2017/18 College Football Bowl Games Opening Odds Roundup, Betting Trends

OddsShark.com@@OddsSharkFeatured ColumnistDecember 4, 2017

ARLINGTON, TX - DECEMBER 2: Baker Mayfield #6 of the Oklahoma Sooners looks to throw against the TCU Horned Frogs in the first half during the Big 12 Championship at AT&T Stadium on December 2, 2017 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images)
Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

After three months of play, including a wonderfully chaotic last couple of weeks, we finally know the bowl matchups for this college football season. And the betting market is now open at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark, with spreads on all the big bowl games. Here's a quick look at some of the opening college football bowl odds and where they've moved.

The first College Football Playoff national semifinal takes place in the Rose Bowl on New Year's Day, matching the SEC champion Georgia Bulldogs against the Big 12 champion Oklahoma Sooners. Most of this year's bowl betting market opened Oklahoma at -1.5, but early action pushed the spread down to -1, and to a pick'em at some shops.

The second semifinal takes place in a Sugar Bowl matchup that pits the defending national champion and three-time defending ACC champion Clemson Tigers against the Alabama Crimson Tide, who didn't win anything this year. The market opened this game as a pick'em, but early action saw the Tide rise to -1.5 and -2 at some books.

The New Year's Day action kicks off with a Big Ten-SEC matchup, as the Michigan Wolverines take on the South Carolina Gamecocks in the Outback Bowl. Michigan started off as a 7.5-point favorite, and early action pushed them to -8.

Shortly thereafter the undefeated Central Florida Knights get their shot at a big-time program when they meet the Auburn Tigers in the Peach Bowl. Central Florida opened as an eight-point underdog, but it's not getting much love for its last game under coach Scott Frost, considering early action pushed them to 10-point underdogs.

And the Citrus Bowl matches the LSU Tigers against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. LSU opened as a one-point favorite but quickly got bet up to -2.5 and -3.

Other good bowl matchups include the Cotton Bowl on December 29, where the Big Ten champion Ohio State Buckeyes opened as six-point favorites over the Pac-12 champion USC Trojans; the Fiesta Bowl on December 30, where the Penn State Nittany Lions opened as 4.5-point favorites over the Washington Huskies, then fell to -3; and the Orange Bowl on December 30, where the Wisconsin Badgers opened at -5.5 over the Miami Hurricanes, before getting bumped to -6.5.


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