Updated November 30 via DraftKings Sportsbook:
- USC is +1,200 to win the National Championship
- The Trojans are -155 to make the Playoff
- Caleb Williams is -2,500 to win the Heisman
- USC is -3 against Utah to win the Pac-12 title
The USC Trojans are favored to win the Pac 12.
No way. Really?
Yes, that’s what the addition of coach Lincoln Riley and quarterback Caleb Williams, both transplanted from Oklahoma, is expected to provide in the coming NCAA football season.
Southern Cal’s dreary 4-8 campaign, which included a record of 2-5 at home, 2-3 away and a season-ending four-game losing streak in 2021, is a distant memory.
So, perhaps, is USC’s standing of being tied for fourth in the Pac 12 South behind Utah at 8-1.
Oregon won the north division.
Utah then beat Oregon 38-10 in the championship game.
There are two ways to assess USC’s sudden betting support.
One, it’s an indication of a turnaround.
Two, it will prop up the betting odds of other teams, like UCLA.
Here’s a look.
DraftKings College Football National Title Odds
The Trojans are +3,000 to win it all
Alabama leads the way at +180.
Ohio State is +320.
Georgia is +380.
Clemson is +1100.
Texas A&M and USC are next at +3000.
Pac-12 Championship Odds
USC is favored but at +200. Good value for odds shoppers.
Utah is +260.
Oregon is +290.
UCLA is +900.
FanDuel has shown USC a significant level of respect.
USC is +2000 to win the national championship, fifth-best among all schools.
Alabama opened as the +180 favorite.
Ohio State came up next at +300.
Defending national champion Georgia is +350.
Clemson comes in at +800.
And then come the Trojans.
FanDuel USC Pac-12 odds
USC is favored at +150.
Utah is next at +300.
Oregon comes in at +300.
UCLA is +1200.
Washington is +1700.
Washington State comes in at +3000.
DraftKings USC Win Total Over/Under
The over is 9.5 -125
The under is 9.5 +105.
There’s a lot of expectation already built into this season already for USC.
How bettors might consider playing it
Johnny Avello, the director of race and sportsbook operations for DraftKings, told mylasports.com that bettors should observe USC’s rosy forecast – especially a national championship – with a measure of caution.
“Yes, there is a lot of excitement surrounding USC right now, but the task of winning a national championship is one in which they would have to play exceptionally well and then everything would have to break right for them.”
“When you look at the teams who win a national championship, rarely does that happen with a new coach. The program has been moving forward for years.”
Bettors don’t have to go all in to make most of their money ride on a national championship, Avello advised. The Pac 12 title has fair odds and it can be linked with other bets.
“I think it is a reasonable expectation that USC is going to have a good season,” Avello said. “But you have to figure that winning the Pac 12 would be a big accomplishment. The Pac 12 is not easy. Rarely is there an easy game in there, maybe against an Arizona, but that’s it.
“If you think they are able to do that but that it would be asking too much for USC to win a national title, you can parlay a bet like this into other futures.
“Bettors are doing a lot of that now. We just had somebody who parlayed the Colorado Avalanche to win the Stanley Cup, the Golden State Warriors to win the NBA championship and Georgia to win the college football championship.
“He turned $40 into something like 27 grand. It seems like we’re paying out some type of bet like this every day.”
Here’s what bettors are assessing with the Trojans.
USC certainly made bold moves. The Trojans obtained a proven coach and signal-caller off the bat.
Riley finished his Oklahoma tenure with a 55-10 mark and the highest winning percentage in the history of coaches at the OU program.
He also has authored a magical touch in elevating young quarterbacks. Three of his proteges have been playing at a high NFL level.
He mentored Heisman Trophy-winning quarterbacks Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray in consecutive seasons.
Another, Jalen Hurts, completed his first season as everyday quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles. Hurts helped the Eagles reach the post-season last year.
Is Williams the next example? Trojan bettors hope so.
Williams played in 11 games for Oklahoma in 2021. He accumulated 1,916 passing yards and 27 total touchdowns with the Sooners.
That included two touchdown passes to help Oklahoma beat Texas 55-48 in a memorable Red River shootout.
The USC football schedule begins by hosting Rice on Sept. 3.
Early analysis would project them for victories against Rice, Stanford, Fresno State, Arizona State, Washington State, Arizona, California, Colorado and UCLA.
Losses would be projected against Oregon State, Utah and Notre Dame, teams who are expected to be nationally ranked.
No projections work out exactly, of course. There could be a surprise from the opponents in either group.
Nonetheless, a 9-3 season would make many Trojan backers happy.
And that’s right about where the books are going to peg USC’s final record.
Watch this offense progress. If Williams clicks with his new teammates, there may be money to make on taking the “over” in USC games and/or individual team totals.