FIU believers, here's your chance to back up your belief with some bucks. Or, just give you something to talk about if you run into Brent Musberger or Al Michaels at a party.
As often stated here, only serious bettors tend to get down on FIU games, so the linesmakers tend to be pretty facile in their analysis of said contests. So, there's usually value to be had.
The website 5dimes.com, to which I was alerted by 940WINZ sports radio host Andy Slater, has posted the first line I've seen on FIU's season opener Aug. 30 against Bethune-Cookman. The site rates the Wildcats 4.5-point favorites over the Panthers in the Cat Fight at The Cage.
Last year, FIU opened as the favorite, but Bethune went off as the favorite at kickoff and covered in a 34-13 win. The over/under in that game was 47, by the way.
Also on that site are money line odds on the Conference USA title game. Marshall's the favorite at -450, meaning you'd have to bet $450 on Marshall to win $100. FIU's the longest shot with a +15000 money line, meaning if you laid down $100 on the Panthers, you get $15,000 if they win the Conference USA title.
MySportsBook's money line has Marshall at -500 with FIU and UTEP at +11,000. As I said in Monday's column, I don't see FIU as the worst team in the East Division, much less in the entire conference. I don't see them as conference champs, either, but at those numbers, well, you probably wasted money on worse things this week so plunk a few bucks down.
LVH Superbook and Gaming Today also puts Man O' War odds on Marshall, too, 1-6, the biggest favorite among the conferences listed. FIU and UTEP are the longest shots at 100-1. BetUSA.com puts Marshall at 1-5 with FIU and UTEP at 110-1.