Auburn 2019 Betting Guide: Is More Odd Year Magic In Store?
Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Derrick Brown
Auburn 2019 Betting Odds
- National Title: 50-1
- To Win SEC: 20-1
- To Make The Playoff: 12-1
- Win Total: 7.5
Auburn Schedule, Projected Spreads
What to Like about Auburn
The defensive front 7 may be the best in all of college football. A defensive line with a havoc rate of 17th in the nation returns Derrick Brown, Marlon Davidson, Nick Coe and Big Kat Bryant.
Along with a secondary that returns almost every name on the two-deep, Auburn may be the most feared defense in college football.
Derrick Brown is a freak of nature pic.twitter.com/YuJCjF5BwE
— Power of Dixieland (@PwrofDixieland) September 30, 2018
The defense was top 20 in both rushing and passing S&P+ during 2018. Auburn limited big plays, well, as the Tigers ranked 13th in defensive explosiveness on passing downs.
A rank of No. 6 in goal line success rate highlights a defense that was also 20th in finishing drives.
Defensive coordinator Kevin Steele has held this position since 2016 after previous stops at Alabama and Clemson, and this should be his best unit yet.
No matter who wins the quarterback competition, Auburn returns almost every snap on the offensive line. The Tigers have 104 of a possible 105 career starts on the offensive line returning this fall.
Auburn should control the trenches on both sides of the ball.
Gus Malzahn has taken over play calling duties at Auburn. Some critics would suggest he was always making the calls from offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee to Chip Lindsey.
Malzahn has “unretired” his clipboard and will be responsible for all offensive schematics this season. 28-year old Kenny Dillingham from Memphis will fill the position of coordinator, but make no mistake that Gus Malzahn is in 100% control of the Auburn offense.
What Could Cause Problems
Auburn has a returning production rank of 84th, and there will be a new quarterback under center. As of this writing, rumors are flying that true freshman Bo Nix will be the starter against Oregon on Aug. 31.
Redshirt freshman and RPO specialist Joey Gatewood will get plenty of playing time this season, as Nix has looked better through the air during camp.
While the offensive line is solid in returning production, the wide receiver group loses the top two targets from 2018. The linebacker unit also cycles out the top three tacklers, leaving a roster that has almost no experience at the strong and middle linebacker position.
If it wasn’t for South Carolina taking on Clemson, Auburn would easily have the toughest schedule in the nation.
Outside of the usual SEC West games, the Tigers get the two toughest teams from the east in Florida and Georgia.
An opening game at a neutral site against Oregon is arguably the fifth toughest game on the schedule.
I’ve got a few diehard San Francisco Giants fans in my life. Their motto became “We will win the World Series in even years,” which was true in 2010, 2012 and 2014. If there was ever a rule that applied to college football, it would be an Auburn fan talking about odd number years.
In 2013, Auburn would go on to face Florida State in the BCS Championship Game. A final record of 12-2 and SEC Championship cannot underscore the craziness of the season. The Prayer at Jordan-Hare against Georgia was just a start.
Auburn would need to get past an undefeated and No. 1 Alabama to get to the SEC Championship Game.
With no time left in the 2013 Iron Bowl, Alabama elected to kick a 50-plus yard field goal to try and win the game. What happened was a generational football moment that will be told for a century as a play called Kick 6.
There were high expectations in 2015 for an Auburn team that started 5-0, but a collapse on both sides of the ball had the Tigers limp to 7-6.
2017 saw the return of the odd year magic, as Auburn defeated both Georgia and Alabama at home. But Auburn would go on to lose the SEC Championship Game and watch both Georgia and Alabama compete in the national title game.
The odd year thing isn’t all fluky, either. They all took place in Jordan-Hare Stadium.
This season, Auburn against plays host to Alabama and Georgia at home. More specifically, the Tigers play every game in the month of November at home.
If a freshman led Auburn team can make it through October with one loss, the Tigers will shape the picture of the College Football Playoff.
Bets to Watch
Followers in the Action Network App have seen a Week 1 play on Auburn covering against Oregon. These are two of the best offensive lines in football, but the Auburn defensive line will give Justin Herbert pressure all game.
The Auburn secondary is loaded with experience that ranked 26th in opponent completion percentage. The Tigers were a fantastic third down and red zone unit, and will take on a Ducks team that struggled to put up points away from home. Oregon put up 66 total points in games against Washington State, Arizona, Utah and Michigan State.
Our win total projection sits at a lowly 7.1, as Auburn took losses in returning production on offense and net turnovers during the offseason. The Tigers touchdown-plus record — games where they’ll be -7 or +7 or greater — is 5-2 but they will be clear underdogs to LSU and Florida.
A sweep of Texas A&M, Mississippi State and Oregon are needed to eclipse the win total from a touchdown-plus point of view.
No play is suggested on the win total, but look for situational spots when Gus Malzahn has been his best. Film study may be a large factor, as Malzahn has posted a 70% cover rate against teams after a loss. That number is 11-3-1 against the spread in just SEC conference play.