College Football Betting Tip: When Two Ranked Teams Collide

Betting Ranked vs Ranked CFB Matchups

The calendar has turned to October and chances are that this crazy start to the football season has burnt a hole in your wallet.

If, by chance, you have weathered the storm and profited through the first several weeks, get ready to make even more money because I have unearthed a valuable college football trend.

Although at times college football outcomes can seem very random and unpredictable, trends have emerged in the sport that bettors should be aware of. Being cognizant of these trends can be just as useful when handicapping as being able to analyze mismatches and game plans.

Beware of That Tiny Number

One trap college sports bettors will surely want to avoid is placing too much weight on a team’s ranking. The little number beside a team’s name can give false impressions of their talent level. Remember that rankings are very subjective and that they reward a team for being hot, not necessarily for being better than those ranked below them.

An emerging trend in college football exemplifies this perfectly. Take a look at these numbers dating all the way back to 2013 for ranked teams against the point spread playing at home against a higher-ranked team:

Year ATS Win % ROI
2013 57.1% 10%
2014 58.3% 12.5%
2015 52.4% EVEN
2016 61.9% 20%
2017 66.7% 30%

These numbers show that ranking does not mean as much as many think it does. If rankings were solid indicators of ability, upsets would be few and far between. As you undoubtedly know if you follow college sports, upsets happen all the time.

Do not believe in the fallacy that the #3 team will beat the #7 team simply because of the little number next to their name. Do your research. Figure out why they are ranked higher and whether that advantage will hold in a head-to-head matchup.

This trend also illustrates the importance the public places on home field in big games. In a sport steeped with passion and tradition, home field can be a major influence on the outcome of college football games. Often times, however, even home field will not protect a team from a bad showing.

Over the past two seasons, home teams in non-conference games have posted ATS win percentages of 42.6 and 46.5, respectively. When playing an unimportant, low-stakes game, it can be difficult to rile yourself up, even at home.

Research will determine which players and coaches regularly take advantage of home field and boost their performance. In certain situations, the home field effect is very real and tangible. Other times, bettors will be left scratching their heads as to how their team failed to secure that easy home victory.

Knowledge is power. Knowing the facts will give you the edge that just might make the second-half of this college football season a memorable one.

The Author

Kreighton Rahn

Kreighton Rahn is a contributing writer for Rahn, who earned a Bachelor of Science degree in writing at the University of Michigan, is a former sports betting content writer for the now defunct OGSports. Kreighton has a love of both sports and mathematics, and he is a dedicated sports fan as well as an avid sports bettor. His favorite sports to follow and bet are MLB, NFL, NBA, and men's college football and basketball.

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