Compass Bowl Odds: Southern Methodist Mustangs vs. Pittsburgh Panthers


College Football Betting OddsThe Southern Methodist Mustangs and the Pittsburgh Panthers will fight on January 7 at Legion Field in the BBVA Compass Bowl. Join Now to Bet on this Game!

Back in the old days, a team received a bowl invitation as a reward for an outstanding season. Not any more.

In fact, if we established the criteria that any team must (a) own a winning record overall and (b) own a winning record in its own conference, 21 of the 70 schools that qualifi ed for post-season play this year would NOT have made the cut.

One of those teams staying home would be 6-6 Pittsburgh, a program dealing with its third head coaching change in less than a year (Michael Haywood, who replaced Dave Wannstedt, never coached a game before getting canned, and current HC Todd Graham has already accepted the head job at Arizona State for 2012).

Thus, DC Keith Patterson will lead the Panthers today before new head coach Paul Chryst moves over from Wisconsin.

Similarly, there was some concern in Dallas that SMU coach June Jones was sniffi ng around for a better job but his top option – Texas A&M – went for Houston’s Kevin Sumlin, so JJ will be staying put for the time being.

The Mustangs busted out of the stall in 2011 with a 5-1 SU start but quickly headed to the glue factory with an awful 2-4 SU and 0-6 ATS finish.

However, we think that losing streak brings plenty of value to the 18-returning starter ponies, a team that was embarrassed by Army as 7.5-point chalk in last year’s Armed Forces Bowl.

We also unearthed more than a few negative trends for Graham but those get tossed into the trash following the recent coaching carousel high-jinks. SMU hasn’t done well SU against bowlers the last three seasons (5-14) but they’re catching 5-6 points here and our database informs us that the dog is 6-0 SU and ATS of late in Mustangs’ bowl games.

That’s enough ammo for us considering the Panthers’ players are likely in a state of emotional turmoil. Jones earns at least one week of his inflated salary by leading his ponies to the upset here.

Sportsbooks currently have the Panthers listed as 5½-point favorites versus the Mustangs, while the game's total is sitting at 49.


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