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    Bowl Prop Bets (12/18/13)

    John Ewing, Director of Research and Analytics, @johnewing
    By John Ewing
    ‘Tis the season to go bowling. Bowl prop bets including win totals for each conference, most points scored and largest margin of victory. Props courtesy of


    Bowl Season officially kicks off Saturday with four games, what more could you ask for? How about some prop bets to make the bowl schedule more watchable.
    For analysis on every bowl game, our Bowl Package is now available. As a holiday treat we are giving away our picks (straight-up, against-the-spread, and over/under) for the BCS National Championship game, for analysis on Florida State vs. Auburn click here.
    Win Totals by Conference
    • Over 4.5:  Even
    • Under 4.5:  -140
    The ACC has a record 11 teams in bowl games. Yet, only two teams (Florida State and North Carolina) are favored in their matchups, which goes a long way to explain why the conference win total is so low. Smart money is on the under and we agree with the ACC only projected to win two games and not necessarily the two that they are favored in.
    Big 12
    • Over 2.5:  -115
    • Under 2.5:  -125 
    The Big 12 has six teams in bowl games this season and to bet the over you will need half of them to win. Like the ACC, the Big 12 isn’t favored in many games. Only Baylor and Kansas State are laying points and we project the Bears as the only winners for the Big 12. Take the under on this one.
    Big Ten
    • Over 2.5:  -140
    • Under 2.5:  Even 
    The B1G is the first conference with more teams favored (3) to win than their conference win total. Smart money appears to be on the over and rightfully so as we project four teams to win bowl games for the Big Ten.
    • Over 6:  -120
    • Under 6: -120 
    A strong case could be made that the Pac-12 is the best conference in college football from top to bottom. For starters nine teams made bowl games and all nine are favored to win. What is even more impressive is that we project all nine teams to win as well.
    • Over 6.5:  -105
    • Under 6.5:  -130
    With the exception of Auburn and South Carolina, the SEC is favored to win its other eight bowl games. You will need seven teams to claim victory in order to win this prop bet, but we think it goes over with a projected eight SEC teams winning. This is the only prop where we are favoring the dog.
    Additional Prop Bets
    Most Points Scored in a Bowl Game by 1 team?
    • Over 62.5:  -120
    • Under 62.5:  -120 
    The 2013 season has featured some high-octane offenses including Baylor (53.3 points/game) and Florida State (53.0 points/game). The Bears have topped 62.5 points six times this season while the Seminoles went over that mark twice and were within one score of topping it three other times.
    62.5 points is a lot to score in any game let alone a bowl game. Last year only two teams topped 50 points: Arizona State (62 points vs. Navy) and Oklahoma State (58 points vs. Purdue).
    Our highest projected scores by one team are Texas A&M (45.6 points), Oregon (44.8 points), and Ball State (44.4 points). This prop bet is a lot like the Super Bowl coin flip prop. It is a 50/50 proposition but bookmakers are going to charge you double the juice for the privilege of wagering.
    Largest Margin of Victory in a Bowl Game?
    • Over 32.5:  -130
    • Under 32.5:  -110
    For this prop to go over you will need a team to win by at least three touchdowns and four field goals (33 points) or some combination of the two to top 32.5 points.
    Last year the largest margins of victory were 45 (Oklahoma State 59, Purdue 14), 
    34 (Arizona State 62, Navy 28), 33 (SMU 43, Fresno St 10), those were also the only games with a margin of victory to go over this prop. In the 2011-12 bowl season, only one game had a margin greater than 32.5 points: West Virginia 70, Clemson 33.
    Our largest projected margin of victory is Arizona State over Texas Tech but it doesn’t come close to the 32.5 points needed for this prop. Of course these are averages of 50,000 simulations so it wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibility for a team to win by more than 32.5 points. 
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