Tuesday, March 21, 2023
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Conference championship weekend: Caleb and Amanda’s gambling picks for Power Five title games

Friday night marks the start of Conference Championship weekend. Caleb Calhoun and Amanda LaFratta give their gambling advice for every Power Five title game.

Pac-12 Championship

No. 11 Utah Utes vs. No. 4 USC Trojans

  • Line: USC -2.5
  • Over/Under: 67.5
  • Moneyline: USC -144; Utah +120

As is tradition, the Pac-12 kicks off conference championship weekend for Power Five teams Friday night. USC and Utah face in a regular season rematch, this time in Las Vegas, with a College Football Playoff berth on the line for USC.

Important facts to know:

USC lost to Utah on the road 43-42 earlier in the season.

Last year, Utah beat the Oregon Ducks twice to ruin their College Football Playoff hopes, onec in the Pac-12 championship game.

Seven of USC’s 12 games have gone over 67.5, including five of their last six; four of Utah’s eight games have hit the over.

Caleb’s pick: USC -2.5; Over 67.5

Amanda’s pick: USC -2.5; Over 67.5

Big 12 Championship

No. 10 Kansas State Wildcats vs. No. 3 TCU Horned Frogs

  • Line: TCU -2.5
  • Over/Under: 61.5
  • Moneyline: TCU -125; Kansas State +104

This is another game with playoff implications, as TCU is undefeated. If they win, they’re in.

Important facts to know:

TCU came back from a 28-10 deficit to beat Kansas State 38-28 at home in October.

Kansas State quarterback Will Howard saw his first action against TCU and has started four games since.

Five of Kansas State’s 12 games have gone over 61.5; eight of TCU’s 12 games have gone over.

Caleb’s pick: Kansas State +1.5 and moneyline; Over 61.5

Amanda’s pick: Kansas State +1.5 and moneyline; Over 61.5

Southeastern Conference Championship

No. 14 LSU Tigers vs. No. 1 Georgia Bulldogs

  • Line: Georgia -17.5
  • Over/Under: 51.5
  • Moneyline: Georgia -1000; LSU +640

Technically the SEC Title game has CFP implications, but if Georgia loses, they’re still in as long as it isn’t a blowout.

Important facts to know:

LSU is the only team to ever win the SEC Championship with three regular season losses, beating Tennessee in 2001.

Five of Georgia’s 12 games have had a total under 52; seven of LSU’s games were under 52.

Georgia has won eight of their 12 games by more than 17.5 points but only one of their two against ranked teams; One of LSU’s three losses is by more than 17.5 points (to Tennessee).

Caleb’s pick: LSU +17.5; Under 51.5

Amanda’s pick: Georgia -17.5; Over 51.5

Atlantic Coast Conference Championship

No. 9 Clemson Tigers vs. No. 23 North Carolina Tar Heels

  • Line: Clemson -7.5
  • Over/Under: 63.5 
  • Moneyline: Clemson -300; North Carolina +240

The ACC title game is the only conference championship game with no playoff implications.

Important facts to know:

Both teams come in on the heels of a loss; UNC is on a two-game losing streak.

Only two of Clemson’s 12 games have gone over 63.5; Seven of UNC’s 12 games have gone over that, but the last two haven’t.

UNC’s only loss by more than 7.5 points was to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, who beat Clemson by even more. Clemson has only won one game against a ranked team by more than 7.5 points.

Caleb’s pick: Clemson -7.5; Under 63.5

Amanda’s pick: North Carolina +7.5; Under 63.5

Big Ten Championship

Purdue Boilermakers vs. No. 2 Michigan Wolverines

  • Line: Michigan -16.5
  • Over/Under: 51.5
  • Moneyline: Michigan -820; Purdue +550

Similar to the SEC championship, this game features a playoff team who will likely go even if they lose. Michigan is No. 2 in the rankings, and as long as they don’t get blown out, they’re likely in.

Important facts to know:

Seven of Michigan’s 12 games have gone over 51.5; eight of Purdue’s 12 games have gone over that.

Purdue has not lost to a ranked team by more than 10 points this year; Michigan beat both of its ranked foes by over 20 points.

Michigan running back Blake Corum is out for the season, but he only had two carries in their 45-23 win over the Ohio State Buckeyes.

Caleb’s pick: Purdue +16.5; Over 51.5

Amanda’s pick: Purdue +16.5; Over 51.5

Note: All lines are from FanDuel and subject to change

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