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Friday Sharp Action Report for UAB-Marshall and Oregon-USC

December 18, 2020 08:05 AM

The Chargers (+ 3) came up huge for sharps and contrarians on Thursday Night Football, upsetting the Raiders 30-27 in overtime as 3-point road dogs. Despite the majority of the betting public backing Vegas, we saw the Raiders fall from -3.5 to -3 on gameday. This sharp reverse line movement was an indication that pros got down on Los Angeles plus the points, forcing books to adjust the line a half-point in their favor. Los Angeles cashed + 155 on the moneyline.

With the Chargers covering, primetime dogs improve to 26-16 ATS (62%) on the season. Short road dogs + 6 or less are now 49-28 ATS (64%). Divisional dogs are now 39-31 ATS (56%). Road divisional dogs + 3 or less are now 10-4 ATS (71%) on the season.

While sharps nailed last night's spread, the public beat the wiseguys on the total. It opened at 55 and respected under money dropped it down to 52.5. But the public got the last laugh as Herbert's game-winning touchdown cashed the over with a final total of 57.

Now it's on to Friday, where we have three college football games and a loaded college hoops slate. For an updated breakdown of Friday's betting action, be sure to tune in to the VSiN Market Insights Podcast with Josh Appelbaum. It will be posted at 12 p.m. ET. I'll also be joining Patrick Meagher and Michael Lombardi on The Lombardi Line at 12:30 p.m ET to offer a market update.

For now, let's discuss where the action is flowing for a pair of Friday Night Lights matchups on the college gridiron.

7 p.m. ET: UAB at Marshall

This is the Conference USA Championship Game. UAB (5-3 SU, 2-6 ATS) snapped a two-game losing skid last week with a 21-16 win over Rice, although they failed to cover as 7-point road favorites. On the other hand, Marshall (7-1 SU, 5-3 ATS) started the season 7-0 but then got humbled their last time out, falling to Rice 20-0 and losing straight up as 23.5-point home favorites. Both teams have similar offenses, averaging roughly 30 PPG each. The difference comes on defense, where UAB is allowing 22.5 PPG and Marshall is only giving up 11.4 PPG. This line opened with Marshall listed as a 5.5-point home favorite. The public is backing the Thundering Herd, yet we've seen this line drop from 5.5 to 4.5. This sharp reverse line movement signals pro money backing UAB plus the points. UAB has value as a short conference road dog with a line move in their favor, a dog with a low total and a buy low "bad" ATS team (2-6) against a sell high "good" ATS team (5-3). We've also seen some money hit this over, driving up the total from 42 to 43.5. Super low totals of 50 or less are 61-45 (58%) to the over this season.

8 p.m. ET: Oregon at USC

This PAC-12 Title game is the marquee game of the night. It also happens to be nationally televised in primetime, making it the most heavily bet game of the night. Oregon (3-2 SU, 2-3 ATS) started the season 3-0 but has since lost two straight, most recently falling to Cal 21-17 and losing straight up as 9-point road favorites. Meanwhile, USC (5-0 SU, 3-2 ATS) enters this game undefeated and ranked 13th in the country. The Trojans just beat UCLA 43-38, covering as 3.5-point road favorites. Both teams are averaging roughly 35 PPG on offense, but USC has been slightly better on defense (25 PPG allowed vs 28 PPG allowed). This game opened with USC listed as a 3.5-point home favorite. The public is rushing to the window to lay the short spread with the Trojans, yet we've seen this line fall from 3.5 to 3. This fishy line move was caused by respected pro money buying low on the Ducks plus the points. Oregon has value as a short road dog + 4 or less (roughly 56% ATS the past decade) and an unranked road conference dog against a ranked opponent. The Ducks are also your top contrarian play of the night, only receiving roughly one-third of bets in a primetime showdown. We've also seen pros and Joes target the over, pushing the total up from 62 to 64. Oregon is 3-1-1 to the over but USC is 4-1 to the under.

More Friday moves

Buffalo -12.5 to -13.5 vs Ball State

Ball State-Buffalo Over 66.5 to 67.5

Nebraska -5.5 to -6.5 at Rutgers

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