Submitted by Kelso Sturgeon on Friday, July 28, 2017 at 12:57 PM
Alabama 7-2 To Win 5th National Championship In Last 8 Years…USC Which Lost To Crimson Tide 52-6 Last Season Second Choice At 4-1, Buckeyes In 3rd Spot At 9-2
College Football Teams Report Monday With First Games Just 25 Days Away
Best Futures Bet On Board Is To Take 18-1 Washington To Win More Than 7.5 Games
NFL Preseason Begins Thursday And You Can Get All The Winners Free
By Kelso Sturgeon
The nation's 130 NCAA Division I football football teams open their training camps Monday and it surprises no one the Alabama Crimson Tide are the 7-2 favorites to win their fifth national championship in the past eight years. That's what Alabama does - win, win and then win some, like 119-19 since Nick Saban landed in Tuscaloosa 10 seasons ago.
The football dynasty that began in Tuscaloosa in 1958 when one of the greatest of them all - Paul "Bear" Bryant took over as head coach and in his 25 years on the job won six national championships, 14 Southeastern Conference titles and 15 Coach of the Year awards while going 232-46-9 on his way to the Hall of Fame.
While there is nothing in the record books about it, Bryant's greatest accomplishment was integrating the conference that previously did not allow African Americans on its athletic teams. Always the pragmatist Bryant realized dozens of potentially great black players were winning for other schools and he wanted them to stay home. He was the untouchable Bryant and no one dared say a word.
Since the days of Bryant, Alabama has been the leader of college football.
It was said there would never be another one like him - and then Nick Saban arrived on campus 10 years ago to restore the school's former glory, He has done just that, winning four national championships while going 119-19.
It is of note Alabama (-6.5) just missed winning another championship last season when it fell to the best team Clemson has put on the field in years, 35-31. Losing that game meant teams from the Southeastern Conference dropped to 7-3 in the last 10 title games. The only outsiders to win in the past 10 years are Clemson and Florida State from the Atlantic Coast Conference and Ohio State from the Big Ten.
There is no reason to expect a different result this year and the most likely candidate to do that is Alabama.
Why Alabama Again?
There are many in the football world that suggest Alabama wins because it cheats but that is just sour grapes. Alabama wins because it puts one the field every Saturday a team that runs at least three deep with nothing but blue-chip players at every position. One goes down and it's next man up and that player is just as good as the one he replaced.
In short the Crimson Tide win because they have (1) the best players, (2) the fastest players, (3) the biggest offensive and defensive lines and a coach that teaches every single member of the team to play with the intensity and focus he brings to the game.
Talent? Alabama returns just six players on offense and five defense who started last season. Yet, when the preseason All SEC Team was announced Alabama grabbed 16 spots - including a stunning 10 on the first unit and three each on the second and third teams.
NFL Preseason Football Begins Thursday
The NFL preseason begins this coming Thursday when the Dallas Cowboys and Arizona Cardinals meet in the Hall of Fame Game in Canton, Ohio. The game kicks off at 8:00 Eastern time and will be televised nationally on NBC. I intend to win it and launch another successful preseason.
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Winning Is Determined By Just Two Handicapping Factors
Handicapping the NFL preseason is an exercise conducted without the support of the data that is real and aids bettors during the regular season. In other words, all numbers are worthless. Winning in the pre-season stands on just two factors - inside information and a coach's record in these games.
"Inside information" is an overused term during the regular season but not during the pre-season. It exists and one must dig for it to determine (1) a team's game plan, what facet of its game it is working on and keep in mind both coaches meet beforehand to discuss what they hope to accomplish in these glorified practice games.
Then there is the coaching factor. Coaches do have a history in pre-season games. For instance Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh is 24-12 in pre-season games, Minnesota's Mike Zimmer is 12-1 and Washington's Jay Gruden is 9-3. Meantime, Jason Garret is 9-16 in his six seasons as head coach of the Dallas Cowboys. Simply put, some coaches like to win in the pre-season while winning means little to others.
But a coach's pre-season record reveals another solid statistic which can reveal a team's intent in each week of the pre-season. Harbaugh is 8-1 in the first game of exhibition football, while Chicago's John Fox is 10-5 and New England's Bill Belichick is 12-6 in week one. Cincinnati's Marvin Lewis is 10-4 in week four and New Orleans Sean Payton is 1-10.
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Odds To Win College National Championship Plus Projected Number Of Wins
National Football League Trivia
When Las Vegas bookmakers took a look at the all 16 of the regular season each team will play, here are some of the conclusions they drew:
--Arizona is favored in just 8 games this season.
--Atlanta, the defending NFC champion, is favored in 13 games.
--Cleveland will be an underdog in 15-of-16 games this season and a pick'em against the Jets.
--Denver is favored in just 5 games. The entire season.
--Los Angeles Rams are underdogs in every game.
--New England Patriots will be favored in all 16 games.
--Kansas City will be favored in all 8 home games.
--New York Jets will be favored in just one game this season (against Jacksonville Jaguars at home on October 1) will be a pick'em in 2 other games.
--Pittsburgh Steelers will be favored in 13 of their 16 games.