The absences of Caleb Williams, Drake Maye, and other opt-outs affected Bowl Game betting lines. North Carolina opened as the 3.5 underdogs vs. West Virginia in the Mayo Bowl. However, it is now 6.5 points after Maye’s announcement that he would not be part of the game.
Almost ninety percent of bettors are backing West Virginia to cover the spread, most likely due to Maye’s official injury. The starting line most likely factored in the oddsmakers’ suspicion that the probable first choice in the 2024 NFL Draft would miss the game.
Maye’s absence means that redshirt freshman Conner Harrell will lead the Tar Heels into the bowl game. According to college football news reports, Harrell has attempted only six passes this season.
Despite Williams’s lack of a formal draft declaration, USC head coach Lincoln Riley announced that Williams would not participate in the Holiday Bowl matchup against No. 16 Louisville. Initially, USC was a 6.5-point underdog against the Cardinals; now, that difference is 7.5.
More than 80% of the money wagered on the spread is on Louisville to cover, with over 75% of bets on Louisville to cover that spread.
Of all the bowl games thus far, the Cotton Bowl has seen the most movement in the spread. No. 9 Missouri is a 2.5-point favorite after starting as a 6.5-point underdog against No. 7 Ohio State. Since he is in the transfer portal, Ohio State quarterback Kyle McCord will not participate in the game. We are also still awaiting an official decision from Heisman candidate Marvin Harrison Jr.
Some players have already said they will participate in the game, including CB Denzel Burke and WR Emeka Egbuka. According to sports news reports, sixty-two percent of the money on the money line is on Missouri to win outright, while almost two-thirds of bets and money are on Missouri to cover the spread.
More than 70% of wagers and money are on Alabama as a 1.5-point underdog versus No. 1 Michigan in the Rose Bowl College Football Playoff semifinal. Thus, Alabama is the most favored team at a price per head sportsbook heading into bowl season.