These two teams have been the Big12 dominant forces when it comes down to NCAA football. The series is considered to be one of the greatest rivalries in American sports. When it comes to the Big12 perhaps only the Rivalry that the Texas Longhorns hold against the Texas A&M Aggies, and the Rivalry between the Sooners and the Oklahoma State Cowboys can match the media attention and the crowds this event carries on.
Since 1945, the two teams have managed to arrive on this date ranked among the top 25 teams in the nation, which makes this even significant not only among the Big12 conference teams, but an important and nationally televised sporting event. Now, six of the last 10 Red River Rivalry games have included at least one team playing in the Bowl Championship Series, including the national titles won by the Sooners in 2000 and the Longhorns in 2005.
If placed under a National scenario, perhaps only the Navy-Army game and the Michigan-Ohio State series have a major impact on NCAA sports. It is always a game that attracts a lot of wagering action, as the teams are known to go out and give on the best show they possibly can.
As of press time, the Sooners are a -3½ point favorite on the spread. Totals will be opened later on the week. Even though the game is played in the state of Texas, the Fairgrounds in Texas are considered to be a neutral site. Until 2015, both schools will play the game at the Fair Park. It is a very important event, as some studies have established that the hosting town could see revenues of up to $17 million annually to local businesses.
The Longhorns come from somewhat of an embarrassing game against UCLA. The polls had Texas as No.1 before their stunning home loss against UCLA. Here is the thing; losing against a unranked team is a blow for the Longhorns institution. But losing against an unranked team while playing in Austin, of all places, hurts even more.
Now, the Longhorns have to get their act together, otherwise Oklahoma is going to crush the heck out of them in this Saturday’s game. The longhorns dropped in the AP poll from 7th to No. 21. A lose against the Sooners would hurt their aspirations to make it into the Bowl Championship Series.
On the other hand, the Oklahoma Sooners should be aware that the Longhorns have to redeem themselves with their fans. No matter where you stand in regards to their performance, losing like they did to UCLA is unacceptable. If their players have a strong sense of self-respect, they are going to bring down their A-game into this Red River Rivalry showdown.
If you are looking for the X factor in this game, this is probably the right perspective. Oklahoma is expected to win by 3.5 points on the spread. The Sooners have had a fairly good season in both conference and non-conference play. It is the Longhorns who have to come and turn their team around if they expect to be among the best college football teams in the nation.
The Crimson Tide will be visiting the Wallace Wade Stadium in Durham, North Carolina, to play Duke in the third week of regular season. Duke is not expected to put much of a fight against Alabama’s game. Now, rumor has it that Mark Ingram, the first Heisman Trophy winner for Alabama, is finally going to make his comeback after the talented player had to undergo knee surgery on August 31st.
Mark has been on the sidelines as the Crimson Tide has pulled off two great games against inferior teams, nonetheless the young men from Alabama have proved that they deserve to be among the favorite and top ranked teams in the nation. Alabama began it season with a demolishing 48-3 victory over San Jose State, and even managed to defeat the (back then No. 18 ranked) guys from Penn State with an easy 24-3. Someone said that Bama needed a boost for morale. Well, Ingram and the talented defensive end Marcell Dareus are expected to be back in top shape for their weekend game against Duke.
Trent Richardson, Ingram’s replacement, has certainly played to the expectations of the Crimson Tide’s fans. For this two opening games, Richardson has rushed for 210 yards and three touchdowns. A pair of statistics that prove that though having Ingram is a plus, even if he is not there, they’ve got him covered.
On the other end of the offensive line, Greg McElroy threw for 229 yards and two touchdowns. As of press time, Alabama is ranked among the top 20 teams in the nation.
Duke on the other hand started the season with a 41-27 victory over Elon, but then had a very entertaining and difficult game against Wake Forest, which they lost 54 to 48. Duke is 0-10 all-time against No. 1 teams. And this should not be the exception. If you are into wagering on your favorite college football team, or like betting on NCAA football, you might want to take notice, as the question is not if Bama will win, but if they will cover the spread. As of press time, Alabama is a very strong favorite to win this game. The guys over at BetIAS.com have made Alabama a -23½ point favorite. Like to take the over under? As of press time you can pick either way for o/u 58 flat.
Remember those many years where the New Orleans Saints were stacking up a losing season after the other. Their record was so obnoxiously low that even the home fans were at one point calling them the New Orleans Aint’s. Let’s take a quick look at their losing years. The Saints were founded back in 1966 as an expansion team. They played at the Tulane Stadium until 1974. It would take the franchise two more seasons to finally finish a regular season with a .500 average.
As if that was not enough, the people of New Orleans had to wait even longer, until 1987 for the team to see its first successful years, but the spell did not last too long and by 1992, the Saints were again on the losing end of the spectrum. Want to talk about playoffs wins? Well, then you would have to wait until the first postseason of the new millennium to see the Saints win their first ever Playoffs game against the then defending Champions the St. Louis Rams.
And then came Head Coach Sean Payton, and quarterback Drew Brees. It was the spring of 2006 and even before the game began, the fans were starting to believe that good things would follow after Payton and Brees. For the first time in franchise history, the Saints owner, Tom Benson, announced that the team had sold out the entire season on the Louisiana Superdome, with season tickets alone. Just to be clear here, there are 70,001 seats in the that Arena after the latest modifications.
The first home game was somewhat of a national event. The city was finally making its first steps since Hurricane Katrina devastated half of the city. It was a magical moment not only for the team but also for the NFL and the city of New Orleans. The people were showing their support not only to the team but also for what it represented: a city that could get back on its feet, a team that could start making a difference.
2006 was a key season. The Saints made it to the NFC Championship game were they lost to the Chicago Bears. That was their best performance yet. 2007 and 2008 went by without too much success. Then came their year. In 2009 the Aints became the Saints. They played it smart, and although they went on and sacrificed the perfect season, the team was able to win its first ever Super Bowl and bring back the Vince Lombardi Trophy to New Orleans.
Brees is got the keys
Now, for the first time in his professional career, and despite having had some great seasons in the past, the hard working and dedicated Drew Brees is finally joining Peyton Manning and Tom Brady a top of the NFL’s superstardom. Not only is he up for an enormous contract extension, he has received the respect of his fellow players as well as the fans.
He has a very difficult task in front of him. Two in a row is not such a common denominator when it comes to Super Bowl success. As of press time, the Saints are among the top three ranked teams in the Odds to win XLV Super Bowl. Sports betting industry leader Instant Actions Sports has already set up the lines for the first week of the NFL.
Following the steps of the NFL the NBA has officially announced that it will take two of its teams for a regular season game to be played in England. The NBA commissioner, David Stern, has said that he has been trying to take the championship overseas for a while now. And London might be the key to great things to come for the NBA in the European Continent.
Stern’s decision to take the two Toronto Raptors and New Jersey Nets to play in London is downright a smart marketing decision. We need to take into consideration that the timing is quite perfect. The city of London has al ready set its mind for sports. It has made a multi million-dollar inversion to host the 2012 Summer Olympics. So it seems only natural that the NBA fans and the sport fans alike might take this chance to try something different then Football, Cricket and Rugby.
The two games between the Toronto Raptors and the New Jersey Nets will be played on March 4 and 5 at the O2 Arena. This might be a late-reaction for the NBA. The NFL on the other hand has been playing a regular season game in England for the last four consecutive years. This time around, on October 31, at the Wembley Stadium, the San Francisco 49ers will face the Denver Broncos. The NFL has had significant success playing both in European cities and in Latin American cities.
The other professional league that has experimented some success abroad is the NHL. The NHL has already played in London and occasionally has taken its games abroad to other European cities.
These will not be the only games or teams the NBA will future in European Cities. As of press time, we know that the defending champions the LA Lakers, the New York Knicks and the Minnesota Timberwolves will each play two games in what will be the NBA’s 5th installment of their Live Europe Tour. The Lakers and the Timberwolves will start their round in the 02 Arena on October 4th and then will move on their show three days later in Barcelona, Spain.
Betting on the NBA Futures
The NBA betting lines are already up. Sports Industry leader BetIAS.com has already set up some nice NBA betting Futures for the next 2010-2011 NBA Season. The Line Managers and the guys and gals over at the Prop Department have already set up some nice futures including NBA regular season MVP winner. Take a guess who is the favorite to win this one?
At ML+240 Kevin Durant leads the way followed closely by Kobe Bryant. It seems that the Miami Heat move to bring Chris Bosh, Dwayne Wade and LeBron James together rocket-launched its chances to win the NBA Championships. But the three big guys might have a hard time sharing all the attention and perhaps the glory. LeBron James for the MVP pays at ML+475
The Team Regular Season wins and even the odds to win the Rookie of the Year award. John Wall and Blake Griffin are the too players with the best odds to win this award. As of press time, the Miami Heat guide the way into the odds to win the 2010-2011 Championship paying at ML+150.