Pro Edge Sports had several teams circled during the offseason that we felt would make dramatic strides in 2013, and we have not been disappointed with how these squads have performed to date. Let’s take a closer look at some of the most improved college football teams in 2013:
- Head coach Bobby Hauck was certainly feeling the pressure after UNLV started the 2013 campaign with consecutive losses to Minnesota (51-23) and Arizona (58-31). After being outscored by an alarming 109-54 margin in their first two games, the Rebels have won five of its last six contests, including upset road wins over New Mexico and Nevada;
- UNLV is 0.2 yards per rush play, 0.9 yards per pass attempt and 0.4 yards per play worse than average offensively this season. The Rebels are also 1.1 yards per rush play and 0.5 yards per play worse than average defensively, although their secondary has been 0.2 yards per pass play better than average in 2013.
East Carolina Pirates:
- No one is talking about the 5-2 Pirates despite the fact that coach Ruffin McNeill’s squad continues to dominate its opponents. After nearly pulling the upset over Virginia Tech as 8.5-point underdogs, the Pirates rebounded with solid road wins over both North Carolina (55-31) and Middle Tennessee State (24-17);
- East Carolina is 0.3 yards per pass attempt, 0.1 yards per play and 1.6 yards per point better than average offensively this season (37.1 points per game). The Pirates also possess a vastly improved defense that is 0.9 yards per rush play, 0.4 yards per pass attempt and 0.4 yards per play better than average. East Carolina should become bowl eligible with a win over Florida International Saturday.
North Texas Mean Green:
- North Texas continues to be the most underrated team in college football as the Mean Green are a perfect 3-0 SU and ATS at home where they are limiting opponents to a mere 13.3 points per game on 5.9 yards per play. While the Mean Green are actually 0.4 yards per play worse than average defensively overall (5.8 yards per play to teams that combine to average 5.4 yards per play), they force their opponents to earn points the hard way (i.e. with extended drives; 18.7 yards per point). North Texas is also 0.5 yards per pass attempt and 0.1 yards per play better than average offensively;
- North Texas has excelled in competitive games this season as the Mean Green recently defeated Middle Tennessee State and Louisiana Tech as small favorites, while also upsetting Ball State as 3-point underdogs. Head coach Dan McCarney has his sites set on a bowl game, and we expect the Mean Green to secure their sixth win of the season on Thursday over Rice.
Successful sports investors like to support undervalued teams like those listed above as they provide solid line value. While the markets are too busy adjusting lines on prime time games receiving the majority of the betting action, sophisticated bettors exploit the inefficiencies in the betting market by investing on teams like UNLV, East Carolina and North Texas.