My College Best Bets are 2189-1809-74 (55%) on a Star Basis for +223.8 Stars Since 1999, including season win totals and futures, and the Strong Opinions are a profitable 723-621-21.
College Bowls and 2020 Season Recap
It is unfortunately fitting that the final Best Bet of the College Football season was a 1/2 point loss on a game that looked like a winner the entire way – and should have been a winner. It took 31 4th quarter points to push the North Carolina-Texas A&M game over 67.5 points. The game shouldn’t have even been close to going over, as the teams combined for just 782 total yards even with explosive touchdown plays of 76 yards and 75 yards. Neither team could consistently move the ball (just 5.1 yards per play combined without those two big plays included) and the 782 yards on 125 plays projects just 55.3 total points. That was a very good bet and will be recorded as my second undeserved Best Bet loss of the season. The other undeserved loss was Auburn -2.5 vs S. Carolina when Auburn outgained the Gamecocks by 179 yards but were an uncharacteristic -2 in turnovers (only 6 offensive turnovers combined in their other 10 regular season games and 3 vs South Carolina). I also had a Best Bet loss on the East Carolina-Tulsa Under that was featured as one of Scott Van Pelt’s 3 worst beats of the year (in all sports). That was a brutally unfair ending that caused us to lose that game (3 officials mistakes) but I counted that one as a toss-up game that lost due to the stats projected score being pretty close to the total.
The other Bowl Best Bet was a well-deserved loss on Colorado +12.5, who got crushed by Texas. The Bowl Strong opinions were just 1-2 but could just as easily been 2-1, as the Mississippi State-Tulsa Under was decided in the final couple of minutes with a defensive touchdown being the difference between winning and losing. The other two Strong Opinions were a loss on Auburn +3.5, who lost by 16 to Northwestern (it didn’t help that their best offensive player was declared out right before the game started) and a win on the Kentucky-NC State Under 51.5 in a game I picked the exact final score of 23-21 (game went under despite 4 NC State defensive starters being unannounced scratches). The Bowl Leans were 8-4 with sides being 6-0 and totals being 2-4. Overall, the bowl analysis was decent considering the lack of connections between conferences in the regular season but being 0-2 on Best Bets (instead of 1-1) and 1-2 on Strong Opinions (instead of 2-1) puts a disappointing final nail into a disappointing season that could have been much better.
For the season my College Best Bets are 28-28-3 for -4.9 Stars (0-1 on 3-Stars, 8-7 on 2-Stars, 20-20-3 on 1-Stars with -0.15 of juice) and my Strong Opinions are 25-19-2 for the season.
The Best Bets were just 2-5-3 on toss-up games (instead of 50%) and with 2 undeserved losses against zero lucky wins this season (my first college season without a lucky win). The Best Bets were just 28-28-3 but winning those two games I certainly deserved to win and going 3-4-3 on toss-up games instead of 2-5-3, would have resulted in a decent 31-25-3 record (55.3%), which is right at my all-time win percentage in college football. The Strong Opinions were 25-19-2 (57%), so overall my level of handicapping in 2020 was pretty solid, especially considering the amount of late-breaking news due to the Covid pandemic. I’ve has seasons when the luck has been on my side too and this season I’ve won more close games than I’ve lost in the NFL, which has been incredibly good, so no complaints about this football season overall (81-53-3 on all Football Best Bets), although I suppose the few of you that haven’t been on the NFL have some complaints.
My Week 16 Free Analysis sides were 9-8 ATS and 2-3 on differences form the line of 4 points or more. The totals were 10-7 (1-3 on differences or 6 points or more, which are historically profitable). For the season, the Free Analysis sides are just 149-166-1 (38-44 on differences of 4 points or more) while totals are 166-161-5 (19-19 on differences from the line of 6 points or more, 45-34 on differences of 5 or more).
This will likely be the first season in which the Free Analysis sides with differences from the line of 4 points or more have not been profitable and the first season in which all Free Analysis sides will have a losing record. However, the Best Bets and Strong Opinions are a decent 51-41-2 (55.4%) and going forward the free plays should be profitable given the long term record.
The record on all Free Analysis sides is now 2064-1856-73 ATS since 2013, which is very good picking nearly every game over 8 years. The Free Analysis sides in which my predicted margin was 4 points or more away from the line are a profitable 688-587-27. Totals on the Free pages are now 1807-1757-31 in the 7 seasons I’ve been tracking them.
The spreads posted are the consensus lines at the time I posted each analysis.
Check out this week’s College Football Free Analysis.