College football betting: Alabama, Georgia and Ohio State top projected win totals
We're just over 12 weeks away from Week 0 of the college football season on Aug. 27. While we still have almost an entire summer to get through before our Saturdays return to being filled with college football, BetMGM has already posted its season win totals and conference odds for the upcoming season.
Right off the bat, you'll notice that the highest projected win total for any team this season is just 10.5 wins. This is in stark contrast to last season, when Alabama, Ohio State, Clemson and Oklahoma all had win totals listed at 11 or higher. This year, Alabama, Ohio State, Georgia and Clemson are tied for the highest win total in the country at 10.5.
Things you need to know about betting win totals
In case this is your first year betting on college football win totals, there is some important information you need to be aware of.
First and foremost, you must place your bets before the season starts and your money will be held until the regular season is over in late November. Your bet is locked in at the odds you get when you place your bet, for better or worse.
Also, only regular-season games count. Almost every team plays 12 games. Out of conference games do count toward the win total, but conference championship games, bowl games and the college football playoff do not.
The third thing to be aware about is the juice required on some of these bets. Unlike a normal football game where the spread is set and both sides are juiced at -110, the juice varies greatly on win totals. Due to the fact each win means so much, oddsmakers will adjust the juice rather than moving a team's win total up or down.
A good example of this is in the SEC. Florida, LSU, Ole Miss and Tennessee all have win totals of 7.5. However, Ole Miss and Tennessee's over side is juiced at -175, while LSU and Florida's juice is much lower at -105 and -110 respectively. While the win total might be the same, the oddsmakers are telling you that they think it's much more likely Ole Miss and Tennessee reach eight wins than the two other schools.
Clemson favored in the ACC
Most would view Clemson's 2021 season as a disaster, but even in a disastrous season, the Tigers went 9-3 and won a bowl game. Dabo Swinney lost both coordinators this offseason and there's still plenty of questions about D.J. Uiagalelei at quarterback, but Clemson is back in the favorite role in the ACC. The Tigers are -140 to win the conference and their projected win total is set at 10.5, tied for highest in the country.
Miami and North Carolina State are viewed as the biggest threats to Clemson to win the conference, as both schools sit at +700 to win the ACC. Those two schools, along with Wake Forest and Pittsburgh, have projected win totals of 8.5. Syracuse (4.5 wins), Georgia Tech and Duke (3.5 wins) are projected to finish at the bottom of the conference.
Alabama favored over Georgia in SEC
Alabama and Georgia met in the national championship game last season, and they're the two current favorites to win it all in 2022. Georgia took home the hardware this past January, but Alabama is the slight favorite ahead of the Bulldogs in both the national championship odds and odds to win the SEC.
It's a two-horse race in the SEC, as the Crimson Tide are -125 to win the SEC while Georgia is +150. Both teams are eye-popping -200 favorites to go over 10.5 wins in the regular season as oddsmakers view it rather unlikely that either team drops two games before the SEC championship game.
Outside of the two powerhouses, the rest of the SEC is pretty compacted in terms of projected win totals:
8.5 wins: Texas A&M, Kentucky
7.5 wins: Ole Miss, Tennessee, Florida, LSU
6.5 wins: Arkansas, Mississippi State
5.5 wins: South Carolina, Auburn, Missouri
Of course, Vanderbilt is projected to finish at the very bottom of the conference and their projected win total is just 2.5 wins.
USC is Pac-12 favorite in first year under Lincoln Riley
USC made a big splash when it lured Lincoln Riley from Oklahoma, and oddsmakers are expecting that move to potentially pay immediate dividends. Joining Riley in Southern California will be former Sooners quarterback Caleb Williams, along with a swarm of other transfers, including Biletnikoff Award winner Jordan Addison. USC is a +200 favorite to win the conference, and it has the highest win total in the conference at 9.5.
However, the Trojans will face some serious competition. Utah is +250 to win the conference, and Oregon is +300. Both teams have projected win totals of 8.5. UCLA (8 wins, 10-to-1) and Washington (7.5 wins, 12-to-1) are also in the picture. It's worth noting that the Pac-12 is taking a page out of the Big 12's book and will now send the two best teams in the conference to the championship game, regardless of which division they're in.
Ohio State a heavy favorite in Big Ten
In 2021, Michigan put an end to a run of four straight Big Ten championships for Ohio State. However, the Buckeyes are right back in the favorite role for 2022. Ohio State is a prohibitive -250 favorite to win the conference this upcoming season, and it is a -200 favorite to go over 10.5 wins during the regular season. CJ Stroud, the quarterback for Ohio State, is the current Heisman favorite at +200.
Coming off a college football playoff appearance and Big Ten championship, Michigan is +900 to repeat as conference champion this upcoming season. It has the second-highest win total in the conference at 9.5. Wisconsin and Penn State are both 14-to-1 to win the Big Ten, and both teams have projected win totals of 8.5.
Michigan State, Purdue, Iowa, Minnesota and Nebraska all have their preseason win totals set at 7.5. Maryland, Illinois, Rutgers, Indiana and Northwestern are all projected to be at best fighting for bowl eligibility, as their win totals range from 3.5 to 5.5 wins.
Oklahoma is the Big 12 favorite
Despite losing their coach and starting quarterback during the offseason, the Oklahoma Sooners have opened as the favorites to win the Big 12. Lincoln Riley and Caleb Williams have been replaced by Brent Venables and Dillon Gabriel, and Oklahoma looks to return to the top of the conference. Baylor won the conference in 2021, marking the first time since 2014 that the Sooners didn't end the year calling themselves Big 12 champions.
Oklahoma is +175 to win the conference, and its 9.5 projected wins are the highest in the Big 12. Texas is right on its heels, as the Longhorns look to rebound from an embarrassing season. Texas is +230 to win the Big 12 and -200 favorites to go over 8.5 wins.
Behind those two, Oklahoma State is +700 to win the conference. Last year's champion, the Baylor Bears, are +900 to repeat the feat. TCU, West Virginia and Iowa State are all between 10-to-1 and 18-to-1 to win the conference. As usual, Kansas brings up the rear with a projected win total of 2.5 wins and 100-to-1 odds to win the conference.