Many do-it-yourself handicappers prefer to wait for the marquee bowl games that hit the schedule just after Christmas. Sharps (professional wagerers) in Las Vegas and offshore have known for years that many of the best options come in the EARLY games that the public isn’t paying attention to. Oddsmakers don’t follow mid-major teams as closely as they should. Sharps cherry-pick the mistakes and attack.
You’ve already seen plenty of that so far in December action. Let’s see what the sharps are betting in Friday Night’s Beef O’Brady’s Bowl from St. Petersburg, Florida.
BALL STATE vs. CENTRAL FLORIDA
Opening Line: Central Florida by 7.5, total of 63
Current Line: Central Florida by 7, total of 61.5
The lines have been up since early December for the bowls now. Initial response from sharps was to bet Central Florida a bit higher. The line did reach -8 or even -8.5 in the first few days after open. But, underdog money was soon to follow…and the line has now been sitting right on the key number of seven for a couple of weeks at most stores.
*There was more interest on the dog than the favorite from the Wise Guys. Limited early interest on the favorite was trumped by much more serious interest on the dog.
*There wasn’t much interest on the favorite even when the line hit a key number. That’s telling. We didn’t see it “bouncing around” a line of Central Florida -7.5. It sunk to -7 and stayed solid.
*There’s a virtual certainty that sharps will buy back more on Ball State if the public comes in on the favorite through the day Friday. The public often bets favorites in bowls…but is prone to focus its attention on big name teams or highly marketed bowl matchups. Ball State-Central Florida doesn’t have much going for it in terms of public interest beyond being the only football game on Friday Night TV.
The total has been bet Under, which is interesting because this game is indoors. Sharps will typically bet Overs in domes in these early bowls because you usually have borderline defenses who aren’t able to keep up on a fast track. Some math guys have told us that they add 4-5 points to what would have been a regular season projection for indoor bowls. Given that backdrop, this Under money represents a stronger sentiment than you might have realized.
Sharps are on Ball State at anything higher than seven. Sharps like Under 63, Under 62.5, and Under 62.