A visitor to wiseguys.com relayed this brutal money line loss to me. UCSB scores to go up by two with one second on the clock. Cal Poly heaves an inbound pass to half court. The clock doesn’t start till another half court heave at the basket fails. Whistle, foul with .3 of a second on the homecourt clock. The Cal Poly heaver gets three foul shots and drains all three. Cal Poly wins 80-79. I have no answer how we handicap and overcome bad calls and no calls in baskets and football. That's both pros and colleges. Take a look:
Sorry guys for the password mixup the past few days :(
A friend of mine who still works in the business in LV relayed this conversation to me:
"I was talking to a guy who works at the ....... in Las Vegas, I ask how the day was yesterday and he says about a break even. Now that’s impossible with those results. I said you should have won a ton on the Auburn game as it went from -9 to -12? He said they lost that game, they kept moving following the Island moves, no more bookies in Las Vegas, its all over!!
Once again Kentucky's 'Rent a Team' Wildcats fall to UCLA. Kentucky has one player on their roster from Kentucky and he's seen one minute of action this season. He does bring up the team grade point average though and he looks good in airports.
ARMY NAVY Game
If there’s a single game or sporting event that produces the correct winner it’s the annual Army Navy game. It’s a handicappers delight. These two teams are equal in recruiting policies, player amenities, focus and outlooks.
Every kid every play gives his best with minimal mental mistakes or emotional outbursts. Bad beats and questionable calls that can’t be handicapped into the winner almost never figure in the payoff of this game. If you back the loser here you shouldn’t be left with a bad taste.
The Army Navy game is well worth the wait every year. Un ashamed and proud patriotism everywhere. Hands over hearts for a rousing National Anthem and never a knee to the ground.
We don't have to be agitated by player celebrations or watching delusional coaches with oversized headphones screaming at referees or even their own players. Bonehead penalties are rare and you'll never see an un sportsman like conduct penalty, never. No players in full gear pretending they're fighting. Injuries seem to be minimal, Hint: these kids are in awesome shape and just might be a bit tougher than civilian teams(my terminology). These players are up at 4:30 am daily, both teams. They must pass difficult courses and grades are for real. When the game is over mutual respect for their brothers on the other team takes the place of pumped up egos. In fact in last games interview the first thing out of the winning Army coach was to wish the seriously ill child of a Navy coach his best wishes for his recovery.
This game actually means something to a lot of us. Let's hope kids all over this great country of ours imitate these players instead of what they're fed on TV. Maybe they could even look forward to and work to play in it someday.
I’ll leave it with the image of the crowd, the fans. No “adults” painted up and dressed in costumes making fools of themselves. Both teams and their followers pay respect to each other and mean it.
I wish neither had to lose.
Monday, December 4th, the Supreme Court will hear arguments for and against repealing the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). They could clear the way for single game sports wagering Country wide. If the PASPA Act goes down then it must be decided if it’s controlled State by State or on a Federal level. Their decision is expected to be announced in June.
Sports bettors nation wide are rooting for a repeal. If they get a PASPA repeal don’t expect a seamless Las Vegas betting style transition overnight. So, so many issues must be thought out before the first wager is taken.
The logical approach would be to welcome Las Vegas Corporations that are established in booking sports then stay out of business decisions, sit back and tax it. That makes too much sense. Fighting sentiment with logic is almost impossible. First consider that Las Vegas geography is a big reason for the happy medium between Nevada Regulators and privately owned Nevada based casinos. Don’t laugh, think about it. We’re an island contained by a desert. The Nevada Gaming Commission and Gaming Control Board can police, monitor and tax the business in an effective secure way because we’re contained in a small area that’s conducive to oversight. Put multiple sports betting operations in NYC and try to monitor them. What could possibly go wrong?
Say a State Government partners with a Las Vegas sports betting entity. Will the new sportsbooks simply keep out of the way or knowing politicians will they want their hands on the switch. Las Vegas casinos are obsessed with pleasing the Feds so they will leave us alone. So far it’s worked. That won’t be the case in the new rookie operations around the Country. Will the out of state sportsbooks be diligent in monitoring the action and bettors and filing the mountains of Suspicious Activity Reports and Casino Transaction Reports required by the Feds? Will Las Vegas casinos turn over partial control to another entity and risk losing their licence when and if something goes wrong and it will. Goes Wrong is the favorite.
Begin with politicians in control of Government, State or Federal, who consider themselves sports betting and handicapping geniuses or have “others” touting them. The second guessing begins with the first losing month. We’re not dealing with slots here, booking sports is a gamble i.e. you can lose. Now we have friction between LV sportsbooks and their out of state clients. A good month dealing sports will show around a 5% profit. Will the new States cut the pot right out of business? A 5% win is a very good month but booking sports is gambling not slots. It’ll be tempting for rookie politicians to misread the nature of the business, the profit margin is small and fragile. It can be taxed right out of business. We haven’t dealt with the professional players and the players union yet or the owners? And now the elephant in the room being college players wanting in on it AND believe me that’s going to happen.
Let’s end with this cheery thought: What a spot for sophisticated hackers and scammers both inside and out. They WILL find the weak spots.
Never A Bad Beat
There’s a sport that leaves nothing to blame on bad beats, bad calls/no calls, turnovers, bizarre play calling etc. There's a sport that produces
true and correct winners almost every time and that sport is high school and college wrestling.
No expanding and contracting strike zones, no safe judgment calls. No crazy bounces from an oblong football, no missed interference calls. No flags on phantom holding and interference calls to kill a drive. No goofy plays or decisions from coaches. No mistaking a charge from a block. No going to the foul line 30 times while their visiting opponent has three trips to the line. No players playing at half speed because of “foul trouble.”
No having to watch some NFL seven watt bulb do a dance after making a “play” they’re supposed to make. Or an aircraft carrier sized basketball player scream at the rafters while grabbing his jersey number because he made a basket.
There's zero time for grandstanding during a wrestling match. No timeouts to get oxygen like in the NFL or ask to be taken out after a 25 yard run. It’s just you and an equally determined opponent on the mat. Rarely, if ever, is the wrong wrestler’s hand held up in victory. Rarely does a ref make a bad call. The winner is the winner without the bad beats to overcome. You can recognize a dedicated, hard working wrestler. He’s the kid with the cauliflower ears and eyebrows and maybe a crooked nose. He’s also refreshingly polite and humble. Wrestlers willingly endure the hardest workout regimens and sacrifice the most to stay in incredible shape.
Wrestling is the perfect sport to handicap and book. The stats and records reflect actual strengths and capabilities of the opponents, be it an individual match or a team result. There’s an array of propositions that are true to the sport without the silliness of Super Bowl props. Wrestling is perfect for money lines, rounds, full outcomes, over and unders, etc. In-progress betting would be hard to accommodate because the action is so fast. There’s a minute at most between the three rounds (3,2,2 minutes) and maybe a minute between matches. If all 10 weight classes go the distance that’s 70 minutes of nonstop action. The whole event is over in 85-90 minutes, including a brief half time. You can count on the correct decisions be it individual or team outcomes and avoid the stench of a bad beat. Wrestling is the purest Western sport.
Standing with arms linked is not standing with your hand over your heart. It's still meant to show disrespect but in a cowardly way. The United States does NOT tip our flag to any other nation or cause. The NFL and the networks have chosen to tip our flag to the protesting players by hiding our National Anthem from view and earshot before games. Kneeling for our National Anthem on foreign soil (London) while standing for God Save The Queen makes the NFL an enemy of the United States. Now the 15 watt bulbs hope we're stupid enough to fall for their feel good nonsense before games instead of our National Anthem.
Let’s put the NFL protesters aside for a moment and take a look at other reasons the professional game is tanking in a self inflicted spiral to the back of the pack.
Time was when a game was scheduled for say 1:00 o’clock you tune in at 1:00 and their it was. No pre game show biz panel of has been players and coaches shouting and giggling. No pre game country western/rock music spectacular needed to attract you, after all you were already tuned in. No non ending looks of vicious hits and spectacular catches were needed. The only draw was an impending football game featuring the best players on the planet.
It’s possible of course to tune out the Hollywood show biz leadup to today’s games but we can’t escape the theatrics that blend in and continue with the antics of today’s players. After almost every play we’re treated to a showboating, self absorbed player doing a dance or a shuffle because he made a play that he’s getting paid to make and is supposed to make. What a treat to see a player losing by 30 points finally sack a QB then do a dance. We saw you buddy and we also saw that same QB make you look inept for most of the game.
Penalty flag after flag is now part of the show but not on most pass plays where interference could be called on a majority of passes.
Those players on the other team who know how to find the end zone aren’t to be out showbizzed either. The 15 watt bulbs in the league boardrooms have encouraged end zone “celebrations” this season. Just what we need when we have no shot at covering. Now between the beer, truck and erectile disfunction commercials come the nail biting halts to the flow of the game while someone in a far, far away place reviews the play to see if he actually did fumble or if his big was toe in or out. A referee stands and stares into a hand held monitor but he has nothing to say about the decision for which we see from every angle possible.
There’s approximately 13 minutes of actual action in a game. The line between those 13 minutes and the unnecessary added nonsense are blurred by the geniuses who have inherited the once proud NFL brand. They were handed the keys to a Rolls Royce and all they had to do was drive it without wrecking it.
Reap What You Sow
The NFL finds itself in a no win situation of their own making and a sizeable portion of the Country is rooting against them. Another portion is now emboldened by recent media exposer. In the simplest of terms we have NFL players who sit or kneel during our National Anthem vs those who oppose them and their actions.
Up until now the League and team owners could largely ignore the situation hoping it goes away. No more. The NFL is now an ideological battleground. They’ve drawn that famous line in the sand provoked by President Trump.
Like him or not President Trump has forced them into a struggle with passionate Americans who will defend their beliefs just like the protesting players are defending theirs. Other players are now given cover to jump in riding the fashionable wave of those who dislike the President.
The League is misreading their once high status. Look no further than NFL Commissioner Goodells response to President Trump’s call for owners to fire players who kneel during the national anthem and also encouraging fans to walk out in protest or just stay away from the games altogether. Goodells response to President Trump in part: “ Divisive comments like these demonstrate an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL, our great game and all of our players, and a failure to understand the overwhelming force for good our clubs and players represent in our communities.” HUH?
NBA deep thinkers like Lebron James and Stephen Curry jumped in with name calling and even an MLB player sheepishly took a knee while another brave soul put his hand on his shoulder.
Who’s going to blink first. It won’t be the fans who will learn first hand they can do very well without this mess and those who caused it.
Dear NCAA, Forgedabowdit
How can it get any goofier? Now the 15watt bulbs in the NCAA front office are proposing a suicide pill to stave off an inevitable uprising. College athletes are heading for unionization or some form of collective protection. They want their piece of the money pie they provide with what they perceive as not enough compensation. They do get an education if they take advantage. The NCAA rules are being loosened up but maybe a bit too late to stave off the inevitable
With a food stipend they no longer have to eat hamburger while the coaching the staff eats steak and lobster. They can fly home on the colleges dime now and “enjoy” other loosening of archaic rules. The NCAA is the first to blink. They are going all out to create the ultimate stopgap rule to delay the inevitable which is a team saying we’re not going to play in the Rose Bowl Game or the Cotton Bowl Game unless we’re cut in on the gravy.
What’s this brainstorm the NCAA is contemplating? In broad terms any kid can transfer anywhere they want, if they are welcome of course, and play immediately with no need to sit out a year.
All that’s required is the school they’re transferring into has the same or equal course they are leaving. An athlete taking basket weaving at Potluck U, after an exceptional season, can transfer to Mortons Steak House and play immediately. Some schools will remain academically honest of course but the bandit schools will take advantage and bring down others with them so they can remain competitive.
Basketball with 13 man rosters will be especially vulnerable. A kid transfers out to start immediately at a school who will then cut a kid to make room. That kid will now transfer to another school who will have to make room and on and on. What about a successful team that now has three kids looking to take advantage of their good season and transfer individually or together. Together is not out of the question. See where this is going if the NCAA goes through with this or some form of it.