College Football Betting — Utah Utes at Colorado Buffaloes (11/26)
By Charles Jay
It was not widely suspected that the Colorado Buffaloes could wind up being the Pac 12 champions and in the Rose Bowl. But if they can beat the Utah Utes on Saturday night, then score a mild upset over the Washington Huskies in the conference championship game after that, they might even be able to do one better – perhaps a berth in the college football playoff. First thing’s first, however – they’ll face the Utes, a wounded team after an upset defeat, at 7:30 PM ET on Saturday at Folsom Field in Boulder, CO. BetAnySports customers will have an opportunity, even after the opening kickoff, to place wagers in real time, using the state-of-the-art software from Live Betting Ultra.
The Buffs lost 25 of their last 27 Pac 12 games coming into this season, but they had lost eight games by a touchdown or less, which in the opinion of some indicated that they were getting closer to being competitive. After a 4-9 season in 2015, they returned nine starters on both sides of the ball. And the results have been fabulous. Colorado has lost only to Michigan (45-28) and USC (21-17) and if they win this game, they will gain entry into the Pac 12 title game next week against Washington, which won decisively over Washington State in the Apple Cup on Friday. If Colorado loses, it will be USC going to the title game, because the Trojans will own the tie-breaker.
Utah was 10-3 last season and recognized that this might be a rebuilding year of sorts. Things started out promising for them as they won their first four games, beating BYU and USC in the process. But they were victimized by Cal’s wide-open offense, dropped a decision to U-Dub, and last week last at home to Oregon as a 13-point favorite.
Colorado is #9 in the nation across the board, which means in the Associated Press poll, the Coaches’ poll and the Playoff Rankings. Utah is clinging onto a national ranking; they are 20th with the Coaches’ poll, 21st in the AP rankings and 22nd in college football’s Playoff Rankings.
In the college football betting odds posted on this game by the people at BetAnySports, Colorado is favored to take the next step:
Colorado Buffaloes -9.5
Utah Utes +9.5
Over 53.5 points -110
Under 53.5 points -110
Colorado has compiled an amazing 10-1 pointspread record this season, failing to cover only as a favorite against UCLA. A big reason for that is their ability to keep teams out of the end zone. They are especially tough in the red zone, where they have allowed opponents to score points only 67.7% of the time – the fourth-best figure in the nation. And they are sixth in the nation in passing efficiency defense. They actually held Washington State quarterback Luke Falk below 50% last week (26 of 53) in the process of a 38-24 victory.
Phillip Lindsay seems to be getting hot at the right time. The Colorado running back has had 100 yards or more in four of his last five games, and had 144 yards on the ground against Wazzu. BetAnySports patrons also know that senior QB Seth Liufau supplements what he can do with his arm (10 TD’s, three INT’s, and 348 yards passing vs. WSU) with what he can accomplish with his feet, and he topped the 100-yard mark for the firs time last week.
Utah certainly let a golden opportunity slip by against Oregon, as Kyle Whittingham’s team eliminated itself from the South division race. But they are still jockeying for bowl positioning. It is clear that Utah will try to move the chains by advancing the football on the ground. Joe Williams leads the way with 1088, and he had 187 in last year’s meeting, which the Utes won 20-14 in Salt Lake City. Keep in mind that Utah has covered eight of its last eleven as an underdog, and that this series has been rather closely contested, with the last five encounters decided by a a total of 23 points.
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