First and foremost, the DP doesn't endorse gambling in any shape or variety (except fantasy football, March Madness pools, trifectas at a Triple Crown race and Swamis).
But considering it's now legal to bet on NFL games in Delaware and that could soon spread to NCAA games, DPOSTM offers its third-annual official Penn football bettor's guide - in case you have a burning desire to place a few wagers (hopefully for gentleman's stakes).
V will probably stand for Victory. Penn faces No. 2 Villanova Saturday in its opener. Though the Quakers haven't beaten Villanova since 1911 - and to be fair, the two teams have only matched up eight times since that year - four of the last five games have been decided by a touchdown or less. So you might be inclined to take Penn and the points.
That said, take Villanova and spot Penn the points. Using Jeff Sagarin's ratings, Penn would be a six-point underdog, so the Wildcats will probably cover.
Since Division I split into I-A and I-AA in 1978 (renamed Football Bowl Subdivision and Football Championship Subdivision, respectively), Villanova is the highest-ranked opponent Penn will have ever faced.
"I can think of easier games to open up with," Penn coach Al Bagnoli said laughingly at media day.
While Penn will probably hang with Villanova for at least a half, this game very well might end up being decided by 10 to 13 points.
Over/Under. Last year in this space it was suggested to take the under on Penn games since the defense was strong but the offense was full of question marks. This year the offense is pretty settled and the defense looks as strong as ever.
So should you take the over? Yes and no.
You should for the Villanova matchup in game one. Lafayette and Penn scored a combined 41 points last year, so Week 2 could yield the over again. In addition, the Penn-Princeton game should have more than last year's combined 23 points.
On the other hand, the Yale game should still be low scoring (though probably not as low as the 16 combined points of a year ago). That definitely could be another time to take the under.
With a heavy running emphasis, quarterback Keiffer Garton won't be asked to throw the ball all over the field. Last year Penn quarterbacks threw for 1,700 yards. This year the over/under on passing yards probably will be around 1,300. However, overall offense probably will increase from last year's 3,100 output. So this year the over/under should be around 3,500.
Prop Bets. Penn led the Ivy League with a 33:24 average time of possession last year. As the offense has become even more run-oriented than it has been in the past, expect that number to go up and for the Quakers to lead the league again (it helps that the offense in general will be better).
Andrew Samson is a preseason All-American at kicker after hitting all 20 extra points and going 16-for-19 on field goals. He also literally outscored Yale, 9-7, last year. Add all that up, and the junior could hit at least one game-winning kick.
If you want to bet on the offense, there are a variety of ways to go. The Penn offense should do much better than last year's 19.0 points per game. In the backfield, Penn will have as many as four players get a significant number of rushes. That said, with the plethora of rushers, it is unlikely that one gains over 1,000 yards (though as many as three could get over 500).Comments powered by Disqus
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