The 2020 college football season is set to begin next week, but it will be a season unlike any other. There is still plenty of uncertainty surrounding college football, and there is still some doubt that a season will actually be completed.
Football is the most popular sport to bet on in the United States, and sportsbooks rely on the revenue that football brings. Betting on the NFL clearly leads the way in the US sports betting industry, but college football is a close second.
Most sportsbooks were offering Week 1 betting odds as early as March, and several sportsbooks were forced to refund bettors. Many of the top non-conference games have been canceled as leagues are moving to conference-only action.
If there are games to be played, bettors will continue to make bets on college football. Sportsbooks will be offering unique betting options for the 2020 season to keep those bettors engaged.
Bettors are also worried about the effects of a positive COVID-19 test and how that could potentially shut down top teams or players. This will be a very interesting college football season for all teams involved, and for sports bettors throughout the country.
Big Ten, Pac-12 Both Cancel Seasons
The Big Ten Conference and the Pac-12 Conference will not be playing football this fall, as both leagues have postponed all fall sports. The Big Ten was the first conference to make the announcement, but the Pac-12 followed suit shortly after.
Both leagues had expected the other Power 5 Conferences to make similar announcements, but those leagues are still expected to continue with their seasons. Players and coaches from both conferences have petitioned the commissioner to reinstate the season, but no changes have been made up to this point.
NCAA to Modify Bowl Criteria?
The NCAA has some tough decisions to make before the start of the 2020 college football season begins, especially when it comes to bowl criteria. Normally, teams must win at least six games to qualify for a bowl game, but schedules have been reduced for many teams this season.
The NCAA could also be left with fewer teams than bowl spots, and that could force some bowls to be canceled in 2020. Companies pay huge sponsorship money for the rights to host a college bowl game, and that will be money that is lost by the NCAA.
Reports have already started circulating that the NCAA will allow every team that finishes the season to participate in a bowl game, but an official announcement has not been made.
Conference Odds Set By Sportsbooks
FanDuel Sportsbook is offering future betting odds for the three Power 5 Conferences set to play football this fall. These odds are expected to change slightly leading up to the official start of the season.
Alabama (+110) is the favorite to win the SEC, followed by Georgia (+220), and Florida (+750). The LSU Tigers are fourth on the list at +750 after they lost a ton of talent from their national championship team a season ago.
In the Big 12 Conference, Oklahoma and Texas are both listed at +125 to win the conference championship. Iowa State is next on the list at +725, so it appears that the Big 12 is a two-team race.
Clemson is a huge favorite to win the ACC, listed at -350 at FanDuel Sportsbook. Notre Dame is next on the list at +500, as it will be joining the ACC for the 2020 season.