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This Week's Vegas Oddsmakers' Top 25/30

As always, featuring 30 teams and the not-to-be-contested wisdom of Las Vegas Sports Consultants, which tells you which college teams are the best, scoreboard and polls be damned. And now, we enter the portion of the season where we compare Vegas's wisdom with the actual BCS standings, which are supposed to be the finest in the land. But hark! We have disagreement! Vegas would like either an LSU-Ohio State or LSU-Southern Cal championship game. The BCS prefers Ohio State-Boston College. Stay tuned.

And actually, the more interesting differences come at the bottom, where the unreasoning BCS rewards garbage teams with strong records and impressive (small-margin) wins, while Vegas has sense enough to tell us that Connecticut would be a big dog against UCLA on a neutral field.

Biggest frauds, according to Vegas: Boston College, Kansas, Hawaii and Virginia Tech are ranked seven spots too high by the BCS. Arizona State and Kentucky ranked six spots too high. Virginia (15th in the BCS) shouldn't even be in the top 35 according to Vegas.

Biggest sleepers, according to Vegas: BYU remains tragically underrated; 21st according to Vegas, in nowhere land according to the BCS. Cal is ranked 11 spots too low by the BCS. Southern Cal is ranked 10 spots too low. Charging Michigan is ranked eight spots too low. Penn State is ranked seven spots too low.

Vegas looked smart when: Vegas had Florida ranked well ahead of Kentucky, the AP had Kentucky ranked well ahead of Florida. Duh. Vegas wins. Vegas said Oklahoma State was underrated and Kansas State was overrated. Vegas wins again. Vegas said Michigan was underrated and Illinois was overrated. Vegas wins again. Three of Vegas's five biggest frauds last week were South Carolina, Kentucky and South Florida, which all lost outright. Vegas wins again. Vegas refused to rank Cincinnati, which lost, horribly. Vegas wins again. I love Vegas.

Vegas looked dumb when: Well, Vegas has been high on Florida State all year and that continued last week; the 'Noles did not look good in losing to Miami. That's about all I've got.

Games to watch: Southern Cal at Oregon: Vegas remains quite high on Southern Cal, and a bit lower on Oregon than the BCS. Florida at Georgia: Vegas is higher on Florida and lower on Georgia than the BCS. Cal at Arizona State: Vegas is way higher on Cal, and significantly lower on Arizona State than the BCS. Boston College at Virginia Tech: Vegas hates you both. South Florida at Connecticut: Vegas hates you both.

Numbers after the jump. BCS rankings in parentheses.

1. LSU (3)
2t. Ohio State (1)
2t. Southern Cal (12)
4. Oklahoma (6)
5. West Virginia (7)
6. Florida (11)
7. Oregon (5)
8. Missouri (13)
9. Boston College (2)
10t. California (21)
10t. Arizona State (4)
12. Michigan (20)
13. South Florida (10)
14. Texas (19)
15. Virginia Tech (8)
16. Kansas (9)
17. Auburn (22)
18t. South Carolina (16)
18t. Penn State (25)
20. Kentucky (14)
21. Brigham Young (NR)
22. UCLA (NR)
23. Georgia (18)
24t. Texas Tech (NR)
24t. Hawaii (17)
26. Clemson (NR)
27. Tennessee (NR)
28. Oklahoma State (NR)
29. Rutgers (NR)
30t. Boise State (NR)

Not ranked by Vegas: Virginia (15th in the BCS), Connecticut (23rd in the BCS), Alabama (24th in the BCS).

By Dan Steinberg  |  October 24, 2007; 9:58 AM ET
Categories:  College Football  
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Comments

So how do I translate this into winning money on Saturday? I imagine the spreads are based on Vegas rankings, so everything's 50-50 anyway right? This just shows that Vegas is smarter than the BCS, but can't give me an edge when I pick my teams, correct?

Posted by: Degenerate | October 24, 2007 11:12 AM | Report abuse

OK, what am I missing here? Alabama beat Tennessee 41-17 on Saturday (in Tuscaloosa, mind you), and Vegas still has Tennessee at #27 while Alabama is not in the top 30? The BCS standings are a joke, of course, but they got it right on this one.

Posted by: GKC | October 24, 2007 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Degenerate - Correct. What this means is that Vegas is good at picking the favorite - which means if you are placing 1:1 bets on the straight up winner with your buddies you should trust Vegas. But vegas of course uses the spread so that, in actuality, you aren't betting on a winner, but on a margin of victory. (I don't bet, so correct me if I'm wrong, but you CAN bet on the winners if you want, the problem is you don't get 1:1 odds, so in the long run Vegas will still make money off of you.)

Posted by: BiGpimpin | October 24, 2007 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Funny to see Tech being a fraud and ranked too high when they are one of the only teams that hasn't been up and down while leapfrogging winning teams this season.

Posted by: sitruc | October 24, 2007 2:57 PM | Report abuse

BigPimpin and Degenerate, yeah, obviously the lines reflect these rankings, so these won't help you win money. But they will show you that a team like BC might be undefeated and well-regarded by the BCS, but Vegas (the source of the most accurate knowledge, for my money) is considerably less impressed. That's about it. I still think it's interesting.

Posted by: Dan Steinberg | October 24, 2007 10:22 PM | Report abuse

Vegas has that right for sure.

Posted by: BYU is the best non-BCS in the country | October 25, 2007 11:28 AM | Report abuse

The big thing seperating us in vegas from the AP and other sources is that we aren't voting with our hearts. Who we think is this or that--- straight up numbers and strength in the value of the play,forget who you like it doesnt matter.

BC and VTech tonight is definatelyy one that makes you sratch your head. Looking at a team that is supposed to be best in the nation vs the run, but then have to go all the way down to the 90 and later spot for the overall Defense ranking and you understnad why VT gets the Favorite ranking in this game...

Vegas Winners
Whos ya Daddy?

Posted by: CrazyDaddy.net | October 25, 2007 4:39 PM | Report abuse

If Vegas has USC ahead of Oregon, why are they an underdog?

Posted by: Ferrari | October 26, 2007 4:49 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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