SEC championship game will decide two college football titles
Looking at this weekend’s college football lines, it looks very much like oddsmakers expect Florida and Oklahoma to win their respective conference crowns and play for the BCS Championship game in January.
Both are huge favorites Saturday, the Sooners by 17 against Big 12 North champion Missouri and the Gators a surprising 10-point chalk to the No. 1 Crimson Tide.
Along the way, we also dig into the NFL Week 14 point spreads to see if we can find some goods betting value in the pros.
College football odds
SEC Championship Game odds - No. 1 Alabama (12-0) at No. 2 Florida -10 (11-1) O/U 52
This game is for all the marbles, as the winner can punch their ticket to the BCS Championship game. Both these teams have defenses that are ranked in the top 10, but the Gators are better offensively and have been on fire lately.
In their current 8-game winning streak, the Gators have averaged over 50 points per game. Florida is en fuego and they are at home, so look for the Gators to win this game and cover the surprisingly large odds against Bama.
Big 12 Championship Game odds - No. 4 Oklahoma -17 (11-1) vs. No. 19 Missouri (9-3) O/U 78.5
Wow, look at that total! If the Sooners can win this game, they will play in the BCS Championship game and if the Tigers can pull an upset they will play in their first-ever BCS Bowl game.
This game will be all offense, as the Sooners have the nation’s top-ranked scoring offense and third-ranked passing offense and the Tigers rank fourth in the nation in points scored per game and passing yards per game.
For the Tigers to win this game they will have to contain the rushing offense of the Sooners. Look for a high scoring game, but for the Sooners to roll and cover the spread. The Over is also a good pick, even at 78.5.
ACC Championship Game - No. 18 Boston College (9-3) at Virginia Tech (8-4) Pick O/U 38.5
Neither team has a passing offense that ranks in the Top 100. The Hokies are undefeated at home this season. Look for the Hokies to eke out a win in a defensive low scoring game.
Dallas Cowboys (8-4) at Pittsburgh Steelers -3 (9-3) O/U 38.5
The Cowboys need to win this game to stay in the driver’s seat for a NFC Wild Card. The Steelers have the top-ranked defense in the league, but their offense is banged up and their offensive line is weak. Tony Romo will figure out how to move the chains on the Steelers’ secondary and they will win this game in an upset.
Washington Redskins (7-5) at Baltimore Ravens -5 (8-4) O/U 35.5
This is almost a must win for the Redskins if they want to stay in the hunt for a Wild Card berth. Clinton Portis leads the NFL in rushing yards, but the passing offense of the Redskins is struggling.
That is not good playing a Ravens team that has the leagues second-ranked defense. The Redskins defense ranks sixth in the league and they will be the difference in this game, as the Redskins will ride Portis to an upset in Baltimore. The five points are a bonus cushion.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (9-3) at Carolina Panthers -3 (9-3) O/U 38.5
Both these teams are tied for first place in the NFC South. The Bucs are winning with their fourth-ranked defense and the resurgence of QB Jeff Garcia. The Panthers have a good defense and a good running game and they are undefeated at home this season.
Look for the Bucs to play well on defense and score just enough points to pull an upset in Carolina, taking over first place in the NFC South.
Same story as above where we have the road team riding in and winning outright as an underdog.