2008 Champs Sports Bowl Betting Odds

Written by:
Don Shapiro
Published on:

2008 Champs Sports Bowl betting odds for Wisconsin vs. Florida State opened at Seminoles -5 ½.  Gambling911.com would like to point out that there was a middling opportunity in this game should Florida State win by 6 points as Sportingbet.com and a handful of other online sportsbooks were offering this one at -5 ½ while betED.com had a line of +6 ½ for Wisconsin. 

The Badgers have played well in non-conference games of late, going 13-4 in their last 17.   The Seminoles are 6-15-1 ATS in their last 22 games as a favorite of 3.5 to 10.0.

Wisconsin wants to finish strong after an 8-5 season that saw the Badgers drop from a No. 8 national ranking to out of the AP poll after losing their first four Big Ten games.

Florida State is trying to win nine games for the first time in four seasons and give Bobby Bowden redemption. With a win, Bowden may retire and turn the job over to offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher, though the 79-year-old legend has shown no indication of doing so. FSU signed Fisher to an extension this season, with the stipulation that he will succeed Bowden by 2010.

"It's been a while since Florida State won nine games," Florida State quarterback Christian Ponder said. "A win would be a great way to head into the offseason."

Both quarterbacks figure to be under scrutiny.

Ponder, a sophomore, returns from injury to direct a Seminoles attack predicated on his ability to run and spread the field.

Bowden said he expects the time off since the Seminoles fell to Florida in late November to lead to a crisper attack.

"There've been too many dropped passes, too much of not being on the same page," he said.

FSU's passing attack ranks 87th in the nation with a 192-yard-per-game average. Ponder is 89th in pass efficiency, completing 55 percent of his passes with 13 INTs and 12 TDs.

Wisconsin junior Dustin Sherer didn't throw his first TD pass until mid-October, a month after replacing injured starter Allen Evridge. He's completed 55 percent of his passes, with five TDs and five INTs.

Both must prove they can offset their passing shortcomings.

Badgers defensive coordinator Dave Doeren said Wisconsin must keep the Seminoles, who run much of their offense from a one-back set, from spreading the field and working the outside edges.

"You have to leverage the ball, keep them inside, contain their speed and stay with our assignments," Doeren said.

Wisconsin will be without backup cornerback Mario Goins, who is academically ineligible.

Heather Dinich of ESPN.com points out that Both Florida State and Wisconsin have depended on their running games this season, with the Badgers leaning on P.J. Hill and John Clay, and FSU relying on Antone Smith and Jermaine Thomas. Seminoles quarterback Christian Ponder is looking to redeem himself from a poor performance against Florida in which he was benched in favor of Drew Weatherford. The Badgers have been more effective since Dustin Sherer replaced Allan Evridge at quarterback.

Don Shapiro, Gambling911.com


Sports News