Vanderbilt won't just have home field advantage when they open their season on August 29th against Ole Miss. They'll be favored by sportsbooks across the country as well.
The Commodores opened as a 6.5-point favorite for their game with Mississippi when the first odds of the season were released on May 1st. Since then, James Franklin's team has been bet down to a four-point favorite, but the difference still outweighs the typical three-point advantage that bookies assign for home-field advantage.
The news probably won't have much effect on the 'Dores, but it could be a huge motivator for the Rebels. Ole Miss held a big advantage over Vandy in Oxford before unraveling in the second half. If Bo Wallace and company can put together four solid quarters of play, Mississippi will have a very good chance to pull off what Vegas is deeming an upset. Vanderbilt will also have the task of replacing standout offensive players Zac Stacy and Jordan Rodgers for the first time in this matchup.
However, the 'Dores are coming off of a 9-4 season and losing very little talent aside from their Music City Bowl winning tailback and QB. Austyn Carta-Samuels is an experienced passer who can replicate Rodgers's presence, and a dominant defense will return to take a few more shots at the Rebels. Both teams are rising stock in the SEC, and it may turn out that an August showdown ends up being one of the best games in the conference for 2013.
Vanderbilt will kick off the college football season on Thursday, August 29th, at Vanderbilt Stadium at 8:15 PM Central Time.