Betting on College Football Mid-Majors
Division 1A college football, which is also referred to as the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) is comprised of 10 conferences along with a small number of teams that play as Independents. In that group there are five major conferences (ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC) and the other five are known as the Mid-Majors.
The Mid-Majors consist of the American Athletic Conference, Conference-USA, Mid-American, Mountain West and the Sun Belt. While most college football fans are familiar with teams such as Boise State, Northern Illinois and Central Florida because of their recent climb into Top 20 contention, there are a host of other quality mid-major programs that offer quite a bit of value when it comes to wagering on the games.
It is well worth your effort to familiarize yourself with these mid-major conferences when developing a betting strategy for college football. This should be broken down into two primary areas; Mid-Major matchups against teams from the major conference and head-to-head matchups within a mid-major conference.
The top teams in the nation will often times load-up the non-conference portion of their schedule with games against mid-major teams in an effort to bolster their win total before starting conference play. They will often sprinkle-in a game or two against a Mid-Major late in the season as a breather before a big conference showdown. The Oddsmakers are more than generous with their spreads in matchups like this, which often times leads to a golden opportunity to cash-in on a bad line.
The Mid-Major underdog may not win the game straight-up, but many times they will cover against the spread with relative ease. The trick is to know which mid-major teams have the capability to remain competitive against even the best programs in the nation and which ones are basically lambs being led to the slaughter. One betting strategy would be to identify a list of one or two mid-major teams that shape-up as the top teams in their conference before the season gets underway. Jump on them early in a matchup against a team from a major conference when the betting line leans your way and then adjust accordingly over the next few weeks.
Head-to-head matchups between mid-major teams within their respective conference is another great way to cash-in on the games. By the time conference play begins you will already have a good feel for how these teams fared in their early games.
There is a wealth of key statistics and recent betting trends are readily available to help handicap these head-to-head matchups so you can always find a couple of games with a bad line. Look for solid underdogs at home in what could be perceived as a rivalry game. These guys are playing for the sheer love of the game and an upset over a bitter rival can sometimes become the primary focus of an entire season. The revenge factor is huge in college football, especially between two closely matched teams. These types of opportunities exist every single week in the Mid-Majors if you know where to look.
Another betting strategy is to look for mid-major teams with a quality quarterback as well as some other top players at the skill positions on offense. They already have a chip on their shoulder since they were bypassed by the major football programs and they are probably playing the game to get noticed by the pro scouts. These guys can be game-changers at this level so in this case you want to ride the heavy favorite at home against an inferior defense that has no chance to slow them down.
A final strategy for betting on Mid-Majors is to focus your attention on just one conference. Even better is focusing-in on a conference that is geographically close to where you live. These programs are not getting the national coverage like teams from the SEC or Big Ten do, so you really need to rely on local sources to get an inside view of what is going on. This can really work in your favor to provide an extremely valuable edge when it comes to handicapping the games.