College Football Win Totals: Valuing Kentucky Wildcats Odds
College football bettors have had access to SEC odds for some time. Georgia, the two-time defending national champion, is atop the board despite losing a multitude of integral pieces. Former offensive coordinator Todd Monken, who left for the Baltimore Ravens, is certainly one of them. Although Kentucky football odds are an obvious longshot (and then some) in this betting market, the Wildcats’ win total provides some intrigue.
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2022 Kentucky Football recap
The Wildcats’ straight-up results were as humdrum as they come. Despite a 4-0 start, Mark Stoops’ bunch went 5-3 at home, 2-2 on the road, 3-2 in one-possession contests, and each of their victories came against programs outside of the SP+ top 25 rankings. Meanwhile, every loss came to a team inside of them, excluding their defeat against 79th-ranked Vanderbilt.
Will Levis, who was nabbed by the Tennessee Titans with the No. 33 overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, damaged his stock in the process. The Penn State transfer-turned-Kentucky signal caller tallied a considerably worse dropback EPA (with less than 3.5 seconds to throw) than his counterparts Bryce Young and C.J. Stroud. Levis will presumably back up veteran Ryan Tannehill after he was presumably locked in as a first-round selection entering his senior campaign.
Regarding the betting market, Kentucky finished 8-4 against the spread. It managed to hit the under in 10 of the 11 games to boot. The Wildcats’ defense, which tied for the 35th-fewest yards per play (YPP) allowed, held their own. According to SP+, they boasted the fourth-rated unit across D-I.
Appraising 2023 Kentucky Odds
Sticking with the defense, the Wildcats return everyone who logged more than 150 snaps on the line — outside of Justin Rogers. Deon Walker represents one of their more intriguing commodities. The 6-foot-6, 348-pound nose tackle finished tied for the most run stuffs (10) on the team while also generating the third-most tackles for loss (5.5).
Collectively, Kentucky showcases a sizable front with Josiah Hayes (317 pounds) and Keeshawn Silver (322 pounds) along for the ride. However, the Wildcats’ secondary is concerning, losing three of their top four defensive backs. Jordan Lovett, their premier run-stopping safety, remains in the fold.
Unsurprisingly, there’s offensive upside in store with Levis gone from Lexington, Ky. Professional bettor Brad Powers is bullish on Devin Leary, who surpassed Phillip Rivers’ single-season school record for touchdown passes at NC State. There’s even some NFL buzz around him. Keep in mind, the 2022 ACC Preseason Player of Year suffered a torn pectoral muscle in mid-October, costing him the remainder of the season before transferring over in December.
“There’s a good possibility that Leary (if healthy) is an upgrade over Levis, and I really like their pair of sophomore wide receivers in Barion Brown and Dane Key,” Powers told TheLines. “Kentucky’s offensive line should also be much improved after last year with the return of four starters. Speaking of returnees, 2021 Kentucky offensive coordinator Liam Coen is back after spending a season with the Rams. Overall, the schedule sets up nicely as the Wildcats should be favored in each of their first five games. The final seven are a gauntlet, but I priced UK’s win total at 7 (OV -125) so I’m showing (a bit of) value on (a juiced over) 6.5.”
Below are the odds for Kentucky’s season opener versus Ball State. Access the best sportsbook promo codes if you’ve yet to sign up for any of the nationwide operators.
Kentucky Sports Betting News
As bettors continue to place wagers on college football and NFL betting odds, there is positive news on the horizon for the Bluegrass State. Online Kentucky sports betting is expected to go live on Sept. 28. If you’re a resident, here are the recently agreed upon wagering regulations. One of them revolves around Kentucky Horse Racing Commission only accepting bets on sporting events, meaning that Heisman Trophy odds won’t be offered by online operators.
Nevertheless, national championship odds and the like are on table for soon-to-be Kentucky sports bettors.
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