This season’s 35-game college bowl schedule, which includes the final BCS Championship, is your last chance to cash in on the games until next August. To get you ready for all the action, I have singled out the Top 10 bowl-bound teams that have been paying huge dividends all season long against the spread (all ATS records from Covers).
No. 10 – Washington State Cougars
The Cougars finished the season an even 6-6 straight up, but when it came to covering ATS they were a profitable 9-3. They closed out the year with just two SU wins in their last six games, but they were 5-2 ATS in their last seven contests. They will face Colorado State in this year’s Gildan New Mexico Bowl on Dec. 21.
No. 9 – Minnesota Golden Gophers
Minnesota made some noise in the Big Ten this season with four straight victories in conference play before fading down the stretch with losses to Wisconsin and Michigan State. It was 8-4 SU overall with a 9-3 record ATS. The Golden Gophers were especially kind to bettors down the stretch with a perfect 6-0 record ATS in their last six games. They will play Syracuse on Dec. 27 in the Texas Bowl.
No. 8 – Baylor Bears
Baylor had only one SU loss this season against 11 victories, and that loss probably cost it a shot at a national title. It remained a solid bet all season long with a 9-3 record ATS. The Bears had all their issues on the road with a perfect 8-0 ATS record at home. They will play the upstart Central Florida Knights in this year’s Tostitos Fiesta Bowl on Jan. 1.
No. 7 – Duke Blue Devils
Duke is coming off one of its best football seasons in school history despite getting trounced by Florida State in the ACC title game. The Blue Devils earned a spot in this season’s Chick-fil-A Bowl on Dec. 31 against Texas A&M with an overall record of 10-3 SU, and they earned a spot on this list by covering in 10 of their 13 games.
No. 6 – Bowling Green Falcons
The Falcons may play in the Mid-American Conference, but they are the kind of team that nobody wants to face in a bowl game. They hammered then-No. 14 Northern Illinois 47-27 in the conference championship as three-point underdogs to finish the season 10-3 both SU and ATS. Bowling Green will face Pittsburgh in the Little Caesars Bowl on Dec. 26.
No. 5 – Wisconsin Badgers
Wisconsin accepted a bid to play South Carolina in this year’s Capital One Bowl, which should be one of the better matchups on New Year’s Day. The Badgers got tripped up by Arizona State and Ohio State earlier in the season and took the day off against Penn State in their season finale, but they remain a solid team to wager on with a 9-2-1 record against the spread.
No. 4 – Missouri Tigers
The Tigers were knocking on the doorstep of a possible BCS title game berth, but they got caught up in Auburn’s incredible roll to the National Championship Game in the SEC title game. Nonetheless, Missouri has been a highly-profitable team to ride all season long with a sterling 10-2-1 record ATS to go along with its 11-2 record SU. It will play Oklahoma State in this year’s Cotton Bowl on New Year’s Day
No. 3- Houston Cougars
The Cougars joined the newly-formed AAC this season, and while they never cracked the rankings they did play a lot of teams tough en route to an 8-4 SU record this year. Houston will face Vanderbilt on Jan. 4 in this season’s BBVA Compass Bowl and could be a strong play in that matchup considering that this team has covered in 10 of 12 games this year.
No. 2 – Auburn Tigers
Auburn is just one more victory away from one of the greatest rides to a national title in the history of college football. There was plenty of room on this bandwagon when the season started, and anyone who was smart enough to stick around for the entire ride lined their pockets behind an 11-2 record ATS.
No. 1 – Florida State Seminoles
It just so happens that the two best teams in the nation this season also happen to be the two most profitable ones as well. Florida State ran the gauntlet to a perfect 13-0 record, and the Seminoles did it with such authority that they covered as heavy favorites in 11 of those games. The best play in this title game against Auburn could be the “over” on the total line. The total went over in eight of the Tigers’ 13 games, and it went over in 10 of Florida State’s 13 contests this year.
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