Texas A&M claimed the top spot over Alabama as the best SEC team against the spread after defeating Auburn 29-16 as a 1.5-point underdog last Saturday.
The Aggies are playing nearly 11 points better than the Vegas number per contest through three games. Success is coming on both sides of the ball. Coach Kevin Sumlin’s squad has scored more points (3.3 per game) and allowed fewer (7.3 per game) than the betting market projects in each game. It is 3-0 against the spread, the only undefeated team remaining in the league.
The Crimson Tide slipped to second in the rankings after failing to cover a 10-point spread as favorites in their 48-43 win against Ole Miss last Saturday. A recent trend suggests their slide may continue this weekend. Alabama is 2-11-1 against the spread in its last 14 games at Bryant-Denny Stadium against nonconference opponents. One win and the push, however, occurred this season against Charleston Southern (56-6, -40) and Western Kentucky (38-10, -28). Oddsmakers opened the Tide as 41.5-point chalk in their home matchup against Kent State this weekend.
Missouri inched its way to third in the covers standings after suffering a heartbreaking 28-27 loss to Georgia as a 6.5-point pup on Saturday. The team still is milking its 61-21 blowout of Eastern Michigan in which it covered the spread by 24.5 points. The Tigers face FCS squad Delaware State this weekend before tackling LSU and Florida in their first road conference tests this season. In 2015, Mizzou went 1-3 against the spread in SEC road contests, averaging 6.2 points per game on offense.
Despite dropping its most points against the spread in a year last weekend, Auburn continues to surprise in the betting market with a 1.5 average margin over the number. The Tigers kicked off as 1.5-point favorites against Texas A&M, missing the cover by 14.5 points. It was their largest deficit since a 45-21 beatdown by LSU as a touchdown dog last September. Auburn, highly overvalued to begin the 2015 season, looks to avenge its loss to the Bengal Tigers as a 4-point pup this weekend in the Plains.
Florida and South Carolina round out the top 5 in differential, tied at 0.8 point per game. The Gators’ cupcake schedule to date awards them the highest average line (-28.2) of all SEC programs. Oddsmakers opened Florida as an 8-point dog for its annual clash against Tennessee this weekend, the most points given to the Gators in at least the last 35 meetings.
Here’s a look at where all the SEC teams rank in average margin against the spread. Included is each team’s average betting line for the season, as well as record against the number.
|TEAM||AVERAGE ATS MARGIN||AVERAGE LINE||ATS RECORD|
|1. Texas A&M||10.7||-18.3||3-0|
|T5. South Carolina||0.8||+2.5||2-1|
|9. Mississippi St.||-4.7||-7.7||2-1|
|10. Ole Miss||-6.3||-9.3||1-2|
Below is another table showing how SEC teams fared against game totals, including average over-under margins and records. Here’s the tally through Week 3:
|TEAM||AVERAGE O/U MARGIN||AVERAGE TOTAL||O/U RESULTS|
|2. Ole Miss||17.7||56||2-1|
|8. Texas A&M||-4.0||59.7||0-2-1|
|10. Mississippi St.||-7.7||49.3||0-3|
|14. South Carolina||-13.8||46.8||0-3|
Kentucky reigns supreme in the over’s market with a 3-0 start after allowing 40-plus points in its third consecutive game in a 62-42 win against New Mexico State. Coach Mark Stoops’ leaky defense is allowing 15.4 more points per game than the market projects in 2016. Only Marshall (20.4), Florida State (18.3) and TCU (15.8) have yielded more than expected in FBS play through Week 3.
The Wildcats square off against South Carolina this week. The over is 8-1 in the last nine meetings between the two, eclipsing a 50.5 average total by 7.4 points per game. The Gamecocks’ -13.8 over-under differential is the lowest in the SEC.