PredictionMachine.com’s Manager of Research and Analytics, John Ewing, reviews the week that was with a look at three college football teams that stood out for good reasons and three whose weekends did not turn out as successfully as anticipated.
Alabama Crimson Tide
2012 Record: Straight-Up 12-1, Against-the-Spread 5-7
Previous Game: 32-28 SEC Title clinching victory
Alabama is headed to its third BCS title game in four years but it had to survive a late scare from Aaron Murray and crew. With nine seconds remaining Georgia opted to run a play instead of spiking the ball, Aaron Murray’s pass was tipped at the line but was caught by a wide receiver in the flat who fell down inbounds as time expired. Eddie Lacy and T.J. Yeldon powered ‘Bama to the victory with each rushing for over 150 yards.
The Tide will face Notre Dame for the seventh time when they face off in the BCS title game; the Irish hold a 5-1 record against Alabama. The two schools have not played since 1987, a 37-6 Notre Dame victory. What will happen, seven straight BCS titles for the SEC or the end of a 23-year national championship drought for Notre Dame?
Notre Dame is 15-16 all-time in bowl games; they are 2-8 in their last ten games
Alabama is 33-22-3 all-time in bowl games; they are 5-5 in their last ten games
Kansas State Wildcats
2012 Record: Straight-Up 11-1 Against-the-Spread 9-2-1
Previous Game: 42-24 Big 12 Title clinching victory
Kansas State put the beatdown on Texas to win only its third conference title in 117 years. The real question though is whether or not Collin Klein can become the school's first Heisman Trophy winner. Lets decide right now, Klein vs. Manziel.
Klein: 2,490 yards passing, 15 TDs, 890 yards rushing, 22 TDs
Manziel: 3,419 yards passing, 24 TDs, 1,181 yards rushing, 19 TDs
Edge: Manziel, bigger and better numbers across the board against tougher defenses
Klein:11-1 overall, 8-1 conference, Big 12 Champions
Manziel: 10-2 overall, 6-2 conference, finished 3rd in SEC West
Edge: Klein, stats matter but we play to win the game
Klein: Optimus Klein
Manziel: Johnny Football
Edge: Klein, not only is the nickname cooler but they have better merchandise
Kansas State is 6-9 all-time in bowl games; they have lost their last 4 games
Oregon is 10-14 all-time in bowl games; they are 3-1 in their last 4 games
2012 Record: Straight-Up 8-5 Against-the-Spread 6-7
Previous Game: 70-31 Big 10 Title clinching victory
Wisconsin is heading to the Rose Bowl for the third consecutive year but this trip is the most improbable. Wisconsin finished third in the Leader’s Division but was the representative after Leader’s champion Ohio State and runner-up Penn State were both ineligible for postseason play. Wisconsin captured its 14th Big 10 title in record-breaking fashion. Wisconsin had two 200-yard rushers for the first time in school history, they tied a conference championship game scoring record, Montee Ball set the NCAA all-time record for rushing TDs, and the most curious stat of all; Nebraska had the ball for 30 seconds more than Wisconsin but still lost by 39 points.
The Badgers will be the first team to play in the Rose Bowl with five losses. Wisconsin had 640 yards of total offense and had three touchdown runs of over 50 yards. Wisconsin will face a stingier defense in Stanford, a team that has only allowed 2 touchdown runs of 50 yards or more during the entire 2012 season.
Wisconsin is 11-12 all-time in bowl games; they are 1-4 in their last 5 games
Stanford is 10-12-1 all-time in bowl games; they are 1-4 in their last 5 games
Kent State Golden Flashes
2012 Record: Straight-Up 11-2, Against-the-Spread 10-2-1
Previous Game: 44-37 MAC Title loss
I’m sad, all the “MACtion” on Friday night had me dreaming of a high scoring BCS bowl featuring a team from Mid-American Conference. The MAC has never had a team selected to participate in a BCS bowl game. Two teams, Marshall in 1999 with a record of 12-0 and Miami OH with a record of 11-1, were eligible for selection to become BCS busters but were not selected. Kent State, coming into this game was ranked #17 in the BCS. If they finished in the top 16 they would have a chance of being selected. The overtime loss, first in MAC Championship history, to the Huskies ruins the Gold Flashes chances of representing the conference in a marquee bowl.
Northern Illinois crashed the BCS party (go to the 3 minute mark for Kirk Herbstreit’s thoughts on NIU); the #15 ranked Huskies will play Florida State in the Discover Orange Bowl. NIU’s bid knocks a 10-win Oklahoma team out of a BCS game.
Northern Illinois is 4-3 all-time in bowl games; they have made four straight bowls
Kent State has only made one bowl game, the Tangerine Bowl in 1972
2012 Record: Straight-Up 8-4, Against-the-Spread 5-7
Previous Game: 42-24 butt kicking by Kansas State
Texas’ loss to Kansas State dropped them to 5-8 all time against Kansas State, its one of three programs that Texas has a losing record against. The loss also highlights some disturbing trends for the Longhorns. Since 2010, Texas is 2-11 against opponents ranked in the top 25. During the same time frame Texas has a conference record of 11-15 including a losing season in 2010 with an overall record of 5-7. Worst of all, during the same three year run Texas has lost each of their matchups against Oklahoma suffering two of the worst losses in the Red River Rivalry.
Texas is 26-22-2 all-time in bowl games; they are 8-2 in their last 10 games
Oregon State is 8-5 all-time in bowl games; they are 6-4 in their last 10 games
Thanks for playing (Big dogs that do not cover)
Week 14 Record: Straight-Up 0-10, Against-the-Spread 4-6
Week 13: Straight-Up 1-17, Against-the-Spread 5-13
This section is reserved for teams that were getting double digits points against-the-spread and failed to cover (or make it interesting). This week is highlighted by the following games:
Texas +11.5, lost 42-24
New Mexico State +13.5, lost 66-28
Middle Tennessee State 10, lost 45-0
Kansas +20.5, lost 59-10
Nicholls State +50.5, lost 77-3
The combined record of these teams is 19-40; two of these teams will make bowl games this year. If you had bet all dogs getting double digits in the last two weeks you would have went 9-19 against-the-spread. That’s a win percentage of 32.1%
Before you start betting all double-digit favorites you should know that in Week 12 they went 12-18 ATS, and 12-12 ATS in Week 11.