Updated on 09/15/2011 2:41PM

A dog day New Year's Day


LAS VEGAS - Through Friday's Holiday Bowl, bowl game underdogs were 7-2 against the spread, and had won five bowls outright.

I mostly have been betting underdogs so far in bowl games, which explains how the college bankroll started 6-0 before losing with favored Texas on Friday night.

I went with three favorites in Saturday's games (Toledo, Texas Tech, and Kansas St.) but reverted back to dogs on New Year's Eve with three dogs and one favorite. New Year's Day also looks like a good day to take the points.

Arkansas (+13 1/2) vs. Oklahoma

I've avoided Arkansas most of the year after watching its weak performance in beating UNLV 14-10 in the season opener, but the Razorbacks have proven to be a scrappy team. Media reports say they're pumped up to face regional rival Oklahoma. The Sooners, on the other hand, will find it hard to be as motivated after having had a chance at the Rose Bowl slip away. Arkansas might not have the talent to win outright, but only one Arkansas loss has been by more than two touchdowns, a 31-10 defeat to Alabama before Arkansas put it all together.

Play: Arkansas for 11 units.

Virginia Tech (-2) vs. Florida St.

This is the only favorite I'm playing on New Year's Day, but it should be noted that Florida St. opened as a 1 1/2-point favorite before Virginia Tech was bet to favoritism. I think the money is on the right side because the Hokies and their fans are excited to be playing in the Gator Bowl, while Florida St. surely sees this as a step down. Virginia Tech came up a two-point conversion short of taking Miami to OT, and the Hokies should have gained a lot of confidence from that.

Play: Virginia Tech for 11 units.

Michigan (+4) vs. Tennessee

Both teams had higher goals than the Florida Citrus Bowl. Michigan had a BCS berth in its grasp before losing to arch-rival Ohio St. Tennessee appeared to be headed to the Rose Bowl, but lost to LSU in the SEC title game. Michigan has every chance to spring an the upset with a balanced attack, highlighted by the passing combo of QB John Navarre and WR Marquise Walker.

Play: Michigan for 11 units.

Oregon (+2 1/2) vs. Colorado

The winner of the Fiesta Bowl might get a share of the national championship if Nebraska knocks off top-ranked Miami in the Rose Bowl. Colorado finished the season playing as well as anyone, but Oregon simply has a knack of winning close games. Oregon QB Joey Harrington didn't have the stats to get the Heisman, but he is a winner and he has a strong running game to keep the Colorado defense honest.

Play: Oregon for 11 units.

Illinois (+3) vs. LSU

Illinois is a worthy Big 10 champion, but backed into the title when Michigan lost to Ohio St., and was a surprise to get a BCS berth here in the Sugar Bowl.

LSU also is a surprise after beating Tennessee in the SEC title game. LSU is favored only because the game is being played in New Orleans. Illini QB Kurt Kittner is not easily rattled and should pick apart the LSU defense, while the Illinois defense should be up to the challenge of LSU's explosive attack.

Play: Illinois for 11 units.

Starting college bankroll: 1,000 units.

Bankroll through Christmas Day: 1,003 units.

Last Thursday/Friday's results: Won on Georgia Tech and Boston College, lost on Texas. Net profit: 9 units.

Bankroll through Friday: 1,012 units.