Western Michigan pulled off one of the most incredible comeback victories in recent college football history last night, resulting in either a horrific bad beat or a prayer being answered depending on which side of the spread you were on. The Broncos trailed Toledo 38-28 with about 2-minutes left in the fourth quarter. Western Michigan scored a touchdown but missed the extra point to cut the deficit to 38-34. Western Michigan proceeded to recover an onside kick and then scored on a fake-spike touchdown with 17 seconds left to win 41-38.
Western Michigan opened as a 2.5-point favorite and closed at -1.5 thanks to a combination of public and late sharp money on Toledo. For Western Michigan backers, it was one of the most thrilling comeback wins and covers of all time. For Toledo backers, it was the epitome of a bad beat. For whatever reason, MACtion never seems to disappoint.
Now we turn our attention to Thursday, where we have a pair of pro and college football games to get down on. For an updated breakdown of Thursday's betting action, be sure to tune in to the VSiN Market Insights Podcast with Josh Appelbaum. It will be posted at noon ET.
In the meantime, let's discuss where the smart money is flowing tonight's Thursday Night Football matchup.
8:20 p.m. ET: Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans
This Thursday Night showdown features two AFC South rivals coming off opposite Week 9 performances. The Colts (5-3 SU, 4-4 ATS) let down the sharps last week, moving from 3-point dogs to 1-point favorites against the Ravens and then losing straight up 24-10 at home. Meanwhile, the Titans (6-2 SU, 3-5 ATS) are coming off a 24-17 win over the Bears, hanging on to cover as 6-point home favorites. The Colts are + 48 in point differential this season. The Titans are + 31.
This line opened with Tennessee listed as a 2.5-point home favorite. The public is rushing to the window to back the Titans since they have a better record and are a home favorite laying a short number. However, despite this lopsided betting we've seen the line tumble all the way down to a pick'em. Why would books drop the line to make it easier for the public to cover with the Titans when they're already betting Tennessee to begin with? Because an overload of respected sharp action has come in on the Colts, forcing oddsmakers to adjust the line drastically in their favor. Essentially, we are looking at a super sharp reverse line move on Indianapolis.
The Colts are in a classic buy low spot off a loss against a sell high Titans team off a win. And while the line is now down to a pick'em, the Colts had value all week as a road divisional dog and a short road dog + 6 or less (35-15 ATS, 70% this season). Also, primetime dogs are 18-9 ATS (67%). Road teams with a line move in their favor are 43-25 ATS (63%). Indianapolis is also contrarian in a heavily bet game as they are only receiving about one-third of bets in a nationally televised spot. These primetime games get an influx of public betting, which leads to high ticket counts and more recreational bias to go against.
We've also seen some smart money hit this under. Despite roughly two-thirds of bets taking the over, the total has fallen from 49.5 to 48.5. Historically, divisional unders that fall at least a half point have won at roughly a 54% clip over the past decade. Primetime unders are 18-9 (67%) this season.The lead referee Brad Allen is slightly favorable to unders (52%). The Colts are 4-4 to the over/under this year. The Titans are 5-2-1 to the over.