2012 College Football Conference Championship Odds & Picks

by Scott

This week there are a few teams finishing up their regular season, but more importantly conference championships are also this weekend and we have predictions for each of the match-ups. Last week I went 4-2 with my picks, as I lost the Texas game plus the Oklahoma game. It was a week without many surprises, but with conference championships this week anything can happen.

Northern Illinois -6.5 (-110) vs. Kent State +6.5 (-110) – Pick: Kent State +6.5

Both these teams went 11-1 (8-0 in MAC) this season. Kent State lost to Kentucky in their 2nd game this season while the Huskies lost their 1st game of the season against Iowa. The Huskies rely on a 9th ranked rushing attack (245 RYPG) while Kent State also relies on their 11th ranked rushing offense (241.5 RYPG). Northern Illinois will have an edge in passing with Jordan Lynch.

Kent State doesn’t have a good passing attack, but they still manage to score 34.4 PPG (35th) compared to Northern Illinois who ranks 12th in points scored (40.5 PPG). One reason why NIU has an edge in most stats is because they played a SOS of 115 while the Golden Flashes had a SOS of 97. This is a pretty even match-up and I definitely like Kent State getting +6.5 points.

UCLA +7.5 (-110) vs. Stanford -7.5 (-110) – Pick: UCLA +7.5

UCLA went 9-3 (6-3 in PAC-12) this season while Stanford went 10-2 (8-1 in PAC-12). Last weekend the Cardinals won 35-17 on the road against the Bruins, but that was a game where UCLA didn’t need to win and you could tell they didn’t give it 100%. I think that the spread is reflecting public opinion from last week’s result and I’ll gladly take over a TD on the Bruins this Friday.

Stanford has got it done this year with defense, as they rank 11th in points against (16.9 PPG), but the Cardinals only rank 69th in points score with 28.6 PPG on average. UCLA is the opposite, as they allow 25.8 PPG (55th) and score 36 PPG (25th). Stanford is going to have their hands full with a dual attack. UCLA can run the football (196.2 RYPG – 34th) or pass (279.5 PYPG – 32nd).

Central Florida +2 (-110) vs. Tulsa -2 (-110) – Pick: Tulsa -2

With Tulsa being at home I’m betting on them in the MAC conference championship this Saturday. Tulsa and UCF both went 9-3 (7-1 in MAC) this season. Tulsa lost to SMU last weekend in their only division loss in a game that didn’t matter while UCF lost to Tulsa a couple weeks ago (23-21). That game was in Tulsa as well, so I think the Golden Hurricanes will win again at home.

Tulsa has had a solid rushing attack the entire season and ranked 12th in the nation (236.1 RYPG). UFC ranks lower in passing and rushing than Tulsa, but they average 35.9 PPG (26th) compared to Tulsa who averages slightly less (35.2 PPG – 31st). Tulsa has had a tougher SOS than UCF this season as well (Tulsa 82 SOS / UCF 100 SOS), so I’m backing them at home this weekend.

Alabama -7.5 (-105) vs. Georgia +7.5 (-115) – Pick: Georgia +7.5

In the biggest game this weekend, the Crimson Tide take on the Bulldogs in the SEC conference championship. Alabama finished this season with a 11-1 (7-1 in SEC) record while Georgia had a 11-1 (7-1 in SEC) record as well. Bama lost to Texas A&M and Georgia lost to South Carolina earlier in the season, but apart from that both teams were dominant for most of the season.

Since losing, Alabama has won two straight games by the score of 49-0. Georgia had a great game last week as well and I expect this game to be close to the end. Alabama has the edge on defense, as they allow 9.3 PPG (1st) compared to Georgia who allows an average 17.7 PPG (16th). Both teams have great rushing attacks and that should help chew up the clock and keep it close.

Florida State -14 (-110) vs. Georgia Tech +14 (-110) – Pick: Florida State -14

Georgia Tech was 6-6 (5-3 in SEC) and will be playing in the ACC championship game due to default. Florida State went 10-2 (7-1 in SEC) this season and they should be one of the only teams to blowout their opposition in the conference championships. FSU is a great offensive team (41.5 PPG – 5th) and defensive team (15.1 PPG – 7th), which will pose problems for Georgia Tech.

Last week Georgia blew out G-Tech 42-10 and the Seminoles should have similar success. They just need to shutdown the G-Tech rushing offense (323.3 RYPG – 3rd) to win this game by a lot. EJ Manuel is going to have a bounce back game after he played very poorly last week against in-state rival Florida Gators. I’m also betting on the Seminoles 1st half spread this weekend.

Nebraska -3 (-110) vs. Wisconsin +3 (-110) – Pick: Nebraska -3

Wisconsin had a rough season and they only finished with a 7-5 (4-4 in Big Ten) record. Wisconsin is only in this game because OSU and PSU are both not eligible this season. I love Montee Ball and he’s helped the Badgers rush for 212.7 RYPG (23rd), but the team doesn’t pose a legitimate passing threat. They only average 167.8 PYPG (112th) through the air this year.

Nebraska was 10-2 (7-1 in Big Ten) this year and they’ve been playing great football. They haven’t lost since the start of October and they’ve played some tough teams down the stretch. Nebraska has the 8th best rushing attack (252.2 RYPG), but like Wisky they also struggle passing the football (208.8 PYPG – 91st). Nebraska is a deeper team and I’m backing them this weekend.

About The Author

has written 52 awesome posts on tipsandpicks.com.

Scott primarily focuses on the US sports at Tips and Picks and he spends most of his time analyzing the betting markets to ensure bettors always get the best odds