Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Notre Dame quarterback Ian Book
- Heavily bet games rarely see exceptionally lopsided betting percentages.
- Notre Dame, however, is drawing a team record 89% of bets tonight against USC, according to our Bet Labs database.
You’ve probably heard all the clichès about rivalry week enough times this morning to want to mute your TV by now. “Throw the records out the window, anything can happen this week.” Yada yada yada.
These games mean so much that they’re often much more exciting than what the two teams’ performance over the season might suggest.
If the betting market is any indication, however, tonight’s Notre Dame-USC matchup will be anything but.
A whopping 89% of percent of bets are behind the Irish tonight — who’ve moved from -8 to -11.5 — which makes them the most popular pick on Saturday’s slate. But that doesn’t begin to illustrate just how rare a number like that is.
In our Bet Labs database — which dates back to 2005 — Notre Dame has never seen more than 81% of bets in a game (Oct. 28, 2006 at Navy). Similarly, USC has never received less than 21% (Nov. 1, 2013 at Oregon State).
So why are both teams blowing their previous marks out of the water? Because both teams tend to draw a heavy number of bettors on a weekly basis, and oddsmakers rarely allow for heavily bet games to see such lopsided action.
With more than eight hours still remaining until kickoff, this matchup is drawing the second-largest ticket count on Saturday, trailing only Michigan-Ohio State, which begins at noon ET. That means there’s a legitimate chance that this game could wind up being the most heavily bet college game of the entire weekend.
Only six times has a game that eclipsed 30,000 bets from our contributing sportsbooks seen more than 85% of bets on a side since ’05, and with this one on pace to reach that mark, you can be sure that oddsmakers will be draped in USC gear tonight.