USC vs. Penn State Betting Preview 01/02/17 – Rose Bowl Odds

Betting Preview

These might be the two best teams that aren’t playing in the CFP. Both teams turned their seasons completely around after slow starts and both teams have victories over teams that are in the CFP.

The Trojans got off to a 1-3 start and made the decision to switch quarterbacks. In came freshman Sam Darnold and everything changed as he passed for over 2600 yards and threw 26 touchdown passes. The Trojans never looked back as they ran the table and won their last eight games including handing the Huskies their only loss of the year 26-13. Their defense also stepped up and held six of their last eight opponents to 20 points or less.

Penn State got off to a 2-2 start and then quarterback Trace McSorely led the Nittany Lions on a run that saw them win their last 9 games of the season including handing Ohio State their only loss. In the last two games he passed for a total of 760 yards and threw eight touchdowns without an interception in wins over Michigan State and then Wisconsin in the Big 10 Championship Game. They have a great running back in Saquone Barkley who ran for over 1300 yards and scored 19 touchdowns. Their defense played very well during their streak as they held seven of the eight opponents to 24 points or less.

The oddsmakers opened up with USC as a 7.5 point favorite but it has been bet down to 6.5 while the total is set at 60 after being bet down from the opening 63. According to Consensus Analysis 54% of the public like the idea of Penn State as a dog and are backing the Nittany Lions while 59% are impressed with both teams offenses and are behind the over.

The total has gone under in seven of USC’s last eight games overall and over in five of Penn State’s last six games overall.

Previous Meetings

01/01/09: Nittany Lions 24 @ Trojans 38
08/27/00: Trojans 29 @ Nittany Lions 5
08/25/96: Trojans 7 @ Nittany Lions 24


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WHO IS THE ICEMAN? He’s no soothsayer and he doesn’t have a crystal ball, but Jesse Schule can indeed predict the future. As a professional handicapper, it’s actually part of his job description. His clients have accused him of secretly possessing Marty McFly’s Sports Almanac, but he tells us the secret to his success is thanks in part to his fascination with history. The idea that you can predict the future by studying the past is nothing new. Historians have been doing it for years.

Career Highlights:

- Perfect 10-0 start to NFL Season (2022)

- Perfect 5-0 Super Bowl Card (2018)

- Perfect 6-0 NBA Finals Futures (2017)

- Perfect 3-0 NBA Finals Futures (2019)

- Perfect 3-0 NBA Finals Futures (2020)

- Perfect 8-0 card X-Mas Day (2016)

- Perfect 8-0 NCAA Tourney picks Sweet 16 - Final (2015)

- Picked Germany +$700 to win World Cup (2014)

- Picked Marcus Mariota +$700 to win Heisman (2014)

Handicapping Methodology: Jesse is not a believer in systems, programs or number crunching formulas to handicap games. He is firm in his belief that you aren't playing against the sportsbook, you are playing against the average Joe (other bettors). Jesse is notorious for attacking inflated point spreads, soft lines and totals that are a little out of whack. He also relies on a nearly photographic memory with an uncanny ability to tell you a player's history and stats dating back for decades. Anyone can look up how many touchdowns a guy has scored, Jesse can also tell you about the ones that he almost scored.

Money Management: His plays are rated based on a 1-10 star system, and he recommends wagering 0.5 percent of your bankroll per star rating. So a top rated 10* play would represent a bet equal to five percent of a player's bankroll.

Signature Plays:

AFTERNOON EXECUTIONER: This title is reserved for games with a start time between 12:00 – 4:30 ET. These are popular with action junkies who are dying for the games to get underway.

The TERMINATOR: Jesse's signature totals play, the Terminator has established a reputation as one of the most consistent winners in Schule's repertoire.

TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE: These plays represent a game where the stats show a significant trend which isn't reflected in the price.

GRIM REAPER BLOWOUT: His signature play reserved for medium to large favorites. High percentage plays for those who don't mind laying chalk.

HOT DIGGITY DOG: This is the Iceman's signature underdog play. About as rare as strawberries in December, you'll want to grab these whenever they are available