Tennis Betting: Lessons Learned as US Open Unfolds

us-open-tennis-ticketsThe US Open is underway and little has unfolded over the course of the initial rounds that would change the long-term tennis odds for the tournament. That’s not to say, however, that there haven’t still been plenty of lessons to be gleaned from the opening days of action.

Bet on the US Open and get a free 50% Bonus.

Juan Martin del Potro, for one, the sixth-seed in the tournament, suffered a scare at the hands of Guillermo Garcia-Lopez in the first round, dropping the second set of the match and needing a hard-fought overtime to eke out the clinching fourth.

Despite his 12/1 odds of winning the US Open and having already won the tournament once back in 2009, del Potro will need to be at the top of his game if he hopes to contend with the likes of the Big Four – his first appearance showed no such preparedness.

Reigning US Open winner Andy Murray is a popular favorite all over the sportsbook having not only won the tournament last year, but Wimbledon earlier this summer as well. His 4/1 tennis futures, though, trail both Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.

Both Nadal (2010) and Djokovic (2011) have won the US Open previously and boast 7/4 odds and 2/1 odds of doing so again in 2013, respectively.

Not surprisingly, all of Murray, Nadal and Djokovic (and Roger Federer, to boot) made it through the first round unscathed, not just dropping so much as a single set.

Get your tennis odds at Bovada today.

2013 College Football Preview: SEC

2013-sec-east-preview-georgia-bulldogs-570x379Sportsbook.ag

ALABAMA CRIMSON TIDE

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 13-1 (8-1 in SEC)

ATS Record: 7-7 (50%)

Over/Under: 8-5

Points Scored: 38.7 PPG

Points Allowed: 10.9 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 3/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 6

Defense: Starters Returning: 7

The Crimson Tide won their third national title in four seasons in 2012, and certainly have the personnel to do it again. QB AJ McCarron (2,933 pass yds, 30 TD, 3 INT) led the nation in passing efficiency and still has WR Amari Cooper (1,000 rec. yds, 11 TD). RB T.J. Yeldon (1,108 rush yds, 12 TD) propels the No. 16 ground game (228 YPG), which lost three O-Line starters. For the second straight season, Alabama led the nation in both total defense (250 YPG) and rushing defense (80 YPG), while ranking second in points (10.9 PPG). DE Ed Stinson (3 sacks, 5 QBH) is the lone D-Line starter back, but LB C.J. Mosley (107 tackles, 4 sacks) will dominate again with OLB Adrian Hubbard (7 sacks, 3 FF). CB Deion Belue (40 tackles, 7 PD) and safeties Ha Ha Clinton-Dix (5 INT) and Vinnie Sunseri (54 tackles) are all top-notch.

 

GEORGIA BULLDOGS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 12-2 (7-2 in SEC)

ATS Record: 8-6 (57%)

Over/Under: 7-6

Points Scored: 37.8 PP

Points Allowed: 19.6 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 12/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 10

Defense: Starters Returning: 4

After coming a few yards shy of an SEC crown, 12-2 Georgia is loaded for another title shot. The excellent offense (37.8 PPG, 19th in FBS; 468 YPG, 22nd in FBS) is orchestrated by QB Aaron Murray (3,893 pass yds, 36 TD, 10 INT), who was second in FBS passing efficiency. WR Malcolm Mitchell (572 rec. yds, 4 TD) should have a breakout junior year. RBs Todd Gurley (1,385 rush yds, 6.2 YPC, 17 TD) and Keith Marshall (759 rush yds, 6.5 YPC, 8 TD) form an impressive duo. The defense lost a ton of talent, namely LBs Jarvis Jones and Alec Ogletree, and safeties Bacarri Rambo and Shawn Williams, but the cupboard is not bare. OLB Jordan Jenkins (5 sacks, 4 QBH) and ILB Amario Herrera (70 tackles) are both hard hitters that are keys to the 3-4 scheme. CB Damian Swann (4 INT, 2 FR, 53 tackles) is a true playmaker.

 

SOUTH CAROLINA GAMECOCKS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 11-2 (6-2 in SEC)

ATS Record: 8-5 (62%)

Over/Under: 8-4

Points Scored: 31.5 PPG

Points Allowed: 18.2 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 30/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 6

Defense: Starters Returning: 5

After an 11-2 season, South Carolina wants more in 2013. QB Connor Shaw (1,956 pass yds, 17 TD, 7 INT; 435 rush yds, 3 TD) is the starter, but Outback Bowl hero QB Dylan Thompson (1,027 pass yds, 10 TD, 2 INT) should also see plenty of snaps. Both will benefit from a veteran O-Line, as will RB Mike Davis (275 rush yds, 5.3 YPC, 2 TD), who takes over for departed RB Marcus Lattimore. WR Bruce Ellington (600 rec. yds, 7 TD) will see more targets with WR Ace Sanders gone. The Gamecocks’ 11th-ranked defense (316 YPG) with 43 sacks (6th in FBS) features superstar DE Jadeveon Clowney (13 sacks, 23.5 TFL, 54 tackles, 3 FF) who could get some Heisman votes. No starting linebackers return, but the secondary is in good hands with CBs Victor Hampton (40 tackles, 6 PD) and Jimmy Legree (44 tackles, 3 INT, 6 PD).

 

FLORIDA GATORS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 11-2 (7-1 in SEC)

ATS Record: 7-6 (54%)

Over/Under: 5-7

Points Scored: 26.5 PPG

Points Allowed: 14.5 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 25/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 6

Defense: Starters Returning: 5

Florida’s 11-win season concluded with a thud, a 33-23 Sugar Bowl loss to 14-point underdog Louisville. For the Gators to improve, the 105th-ranked offense (334 YPG) must take a leap forward. That starts with QB Jeff Driskel (1,646 pass yds, 12 TD, 5 INT; 413 rush yds, 4 TD) finding reliable receivers in a lackluster group now coached by Joker Phillips. Once RB Matt Jones (275 rush yds, 5.3 YPC, 3 TD) recovers from his viral infection he suffered in August, he will resume his role as the featured back and enjoy plenty of holes created by a burly O-Line. The stacked defense ranked fifth in the nation in both yards (287 YPG) and points (14.5 PPG), and will be fierce again. DL Dominique Easley (4 sacks) and LB Antonio Morrison (34 tackles) hold down the front seven, while CBs Loucheiz Purifoy (3 FF) and Marcus Roberson (12 PD), and S Jaylen Watkins (3 INT) lead a tough secondary. Morrison was suspended for the first two games of the season after his two arrests over the summer, including one for barking at a police dog.

 

TEXAS A&M AGGIES

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 11-2 (6-2 in SEC)

ATS Record: 8-5 (62%)

Over/Under: 4-7

Points Scored: 44.5 PPG

Points Allowed: 21.8 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 20/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 6

Defense: Starters Returning: 4

The Aggies had no trouble transitioning to the SEC with coach Kevin Sumlin guiding them to 11 wins. Heisman Trophy winner QB Johnny Manziel (3,706 pass yds, 26 TD, 9 INT; 1,410 rush yds, 21 TD) led his offense to 559 YPG (3rd in FBS) and 44.5 PPG (4th in nation). Manziel is suspended for the first half of the season opener vs Rice. He’ll frequently target athletic 6-foot-5 WR Mike Evans (1,105 rec. yds, 5 TD). The ground game is loaded with RBs Ben Malena (808 rush yds, 8 TD) and Trey Williams (376 rush yds, 5 TD) rumbling behind a powerful O-Line. The defense (21.8 PPG, 26th in FBS) lost a lot up front, but DE Julian Obioha (6 PD, 4 QBH) has bust-out potential, and LB Steven Jenkins (79 tackles) is productive. Texas A&M surrendered 251 pass YPG (88th in FBS), but CB Deshazor Everett (56 tackles, 7 PD) and S Howard Matthews (58 tackles, 6 PD) have the ability to change that.

 

LSU TIGERS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 10-3 (6-2 in SEC)

ATS Record: 5-8 (39%)

Over/Under: 5-7

Points Scored: 29.8 PPG

Points Allowed: 17.5 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 30/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 8

Defense: Starters Returning: 5

LSU was 10-3 despite ranking 87th in the nation in total offense (374 YPG). QB Zach Mettenberger (2,609 pass yds, 12 TD, 7 INT) is back to change that and is excited that Cam Cameron is his new OC, which should mean more pass attempts. WRs Odell Beckham Jr. (713 rec. yds, 2 TD) and Jarvis Landry (573 rec. yds, 5 TD) both need to be more consistent for Mettenberger to grow. Top RB Jeremy Hill (755 rush yds, 12 TD) was arrested for sucker punching a man outside a bar, but he was somehow reinstated to the team just in time for fall practice. Back-up RB Kenny Hilliard (464 rush yds, 6 TD) has a strong offensive line to work with. The fierce defense (308 YPG, 8th in FBS) lost all D-Line starters, but is still loaded. DT Anthony Johnson (3 sacks), LB Lamin Barrow (104 tackles, 5 QBH), CB Jalen Mills (57 tackles, 2 INT) and SS Craig Loston (55 tackles, 3 INT) are all productive returnees.

 

OLE MISS REBELS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 7-6 (3-5 in SEC)

ATS Record: 10-3 (77%)

Over/Under: 6-6

Points Scored: 31.5 PPG

Points Allowed: 27.6 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 75/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 8

Defense: Starters Returning: 10

Hugh Freeze’s fast-paced spread offense improved from 281 YPG in 2011 (116th in FBS) to 424 YPG last year (46th in FBS), and turned his 2-10 team into a 7-6 club. QB Bo Wallace (2,994 pass yds, 22 TD 17 INT; 390 rush yds, 8 TD) missed the spring due to shoulder surgery, but should be ready for the fall. His three top pass catchers all return with WRs Donte Moncrief (979 rec. yds, TD), Vince Sanders (504 rec. yds, 4 TD) and Ja-Mes Logan (490 rec. yds). Sanders broke his collarbone in practice in early August and will miss at least the first game of the season. Star RB Jeff Scott (846 rush yds, 6 TD) also comes back to pace the ground game. The Rebels’ tremendous D-Line (103 TFL, T-4th in FBS; 38 sacks, T-11th in FBS) will remain disruptive with the nation’s top recruit in DE Robert Nkemdiche. His brother, LB Denzel (82 tackles, 3 sacks, 3 INT, 4 FF), was the star of last year’s 4-2-5 set, along with LB Mike Marry (78 tackles) and CB Charles Sawyer (63 tackles, 8 PD).

 

MISSOURI TIGERS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 5-7 (2-6 in SEC)

ATS Record: 5-6-1 (46%)

Over/Under: 5-6

Points Scored: 25.8 PPG

Points Allowed: 28.4 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 400/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 8

Defense: Starters Returning: 6

Missouri’s 5-7 inaugural SEC season was riddled with injuries. QB James Franklin (1,562 pass yds, 10 TD, 7 INT) was less than 100 percent all year, and the O-line was also hit hard by injuries. But the return of RB Henry Josey (1,168 rush yds, 9 TD in 2011), who missed all of 2012 (knee), will be a huge boost to the 98th-ranked offense (356 YPG). Top WRs Marcus Lucas (509 rec. yds, 3 TD) and L’Damian Washington (443 rec. yds, 2 TD) are both capable of more. The average defense (391 YPG, 60th in FBS) will miss DT Sheldon Richardson, but DE Kony Ealy (3.5 sacks, 7 PD) is due for a breakout year. MLB Andrew Wilson (80 tackles, 4 FF) is the engine of the defense, while CB E.J. Gaines (74 tackles, 11 PD) anchors a subpar secondary.

 

VANDERBILT COMMODORES

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 9-4 (5-3 in SEC)

ATS Record: 9-4 (69%)

Over/Under: 6-6

Points Scored: 30.0 PPG

Points Allowed: 18.7 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 500/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 8

Defense: Starters Returning: 6

Vandy finished 2012 with seven straight wins. New QB Austyn Carta-Samuels (14-of-25, 208 yds, 1 TD) amassed 4,413 total yards and 25 TD in two years at Wyoming. The Commodores shine at receiver with WRs Jordan Matthews (1,323 rec. yds, 8 TD) and Chris Boyd (774 rec. yds, 5 TD). RB Zac Stacy is gone, but RBs Wesley Tate (376 rush yds, 8 TD) and Brian Kimbrow (413 rush yds, 3 TD) have a quality O-Line to run behind. The excellent defense (18.7 PPG, 15th in FBS) is propelled by DEs Kyle Woestmann (5 sacks, 2 FF), Caleb Azubike (4 sacks) and Walker May (3 sacks, 7 QBH), but the most valuable player is LB Chase Garnham (84 tackles, 6.5 sacks). CB Andre Hal (48 tackles, 14 PD, 2 INT) stabilizes the stingy pass defense.

 

AUBURN TIGERS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 3-9 (0-8 in SEC)

ATS Record: 4-8 (33%)

Over/Under: 5-6

Points Scored: 18.7 PPG

Points Allowed: 28.3 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 200/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 6

Defense: Starters Returning: 9

New Head Coach: Gus Malzahn

After an 0-8 season in the SEC, new head man Gus Malzahn has plenty to fix. He’ll start by speeding up the nation’s seventh-worst offense (305 YPG), which will be run by either QB Kiehl Frazier (753 pass yds, 2 TD, 8 INT) or QB Jonathan Wallace (720 pass yds, 4 TD, 4 INT). Both are lackluster options, especially with no 15-catch receivers and a weak O-Line (37 sacks allowed). The Tigers might be able to run the football with RB Tre Mason (1,002 rush yds, 5.9 YPC, 8 TD). New DC Ellis Johnson inherits a subpar defense (421 YPG, 81st in FBS; 20 pass TD, 2 INT). His 4-2-5 set is thin up front, but LB/S Justin Garrett is a perfect fit. Johnson will try to rebuild with DE Dee Ford (6 sacks), S Demetruce McNeal (90 tackles) and CB Chris Davis (46 tackles).

 

TENNESSEE VOLUNTEERS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 5-7 (1-7 in SEC)

ATS Record: 4-8 (33%)

Over/Under: 9-2

Points Scored: 36.2 PPG

Points Allowed: 35.7 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 500/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 5

Defense: Starters Returning: 8

New Head Coach: Butch Jones

After a 1-7 SEC record last year, Butch Jones was brought in to turn the program around. Although the Vols were 18th in FBS total offense (476 YPG), all starting skill players left. Junior QB Justin Worley (738 pass yds, 1 TD, 5 INT career) will likely replace Tyler Bray and orchestrate the fast-paced offense, but it’s unclear which receivers will emerge. A pair of do-it-all backs return though in RBs Rajion Neal (708 rush yds, 9 total TD) and Marlin Lane (658 rush yds, 5.5 YPC, 228 rec. yds). The SEC’s worst defense (35.7 PPG, 471 YPG) will run a 4-3 under new DC John Jancek. The D-Line is unproven, but LB A.J. Johnson (138 tackles, 8 QBH) and safeties Brian Randolph (22 tackles in 3 games) and Byron Moore (86 tackles, 5 INT) are heady players.

 

MISSISSIPPI STATE BULLDOGS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 8-5 (4-4 in SEC)

ATS Record: 6-7 (46%)

Over/Under: 5-7

Points Scored: 29.5 PPG

Points Allowed: 23.3 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 750/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 7

Defense: Starters Returning: 6

After starting 7-0, the Bulldogs lost five of their final six contests, all by 14+ points. Senior QB Tyler Russell (2,897 pass yds, 24 TD, 10 INT) ignites the 80th-ranked offense (382 YPG), but won’t have any of his top four targets. WR Robert Johnson (164 rec. yds, 2 TD) is the de-facto No. 1, with TE Malcolm Johnson (171 rec. yds, 17.1 YPC, 2 TD) also playing a huge role. A veteran O-Line should allow RB LaDarius Perkins (1,024 rush yds, 8 TD) to thrive again. New DC Geoff Collins (co-DC last year) will blitz frequently with his defense that tallied just 18 sacks (T-100th in FBS). DEs Denico Autry (4 sacks, 42 tackles) and Preston Smith (4.5 sacks, 35 tackles) are solid, and LB Benardrick McKinney (102 tackles) knows how to make stops. But FS Jay Hughes (32 tackles) is the only starter left in the questionable secondary.

 

ARKANSAS RAZORBACKS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 4-8 (2-6 in SEC)

ATS Record: 3-9 (25%)

Over/Under: 7-4

Points Scored: 23.5 PPG

Points Allowed: 30.4 PP

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 500/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 5

Defense: Starters Returning: 8

New Head Coach: Bret Bielema

Bret Bielema takes over a 4-8 Arkansas team and will install his run-heavy offense with RB Jonathan Williams (231 rush yds, 5.1 YPC). New OC Jim Chaney needs to trim an FBS-worst-tying turnover margin (minus-19), and expects to name QB Brandon Allen (21-of-49, 186 yds, 1 TD, 3 INT) the starter. With WR Cobi Hamilton gone, the top wideout is WR Mekale McKay (317 rec. yds). The defense was strong up front (124 rush YPG, 19th in FBS; 2.6 sacks per game, 25th in FBS), and should remain that way with DEs Chris Smith (9.5 sacks, 12 QBH) and Trey Flowers (6 sacks) and LB A.J. Turner (53 tackles). The awful pass defense (286 YPG, 8th-worst in FBS) still has talent returning with CB Tevin Mitchel (4 PD) and S Rohan Gaines (75 tackles).

KENTUCKY WILDCATS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 2-10 (0-8 in SEC)

ATS Record: 3-9 (25%)

Over/Under: 5-6

Points Scored: 17.9 PPG

Points Allowed: 31.0 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 50/1 (Field)

 

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 6

Defense: Starters Returning: 6

New Head Coach: Mark Stoops

After an 0-8 record in SEC play, six losses came by 20+ points, the Wildcats hope to start fresh with Mark Stoops. New OC Neal Brown will run the Air Raid attack like he did at Texas Tech. It’s unclear who will operate the sixth-worst offense in FBS (17.9 PPG) between QBs Jalen Whitlow (5.0 YPA, 3 TD, 2 INT), Maxwell Smith (6.5 YPA, 8 TD, 4 INT) and Patrick Towles (5.8 YPA, 1 TD, 1 INT). WR Demarco Robinson (297 rec. yds) and RB Raymond Sanders (669 rush yds, 5 TD) are both decent. The defense was average (391 YPG, 61st in FBS), but should improve under Stoops, a defensive guru who was Florida State’s DC. He’ll run a 4-3 set with DE Alvin Dupree (6.5 sacks, 91 tackles) and LB Avery Williamson (135 tackles, 3 sacks, 2 FF) the team leaders.

NFL Football Betting: 3 Best NFL Picks Of The Week

hi-res-156531550_crop_650x440Betting sports is always challenging, but the NFL preseason is a particularly risky realm for bettors. Yet, if you thought that the NFL preseason in general was tough to deal with, consider the fourth and final preseason game for all NFL teams. It’s one thing to make a prediction on a week three preseason game, when teams play their starters for a full half, sometimes into the third quarter; it’s quite another matter to predict week four preseason contests, when the starters usually get the whole night off and the entirety of a game is devoted to the second- and third-stringers. Coaches need to make final roster cuts and get their teams reduced to 53 players by the weekend. With all NFL preseason games in week four being on Thursday night, coaches are focused on evaluating the battles for the final roster spots at various positions on the field. Games in which backups are the whole show – not just part of the event – are extremely prone to variations and uncertainties. How in the world are you going to find good betting selections for week four of the NFL exhibition season? You have to look very closely.

One game that looks like really good value is the contest between the Philadelphia Eagles and the New York Jets. The Eagles are a 3.5-point favorite over the Jets, and they should be favored by more. New York’s quarterback problems are well documented, with Geno Smith not being remotely ready to perform and Mark Sanchez having been injured this past Saturday night against the New York Giants. New York’s best able-bodied quarterback at the moment might be Matt Simms, and that reality means that Philadelphia, even with its own backup quarterback in the saddle, should be able to perform a lot better than the Jets in this game… certainly enough to win by at least four points and cover the number.

Another good target in the preseason’s final week is the Jacksonville Jaguars, who are a 2.5-point favorite against the Atlanta Falcons. Atlanta’s starters are much better than Jacksonville’s starters, but since this is an all-backup game, Jacksonville’s in very good position to win. Jaguar quarterback Chad Henne has experience as a starter, and he’s going to play at least two and a half quarters in this game if not three. With Atlanta’s Matt Ryan resting, Jacksonville will have the quarterback who is much more likely to play well. Take the Jaguars minus the points.

Finally, the third choice on the docket is the Seattle Seahawks, who are 7.5-point favorites against the Oakland Raiders. Seattle goes all-out in preseason games, for one thing. Second, the Raiders got embarrassed in the first half by the Chicago Bears last Friday. Third, the Raiders’ best quarterback just might be Terrelle Pryor, who is just not that good. Seattle backup quarterback Brady Quinn is a better quarterback than Pryor. Take the Seahawks here.

Click here to get a full list of futures for the 2013 NFL season.

MLB Betting: NL Central up for Grabs when Pirates, Cardinals Collide

hi-res-7540080_crop_650x440The Pittsburgh Pirates and St. Louis Cardinals are barreling toward pole position in the National League Central as the end of the 2013 regular season fast approaches, but only one can take the top spot in the division when all is said and done. Current MLB odds favor the veteran Cards in the long-term, but that could change after the two meet head to head in a three-game series this weekend.

Bet on Major League Baseball and get a free 50% Bonus.

The Pirates will look to win over more than just oddsmakers when they play host to the rivals they’ve been neck and neck with for much of the campaign – they have the entire MLB betting community to win over.

While Pittsburgh’s success is no surprise – they’ve flirted with significance for almost three years now – this is the first time they’ve managed to stay competitive in the standings this late in the season. Now with 12/1 odds of winning the World Series and just one month remaining, it all seems to be coming to fruition.

Even if the Bucs lose out on the NL Central title, their lead in the wild card race is all but guaranteed, suggesting that a playoff berth is inevitable. Could a series victory over St. Louis this weekend give baseball fans a glimpse of what to expect out of PNC Park this autumn?

Get your MLB odds at Bovada today.

Best MLB Matchups Of The Week: August 26-September 1

Clayton KershawAs the season moves toward September, pitchers have to gather even more focus and concentration than ever before. They have to be able to fight through fatigue and distractions.

Texas Rangers @ Seattle Mariners

This is a rare specimen – and therefore a treat – in the world of Major League Baseball: a game being played in the final week of August in which two American League starting pitchers have ERAs under three runs. You just don’t see that scenario very often. Derek Holland of Texas has a 2.95 ERA, while Seattle starter Hisashi Iwakuma checks in at 2.98. Both men have been quite consistent, as you’d expect of A.L. pitchers who have sub-three ERAs this late in the season. It’s one thing to post a sub-three ERA in the National League, where pitchers have to hit. It’s quite another to pull off the feat in the American League, which has the designated hitter. Holland has thrown shutouts in two of his last four outings, giving up a total of five runs in his last four starts combined. Iwakuma has allowed no more than three runs in seven of his last eight starts. This should be a dandy on Tuesday night in Seattle.

 Get a 50% Bonus at WagerWeb.ag

 Chicago Cubs @ Los Angeles Dodgers

This is a Tuesday night matchup in the sportsbook between a really good young pitcher and, on the other side of the divide, the best pitcher in the National League (and quite possibly, all of baseball). Travis Wood of the Chicago Cubs has posted a strong 3.22 ERA this season, giving the Cubbies hope for the future. Yet, his ERA is nowhere close to Clayton Kershaw’s. The shoo-in for the National League Cy Young Award this season has a 1.72 ERA, making this an historically legendary season. Very few pitchers over the past 45 years have been able to do what Kershaw is doing right now.

Oakland Athletics @ Detroit Tigers

This Thursday matinee on the MLB odds features Oakland’s Jarrod Parker, with a 3.58 ERA, and A.L. Cy Young contender Max Scherzer, who is 19-1 with a 2.73 ERA. Parker has been dominant in his last three starts, allowing a total of three runs in 25 1/3 innings of work. He has allowed only one run in each of those three starts. Scherzer is actually getting better as the season goes along. He got a ton of run support in the first half of the season. He’s still getting a lot of help from his bats, but he is becoming more effective as a pitcher. He has not allowed more than two earned runs in any of his last seven starts.

Check out all of the latest odds at www.WagerWeb.ag on every MLB matchup on the board.

 

NHL Betting: Tampa Bay Lightning Notable Offseason Moves

-6d697fcfe7ed855aThe Tampa Bay Lightning has seemed like a team in a constant state of change for the past few seasons. Just when a player seems to be comfortable with the team, that player moves on the next season. The team has been struggling at goaltender for years thanks to this revolving door policy with players. Now the core of the team has been shaken up and it will be interesting to see how the team recovers. Martin St. Louis returns in 2013-14 as the undisputed leader of the Lightning, but he will be working with a team that has had its foundation shaken and its future is in doubt.

2013 Stanley Cup Odds:  40/1

Notable Change #1: Losing Vincent Lecavalier.

The fans in Tampa Bay really cannot blame Vincent Lecavalier for leaving the Lightning after being with the team since he was drafted in 1998. Lecavalier is a competitor that wants to win a Stanley Cup before he retires. Since his career is drawing to a close, it makes sense to leave Tampa Bay because the Lightning is not looking like a Stanley Cup contender. The confusing part is that Lecavalier left Tampa Bay to go to Philadelphia and join the Flyers. Truth be told, the Flyers do not look like any more of a Stanley Cup contender than the Lightning does.

Notable Change #2: Drafting Jonathan Drouin.

The Tampa Bay Lightning was extremely quiet in free agency this year, but they did have a good draft. The fan in Tampa Bay may not have much to look forward to right now, but the team’s farm system is stacked with huge talent. In 2013, the Lightning took forward Jonathan Drouin, who many experts say will be a top forward in the NHL in the next few years. When the fans group Drouin in with some of the defensive and goaltending prospects that the Lightning has in their system, it is easy to see why so many people who track NHL prospects are getting excited about the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Notable Change #3: Signing Valtteri Filppula.

Since the Lightning did not do a whole lot in free agency, the one move the team did make is making some pretty big waves in Tampa. The Lightning signed former Detroit Red Wings forward Valtteri Filppula to a five-year contract that could be worth as much as $25 million in total. The obvious inspiration for this move was the loss of Lecavalier. While Filppula may not be able to put up the same kind of consistent numbers that Lecavalier did, he still offers the Lightning a solid offensive forward who can get to the net and score goals. There is a chance that the Lightning will pair Filppula up with Martin St. Louis to try and keep St. Louis’ production up after losing linemate Lecavalier.

Click here to get a full list of NHL futures for the 2013-14 NHL season.

http://partners.commission.bz/processing/clickthrgh.asp?btag=a_35336b_2

NHL Betting: Ottawa Senators Notable Offseason Moves

thumb.phpThe Ottawa Senators is one of those NHL teams that will peak for a few years and then crash to the bottom of the standings. The strange thing is that the team manages to do this with almost the same exact roster every season. The one big difference is the goaltending. The Senators excel when they have good goaltending and sink to the bottom of the Eastern Conference when the goaltending is suspect. This most recent offseason saw the Senators trying to recover from some changes that have finally altered the core of the roster significantly. In some cases, change can be good. In this case, change may not be what the doctor ordered.

2013 Stanley Cup Odds:  33/1

Notable Change #1: The loss of Daniel Alfredsson.

As with players like Teemu Selane and Jaromir Jagr, Daniel Alfredsson seems to be an ageless wonder. The forward will turn 41 years old this season and he will do so in a Detroit Red Wings jersey. After 17 years in Ottawa, with many of those years seeing Alfredsson take on the role of captain, the winger has made the jump to Detroit. In most cases, players Alfredsson’s age make the move to try and win a Stanley Cup before their careers are over. If the captain of the team does not think that the current roster can win a Stanley Cup, then what are the team’s realistic chances of bring home a title?

Notable Change #2: Picking up Bobby Ryan in a trade.

The Ottawa Senators gave up Jakob Silfverberg, Stefan Noesen and a first-round draft pick in 2014 to get 30-year-old forward Bobby Ryan, but the move still looks to favor the Senators. Ryan is a presence up front that can score goals and change the complexion of a game. Ryan excelled as a member of the Anaheim Ducks and he will bring his talent to the Senators and pair up with Jason Spezza in what should be a dynamic tandem for the Ottawa Senators.

Notable Change #3: Signing Clarke MacArthur.

Clarke MacArthur has been around the NHL for a while and is known for his powerful shot and his speed. The Senators needed to help fill in the gap left behind by the departure of Daniel Alfredsson, and bringing in MacArthur along with Bobby Ryan will definitely help to get the team back on track. The Senators signed MacArthur to a two-year deal worth around $6.5 million in total, so they obviously expect big things from the forward. MacArthur will also fit in with the Senators’ reputation for playing the game with a bit of an edge. He was never shy about getting into the corners or giving out an open-ice hit when he played in Toronto, Atlanta or Buffalo.

 

Click here to get a full list of NHL futures for the 2013-14 NHL season.

NHL Betting: Montreal Canadiens Notable Offseason Moves

hi-res-142561545_crop_650x440Things were looking good for the Montreal Canadiens in the first part of the shortened 2013 season. After a disappointing 2011-12 campaign, the Canadiens came firing out of the gate in 2013 and rose to the top of the Eastern Conference. All season long the Canadiens remained as one of the top three teams in the Eastern Conference. When the regular season ended, the Canadiens were the number two seed in the conference. But cracks in the armor were showing towards the end of the season and the inconsistent play of goaltender Carey Price also raised warning flags. The Canadiens exited the playoffs in the first round and left a lot of work to do to try and appease the toughest fan base in hockey.

2013 Stanley Cup Odds:  28/1

Notable Change #1: The acquisition of George Parros.

One player does not instantly make an entire team tougher, but the presence of George Parros in Montreal does help. The Canadiens were beaten up and smacked around by the Ottawa Senators in the playoffs last season before being eliminated by Ottawa. The Canadiens will need to do a lot more than just bring in Parros to make the team tougher, but Parros definitely adds an element to the Canadiens that it has not had in a long time.

Notable Change #2:  Signing Daniel Briere.

A lot of Montreal fans have voiced their displeasure at the signing of undersized winger Daniel Briere for a two-year, $8 million contract. But Briere brings a couple of things to the Canadiens that the team does not have. First of all, he is a great leader. He has been a captain or co-captain for the past several years and he is the kind of guy that younger players turn to for leadership. Briere also stands out as an excellent playoff performer. He will give the Canadiens the scoring punch in the playoffs that the team needs desperately.

Notable Change #3: Buying out Tomas Kaberle.

When the Canadiens gave Tomas Kaberle his huge contract, it raised eyebrows around the NHL. Kaberle was scheduled to make around $4.5 million for the 2013-14 season. That would almost be worth it for a defenseman if that defenseman scored goals or played solid defense. But Kaberle did neither. He was never known as a goal scorer and he spent most of the 2012-13 abbreviated season in the press box. Kaberle only played 10 games last season, and he was never injured. When a team decides to make a defenseman a healthy scratch that often, then the smartest move is to buy him out and apply the cap space somewhere else. That is exactly what the Canadiens did, and it wound up being a significant and important move to Montreal’s offseason.

 

Click here to get a full list of NHL futures for the 2013-14 NFL season.

NHL Betting: Detroit Red Wings Notable Offseason Moves

hi-res-159901413_crop_650x440The 2012-13 season was the first one that the Detroit Red Wings played without premier defenseman and captain Nicklas Lidstrom since 1991-92, and it did not go well. It took the Wings a couple of months to figure out how to play defense without Lidstrom, and the gaping hole left in the leadership area by Lidstrom’s departure was also evident. Goaltender Jimmy Howard was distracted for much of the season by the birth of his child and the loss of his defensive safety blanket. But as the playoffs got closer, the Red Wings seemed to pull it all together. The odds makers were so impressed that they gave the Red Wings 16 to 1 odds to win the Stanley Cup in 2013-14. But did the Red Wings make the right offseason moves to get closer to another Stanley Cup championship?

2013 Stanley Cup Odds:  16/1

Notable Change #1: Signing Daniel Alfredsson.

The Ottawa Senators will be a worse team for losing Daniel Alfredsson and the Detroit Red Wings will be a better team for signing the veteran. Despite the fact that Alfredsson is going to be 41 years old, he still has a lot to offer a team like Detroit. He brings back that veteran presence that was lost when Lidstrom retired and he also helps bring a sense of toughness to the offense that has been fading in Detroit lately.

Notable Change #2: Signing Stephen Weiss.

Stephen Weiss has played his entire career with the Florida Panthers and has seen playoff action once. The Detroit Red Wings just made the playoffs for the 22nd consecutive season. Weiss signed with the Red Wings, presumably, to make the playoffs a little more often and have a shot at a Stanley Cup championship before he retires. Right now, the 30-year-old playmaker brings a scoring edge to the Red Wings that will be very welcome. Weiss will be able to move the puck out of the defensive end for the Red Wings and take some of the pressure off shell-shocked goaltender Jimmy Howard. Weiss also gives the Red Wings an offensive anchor for the future, which the team had been missing for some time.

Notable Change #3: Letting Valtteri Filppula leave.

After eight years in Detroit, Valtteri Filppula wound up leaving the Motor City and signing with the Tampa Bay Lightning. Filppula is 28 years old and entering a prime phase of his career. It would have been ideal for the Red Wings to team up Weiss with Filppula, but that is not going to happen. The Red Wings only made two significant acquisitions in the offseason, but this one loss could wind up leaving a hole in the Red Wings roster that will take some time to fill. Filppula is a gritty player who offered a lot to a Red Wings team that was trying to transition from older players to a new generation of players.

Click here to get a full list of NHL futures for the 2013-14 NFL season.

2013 College Football Preview: Pac-12

Clemson v Florida StateSportsbook.ag

OREGON DUCKS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 12-1 (8-1 in Pac-12)

ATS Record: 8-5 (62%)

Over/Under: 7-5

Points Scored: 49.5 PPG

Points Allowed: 21.6 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 15/2

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 8

Defense: Starters Returning: 7

New Head Coach: Mark Helfrich

The Ducks were 12-1 last year with the lone loss coming to Stanford in overtime. When Chip Kelly left, OC Mark Helfrich was promoted and his offense (49.5 PPG, 2nd in FBS; 538 YPG, 5th in FBS) could throw more. Two of the nation’s best players return in QB Marcus Mariota (2,677 pass yds, 32 TD, 6 INT; 752 rush yds, 5 TD) and RB De’Anthony Thomas (701 rush yds, 7.6 YPC; 445 rec. yds; 18 total TD). RBs Byron Marshall (447 rush yds, 4 TD) and freshman Thomas Tyner will also share in the nation’s No. 3 rushing attack (315 YPG). WR Josh Huff (493 rec. yds, 7 TD) and TE Colt Lyeria (7 total TD) are both polished. Oregon led FBS with 40 takeaways, and brings back DE Taylor Hart (8 sacks) to anchor a stout D-Line and elite CB Ifo Ekpre-Olomu (4 INT, 16 PD, 6 FF) to lead the secondary. The linebackers are green though

STANFORD CARDINAL

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 12-2 (9-1 in Pac-12

ATS Record: 9-5 (64%)

Over/Under: 5-9

Points Scored: 27.9 PPG

Points Allowed: 17.2 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 20/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 8

Defense: Starters Returning: 7

Despite losing the NFL’s top overall pick (Andrew Luck), the Cardinal still won a dozen games in 2012, including the Pac-12 Championship and Rose Bowl. Now a replacement for RB Stepfan Taylor is needed, but RBs Anthony Wilkerson (914 rush yds, 7 TD career) and Tyler Gaffney (791 rush yds, 12 TD career) are suitable fill-ins. It helps that they’ll run behind what could be the country’s best O-Line. QB Kevin Hogan (1,096 pass yds, 9 TD, 3 INT) progressed rapidly last year, winning all five starts. Receivers are a bit thin, with WRs Ty Montgomery (213 rec. yds) and Devon Cajuste the best available, and no proven tight end. The stingy defense (17.2 PPG, 11th in FBS) was led by an amazing front seven that led FBS in sacks (57) and TFL (124). Many of those standouts return, including DE Ben Gardner (7.5 sacks, 14.5 TFL) and LBs Shayne Skov (81 tackles, 9 TFL) and Trent Murphy (10 sacks, 18 TFL). All-American S Ed Reynolds (6 INT, 3 TD) leads a fantastic back four.

USC TROJANS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 7-6 (5-4 in Pac-12)

ATS Record: 3-10 (23%)

Over/Under: 5-8

Points Scored: 32.1 PPG

Points Allowed: 24.3 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 40/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 8

Defense: Starters Returning: 6

The preseason No. 1 team is not supposed to lose six games, but that’s just what USC did last year. With Matt QB Barkley gone, Lane Kiffin will start either QB Cody Kessler (2-for-2, 9 yds) or QB Max Wittek (36-of-69, 388 yds, 3 TD, 5 INT) in this redemption year. All-American WR Marqise Lee (1,721 rec. yds, 14 TD) led the nation with 118 catches, WR Nelson Agholor (341 rec. yds, 18.9 YPC) is an amazing athlete, and TE Xavier Grimble (316 rec. yds, 5 TD) is a future pro. The ground game has RB Silas Redd (905 rush yds, 9 TD) and freshman Justin Davis running behind a veteran O-Line. New DC Clancy Pendergast will run a 5-2 set for a DL-heavy team that had 45 sacks (T-4th FBS). DE/OLB Morgan Breslin (13 sacks, 62 tackles) is relentless, and LBs Hayes Pullard (107 tackles) and Dion Bailey (80 tackles, 4 INT) are accomplished. But the shaky secondary has no proven cornerbacks to rely on.

ARIZONA STATE SUN DEVILS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 8-5 (5-4 in Pac-12)

ATS Record: 8-4-1 (67%)

Over/Under: 6-6

Points Scored: 38.4 PPG

Points Allowed: 24.3 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 125/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 6

Defense: Starters Returning: 8

Todd Graham’s first season with ASU was as unpredictable as his career path, starting 5-1, then losing four in row, then finishing with 49.7 PPG in three straight wins. Junior QB Taylor Kelly (3,039 pass yds, 29 TD, 9 INT) exceeded expectations without top-flight receivers. The 2013 group is young, but ultra-talented, especially JUCO WR Jaelen Strong. TE Chris Coyle (696 rec. yds, 5 TD) has great hands. The Sun Devils have two elite RBs in Marion Grice (679 rush yds, 6.6 YPC, 11 TD) and D.J. Foster (493 rush yds). ASU led the nation in TFL (9.0 per game), was 2nd in sacks (4.0 per game) and 3rd in pass defense (168 YPG). Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year DT Will Sutton (13 sacks, 23.5 TFL, 63 tackles, 3 FF) and LB Carl Bradford (11.5 sacks, 20.5 TFL, 81 tackles, 3 FF) wreak havoc in opponents’ backfields, really helping an average secondary, led by S Alden Darby (80 tackles, 3 INT).

 

OREGON STATE BEAVERS

 

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 9-4 (6-3 in Pac-12)

ATS Record: 8-5 (62%)

Over/Under: 7-5

Points Scored: 32.5 PPG

Points Allowed: 20.6 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 125/1

 

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 8

Defense: Starters Returning: 7

 

After starting 6-0, the Beavers alternated losses (three by four points or less) and wins to finish 9-4. Coach Mike Riley will delay picking a starter between QBs Sean Mannion (7.9 YPA, 15 TD, 13 INT) or Cody Vaz (8.0 YPA, 11 TD, 3 INT). The winner will throw most often to WR Brandin Cooks (1,151 rec. yds, 5 TD), but will not forget about TE Connor Hamlett (403 rec. yds, 3 TD) or WR Kevin Cummings (208 rec. yds). Four starters return to the offensive line to create holes for a now-healthy RB Storm Woods (940 rush yds, 13 TD). On defense, pass-rushing machine DE Scott Crichton (9 sacks, 17.5 TFL) headlines a JUCO-laden D-Line, while OLBs Michael Doctor (83 tackles, 11 TFL) and D.J. Alexander (50 tackles) fly all over the field. Three starting DBs return, including blanket CB Rashaad Reynolds (75 tackles, 3 INT, 13 PD).

 

UCLA BRUINS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 9-5 (6-4 in Pac-12)

ATS Record: 8-6 (57%)

Over/Under: 9-5

Points Scored: 34.4 PPG

Points Allowed: 27.6 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 75/1

 

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 7

Defense: Starters Returning: 6

Despite a three-game losing skid to end the year, Jim Mora Jr. has to be praised for his 9-5 first season with UCLA. The offense improved to 467 YPG (24th in FBS) thanks to QB Brett Hundley (3,470 pass yds, 29 TD, 11 INT; 355 rush yds, 9 TD). The sophomore won’t have RB Johnathan Franklin, but plenty of talent still exists with RBs Jordon James (419 total yds), Malcolm Jones (313 rush yds career) and freshman Paul Perkins. Hundley has exciting targets in WRs Shaquelle Evans (877 rec. yds, 3 TD) and freshman Devin Fuller, but the O-Line can’t let him absorb another 52 sacks (2nd-most in FBS). The scoring defense improved to 58th in FBS (27.6 PPG), from 94th in 2011 (31.4 PPG). An elite linebacker trio of Anthony Barr (13.5 sacks, 83 tackles, 4 FF), Eric Kendricks (149 tackles, 3 FR, 2 TD) and Jordan Zumwalt (70 tackles) is the heart of the 3-4 scheme. The secondary is green, but still better than most.

 

ARIZONA WILDCATS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 8-5 (4-5 in Pac-12)

ATS Record: 6-7 (46%)

Over/Under: 9-3

Points Scored: 38.2 PPG

Points Allowed: 35.3 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 500/1

 

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 6

Defense: Starters Returning: 10

The Rich Rodriguez era got off to an 8-5 start, but the Wildcats surrendered 49.6 PPG in five defeats. The potent offense (526 YPG, 7th in FBS) has the nation’s top rusher, RB Ka’Deem Carey (1,929 rush yds, 6.4 YPC, 23 TD), but the will sorely miss star WR Austin Hill (1,364 rec. yds) who tore his ACL in the spring. QBs B.J. Denker (259 pass yds, 3 TD, 1 INT) and JUCO Jesse Scroggins have so-so options in WRs David Richards (298 rec. yds, 3 TD) and Garic Wharton (264 rec. yds, 2 TD). The atrocious 3-3-5 defense (499 YPG, 3rd-worst in FBS) remains virtually intact. NT Tevin Hood (26 tackles) anchors a weak front four, but LBs Jake Fischer (119 tackles, 3 FF) and Marquis Flowers (5.5 sacks, 100 tackles) are reliable. DB Tra’Mayne Bondurant (74 tackles, 11.5 TFL) and CB Shaquille Richardson (14 PD) should improve.

 

WASHINGTON HUSKIES

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 7-6 (5-4 in Pac-12)

ATS Record: 8-5 (62%)

Over/Under: 5-7

Points Scored: 24.0 PPG

Points Allowed: 24.2 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 200/1

 

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 10

Defense: Starters Returning: 7

The Huskies rode the roller coaster in 2012, starting 3-1 by beating Stanford, then losing three straight (by 25.3 PPG), winning four in a row and then closing with two losses by a combined five points. QB Keith Price (2,728 pass yds, 19 TD, 13 INT) regressed after a 33-TD sophomore season, but coach Steve Sarkisian hopes a no-huddle offense will revive his career. He has great weapons at his disposal in RB Bishop Sankey (1,439 rush yds, 16 TD; 249 rec. yds), WR Kasen Williams (878 rec. yds, 6 TD) and TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins (852 rec. yds, 7 TD). Williams and Seferian-Jenkins were both cited for DUI charges in the offseason, but neither is expected to miss any games. Price also has four returning O-Linemen to protect him. A solid defense (357 YPG, 31st in FBS) brings back a fast front seven with DE Josh Shirley (6.5 sacks, 6 FF) and LBs Shaq Thompson (74 tackles, 3 INT), John Timu (91 tackles, 2 INT) and Travis Feeney (76 tackles, 4 sacks, 2 INT). A stifling pass defense (197 YPG, 23rd in FBS) is paced by SS Sean Parker (77 tackles, 2 INT) and CB Marcus Peters (3 INT, 8 PD).

 

UTAH UTES

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 5-7 (3-6 in Pac-12)

ATS Record: 5-7 (42%)

Over/Under: 5-5-1

Points Scored: 26.7 PPG

Points Allowed: 25.1 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 500/1

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 6

Defense: Starters Returning: 6

It was a miserable year two in the Pac-12 for the Utes, who finished 3-6 in conference play with five double-digit losses. The injury-fueled QB carousel didn’t help, but QB Travis Wilson (1,311 pass yds, 7 TD, 6 INT) should bring stability to the spread attack this season with new co-OC Dennis Erickson. They hope top WRs — Dres Anderson  (365 rec. yds, 3 TD) and Kenneth Scott (360 rec. yds, 3 TD) — both step up. TE Jake Murphy (349 rec. yds, 4 TD) is also vital to this offense. RB John White is hard to replace, but RB Kelvin York (273 rush yds, 3 TD) could have a big year if his turf toe subsides, as Utah’s beefy offensive line is shaping up nicely. The defense has to rebuild its front four without DT Star Lotulelei, but will be strong in the middle with LBs Trevor Reilly (4.5 sacks, 3 FF, 69 tackles) and Brian Biechen (58 tackles, 5 PD). Safety-turned-cornerback Keith McGill leads a youthful secondary.

 

CALIFORNIA GOLDEN BEARS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 3-9 (2-7 in Pac-12)

ATS Record: 3-9 (25%)

Over/Under: 5-6

Points Scored: 23.0 PPG

Points Allowed: 33.1 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 50/1 (Field)

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 7

Defense: Starters Returning: 6

New Head Coach: Sonny Dykes

The Golden Bears’ pro-style offense fizzled with a paltry 14.8 PPG during a season-ending, five-game losing skid, but figures to be much more exciting this year. Sonny Dykes’ brings his fast-paced spread attack from Louisiana Tech (578 YPG, 1st in FBS), but it’s unclear if junior QB Austin Hinder or freshmen QBs Zach Kline and Jared Goff will start, as the trio has zero FBS pass attempts. New skill-players are needed to help WR Chris Harper (544 rec. yds) and RB Brendan Bigelow (431 rush yds, 9.8 YPC, 3 TD). The No. 95-ranked defense (441 YPG) will switch to a 4-3 with DC Andy Buh. DL Deandre Coleman (48 tackles, 3 sacks) and DE/LB Chris McCain (50 tackles, 4 QBH) and LB Nick Forbes (85 tackles) make the front seven above average. The awful pass defense (272 YPG, T-107th in FBS) lost three starters.

 

WASHINGTON STATE COUGARS

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 3-9 (1-8 in Pac-12)

ATS Record: 5-7 (42%)

Over/Under: 6-5

Points Scored: 20.4 PPG

Points Allowed: 33.7 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 50/1 (Field)

 

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 8

Defense: Starters Returning: 8

The Cougars won just one Pac-12 game under Mike Leach, taking the Apple Cup over Washington in overtime to cap the season. If QB Connor Halliday (15 TD, 13 INT) falters again with the Air Raid offense, Leach will put in redshirt freshman Austin Apodaca. WRs Gabe Marks (560 rec. yds, 2 TD) is the standout amongst a deep receiving group. WSU had the worst rushing offense in the nation (29 YPG, 1.4 YPC) and the offensive line allowed an FBS-most 57 sacks. RB Teondray Caldwell (269 rush yds, 4.8 YPC) is the best runner the Cougars have to offer. The 101st-ranked scoring defense (33.7 PPG) has a chance to improve with plenty of returnees. DTs Toni Pole (5.5 TFL) and Xavier Cooper (3 sacks) are both 300 pounds, and LBs Darryl Monroe (80 tackles, 3 sacks) and Cyrus Coen (60 tackles, 12 TFL, 3 INT) make plays. Star SS Deone Bucannon (106 tackles, 4 INT) has no real weakness.

 

COLORADO BUFFALOES

2012 Statistics:

SU Record: 1-11 (1-8 in Pac-12)

ATS Record: 3-9 (25%)

Over/Under: 6-5

Points Scored: 17.8 PPG

Points Allowed: 46.0 PPG

Odds to Win 2014 BCS National Championship: 50/1 (Field)

2013 Preview:

Offense: Starters Returning: 9

Defense: Starters Returning: 7

New Head Coach: Mike MacIntyre

The 1-11 Buffaloes were just atrocious last season, getting outscored 46 to 18 on average by their opponents. Mike MacIntyre tries to get the program on the track by bringing his multiple set from San Jose State, whose Pistol-heavy offense threw for 333 pass YPG (6th in FBS). QB Jordan Webb has a torn ACL, allowing QB Connor Wood (265 pass yds, 1 TD, 4 INT) to take over. WR Paul Richardson (555 rec. yds, 5 TD) is back from a season-long knee injury to provide the No. 1 target, while RB Christian Powell (691 rush yds, 7 TD) leads a deep group of ball carriers. The nation’s fourth-worst defense (489 YPG) hopes new DC Kent Baer can create more turnovers. DE Chidera Uzo-Diribe (7 sacks) is a beast, and both LB Derrick Webb (66 tackles) and CB Kenneth Crawley (44 solo tackles, 4 PD) are heady and productive.