2016 Deep Fried College Football Preview
It’s that time of year again; the best time of the year, FOOTBALL SEASON (sorry Santa)! We’ve already had meaningful football last Friday in Australia, because nothing says college football is here like a classic down under between Hawaii and California. The real life action picks up again this Thursday and then we have the greatest opening weekend of all time! Don’t get me wrong, I love the Olympics, and I’ve been doing my best to make you some money regarding those, but damnit I’ve got football withdrawals and I NEED MY FIX!
We’ve got a lot to get to so let’s go ahead and get to it. If you were with us last year you know what you’re about to get yourself into (if not familiarize yourself: http://www.deepfriedbets.com/deep-fried-college-football). I’m giving you my favorite team win totals for the season, some conference champions and then my playoff teams. If you’re lucky I may even give you a National Champion (Alabama, probably). As far as the Heisman, it’s too unpredictable to give a real winner but if you tune into the podcast later this week you might get a few names.
My odds will come from all over the place. When it comes to futures bets, it’s a lot better to shop around for the best odds. For example, I usually do my weekly games on Bovada but they have terrible futures odds so I’m looking elsewhere for those. I’m not shopping all of these right now for you. I’m already giving you the winners; I’m not shopping them for you, too!
Before we get started, let me remind all you fine folks that the Deep Fried Bets Podcast will be back for a second season! We appreciate all the love we got last year and we’re excited for the next go around. We’ve already got some legit things planned and some really big time guests. I won’t spoil anything but you’re definitely going to want to tune in for the first week of the college football season (it’s not Saban). Also, we had some badass shirts made in the off-season. If you’d like one let me know and I’ll get you in on the next order!
Now to the important business…
Alabama 9.5: We’ll start this year where we did last year. Take Alabama over 9.5. The odds on this aren’t great no matter where you find them and they shouldn’t be. I have a hard time seeing Alabama not winning 10 games as long as Nick Saban is there. The schedule isn’t kind and they have to replace a lot of starters and even a few coaches. Unfortunately for the rest of the SEC they don’t have to replace Nick Saban.
Baylor 9: Really? Vegas has that much confidence in Jim Grobe, huh? It’s pretty apparent Art Briles was a scum of a human being but he was a damn good football coach. Especially at a place like Baylor. I know they’ve got some talent coming back, but they’re also losing plenty after the scandal. Give me Under 9 wins here all day.
Florida State 9.5: The Seminoles are one of the more polarizing teams coming into 2016. Florida State is one of the hotter teams of the summer, and that didn’t seem to slow down when they lost QB Sean Maguire. Deondre Francois now wins a QB job by default (he probably would have won anyways). I like the Seminoles to possibly win 11 or even 12 games in 2016. They get Clemson and North Carolina at home, but they’ll open with Ole Miss in Orlando. If they can get by that it’ll be smooth sailing to at least 10 wins. Take Florida State over 9.5 wins if you can still get it. I don’t see any way in the world this team doesn’t finish with double digit wins.
LSU 9.5: Let me start off by saying this- I don’t think Les Miles is a very good coach; therefore, I hope he stays there forever. Let me now say this, I have absolutely no head coaching experience and I believe I could lead this team to 10 wins with all the talent they have. If at any point it becomes apparent LSU isn’t going to win at least 10 games, Les Miles should be fired. Like, for instance, if they get down 21 in a game and they already have 2 losses their AD should walk up to Les on the sidelines mid game and fire him. This team is a top 2 team talent wise in America. That alone should get them over 9.5 wins.
Michigan State 8: This seemed absurdly low to me. I know they’re trying to replace Connor Cook, but count me in the camp that thinks Connor Cook was extremely overrated. After all, they did go into Ohio State and knock them off last year with Cook on the bench. I know they got obliterated by Alabama in the playoffs last year but they don’t have any Alabama’s on the regular season schedule this year. Mark Dantonio is a great coach and he’ll get this team to 9 wins. Take the Spartans to win Over 8 games this year.
San Diego State 9: The Aztecs return a good amount of talent off a team that won 11 games last year. They went undefeated in conference last year and they could definitely do that again this year. Their out of conference tests are Cal in week two and Northern Illinois the next week. If they can get out of that stretch 1-1 they should win 10 games at least. I think San Diego State Over 9 wins is a pretty safe bet, one where I think a push is the worst you could do.
Washington 10: Why? They surprised a few folks last year by getting to a bowl but I don’t think that was that hard to see if you really looked at it. Now we’re talking about 10 wins? I know Chris Petersen is a great coach but damn, this is some next level hype right here. A few people came out early in the preseason and said Washington was a sleeper now they’re bordering on Tennessee level build up. I think 8-9 wins are in play, but I don’t see them hitting over 10. Next year? They could be a legit playoff contender next year, but that’s next year. They’re still a year away. Take the Huskies Under 10 wins in 2016.
I could go through teams all day on win totals but let’s be honest, it’s not terribly fun to wait all season on a bet to cash in potentially on a lot less than even money. If we’re going to wait that long on something, better be getting a good return on investment. Speaking of - let’s get to the conference champions!
I know they’re the overwhelming favorite but I think Clemson (+150) is still the team to beat here. After what I saw from Deshaun Watson last year in the National Championship I’m not picking against that kid if he’s healthy. I picked him to win the Heisman preseason last year and he was even better than I thought when I got to watch him in person. They’ve got a lot of depth on defense to replace some of the pros that are gone. They get Mike Williams back at receiver which should make Watson even better.
Florida Sate (+210) is a really good bet too especially since they get Clemson at home this year. I don’t see it being anyone but one of those two teams, although a lot of folks are high on Louisville (+1000). I think there’s some value there, but a lot of folks are basing their pick of them winning on their QB Lamar Jackson. I think the kid’s a great runner, but I don’t think he’s ready to lead a team to a conference championship quite yet.
Finally, a team I originally thought would win their conference isn’t a favorite (just barely). The favorite here is actually Washington (+310), and if you’re paying attention which I’m sure you all are, I think they’re a year away. I think Stanford at (+325) is a good pick as I think they’ll win the East, but they’re not my pick either.
I’m taking UCLA (+400) to win the Pac 12. I think their path is a bit clearer to get to the title game and I think by season’s end Josh Rosen will be one of the two or three best quarterbacks in the country.
This conference is wide open as well, and I can see a situation like last year where they beat up on each other again and get left out of the playoff for a second year in a row. USC at (+650) offers up some good value as does Washington State at (+1200).
This one is up for grabs to me. I’ve seen a lot of people taking TCU in the last couple of weeks; if Kenny “Are we still calling him Trill” Hill can get back to Week 1 2014 form they might be a decent pick. Oklahoma is actually less than even money here at -125. I was right on them last year and I think they definitely have the most talent this year. The schedule is tough and I can honestly see them getting tripped up week one against Houston, but that wont effect their conference championship hopes.
Ultimately I think the Sooners have too much talent so I’m going to have to bite the bullet and go chalk here taking Oklahoma (-125) to win it. I see some value picks in Texas (+650) and Texas Tech (+2500) here though if you’re feeling frisky.
Count me in the camp that’s not completely sold on Michigan (+200). I know Harbaugh is a great coach and he’s done great recruiting there but I still think they’re at least a year away from playoff contention. I was sold before I started this preview that I wanted to go Ohio State here. Well now I’m not so confident seeing they’re the favorites. I’m not trying to go all chalk because I think we all know that won’t happen.
I think Ohio State (+160) will come out of the east but I’m not taking them to win. I’m rolling the dice here and taking who I think will win the west in Iowa (+750) to upset Ohio State in the B1G championship, potentially keeping the conference out of the playoff.
Nebraska at +900 is a good looking sleeper here to me, as I can see them winning the west and then all it takes is one game.
Now folks, here’s what you all came for. The SEC! Let me get started by telling you I will not be picking Tennessee (+400) here; so if that’s something you were expecting you can continue on about your day because it’s not happening. I said last year I wasn’t buying in to the Tennessee hype and I’m not doing it this year either.
For the SEC Champion, I’m rolling with the Tide again! Call it too much Bama, call it whatever you want, but I can’t pick against them; not until Nick Saban leaves at least. Yup, Alabama at (+175) is my pick to win the SEC for the third year in a row. LSU (+375) should provide a real challenge because their stupid talented, but in the end, Les Miles is still their head coach.
Aside from LSU I don’t see much value in the SEC; I really do have a hard time seeing anyone outside of them or Alabama winning the West, and whoever comes out of the East isn’t beating the West champ.
Well, now you have some season win totals to bet on and some conference champions to bet on. It’s time to get to the playoff teams! So my conference champions are Clemson, Oklahoma, Iowa, UCLA and Alabama. Spolier alert, I am not picking all five of those teams to make the four team playoff! Double spoiler alert; I’m not even taking four of those teams to get in! GASP! That’s right friends, welcome to the year 2016; where we worship a dead gorilla and one conference gets two teams into the College Football Playoff. Without further adieu, lets get to my teams!
Alabama (7/5): I know it’s redundant and there isn’t much value here but you can apply the same rules as the SEC championship as you do to the playoff. As long as Nick Saban is coaching the Tide, I’m picking them to make the playoff.
Clemson (7/4): Yup, it’s getting boring. 2/2 in terms of repeat teams (go ahead and shield your eyes for team three if you don’t like where this is headed). Deshaun Watson is the best college football player I’ve ever seen in person. I’ve seen a lot of live college football in my day so trust me that’s saying a lot. Combine him and the rest of Clemson’s talent and I’m taking the Tigers to make it back to the final four in 2016.
Oklahoma (7/4): I told you to shield your eyes, didn’t I? I will say this though, I think Oklahoma will be the fourth team in, not the third and they could be the first two loss team to make the CFP. I think somewhere in the mix there will be a two loss team this year; which is why I’m taking…
LSU (3/1): to be the second team from the SEC to make the playoff. Everyone’s going to absolutely hate it but I think by season’s end there won’t be a choice. I think Alabama either goes 12-0 or 11-1 and I think LSU goes 11-1 with their one loss being to Alabama. Like I said above I think there’s a two loss team that has to get in this year which will pave the way for a one loss LSU to be the second team from their conference to get in. I can hear the bitching already.
Alabama (+600). Move along, nothing to see here. Of course I’m taking the Tide. I honestly think they’re the best team in the country regardless of where I graduated from. I’m not going to try and defend this pick because you’re either with me or clearly an Auburn fan.
Alright thank you folks for tuning in and be sure to stay locked in to Deep Fried Bets throughout the season. We’ve got a lot of big things planned starting with season two of the podcast which we’re going to record Wednesday night with a very special guest. Trust me, if you’re a college football fan you’re going to want to tune in for this one. Be sure to tell your friends about us and follow us on all the social platforms you can think of!