Best Bets in Opening Odds to Win Mountain West, Sun Belt, Mac & Conference USA

Appalachian State
Appalachian State went 13-1 in 2019 en route to their second straight Sun Belt title. Photo by @AppState_FB (Twitter).
  • You can wager on which college football team will win the Mountain West, Sun Belt, MAC and Conference USA in 2020
  • Appalachian State looks poised to win its third straight conference title
  • Read below for our picks to win each conference

Now that spring is here it’s time to start thinking about the upcoming college football season. With that in mind, conference championship odds have been released for the Mountain West, Sun Belt, MAC and Conference USA and we’re here to find the best bet for each.

Speaking of Conference USA, Western Kentucky is the favorite after a 9-4 campaign in 2019, but should their offensive concerns lead bettors to seek a program with a more favorable price tag?

2020 Conference USA Championship Odds

School Odds
Western Kentucky +200
Florida Atlantic +300
UAB +400
Louisiana Tech +550
Marshall +550
Southern Mississippi +600
Middle Tennessee +2500
Charlotte +2800
Florida International +2800
North Texas +4000
Rice +6600
Old Dominion +10000
UTSA +10000
UTEP +15000

All odds taken on March 27th

The Hilltoppers lost their number one receiver from last season and an all-conference tackle, which doesn’t bode well. They averaged just 25.4 points per game in 2019, and even though their staring QB returns, the offense as a whole isn’t very exciting. They do have a loaded defense and plenty of experience, but the lack of firepower will hold them back.

Following WKU in the Conference Championship odds is defending champ Florida Atlantic. However, with head coach Lane Kiffin moving on to Ole Miss, and many key defensive pieces not returning, they’re a pass as well.

Which leaves us with UAB. The Blazers had the third highest defensive rating of any Group of 5 Team last season, despite introducing eight new starters.

All the key defensive pieces are back for 2020, as is their QB, backfield and senior wide receiver duo. It also doesn’t hurt that eight of their opponents are projected to rank 111th or worse in Bill Connelly’s S&P ratings.

Pick: UAB (+400)

2020 Sun Belt Conference Championship Odds

School Odds
Appalachian State -200
Louisiana Lafayette +225
Arkansas State +1400
Troy +1400
Georgia Southern +1600
Georgia State +2200
Coastal Carolina +2500
UL-Monroe +4000
South Alabama +5000
Texas State +6600

Next up is the Sun Belt, where there isn’t much reason to look past the favorites from Appalachian State. The two-time defending champs went 13-1 last season and have their sights set on even bigger goals in 2020.

They will lose their feature running back Darrynton Evans to the NFL, however the rest of the key offensive pieces from last year’s squad that averaged nearly 40 points per game are back. This program is loaded with experience (25 seniors) and has lost just three games in the past two seasons, and has only suffered 10 defeats since 2015. For context, South Alabama lost 10 games in 2019 alone.

Appalachian State’s biggest competition is Louisiana Lafayette, however the Ragin’ Cajuns have never beaten the Mountaineers and that trend likely won’t change in 2020.

Pick: Appalachian State (-200)

2020 MAC Championship Odds

School Odds
Ohio +325
Buffalo +400
Central Michigan +400
Ball State +600
Miami (OH) +800
Toledo +800
Western Michigan +800
Kent State +1200
Eastern Michigan +1600
Northern Illinois +2000
Akron +10000
Bowling Green +10000

Parity was the name of the game last season in the MAC, as no team finished with more than eight wins. This season Ohio is a slight favorite to win the conference, but their odds would be much shorter if not for a gaping hole at QB. Aside from having to replace their quarterback, the Bobcats are by far the most complete team in the MAC.

They’ll return nearly every skilled position player from an offense that scored 34.3 points in 2019, as well as nearly every defensive starter. If they can get competent QB play, their current price tag will be a steal as they’re projected to be favored in all but one of their 2020 contests.

Buffalo, meanwhile, is a stay away at +400. Their offensive line is expected to take a step back which is worrisome for a team that runs 75% of the time on standard downs. Also of concern is their passing attack. They averaged just 138 yards per game through the air last season, yet didn’t make any significant upgrades to address that weakness.

One long shot program to watch out for is Toledo. The Rockets had the number one recruiting class in the conference in 2020 and made big upgrades to their coaching staff.

They’ll be big favorites in three of their games this season, while eight of their other contests all project to be on score affairs. Toledo can definitely make some noise if a few bounces go their way.

Pick: Ohio (+325), Toledo (+800)

2020 Mountain West Conference Championship Odds

School Odds
Boise State -200
San Diego State +325
Air Force +450
Utah State +1200
Colorado State +1400
Wyoming +2500
Fresno State +2800
Hawaii +2800
Nevada +5000
San Jose State +5000
UNLV +6600
New Mexico +15000

The Mountain West Conference championship discussion starts and ends with Boise State. The Broncos are fresh off their first undefeated conference schedule in program history last season, and have won two of the past three Mountain West titles.

Boise State boasts the conference’s number one recruiting class and has won at least 10 games in five straight seasons. The 2020 squad is expected to draw lots of national attention as all of their key skilled position players are returning and their defense is loaded with experience.

The Broncos’ main competition in the odds market is San Diego State, however a new starting QB, new offensive and defensive co-ordinators, as well as key losses on defense make them a stay away.

Pick: Boise State (-200)

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