Bowl Breakdowns

The national championship game does not kick off until January 7th but that’s ok; a buffet of bowl games begins this Saturday. However, not all bowl games are created equal and in that spirit John Ewing, Director of Research and Analytics, only breaks down the top (in his opinion) ten bowls. Records, trends, stats, and more trends, lets do this.

#1 Notre Dame vs. #2 Alabama, BCS National Championship

How they got here:

Notre Dame – Undefeated regular season, 5-0 in games decided by one score

Alabama – SEC Champion, only loss came to Texas A&M

Bowl Records:

Notre Dame is 15-16 all-time, 2-8 in the last 10 games

Alabama is 33-23-3 all-time, 5-5 in the last 10 games

Where the money is going:

Game opened at Alabama -9, 65% of money bet is coming in on Notre Dame

Betting Trends:

The total has gone under in 10 of Notre Dame’s last 11 games

Alabama is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games

#3 Florida vs. #21 Louisville, Sugar Bowl

How they got here:

Florida - Sat out the SEC title game, awarded BCS bowl over Georgia

Louisville – Big East Champion, had to beat Rutgers in final game for crown

Bowl Records:

Florida is 20-19 all-time, 4-1 in last 5 games

Louisville is 7-8-1 all-time, 3-2 in last 5 games

Where the money is going:

Game opened at Florida -14.5, 74% of money bet is coming in on Florida

Betting Trends:

Florida is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games

Louisville is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games

#4 Oregon vs. #5 Kansas State, Fiesta Bowl

How they got here:

Oregon – Pac-12 North runner-up, averaged over 50 points a game

Kansas State – Big 12 champions, beat 5 teams ranked in the top 25

Bowl Records:

Oregon is 10-15 all-time, have made the postseason 8 years in a row

Kansas State is 6-9 all-time, Bill Snyder has coached 13 of KSU’s 15 bowl games

Where the money is going:

Game opened at Oregon -9, 67% of money bet is coming in on Oregon

Betting Trends:

The total has gone over in 4 of Oregon’s last 5 games

The total has gone over in 4 of Kansas State’s last 5 games

#6 Stanford vs. Wisconsin, Rose Bowl

How they got here:

Stanford – Pac-12 Champions, 5-1 against teams ranked in top 20

Wisconsin – Big 10 Champions, **** title with bans on OSU and Penn St.

Bowl Records:

Stanford is 10-12-1 all-time, 1-4 in last 5 games

Wisconsin is 11-12 all-time, Barry Alvarez is 8-3 in bowl games

Where the money is going:

Game opened at Stanford -7, 70% of money bet is coming in on Stanford

Betting Trends:

Stanford is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games

The total has gone over in 5 of Wisconsin’s last 7 games

#7 Georgia vs. #16 Nebraska, Capital One Bowl

How they got here:

Georgia – Lost SEC title game, relegated to second tier bowl game

Nebraska – Big 10 runner-up, blown out in title game 70-31

Bowl Records:

Georgia is 26-18-3 all-time, has made a bowl for the 16th consecutive year

Nebraska is 24-24 all-time, only missed postseason play twice since 1969

Where the money is going:

The game opened at Georgia -10, 85% of money bet is coming in on Georgia

Betting Trends:

The total has gone under in 6 of Georgia’s last 7 games

Nebraska is 3-5-1 ATS in its last 9 games

HALFTIME

Does coaching matter? Of course it does and with anywhere from two weeks to a month a coach will have adequate time to prepare their team for a bowl game. Below is the record for a few coaches in bowl games straight-up and against-the-spread.

Nick Saban, Alabama: 7-6 straight-up, 7-6 ATS

Brian Kelly, Notre Dame: 3-2 straight-up, 1-4 ATS

Les Miles, LSU: 6-4 straight-up, 5-3-2 ATS

Bob Stoops, Oklahoma: 7-6 straight-up, 5-8 ATS

Steve Spurrier, South Carolina: 8-9 straight-up, 8-9 ATS

Mack Brown, Texas: 12-7 straight-up, 8-11 ATS

Bill Snyder, Kansas State: 6-7 straight-up, 4-9 ATS

Mark Richt, Georgia: 7-4 straight-up, 6-5 ATS

Brady Hoke, Michigan: 2-1 straight-up, 1-1-1 ATS

Mike Riley, Oregon State: 5-1 straight-up, 4-2 ATS

Bonus:

The SEC is favored in all 9 of its bowl games

The largest spread this year is Oklahoma State, -16.5 over Purdue

The largest total is 79.5 in the UCLA/Baylor game

The smallest total is 41 in the Michigan State/TCU game

The SEC and Big 12 each have 9 teams making bowl games

The ACC had the worst win percentage in last years bowl games, going 2-6

16 games feature teams favored by a touchdown or more

Alabama and Notre Dame will each make $18 million for playing in the title game

The smallest payout, $325,000, Famous Idaho Potato bowl

#8 LSU vs. #14 Clemson, Chick-fil-A Bowl

How they got here:

LSU – SEC West runner-up, 3-2 against ranked opponents

Clemson – ACC Atlantic runner-up, 0-2 against ranked opponents

Bowl Records:

LSU is 22-20-1 all-time, has made a bowl every year since 2000, 8-4 in those games

Clemson is 16-18 all-time, 1-5 in last 6 games

Where the money is going:

Game opened at LSU -3.5, 77% of money bet is coming in on LSU

Betting Trends:

LSU is 3-6 ATS in its last 9 games

The total has gone under in 4 of Clemson’s last 6 games

#9 Texas A&M vs. #11 Oklahoma, Cotton Bowl

How they got here:

Texas A&M – rode Johnny Manziel to first 10-win season since 1998

Oklahoma – lost two games in Norman, first time since 1998

Bowl Records:

Texas A&M is 14-19 all-time, 2-8 in last 10 games

Oklahoma is 27-17-1 all-time; best win percentage of any team listed in this article

Where the money is going:

Game opened at Texas A&M -4.5, 70% of money bet is coming in on Texas A&M

Betting Trends:

The total has gone over in 7 of Texas A&M’s last 10 games when playing Oklahoma

The total has gone over in 4 of Oklahoma’s last 5 games

#10 South Carolina vs. #18 Michigan, Outback Bowl

How they got here:

South Carolina – back-to-back 10-win seasons, only 3rd time in school history

Michigan – lost to both Alabama and Notre Dame, only school to do so this season

Bowl Records:

South Carolina is 5-12 all-time, made 5 consecutive bowl games, school record

Michigan is 20-21 all-time, 4-6 since 2000

Where the money is going:

Game opened at South Carolina -4, 83% of money bet is coming in on South Carolina

Betting Trends:

The total has gone over in 3 of South Carolina’s last 4 games

Michigan is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games

#12 Florida State vs. #15 Northern Illinois, Orange Bowl

How they got here:

Florida State – won 11 games but had a bad loss to NC State

Northern Illinois – BCS Buster, lost to a 4-8 Iowa, beat 1-11 Kansas

Bowl Records:

Florida State is 24-14-2 all-time, will be 9th appearance in Orange Bowl

Northern Illinois is 4-3 all-time, first bowl game against an ACC opponent

Where the money is going:

Game opened at Florida State -13.5, 69% of money bet is coming in on Florida State

Betting Trends:

Florida State is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 games

Northern Illinois is 7-2-1 ATS in its last 10 games

#13 Oregon State vs. #23 Texas, Alamo Bowl

How they got here:

Oregon State – started 6-0 but went .500 in remaining 6 games

Texas – lost 2 games in a row twice, accomplished that feat in each of the last 3 years

Bowl Records:

Oregon State is 8-5 all-time, first bowl game since 2009

Texas is 26-22-2 all-time, first appearance in Alamo Bowl since 2006

Where the money is going:

Game opened at Oregon State -2, 78% of money bet is coming in on Oregon State

Betting Trends:

The total has gone over in Oregon State’s last 5 games

The total has gone under in 4 of Texas’s last 5 games

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