December 30, 2021

Corrigan's Gambling Corner: 2021 New Year's 6 Bowls Gambling Guide

Welcome to the official gambling guide for this seasons' New Year's Six Bowl games.

This is a bittersweet time as we have six great college football games, but this also means that college football is at the finish line.

It has been a great college football season and barring an absolute disaster, this will be my most profitable season ever.

I cannot wait to watch and bet on all six of these wonderful games. IF you are with us, then we ask that you always gamble responsibly.

Let's pick out some winners.

*Odds via FanDuel Sportsbook

Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl: Pitt vs Michigan State

| Spread: MSU -2.5 | Total: 45.5 | ML: MSU -142, Pitt +116 |

This game was going to be awesome before Kenneth Walker and Kenny Pickett both opted out. Now, we have the pleasure of watching the futures of the Michigan State and Pitt programs.

This game may not be as exciting as it should have been, but the value on the board is incredible. The line has swung significantly towards the Spartans after Pitt opened as a 4.5 point favorite. With Pickett and receiver Taysir Mack opting out, the Spartans are now slight favorites, even with their best player also out.

It should come as no surprise that Michigan State relied on the running game this season. The Spartans were ranked 36th in yards per rush and 46th in rushing yards per game. Even if Walker were playing in this game, the Pitt defense is ranked fifth in yards per rush and sixth in rushing yards per game. The Spartans were always going to have to rely on quarterback Payton Thorne to win them this game.

Thorne did not light up the scoreboard, but he is just good enough to make any thrown when his number is called. Like Michigan State, the Panthers are very weak in the secondary as they are giving up 273.8 yards per game and 7.6 yards per pass. Pitt will turn to Nick Patti at quarterback, and with only 62 career passing attempts, he will have his work cut out for him. Luckily, Michigan State has a terrible secondary.

Both teams are missing their star player, have a tremendous front seven, and terrible secondaries. This game will come down to which quarterback is the better of the two, and I trust Thorne more than Patti.

Pick: Michigan State -2.5 (-115)

Playstation Fiesta Bowl: Oklahoma State vs Notre Dame

| Spread: ND -2.5 | Total: 44.5 | ML: ND -142, OSU +116 |

If you were to put the 2021 Notre Dame Fighting Irish and the 2021 Oklahoma State Cowboys on the field at the same time, Notre Dame would win by approximately 1,000 points. However, Notre Dame will be without Kyren Williams and Kyle Hamilton as they will both prepare for the upcoming NFL Draft.

This will be the first game of the Marcus Freeman era for the Irish, and he will be tested as the Oklahoma State defense is ranked sixth in scoring, third in total yards and yards per play, and seventh in points per play.

Speaking of the Oklahoma State defense, this will be defensive coordinator Jim Knowles' last game with the Pokes as he will take the same position at Ohio State after this game. Ever since Knowles showed up on campus, the Cowboys have had a top 10 defense, and this year is probably his best unit.

losing Williams is not a good sign as Oklahoma State's front seven is among the best in the country, but Chris Tyree has been very effective in his limited carries this season, and quarterback Jack Coan will not do anything bad enough for Notre Dame to lose this game.

Both teams are on a streak when it comes to covering the spread, but Notre Dame has covered in seven straight games, and despite missing their best player on both sides of the ball, I like the Irish in this spot.

Pick: Notre Dame -2.5 (-115)

Rose Bowl: Utah vs Ohio State

| Spread: OSU -4.5 | Total: 64 | ML: OSU -194, Utah +156 |

It was expected, but Ohio State will be without both Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson for the Rose Bowl. Ohio State will also be without Nicholas Petit-Frere and Haskell Garrett due to the NFL Draft. The Buckeyes may also be without Sevyn Banks, Marcus Williamson, and Cody Simon as those three have been limited in practice this week.

Even then, I love the Buckeyes in this spot.

Sure Utah smoked Oregon twice this season while Ohio State lost to the Ducks in Columbus earlier in the year, but that was a different Oregon team, and this is a different Ohio State team.

In their last nine, Ohio State is 6-3 ATS, and they have beaten Pac-12 opponents in eight of their last nine games. Even with all of the opt-outs, Ohio State is just way too talented to not cover. Wilson and Olave were the two-best receivers on the roster, and neither of them led the team in receiving yards. With Jaxson Smith-Njigba, Marvin Harrison Jr., and Emeka Egbuka, Ohio State's backups are better than Utah's starters.

Now, Cameron Rising has caught fire over the last month of the season, and he is a big reason why Utah is in their first-ever Rose Bowl. However, Utah is going to have to outscore and outpace the Buckeyes, and I just do not see that happening.

Pick: Ohio State -4.5 (-110)

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Baylor vs Ole Miss

| Spread: Ole Miss -1.5 | Total: 55.5 | ML: Ole Miss -118, Baylor -104 | 

It is going to take a lot for me to not side with the Lane-train.

Ole Miss is 5-2 ATS in their last seven, and during that same span, the Rebs are putting up 28.6 points per game. Now, there may not be a hotter team than the Baylor Bears, but they have been so inconsistent this season.

Against unranked teams, Baylor is scoring 35.7 points per game, and against ranked teams, the Bears are only putting up 25 points per game. It may sound obvious that it is harder to beat good teams than it is bad teams, but 25 points is not going to beat Ole Miss, especially since this game is practically going to be an Ole Miss home game.

The Rebs are 21st in scoring, fifth in total yards, and 19th in yards per play. Quarterback Matt Corral will play to improve his draft stock. Although there is not much more he can prove as he is the only FBS quarterback with at least 3,000 passing and 500 rushing yards.

I do like Baylor's defense, but the fact that they have not named either Blake Shapen or Gerry Bohanon as the starting quarterback scares me. I do not have a lot of confidence that a team that doesn't even know who will be taking the snaps can outscore Lane Kiffin.

Ole Miss has won their last eight when playing as a favorite, and this game will be no different.

Pick: Ole Miss -1.5 (-110)

Goodyear Cotton Bowl (Semifinals): Cincinnati vs Alabama

| Spread: Alabama -13.5 | Total: 57 | ML: Bama -590, Cincy +410 |

I said it when the opening lines were released for the playoffs, but Cincinnati is getting a lot of value in this spot. 

Alabama wide receiver John Metchie tore his ACL against Georgia in the SEC Championship Game, and outside of Jameson Williams, the Tide do not have a lot of production in the receiver room. Outside of Williams and Metchie, Slade Bolden is the only Alabama receiver over 300 yards on the season. 

Normally, losing Metchie would be fine because Alabama can just out-talent everyone. However, the Bearcats have the best one-two combination at cornerback in Ahmad Gardner and Coby Bryant. 

Both Gardner and Bryant have yet to allow a touchdown this season, and Gardner only gave up five catches for 42 yards. If they can lock up Williams, which according to the numbers is very possible, Alabama might be in some trouble on offense. 

Now, Bryce Young won the Heisman for a reason, but if he has no reliable receivers, the Tide will have to turn to the running game, and on the season, Alabama is ranked 80th in yards per rush and 75th in rushing yards per game. 

When Williams was ejected for targeting against Auburn, Alabama struggled and failed to score until the fourth quarter. While Desmond Ridder and the Bearcats are one of the more efficient offenses in the country, Alabama's defense is still in the top 10 for yards, yards per play, yards per rush, rushing yards, and third-down conversion percentage. 

Everyone is overlooking this game because it is Alabama vs a group of 5 team, but Cincinnati has the perfect team to possibly knock off the defending champions. At the end of the day, I think Alabama is just too much to handle, but the Bearcats will cover. I personally will be buying half a point to make it a clean +14 spread, but I still like the Bearcats at the current number.

Pick: Cincy +13.5 (-110)

Capital One Orange Bowl (Semifinals): Georgia vs Michigan

| Spread: Georgia -7.5 | Total: 45.5 | ML: Georgia -280, Mich +220 |

This may be one of the most interesting playoff games in the playoff era. Both teams play the exact same way, and both teams are dying to win their first championships since the invention of the internet. 

Georgia was the No. 1 team in the country all season because of their defense. The loss to Alabama humbled them, but the numbers are still hilarious to look at. The Dawgs are the No. 1 defense in scoring (9.8), points per play (0.148), and red zone scoring percentage (61%). 

Georgia is also ranked second in yards, yards per play, rushing yards, and yards per rush. All of those things give Georgia the advantage over Michigan. The Wolverines run the ball 42.2 times per game and only 27.6 passes per game. The identity for Michigan has been to run the ball and then play defense, which is exactly how Georgia plays. 

The simple fact is that both of these teams play the same way. Michigan was an incredible 11-2 ATS this season, but they have had some favorable spreads due to low expectations this season. This season is obviously different for Jim Harbaugh and Michigan, but they are also 2-18 SU in their last 20 games as an underdog.

At the end of the day, Georgia is just a better version of Michigan. The spread is a touch higher than I would like it, but we are still rolling with the Dawgs. If Georgia forces Cade McNamara to beat them with his arm, then this would could get out of hand. 

Pick: Georgia -7.5 (-105)

Photo: Getty Images