Sharp Action Moving Michigan vs. Penn State Point Spread
Matthew O’Haren-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Sean Clifford
- After remaining stagnant for much of the week, there's been some late movement on tonight's Michigan-Penn State point spread.
- The Action Network's tools reveal that sharps are at the root of the cause for the shift.
From the moment the line was released for Saturday’s Michigan-Penn State matchup, there’s been no question as to which side was going to be the popular one.
Coming into this game undefeated — and with a point differential of +203 — Penn State has drawn two-thirds of bets in what could end up being the most heavily bet game on the Saturday slate. Sportsbooks quickly raised their point spreads early in the week from -7.5 up to -8.5/9 as a result, and remained in that range for most of the week.
That changed this morning, however, thanks to some late sharp action.
Sports Insights’ Bet Signals triggered a steam move on the Wolverines at +8.5 around 10 a.m. ET, getting this line down to a juiced-up 7.5, and in some cases, a flat +7.
Steam refers to an overload of money hitting the same side of a bet over a very short period of time, often at multiple sportsbooks, and is one of the easiest ways to spot sharp action.
And it shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise to hear that wiseguys are the reason for a line move against a popular side to one of the most important numbers in football betting.
Michigan’s spot has been the historically profitable one as well, being a road underdog in a game with a low total. Per Bet Labs, road dogs in games with totals of 48 or less have won at a 55.5% clip since 2005.
That rate improves in conference games (57.2%) and contrarian spots (56.2%), and teams fitting both descriptions have won 58.2% of the time — which Michigan does.