Here’s a scenario: It’s early November and a Power Five school with two losses goes on the road to play an undefeated conference opponent. The visiting team is unranked in both the AP & Coaches Polls while the home team is ranked 12th & 15th respectively. The road team is favored by 2 points. Now here’s a question my colleagues and I get quite often: “How can a team with multiple losses be favored over a team that’s undefeated, especially when the team favored is on the road and unranked?”
While this scenario can play out in any conference during any week, the answer is this: the point-spread is NOT predicated on a poll ranking. It is derived from various factors, the first being the team’s Power Ranking which is a numerical value we apply to each team.
This rating is evaluated and, if warranted, adjusted from game to game also depending on several factors. I won’t go into the technical aspects in this piece, (I’ll elaborate during our VSiN programming), but will share my opening Top 25 compared to the AP and Coaches Polls. Note that in some slots the positioning is the same or close. Additionally, my rankings will not be identical with some of my colleagues. This is not a critique of the polls by any means. But I can assure you of this: when I post a price, it doesn’t matter where a team sits in the polls. What matters to me is where they are in my ratings. And while I know a few bookies that write or coach, I don’t know any writers or coaches that book!
Football is here – enjoy!
Click here for the AP vs. Coaches vs. VSiN Vinny comparison.