Catch hurricanes in big, early line at Texas A&M

With a series of Power Five winning totals being released across the market, the next step in college football preseason activity is Game of the Year.

At the time of writing, all of these lines can be wagered at FanDuel Sportsbook.

This is a bet on a single game, not just in week 1 but throughout the season. Regardless of whether bets ultimately win or lose, the goal is to identify teams that have inflated perceptions more than three months before kickoff.

Investing in Game of the Year gives us an opportunity to get ahead of the public perception built during Spring Training.

While winning totals and futures offer more difficult opportunities for hedging, a single point spread bet this early in the season gives any player the opportunity to build a window.

An elite example came in 2015 when Western Kentucky opened as a 16-point underdog against Vanderbilt in May. That number was slammed to a pulp by investors looking at the revamped Hilltoppers.

Tyler van Dyke
AP

Those who were early on each western Kentucky number were rewarded, but those who took the finishing line were left empty-handed. A touchdown pass with 33 seconds remaining gave Vanderbilt +3 coverage in a 14-12 loss.

Market entry is just as important in 2022 as it was seven years ago. Our favorite early bet of the year comes in the September 17th matchup between Miami and Texas A&M at College Station. The visiting Hurricanes are eight-point underdogs in the prelims at FanDuel, after a +9 opener.

It’s a new era for Miami Football. The Hurricanes, led by new head coach Mario Cristobal, will face off against two warm-ups at Bethune-Cookman in Week 1 and Southern Miss in Week 2. These two exhibitions serve as a prelude to the Tyler Van Dyke Heisman campaign, as Week 3 includes a trip to Kyle Field and Texas A&M.

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The closet wasn’t left empty after Manny Diaz’s departure as Miami returned more than 65 percent of its offensive unit according to TARP (Transferring Assets and Returning Production).

Although the Hurricanes ended up just outside the top 75 in terms of success rate and finishing drives, one of the best offensive coordinators in the country joins Cristobal. Josh Gattis left Michigan to take the same position as Miami and is no stranger to the SEC, having previously coached under Nick Saban.

Gattis was allowed to run his full offense in the 2021 season, making Michigan the nation’s most devastating rushing attack. That offense was good enough to earn the Wolverines a Big Ten title and a landmark trip to the College Football Playoffs.

From the perspective of the transfer portal and the return of production, defense is what really excels in the 2022 season. Miami will return 79 percent of the defense unit, which will specialize in Havoc despite the exit of the revenue chain.


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Texas A&M will also be under new management following the departure of defense coordinator Mike Elko, who is now Duke’s head coach.

From a scheduling standpoint, this game comes after an opener with former FCS National Champion Sam Houston in Week 1 and Appalachian State in Week 2. Head Coach Jimbo Fisher won’t overlook the ‘Canes, but a Southwest Classic rematch point against Arkansas awaits in Week 4.

The biggest question for Texas A&M this season is who will play quarterback after Zach Calzada leaves for Auburn. Haynes King, returning from an injury-ravaged 2021 season, did nothing to part ways with LSU transfer Max Johnson during the spring game, and that fight will continue into September.

Only 58 percent on offense and 46 percent on defense will return to College Station.

The Action Network is projecting this game as a pick ’em, suggesting Miami would be a slight favorite at a neutral venue.

Texas A&M’s young offense will look to dominate offense pro-style, while new defensive coordinator DJ Durkin will coach a 4-2-5 system for the first time in his career.

Comfortably get the Hurricanes through +7 to a field goal spread leading to this monster non-conference game.

About Mike Crayton

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