Top win totals: Alabama, USC, Oklahoma, Oregon
If you are looking for a national champion in college football you might start with the win totals that the gamblers are projecting.
Original at USAToday.comAlabama: 10.5 (over +110, win $110 on $100 bet, under -130)
USC: 10.5 (over +105, under -125)
Oklahoma: 10.5 (over +130, under -150)
Fall camps are still weeks away and not a down has been played, so yeah... It's pretty early.
There's a key difference in how oddsmakers view a team's chances vis-a-vis how media polls and computer programs rank them in preseason polls--oddsmakers and professional gamblers don't listen (much) to hype. That doesn't mean the covers.com list will be totally reliable predictor of final win totals. But there's a measure of independence here that's worth considering.
What's also interesting about this list (read the whole thing here) is not so much who's on it, but who isn't.
Ten of the 14 teams from the Southeastern Conference are shown. The five left off: Auburn, Kentucky, Ole Miss, and Vanderbilt.
That doesn't necessarily mean that oddsmakers don't think these squads will wins enough football games to make a short list. It does mean that not enough gamblers are interested in them.