The BetMGM online sportsbook has hundreds of exciting betting markets during this first weekend of 2024.
It’s an important time in the sports calendar as the NFL prepares for the playoffs and college basketball enters its conference season.
Steelers at Ravens
Saturday, Jan. 6 | 4:30 p.m. ET | ABC/ESPN
Just about every time the Steelers and Ravens meet on the field, there are major implications for the AFC North.
That makes this week’s rivalry game an interesting edition of the infamous rivalry. Baltimore has already wrapped up not only the divisional title but also the No. 1 overall seed in the AFC playoffs.
Since they have nothing to play for, John Harbaugh and the Ravens have wisely decided to sit key starters (including NFL MVP odds favorite Lamar Jackson) to prevent needless injuries.
But Pittsburgh faces a much different situation on Saturday, as the Steelers are fighting for their playoff lives. The Steelers can still make the postseason if they lose to Baltimore, but it will require a series of unlikely outcomes in other games.
The most likely path for Pittsburgh is to beat archrival Baltimore in Week 18, then hope for some help from either Tennessee or Miami.
For now, the Steelers’ starters are 3.5-point favorites against Tyler Huntley and the Ravens’ two-deep.
No. 22 Ole Miss at No. 5 Tennessee
Saturday, Jan. 6 | 6 p.m. ET | ESPN
With the college basketball season now halfway done and conference play beginning, only three undefeated teams remain: Houston, James Madison, and Ole Miss. Understandably, the game-to-game college basketball odds for all three teams have skyrocketed.
The Rebels were the last of the three to crack the AP Top 25, earning their first (and so far only) Quad 1 win at UCF back on Dec. 10. They’re down to +8000 in the college basketball national championship odds market.
That means this weekend’s trip to Knoxville should be – by far – the biggest test of the season for undefeated Ole Miss. It’s also the SEC opener for both teams.
This game will feature some incredible guard play. Senior swingman Allen Flanigan (16.7 ppg, 7.5 rpg) will likely go head-to-head with Vols guard Dalton Knecht (15.6 ppg, 4.2 rpg). The latter checks in at +4000 in BetMGM’s market for the John Wooden Award odds.
Bills at Dolphins
Sunday, Jan. 7 | 8:20 p.m. ET | NBC
The regular-season finale for the 2023 NFL season comes on Sunday night, and NBC has arguably the most intriguing game of the week to send football fans into the playoffs.
Buffalo and Miami will face off in South Beach, and the winner will be crowned champion of the AFC East. That means Buffalo – currently a 3-point favorite to win, per BetMGM’s NFL odds – is alive for a division title in Week 18. (It’s also third in the Super Bowl 58 odds table at +800.)
But in a strange twist of fate, Buffalo could also miss the NFL playoffs entirely. If Miami, Pittsburgh, and Jacksonville all win this weekend, and the Colts-Texans game doesn’t end in a tie, the Bills players will all be sitting at home on their couches next week.
That might sound like a lot, but it’s really not. A three-way moneyline parlay for Miami, Pittsburgh, and Jacksonville to win is currently +412 at BetMGM.
Perhaps anxious Bills fans can find some comfort in the fact that they’re 10-1 against the Dolphins over the last 11 games between the two teams.