...  If we go haphazard into this year we'll be making super square moves like devaluing home field advantage after a few home favs go bust with no fans in the seats and be on the wrong side ALOT...

Good luck buddy

 

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