By Corey Long – @CoreyLong
Updated Aug. 30, 2019.
Follow @walterfootball for updates.
These are my 2019 CFB betting props. I locked all these in during a trip to Westgate Las Vegas a couple of weeks ago. I’ve had my ups and downs with props, but I’ve finished on the plus side. How much on the plus side? I’m not sure, but this will be a fresh start and we’ll come back to see how I did after the season.
2019 CFP Championship Odds
Michigan Wolverines: 14/1
There are a lot of things going for Jim Harbaugh this year. He has an experienced returning quarterback in Shea Patterson and a roster that’s loaded on both sides of the ball. His main nemesis, Urban Meyer, is going through one of his “retirements,” and new Ohio State coach Ryan Day will be breaking in a first-year quarterback, Justin Fields. The schedule is challenging enough that Michigan might have a margin of error, and a 12-1 Big Ten Championship team would get one of the four spots in the playoff. This isn’t necessarily a do-or-die season for the Wolverines, but everything is in place for a title run.
Texas Longhorns: 25/1
The Longhorns might be a year or two away from being a championship program again, but with an experienced quarterback, Sam Ehlinger, returning for his third year and a team bouncing after beating Georgia in the Sugar Bowl, the value is there. Much like Michigan, there’s probably room for a slip up here – possibly against Iowa State on Nov. 16 -, but if Texas can beat LSU and Oklahoma twice – regular season and Big XII championship -, a 12-1 record should be enough to get the Longhorns in the top four and in position to win a championship in Tom Herman’s third year.
Central Florida Knights 1000/1
For starters, I don’t see it happening. I think the American conference might be up for grabs this year as I expect Cincinnati, Memphis and Houston to be right there in contention. That being said, Central Florida has Stanford at home early, and if the good teams in the American can sneak into the top-25 poll at the right time, there might be enough quality victories for the Knights. But a lot of things have to happen. Stanford has to compete for or win the Pac-12 title. Pittsburgh, another Central Florida opponent, has to have 8-9 wins, and the other teams in contention for a final playoff spot have to have 2 or more losses. I wasn’t going to bet much here, but putting $20 on a team that has won 25 out of its past 26 teams to win $20,000 isn’t the worst gamble.
2019 Heisman Trophy Odds
Writer’s note: Originally, I had Adrian Martinez on my list, but when his odds jumped to 10/1, the value dropped. Martinez should have a great season and could get Nebraska to 8-9 wins, but will the voters give the Heisman to a 9-3 Nebraska team? Maybe; Lamar Jackson won it with a 9-3 Louisville team, and Tim Tebow won it with a 9-3 Florida team. But if Alabama, Clemson or Georgia go undefeated, Martinez will need record-setting-type numbers to pull voters away from them.
Georgia QB Jake Fromm 18/1
Fromm isn’t going to blow anyone away with amazing passing numbers. Georgia runs such a balanced attack with D’Andre Swift and James Cook in the backfield, it’ll would be a stretch for Fromm to do much more than eclipse the 3,000-yard mark. But Fromm could do it with wins and efficiency. He doesn’t turn the ball over much, and if he can muster a 3,000-yard season with 30 or more touchdowns and fewer than five interceptions while leading Georgia to a undefeated season and an SEC championship, that would be Heisman worthy.
Wisconsin RB Jonathan Taylor 25/1
Jack Coan was announced as the Badgers’ starting quarterback this season a couple of days ago, and that should mean big things for Taylor. In three of the five games that Coan started last year, Taylor had one 300-yard game, two 200-yard games and a fourth game in which he gained 185 yards against Penn State. Taylor has a chance to come out of the gate with a big game against South Florida on Friday night, and if he can get over 2,500 yards this season, he might be able to shift some of the talk away from the quarterbacks. Taylor provides the best chance for a non-quarterback to win the Heisman since Derrick Henry did it in 2015.
Texas A&M quarterback Kellen Mond 60/1
Mond went from game manager to legitimate play-making quarterback in his first year working with Aggies head coach Jimbo Fisher, throwing for 3,107 yards with 24 touchdowns and nine interceptions while rushing for 474 yards and seven touchdowns. Mond will have to take his game to another level this year, and with games against Clemson, Auburn and Alabama before the halfway point in the season, he could gain a lot of traction with some big performances. With Fisher’s history of developing quarterbacks, taking Mond at these odds is great value.
Over/Under Total Wins
Cincinnati Bearcats OVER 7.5 -140
Looking at the Bearcats’ schedule, I see six wins, one loss and five toss-up games. Cincinnati has lost some starters from last season’s 11-2 team, but head coach Luke Fickell has done a heck of a job recruiting and probably has the school’s best roster top to bottom this season. Back-to-back seasons with double-digit wins might be a lot to ask for, but an 8- or 9-win season seems like a good possibility.
Florida State Seminoles OVER 7.5 -120
The Seminoles have had a couple of down years, but things should be looking up in Willie Taggart’s second year. Florida State will have a new quarterback and a little more manageable schedule than last season. The opener against Boise State is going to set the tone, and if the Seminoles can win Saturday, an 8- or 9-win season seems to open itself up well for the Seminoles.
Alabama Crimson Tide UNDER 11.5 -160
Well, this is pretty cut and dry. Since win totals include regular-season games that do not include conference championship games, Alabama has to finish the regular season undefeated to pass this total. These odds have dropped a little as Alabama has had some tough luck with injuries. The Crimson Tide will be without starting linebacker Dylan Moses all season and top backup running back Trey Sanders. Don’t get it twisted, they will still be extremely good and just overwhelm most of their competition with talent alone. But the road trips to South Carolina, Texas A&M and Auburn along with the home games against LSU, Tennessee and others will eventually take their toll and someone will clip the Crimson Tide this season.
Maryland Terrapins UNDER 3.5 +110
I believe the Terrapins will beat Howard and Rutgers, but it’s hard to find a third victory on their schedule much less a fourth. If Maryland can’t hit the 4-win mark by October 19, it would appear unlikely it would get there after that with a closing set against Minnesota, Michigan, Ohio State, Nebraska and Michigan State. New head coach Mike Locksley will likely treat his first year as “year zero” and begin to play younger guys as the losses rack up.
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