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2009 College Football: Shocking Preseason Odds


Five teams have a combined 50% chance of becoming National Champions. Florida individually has a better chance than 3 of the BCS conferences!

Las Vegas, Nevada (August 10, 2009) – Las Vegas odds, properly analyzed, tell us what the betting experts really think. With the recent release of the USA Today College Football Poll, now is an interesting time to consider what the lone experts backing their opinions with millions of dollars really think.

Top 5 college football teams with the best chance to win the National Championship:
Florida: 5 to 1
USC: 13 to 1
Texas: 14 to 1
Oklahoma: 14 to 1
Ohio State: 19 to 1

Florida is projected to have more than DOUBLE the chance of winning it all than any other team! The Top five teams combined have approximately a 50% chance at the National Championship. This fact lends itself to an interesting proposition: Who do you think has a better chance to win it all: Florida, USC, Texas, Oklahoma, and Ohio State OR every other team in the country?

BSC Conferences (percentage chance at National Title):
SEC: 25% (9 teams)
Big 12: 20% (10 teams)
Big 10: 19% (7 teams)
Pac 10: 15% (8 teams)
ACC: 14% (11 teams)
Big East: 8% (6 teams)

Clearly the lowest regarded BSC Conference is the Big East: their top ranked team is Rutgers at #25 (91 to 1 against), and the entire conference has only an 8% chance of winning the BCS. The ACC has the most teams in the top 54, with 11 of their 12 teams making the grade (minus only Duke). Consider, if you remove Florida’s chance from the SEC’s number, the combined chance of its remaining teams is only 8%.

Notice that Florida as a team has a better chance of winning it all than any CONFERENCE other than the Big 12 or Big 10. This fact lends itself to an interesting proposition: Who do you think as a better chance at the National Championship: Florida or the entire Pac 10?

Boise State is the highest rated non-BSC school at #13 (46 to 1 against); the only other non-BSC school is Utah at #50 (163 to 1).

A total of 54 teams have been deemed worthy of individual odds; the chances are only 3% that a team outside of the top 54 will be crowned the BSC Champion.

Two teams are massively OVERRATED in the opinion of Las Vegas: Mississippi, ranked #10 in the USA Today Poll, is NOT considered one of the Top 54 teams based upon the odds. And neither is TCU, ranked #17 in the USA Today Poll.

One team is clearly UNDERATED in the opinion of Las Vegas: Miami of Florida, not even ranked by USA Today, is a surprisingly high #15 according to Vegas.

The odds stated above have been adjusted through a proprietary formula to remove the commission charged by sportsbooks. Without this adjustment, the odds against a result are understated substantially (often upwards of 50%). For example, an event whose true odds are 10-1 against will often be incorrectly stated as 7-1 against (the difference is the commission charged by the sportsbook). As a result, there is an overstatement of the chances of the event happening. The failure of nearly all widely circulated odds to account for this adjustment makes those numbers unreliable and misleading.

MEDIA NOTE: Print, radio, TV, and Internet media should feel free to quote any information above. Please attribute: RJ Bell of For follow-up questions, or media appearances - email:

About RJ Bell of
RJ Bell of is the only sports bettor on Forbes’ recent list of Gambling Gurus and has been called “a true insider” by ESPN, “incredibly astute” by AOL and a “point-spread maven” by USA Today. Mr. Bell has been featured on CBS News with Katie Couric, ABC News with Charles Gibson, Nightline, Sportscenter, Outside the Lines (ESPN), First Take (ESPN2), Mike & Mike, Colin Cowherd, Jim Rome, Dan Patrick,,, Yahoo, and in the Wall Street Journal, Associated Press, LA Times,, Bloomberg, Maxim, and Sports Illustrated. is the largest sports betting news website compliant with US Law.



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