Bettin’ on ‘Bama – Preseason Preview
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Welcome to a new segment that we’re calling ‘Bettin’ on ‘Bama, where we’ll take a look at how the Crimson Tide are viewed from the eyes of the sports books in Las Vegas with the help of our friends at WagerTalk. With the start of the 2019-20 college football season less than two months away, let’s explore Alabama’s National Championship odds, some potential Heisman Trophy finalists, and an early peek at the Iron Bowl spread.
To the surprise of no one, there is very little that currently separates Alabama and Clemson in the eyes of bettors. Simply put, they are deadlocked in nearly every betting opportunity at nearly every sports book.
At the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook, both Alabama and Clemson are +225 co-favorites to lift the National Championship trophy in New Orleans. The same is true at the South Point sports book in Las Vegas, where the Tigers and Tide are locked at +225. Clemson opened as a small 2-to-1 favorite at the South Point, but money on Alabama has brought them together.
In May, the SuperBook opened up a prop bet that featured Alabama and Clemson versus “the field.” Essentially, bettors were able to choose between taking the Tide and Tigers for the National Title, or the other 127 FBS teams. Betting opened at -110 juice each way, which means that oddsmakers made it a pick’em. The Alabama and Clemson combo is now a -180 favorite over the rest of the college football landscape, which implies that there’s a 64.3-percent chance that one of those two teams will be celebrating in mid-January.
Much like their respective teams, Tua Tagovailoa and Trevor Lawrence are deadlocked in the Heisman betting market. The star quarterbacks are +275 co-favorites at both the Westgate and South Point sports books. Three other Crimson Tide players find themselves on the preseason odds board: Wide receiver Jerry Jeudy is 50-to-1 to win the Heisman, running back Najee Harris is 80-to-1, and wide receiver Jaylen Waddle is 200-to-1.
At the South Point, Alabama has opened as a -155 favorite to win the SEC championship, followed by Georgia (+300), LSU (+1500) and Florida (+1500). The -155 price implies that the Tide have a 60.8-percent chance of winning the conference this season.
Will Alabama go undefeated during the regular season? Caesars sports book has set the Tide’s regular season win total at 11.5 victories. There is a +250 payout on the over (i.e. a 12-0 regular season). A $100 bet would win $250, with a total return of $350.
South Point has set Alabama’s win total at 11. Betting on the over would cash if the Tide go 12-0, it would push (i.e. get your money back) if they finish 11-1, and lose if Alabama finishes 10-2 or worse. It’s important to shop around at different sports books to get the best price on the wager you’d like to make.
Did you know…You can currently bet on the Alabama-Auburn game that’s over four months away? It’s true. A handful of sports books release “Game of the Year” odds for high-profile games months before the start of the college football season. At the South Point, Alabama is currently a 14.5-point favorite against Texas A&M on October 12, a 16.5-point favorite versus LSU on November 9, and a 14.5-point favorite in the Iron Bowl on November 30. Those numbers could drastically change between now and game day, but the number on your ticket when you make the bet is what you’ll be locked into.
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James Bunting has written for a number of national outlets over the last decade and is currently a sports book supervisor, in addition to analyzing the odds for WagerTalk.