UM -1 over ND!

Submitted by jamiemac on September 7th, 2008 at 10:34 PM

Those following my diaries know that I am more than a little interested in the point spreads of these games we follow. And, I have been tracking some of UM's lines for their future games.

It is with great shock that I report UM is being installed as slight favorite in South Bend.

At Carib Sports--the only place where I am registered that I could find where you could bet tonight on Saturday's game--UM is -1. Lets think about this line:

Summer line: ND -3.5

Adjusted line after Week 1: ND -8.5

Actual line of Game Week: UM -1

I have not seen such a turnaround before. Surprisingly (or not so when you really think about it), most of those summer lines stay true to form.....its scary how accurate those are to the actual line months in advance.....anyway, yeah, you'll see a 1 or 2 point swing over the course of the season, but this line movement is unreal. A five point swing after the first week of games. Then, a 9.5 point swing in the other direction after the 2008 ND team unveiled itself.

To me, it seems that the public and oddsmakers remain confused as what to expect out of both of these outfits. We'll see how this line moves as money begins pouring in now that game week is here. I believe we'll see Irish money come in and eventually the line will be ND -1 or -2. Not sure how anybody can expect anything for sure out of either team. But, it is basically the same ND offense vs the same UM defense as last year and that did not go well for ND. UM got 8 sacks last year and come into this game with 9 sacks and as many TFLs in two games. Also, in three seasons, Weis has only generated three leigt TDs against UM's stop troops. Maybe the experts feel people will remember that and to get even money on both sides have to make UM a small favorite? I dont know.

Think about it: There are savvy betters out there with UM +8.5 tickets in their pocket while all other UM backers would have to lay a single point. I am sure Go Blue Toledo is one of those shrewd betters. Just busting your chops,

Also, USC is favored by 10.5 over Ohio State, a line shift up from +4.5 when the line first came out in July. In the other important Big 10 OOC Saturday, Wisconsin is -1.5 at Fresno, after opening at Wisco -3.5.

 Thoughts?!?!?! Lets hear them.



September 7th, 2008 at 11:12 PM ^

Well, you dont really have to do that. But, I dont think I can name 25 teams who I feel are better right now than Fresno....of course, one of them is Wisconsin. They're a fringe top-25 team, so if the Badgers beat them, Fresno will be out of the rankings.


September 7th, 2008 at 11:00 PM ^

After watching ND vs. SDSU, I like Michigan big time on Saturday. If Michigan can get up early the ND crowd shuts down completely. ND's o-line is amazingly horrible, and Michigan's defense is just warming up. Michigan wins 23-10.

I would also take OSU with the points. Tressel has a history of playing soft against weak teams before big games. OSU will give USC a run, although in the end they'll run out of gas. USC wins 31-27.

That Arkansas v. Texas game is intriguing. I wonder what the line is on that one.


September 7th, 2008 at 11:08 PM ^

Also Tresell called his team out a bit in the post game presser. Two of the best game day coaches square off. I just hope it lives up to the hype and OSU at least honors the league with its play. I can be a sucker for dogs, so if I am having a good day, I could see myself taking those points for shits and giggles. Thats what I am thinking now at least.

Jim Harbaugh S…

September 7th, 2008 at 11:28 PM ^

I really think that UM that should beat ND - but strange things always seem to happen in South Bend (the 2002 Carlyle Holiday phantom touchdown and the 2004 How did we lose to Tryone Willingham again game come to mind).

You never know what can happen in South Bend with all the echos being awakened and returning to glory happening.

We have a better coaching staff, a better defense and I think our offense at this point is time is probably equivalent to NDs (I think we have a better run game but the EMU looked alright throwing a deep ball) - based I this I think we should win.

Also - I'd say bet the house on USC (especially if Beanie can't go) - they have consistently destroyed non-conference competition under Carroll.


September 7th, 2008 at 11:32 PM ^

....because each of our stud WRs--Edwards, Breston and Avant--lost a fumble during a second half collapse. Henne's first road game as a starter. I mean what could possibly go wrong in Sheridan and/or Threet's first start in South Bend?!?!

Effing Echoes. Strange things have been happening to us in this entire series with ND. And, we'll get a chance to see each one again on ESPN Classic throughout the week. On a related note, I may end up drinking more than usual this week.

How come these guys never show, say, the 1985 game? It was a signature game of your namesake!

I am officially off any possible OSU bet. Thanks for piping up.....still lamenting that I did not heed your warnings for weeks about that Rose Bowl.


September 7th, 2008 at 11:48 PM ^

I am splitting hairs here, but I think that one of the stud WR's let a ball go through his hands for a pick, and the other two lost fumbles (Breaston's on special teams maybe?)  I could be off, as I have tried to purge this game from my memory for awhile now.


September 8th, 2008 at 12:32 AM ^

Granted that ND team barely showed up in its opener against SDSU, but it's still a team nevertheless and it did show eventually. And the game was merely an opener. They have an O-line. We do not. They have a QB, no matter how creepy. We do not. ND will play at home. We will not. The crowd and refs will favor ND, not us. I am not optimistic about this weekend, Vegas odds have never consistently worked in our favor.

Go Blue Toledo

September 8th, 2008 at 7:42 PM ^

Did any of you fools watch the ND game?  If the SDSU doesnt fumble the ball into the end zone from one inch away then they would have been up two scores and had a death grip on the game... instead ND caught a break and rode ( is rode a word?) the momentum down the field to a victory.  SDSU lost the CAL FUCKING POLY in the opening week! They are in the bottom 10 of D-1A schools.

Again I found myself screaming at the TV during the Michigan game, "RUN THE FUCKING BALL." We cant pass, lets just face it... So lets put in two TE's and two RB's and run.  Even if it is out of the shotgun it will still be more effective than they shitty pass game we have been trying. And give Minor some carries, he is the only one that runs with an attitude and is a good tone setter.


September 8th, 2008 at 9:24 AM ^

First time since the series resumed in 1978 that both teams are unranked going into the game.

Given the ineptitude of our offense and the fact it's on the road in a place where we've had many weird losses, it's crazy that ND is a dog, regardless of how bad they looked against SDSU. With the crappiness of the ND offense, I think the score will be 6-3 ND. They'll give up 19 sacks but we'll turn the ball over 8 times, and the network will switch to the Canadian Special Olympics Dressage championships midway through the fourth quarter.

The real story coming out of the game is that Charlie Weis will be seen in the UM S&C facility in furtive, tearful, late-night conditioning sessions with Barwis screaming insults in his ears.


September 8th, 2008 at 9:49 AM ^

Pretty sure neither team was ranked last year either. But, lets not go there....still trying to forget last year's start.

But, otherwise, yes I agree with what you said. NBC will get better ratings just re-runing Phelps and Bolt's races from the Olympics......after the Canadian Special Oylmpics Dressage ends, of course....too funny.


September 8th, 2008 at 9:44 AM ^

OSU/USC: if Wells can’t go then USC is a pretty easy bet. I suspect Wells will play but he may not be 100%. So, we won’t know until he starts running. The scary thing for OSU is the defense was giving up 5+ YPC to OU. If you can’t stop the run the otherwise easy Big Ten schedule will be tough. Much of that running was the QB which leads me to believe OSU has not solved their troubles with the spread. I still like Illinois against them.

M/ND: Cripple Fight II is just as inscrutable as the original iteration.

I can’t believe the line moved like that. Just how bad is SDSU? It may be they are north of 75 or so out of the 110+ Div I teams. ND’s offensive line was fine in pass blocking but that may mean very little. In run blocking ND looked less well off. That may just be Weis’ inability to actually call running plays (or have someone else do it) despite his desire to ‘pound it.’ ND will have a hard time running against Michigan. Much as I hate to admit it, Claussen looked much better this season. He also made plenty of mistakes. Michigan will need those.

On defense, I don’t know what to think. SDSU had plenty of opportunities. But, their QB much like Michigan’s is not that accurate. Tenuta’s much heralded incessant blitzing was incessantly ineffective. Since Michigan only runs short patterns I expect that same result. It would be nice if the Michigan QB can get the ball around the blitzers for those screens unlike SDSU. If ND is going to walk their safeties up, I expect we will see several sideline fly routes that can be thrown quickly. ND had some problems containing SDSU when they did run but it was so rare it’s hard to know what to think.

Utah is much better than ND. Miami may be just a tad worse. SDSU is probably the worst team in the equation.

If either team can get a 2 score lead they will squat on it like a hen and hope to hatch a victory.


September 8th, 2008 at 10:14 AM ^

For some reason I blocked it from my mind. Still sticking with my 6-3 guess, though. If we manage to beat them, Ann Arbor Torch & Pitchfork should open up a branch in South Bend. The Jon Gruden-to-ND rumors will start up bigtime, too. I also expect Lou Holthsp will start pumping son Skippy for the job.


September 8th, 2008 at 11:58 AM ^

Clausen looked good because he didn't get pressured or sacked. This week he will get pressured and sacked.

And let's not forget that ND Defense has been pretty terrible under Weis.  Our offense will improve on the execution front with every game this season. This could be the breakout game we were all hoping Miami would be.

Intangibles scare me the most. Especially it being the first road game for the young guys. We need to get a good lead early. The disappointment-familiar ND crowd will get real quiet really fast.

Tim Waymen

September 8th, 2008 at 12:29 PM ^

Clausen looked great. (At least his playing did. He's ugly as anything.) His throws were beautiful. That said, he's doomed. The o-line did not look good at all. I hate to sound like a total homer, but I really think that ND will struggle immensely against Michigan's defense, especially ND's o-line against the d-linemen. Yes, the defense is not invulnerable, but the d-line might absolutely eat the o-line alive.


September 8th, 2008 at 12:52 PM ^

I was about to ask a question about ND's O-line. Thanks for the answer.


"our offense will improve on the execution front.."

Yeah if we get back into the power-I. But, hey, I'm like you...a little naive and forever optimistic

Go Blue Toledo

September 8th, 2008 at 8:03 PM ^

I am staying away from UM-ND game as far as betting goes. But there are some early lines out that I think could be exploited for for some serious cash. Check out the toolshed for the picks on Oregon-Purdue, Auburn-Miss St, and Vandy-Rice.
Let me know what you think... I was 2-0 with my picks last week, the ones that I published that is. So yeah, Go Blue!


September 10th, 2008 at 12:51 AM ^

jamie, tressel as a game day coach has taken a distinct step backwards in the last two NC games. Tressel was flat out coached in both games, in particular, Miles embarrassed Tressel last season.

Go Blue toledo -- the idea of lining up in the power I behind the worst OL in recent Michigan football history and throwing rock is a certain recipe for disaster. Our young RBs are best suited for running in space, not bouncing off of LBs. Is our passing game clicking. No. But Threet was making good decisions, just not putting the ball on the mark. Jake Long is in the NFL. We lost three other contributing OL from last year. There is no quick fix for our offense, other than more snaps together so that the OL will start to gel and a QB starts to catch on.


September 10th, 2008 at 12:54 AM ^

jamie -- I should also note that Carroll is not the greatest game day guy, just the best recruiter and a master motivator. Many people feel that he was out coached by Mack Brown in the NC game at the Rose Bowl, and most people put mack brown in the same strong recruiter bucket as carroll.