As someone whose primary career focus is to cover everything to do with betting on football for TSN, the November schedule is a grind.
Everything that went down over the past couple of weeks has set the stage for an absolutely epic December.
Following a chaotic two-week stretch that gave us the Grey Cup weekend, an American Thanksgiving Thursday NFL triple-header, and a Black Friday game, plus Saturday’s epic showdown between Michigan and Ohio State, I’m thankful to get a moment of reflection while sipping my morning coffee and watching a light snow fall here just north of Toronto.
NFL fans are gearing up for the playoff push with a lot to be decided over the final six weeks of the regular season.
Meanwhile, college football fans are locked in as the conference championship weekend is finally here.
After an impressive win over the rival Buckeyes on Saturday, Michigan is the favourite to win the FBS Championship at FanDuel.
Jim Harbaugh is set to make his highly anticipated return to the sideline with the Wolverines currently a 23-point favourite for the Big Ten title game versus Iowa on Saturday night.
While Michigan is expected to cruise to a third straight Big Ten title, there’s still a lot left to be decided this weekend, including all of the pending college football conference championship futures that fans have been following since the summer.
This is the Morning Coffee for Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2023.
Stage set for epic conference championship weekend
After a season full of uncertainty surrounding Harbaugh’s future, Wolverines fans are looking forward to enjoying something that resembles certainty as he makes his return to the sideline on Saturday night.
Michigan is on track to be the 13th team ever to be at least a 20-point favourite in an FBS conference title game. The previous 12 went 11-1 straight up.
The Wolverines are a heavy favourite to clinch their third straight Big Ten title and book their spot in the College Football Playoff versus Iowa.
Michigan is -6000 to make the playoff and the favourite to win the FBS Championship at +185 odds at FanDuel.
After that, the College Football Playoff picture gets a little more interesting.
Georgia is -590 to make the playoff at FanDuel and the second choice to win the FBS Championship at +200. The Bulldogs are a 5.5-point favourite for Saturday’s SEC Championship game against Alabama.
If Georgia takes care of business in the SEC Championship, they are headed to the playoff. If Alabama pulls off the upset, things get a lot more interesting.
The Tide are +205 to make the playoffs and they are the fourth choice to win the FBS Championship at +1000.
Meanwhile, Oregon is the third choice to win the College Football Playoff at +480.
First, the Ducks need to take care of business against Washington in the Pac-12 Championship. Oregon is a 9.5-point favourite for Friday night’s Pac-12 Championship game.
The Huskies already have a win over the Ducks, so if they can double down with a win over Oregon in the Pac-12 Championship game and go 13-0, it would open the door for Washington to go to the College Football Playoff.
The Huskies are +280 to upset Oregon on Friday night. They are +285 to reach the College Football Playoff.
That’s not the only betting angle to consider for Friday night’s game, either.
The top of the Heisman Trophy market has been a carousel all season with Caleb Williams, J.J. McCarthy, Jayden Daniels, Michael Penix Jr., and Bo Nix all taking a turn as the favourite to win that award at FanDuel.
As of this morning, it’s the Oregon quarterback Nix who stands alone as the betting favourite to win the Heisman at -180 odds.
Penix is the third choice to win that award at +1600. If he delivers another strong performance in a Ducks win, Nix will be the obvious favourite to win the Heisman.
If Penix can lead Washington to an upset win with another epic stat line, he would be a lot more likely to win the Heisman than the current number suggests at +1600.
After a long season, the stage is set for an epic college football conference championship weekend.
November was a wild ride for football fans. December has the potential to be even more memorable.