Sports Betting

College Football Odds Tighten Following Tua Injury, Wisconsin Loss

The college football odds on the national championship winner have tightened following the injury to Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and Wisconsin’s shocking loss to unranked Illinois.

Though only expected to miss a week, Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa’s injury has changed the college football odds picture. (Image: AP)

Week 8 of the NCAA football season was headlined by Heisman frontrunner Tagovailoa’s injury in the second quarter against unranked Tennessee. The top team in the nation saw its top player exit the game with what was later diagnosed as a high ankle sprain.

“Tua Tagovailoa suffered a high ankle sprain last night against Tennessee,” Alabama coach Nick Saban said. “Our physicians performed a successful tight-rope procedure on his right ankle this morning. This is the same injury, but the opposite ankle, that Tua injured last season.”

Tua will miss next week’s game against Arkansas, but we expect a full and speedy recovery,” Saban explained.

The Crimson Tide will host unranked Arkansas Saturday, and then No. 2 LSU in what will certainly have College Football Playoff implications.

Odds Tighten

The uncertainty of Tagovailoa has Las Vegas oddsmakers adjusting their college football odds for the National Championship.

Prior to the Heisman contender’s injury, the Westgate SuperBook had Tag and company at 2/1 (+200) to win the championship. Today, that line has lengthened to 11/4 (+275). The change takes the Crimson Tide’s implied odds from 33.33 percent to 26.67 percent.

Wisconsin’s inexplicable loss to Illinois lengthened the Badgers’ title chances from 20/1 to 40/1. Wisconsin fell to No. 13 in the AP poll.

The Big Ten, however, has two other teams very much in the National Championship picture. No. 3 Ohio State jumped No. 4 Clemson after another dominating performance, this time a 52-3 win against Northwestern.

“They didn’t do anything different than we expected to see,” Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald said. “I mean, the plays they ran were the plays we expected to see. That’s kind of what makes you really, really mad.”

When you’re calling plays from the boundary, and they run it, and you don’t stop it? Kind of ticks you off a little bit. So, you just tip your hat and wish them well,” Fitzgerald explained of the Buckeyes.

Ohio State is at 4/1, behind only Alabama and Clemson (7/2).

Other top ten title contenders include Oklahoma and LSU (9/2), Georgia (16/1), Penn State (25/1), and Oregon and Wisconsin (40/1). After those teams, the odds lengthen greatly to Florida, Notre Dame, Auburn, Utah, Baylor, and Minnesota – all at 100/1.

Big Ten Showdown

No. 6 Penn State welcomed then-No. 17 Michigan to Beaver Stadium to another “White Out” Saturday night. More than 110,000 filled the stadium, many dressed in white, to watch the Nittany Lions escape a strong second half from the Wolverines, 28-21.

With the win, the odds on the 7-0 Lions winning their first national title since 1986 have shortened from 60/1 to 25/1. Penn State will play at Michigan State Saturday, then at No. 17 Minnesota, then host Indiana before traveling to Columbus to face Ohio State.

Devin O'Connor

Gaming Legislation, Politics, Casino Business, Entertainment----Devin O’Connor’s passion for politics and background in the world of pop culture television give him insight into the gaming industry backstories that often drive news these days. After graduating from Penn State University with a theater arts degree, he worked at MTV Networks/Viacom from 2005 to 2010 as a writer and producer, where his credits included Total Request Live, New Year's Eve specials, and a special featuring poker superstar Daniel Negreanu. He later moved on to the HGTV/DIY Network, where he created, wrote, and produced three series specials: That's So House Hunters, That's So 80s, and That's So 90s. Devin came on board with in 2014. He lives in Pennsylvania, and is an avid marathoner, having completed 15 races to date. Email:

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