We’re a couple weeks away from bowl season and below is an article to wet your appetite and get you in the right mindset before bow schedules are announced. Bowl games are a different animal compared to regular season games contests, so enjoy these tips that every bettor should keep in mind this winter.
1.) Ask yourself this one important question
There are a lot of standalone bowl games spread out over two weeks and that’s great news if you want some action while enjoying your winter break or on vacation from work. However, there’s a temptation to bet games you have less conviction in because they’re convenient to bet while you’re enjoying the comfort of your couch during the holiday season.
Before you pull the trigger on any bowl bets this season, ask yourself this one question: “Would I be betting this game if it were on a busy Saturday?” This question can help you get to the heart of your conviction, and if this answer is “no,” the conviction isn’t there. If the answer is “yes” and you’re being honest with yourself then pulling the trigger makes more sense. This question can also be used to prevent you from regretting betting NFL games on Thursday and Monday Nights.
2.) Consider the location, weather, and travel schedules
Neutral sites are often not very neutral at all. Teams who are used to playing in warm weather are often forced into the winter elements and sometimes teams are forced to travel across the country while their opponents take a short bus ride. Don’t overlook the location that each bowl game is being played.
When one team has a long travel schedule, that means their fans do too and it decreases the likelihood that team will have the support of a friendly crowd. This is especially true for smalller schools with less rabid fan bases and less robust budgets.
3.) Know who is in and who is out
Injuries are important for handicapping any football game, but bowl season throws an additional wrench at us. It’s common for players to sit out bowl games to protect their health and preserve their NFL draft stock. This practice is becoming more common and, believe me, you don’t want to put a bet in and then learn that two star defenders are out for the team you’re on.
Sometimes head coaches abandon their teams for greener pastures and aren’t on the sidelines for their team’s biggest game of the season. Know which players and coaches are in and which are out before placing your bet.
4.) Motivation is king
It’s crucial to assess the motivation of each team during bowl season. If a team is full of seniors playing their last game of their collegiate careers, they might get a boost. If a team is playing in the first bowl game in the history of their school, that might give them an edge. On the other hand, if a team is disappointed in their bowl draw and they have a history of playing in more prestigious bowls, it increases the likelihood they come out flat.
Not every bowl matchup will feature one team having a motivation edge, but when bowl games are announced, one of the first things I do is assess this motivation angle and see which games pit a motivated team vs. an unmotivated team