Alabama was favored over LSU by almost a touchdown. Could that spread wind up nearly halved by kickoff?
The Alabama Crimson Tide entered this weekend's colossal game with the LSU Tigers favored by a pair of field goals, a significant spread considering these teams are so closely matched. The traditional home-team edge is three points, meaning Bama got three extra points in there somewhere.
Those three points are going away. Maybe Les Miles' midweek announcement that Tyrann Mathieu and Spencer Ware will play helped calm some nerves. But looking at the updated odds as the week's gone on, you can see bettors are jumping on LSU for one reason or another:
The line's already tumbled by a point or more, and could move more before Saturday evening. The over/under has held steady, but is shrinking a tad.
As Bodog sportsbook manager Richard Gardner puts it:
At the pace that the LSU-Alabama game is getting bet right now, this will almost certainly be our highest bet college game of the year to date and may even rival the BCS championship. As predicted, the public is hitting up LSU, taking the five points on the road, with about 75 percent of the money on the Tigers.
Of course, Vegas could be right. Alabama very well could win by a touchdown. Football Study Hall's stats-based Week 10 college football picks have the Tide winning by 12 points, a quite decisive cover -- and that system's technically better than 50 percent on the year, so go for it!
I expect Alabama to win, but wouldn't put money on anything beyond -3. If lines continue to dwindle as kickoff nears, the patient Bama pick could prove to be the best.