A Little Know-Howe: Vegas Weighs in on Football Win Total Prediction for 2018 and Number is Familiar One

By Brad Howe on July 07, 2018 from A Little Know-Howe via Connect-Bridgeport.com

As you’ve most likely heard, sports betting is on the horizon here in West Virginia so I thought we would take a look inside one of the more intriguing college football numbers coming out of Vegas.
One of the lines that came out of Vegas a few weeks ago really surprised me. The over/under number on wins for West Virginia during the 2018 was just seven and a half. In some places, it was just seven wins. 
Seven wins. 
This is a West Virginia team that is loaded on the offensive side of the ball.
Quarterback Will Grier isn’t just the best returning signal caller in the Big 12, but quite possibly the country.
All-American receiver David Sills can match the hype surrounding Grier with his own. The Biletnikoff Award (best receiver in the nation) finalist seems poised for another monster year.
Gary Jennings may be the most underrated receiver in the conference. His 97 catches last season ranked fourth nationally.
Add in a stable of running backs that may be one of the deepest units in the conference and you’re looking at one of the most anticipated seasons ever for a WVU offense.
Yes, I’m well aware of the question marks on defense. But, I also know Tony Gibson has a knack for getting the most out of his guys. I refuse to believe, barring major injuries, that the defense won’t be improved from last year.
The folks in Vegas will tell you West Virginia’s schedule is a beast. The Mountaineers have ambitiously scheduled two power five schools in the non-conference portion of the schedule. Both of them away from Mountaineer Field.
Add in, a monster November slate that has WVU on the road at Texas, home versus TCU, at Oklahoma State and home for Oklahoma and you can see begin to see why Vegas has some questions.
Whether you are inclined to wager or not, I’ve found many of the professional bettors have fascinating information and stats. It’s the main reason we have them on our radio shows throughout the year.
One of our contributors to our award-winning football gameday radio coverage is Brad Powers with BradPowersSports.com. We talked with him earlier this week on the Citynet Statewide Sportsline to see where he landed on the over/under win debate.
You can hear the full interview HERE
While Brad has upgraded WVU in his power rankings by more than a touchdown over last year’s team (on a neutral field he thinks this year’s WVU team would beat last year’s team by more than a touchdown), he still think the over/under win total is in line. 
He also acknowledges last year’s team would have been a win or two better if Grier had not been hurt, but then mentioned the schedule being significantly more difficult for the upcoming 2018 season. 
He finished with this nugget. The season win total for WVU hasn’t moved since it came out.
Brad says that’s one of two things:
1 - Vegas is getting equal money bet on each side. Half of the people betting WVU goes over seven wins, half betting they get less than seven wins.
or 2 - the market thinks it’s a fair number and they just aren’t getting much action on it.
I have learned over the years to not doubt Vegas very often. “They” get it right more often than they get it wrong. However, I think they’ve got this wrong. I will be stunned if West Virginia doesn’t win more than seven games in 2018. 
If they don’t …well, we’ll leave that conversation for another day. What do you think? Will WVU win more than seven games in 2018? 
Leave a comment below or send me a tweet: @BradHowe07
Editor's Note: Top photo shows Dana Holgorsen, left, and Tony Gibson celebrating after a win last year in Morgantown. In the second photo, Will Grier celebrates after one of several touchdown passes in 2017. In the third photo, standout linebacker David Long looks over the Iowa State defense, while Dravon Askew-Henry leads the team in prayer after leading the team on to the field last year. Photos by Ben Queen of www.benqueenphotography.com.


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