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Boise State vs. Georgia Spread Is Betting On The Same Old Bronco Theatrics

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Any ardent defender of "Friday Night Lights" (the television flavor) could rationalize that show's narrative crutch of ending almost every single football game played in quaint Dillon, Texas with some unbelievable, last-second miracle play by simply pointing to Boise State's "big stage" moments of the last half-decade. I suppose the penance for moments like this is always the eventual Hollywood reconstruction.

To sell the drama, the line on next months' Chick-Fil-A Kickoff - inevitably the Broncos' next installment of Michael Bay wide shots, that classic come-from-behind, national underdog characterization and lots of requisite billowing American flags is just a scant three points in favor of BSU.

That's worth noting when you consider almost a year's worth of teeth gnashing across the Georgia fan base and press pool, the disparity between the two teams' initial USA Today Coaches' Poll rankings and Boise's assumed superiority over an opponent from a conference they've never beaten, and who six years ago dismantled themroughly an hour's drive east.

Bookies aren't afraid to make the Broncos a favorite, as Boise's been a comfortable goliath in conference play - only three times in their last three seasons of WAC play were they favored by less than ten (all road games, all made the cover). But in Chris Peterson's little miracles in prime time, you can see Vegas slowly adjusting to the pixie dust. If you take the Broncos' five biggest wins in school history (compiled solely by the metric of national attention), you'll find they're undeniably charmed, but never convincing:

  • 2006 Fiesta Bowl: Boise State (+7) 43, Oklahoma 42
  • 09/20/08: Boise State (+10) 37, Oregon 32
  • 09/03/09: Boise State (-3) 19, Oregon 8
  • 2009 Fiesta Bowl: Boise State (+7) 17, TCU 10
  • 09/06/10: Boise State (-1) 33, Virginia Tech 30

So is a three-point spread Vegas' faith in Georgia, or simply "fool me six or seven times, shame on me" logic towards BSU from odds makers? It seems the gambling lot is promising two certain truths: that the game will be a lot closer than most downtrodden Bulldogs think, but that Boise will win, because Hollywood Boise always seems find the win every episode. 

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.