Vegas says Mizzou is underdog against Indiana on Saturday
ST. LOUIS -- In August, eight college football writers were asked
for predictions on how Missouri's 2013 season would pan out, game by
game. The Athlon Sports survey yielded no surprises in the first two
weeks. Every person figured the Tigers would breeze by Murray State and
Toledo. Then came Indiana.
Three writers felt the Tigers might stumble for the first time against the Hoosiers on Saturday.
I was one of them, and Las Vegas seems to agree.
Since Monday, Mizzou has gone from a three-point favorite to a one-point underdog in three Sin City casinos. At 5Dimes.eu, an offshore site, Mizzou has fallen from a 5.5-point favorite to a 2-point underdog. According to Covers.com, the Orleans is now the only place listing Mizzou as a favorite.
you bet on sports (I don't), the moving line tells us just one thing:
This game has the feeling of a crapshoot, and the money is on Indiana.
The Tigers, by and large, are not being trusted to take down the
Hoosiers in Bloomington at night.
This seems to baffle some
Mizzou fans, likely due to the foreshadowing a loss would bring. Mizzou
coach Gary Pinkel and his Tigers desperately need to enter Southeastern
Conference play undefeated in order to have a chance at rewriting last
year's forgettable 5-7 record.
But if you haven't heard, the
basketball school from the Big Ten has been building a respectable
football team. Coach Kevin Wilson survived a 1-11 season in 2011, led
his team to 4-8 last year and now sits at 2-1 with the Tigers coming to
Wilson's spread out, pass-happy "fastball" offense averages
50 points per game and 7.55 yards per play, and sophomore quarterback
Nate Sudfeld is only getting better. Whatever momentum was squandered in
a 41-35 loss to Navy on Sept. 7 was likely rekindled in a 42-10
beatdown of Bowling Green last week.
"We're still building,"
Wilson said this week. "We've still got a lot of development and growth
to do. It's going to take hundreds of days to get us to where ... much
like Coach Pinkel and the stability he has done there in Columbia, in
building Mizzou. It takes some time. But I feel like we are on track."
That's what will make Saturday so interesting.
is a team fighting to not lose its well-earned reputation as a
consistent winner. Indiana, with a win, moves one step closer to
grabbing that respect for itself.
Which makes Indiana a team to be feared.
Follow Ben Frederickson on Twitter (@Ben_Fred), or contact him at email@example.com.