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Teddy Covers' Las Vegas Wiseguy Report: NFL teams starting to change their stripes

11.23.2015     11:41 AM     Teddy Covers     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Teddy Covers blog entry.
It’s Week 12 already. Thanksgiving is upon us, with the holiday season right behind it.  All the NFL Bye weeks are in the rear view mirror now, with every team still having exactly six games remaining in the regular season.  We’re seeing numerous ‘morphs’ around the league; teams that have changed their stripes rather dramatically over the course of the last month. 

Some of those morphs are duly noted by the betting markets.  For example, the 3-7 Cowboys with a healthy Tony Romo are favored over the 10-0 Panthers on Thanksgiving Day, with the betting markets reacting to the Cowboys positive showing with Tony Romo back behind center this past Sunday.  The markets certainly aren’t sleeping on Dallas right now!

But what about the Lions, winners of two straight since their woeful 1-7 start?  Or the Falcons, now just 1-4 in their last five games; struggling on both sides of the football?  The Jets aren’t the same team now that they were a month ago, especially if the injuries to shutdown corner Darrelle Revis and Pro Bowl caliber center Nick Mangold don’t heal quickly.  Should we Read more

Tags: NFL Teddy Covers Las Vegas

Teddy Covers' Las Vegas Wiseguy Report: Updating NFL Regular Season O/U Wins

11.16.2015     08:05 AM     Teddy Covers     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Teddy Covers blog entry.
I write a lot about NFL Win Totals and NFL Divisional Odds throughout the summer months; my preferred methodology for discussing the upcoming season.  As we approach Thanksgiving, with Week 10 in the books and the final bye weeks coming up this weekend, it’s a good opportunity to take a look at how those wagers are faring heading into the homestretch of the 2015 campaign.

The very first NFL season win bets cashed this past weekend.  Dallas fell to 2-7, ensuring that the Cowboys cannot go Over their 9.5 game win total.  Carolina improved to 9-0, cashing their Over 8.5 win total from last summer.  Seattle fell to 4-5.  Even if the Seahawks win all of their remaining games, they can do no better than push their 11 game win total. 

It’s a similar story with Baltimore, sitting at 2-7 now, with a win total of 9 from last summer.  A 7-0 Ravens run to end the season would only produce a push for Over bettors. And while I write this column before Monday Night Football kicks off, the Bengals are in prime position to cash their Over 8.5 win total, 8-0 now and sitting as double digit favorites against the Texans.

A Read more

Tags: NFL Teddy Covers

College Football Betting Preview: Oklahoma Sooners at Baylor Bears

11.13.2015     07:24 AM     Teddy Covers     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Teddy Covers blog entry.
Oklahoma at Baylor
Saturday, 5 pm PT - ABC
CRIS Opener:
Baylor -5 O/U 78
CRIS Current: Baylor -2.5 O/U 76
Recommendation: Baylor

Baylor has a clear path to the four team college football playoff this January.  If the Bears can win their last four games, they’re in, plain and simple.  Of course with Oklahoma at home, then road trips to face TCU and Oklahoma State over the next three games, Baylor’s three toughest tests of the season are coming in back-to-back-to-back weeks.

For a good portion of the season, I had Baylor ranked among the top two or three teams in all of college football in my power ratings.  And I’ve got the Bears homefield edge ranked as high as any in the land, as clearly evidenced by their remarkable 19-4 ATS mark in Waco dating back to the start of the 2012 campaign.  It’s surely worth noting that this is the shortest pointspread that Baylor has had at home since 2012 – they haven’t been less than -7 at home against anybody over the last three seasons.

But two things have happened to make me lower my Baylor Read more

Tags: College Football Oklahoma Sooners Baylor Bears Big XII Teddy Covers

College Football Betting Preview: Alabama Crimson Tide at Mississippi State Bulldogs

11.11.2015     08:48 AM     ICC     Printer Friendly
Submitted by ICC blog entry.
Alabama at Mississippi State
Saturday, 12:30 pm PT - CBS
CRIS Opener:
Alabama -7 O/U 49.5
CRIS Current: Alabama -7.5 O/U 50
Recommendation: Alabama

Off last week’s win over LSU, Alabama has positioned itself for a berth in the four-team playoffs. There was nothing fraudulent about the 30-16 victory over the Tigers as the Tide dominated every facet of the game: 434-182 total yard edge and 250-54 rushing yard edge. Now they must turn around with a road trip to Starkville to face a Mississippi State squad that has won four straight and afforded a few days of extra time to prepare having played last Thursday.

For starters, MSU's schedule comes up a little light compared to Alabama's. The Bulldogs drew LSU at home (outgained 5.52-4.73 and trailed 21-6 heading into the fourth quarter) and were statistically even against Auburn and Texas A&M (1-1 SU/ATS). The last four weeks they played three of four games at home, two of which against non-power conference foes, and the other two against SEC bottom feeders Kentucky and Missouri.

And I have concerns about Mississippi State's Read more

Tags: College Football Alabama Crimson Tide Mississippi State Bulldogs SEC Ian Cameron

Teddy Covers' Las Vegas Wiseguy Report: The College Football Playoff circus has begun

11.09.2015     08:08 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
I haven’t had an appropriate opportunity to rant against the most corrupt organization in sports – the NCAA, making billions off the backs of student athletes without a lick of oversight – in quite some time.  But now that we’re in Playoff Committee time here in November, it’s time to call out the NCAA for this ridiculous atrocity, designed to do one thing and one thing only – make the NCAA more money, by driving up the hype factor of the college football playoff.  You know, the playoff that doesn’t begin until January?  You know, the playoff that has a constantly-hyped national TV show every week, designed to get fat checks from corporate sponsors?   Yeah, that college football playoff!

Can you imagine, even for a minute, if the NFL held a mid-season poll so that a group of high profile bureaucrats, administrators and big name celebrities (does Condoleezza Rice really know the in’s and out’s of college football) could vote on who the top teams were?  Of course you can’t imagine such a thing, because it’s a ludicrous concept.  If these polls never existed, there would be Read more

Tags: College Football Teddy Covers

Teddy Covers' Las Vegas Wiseguy Report: Analyzing bye-less College Football teams

11.02.2015     10:16 AM     Teddy Covers     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Teddy Covers blog entry.
Seventeen college football teams enter November without having had a single bye week since the start of the season and without a bye this coming week.  Those teams are Arizona, Ball State, Boston College, Colorado, UConn, Eastern Michigan, Florida International, Hawaii, Louisiana Tech, Miami-Ohio, Ole Miss, Nebraska, Penn State, Texas Tech, Western Kentucky, Wisconsin and Wyoming.  Two more teams, North Texas and UMass, haven’t had byes since Week 1; teams that started their seasons a week late, but haven’t had a break since.  Is there anything unique or different about these non-bye squads?  Read on to find out.

Five of the 17 teams listed above don’t have any bye weeks at all.  Florida International, Miami-Ohio, Hawaii (with their 13 game schedule!), Arizona and Colorado will finish the season without a break.  Note that none of those five are going to play in a conference championship game, and only two (Arizona and FIU) have any realistic shot to make a bowl game.  Bye-less teams don’t tend to be very successful.  Most importantly for our purposes, they also don’t tend to cover many pointspreads Read more

Tags: College Football Teddy Covers Las Vegas

Teddy Covers' Las Vegas Wiseguy Report: Breaking down the NFL's five unbeatens

10.26.2015     07:59 AM     Teddy Covers     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Teddy Covers blog entry.
We’re nearing the halfway point of the NFL season and five teams still remain undefeated; an unusually high number of perfect teams at this stage of the campaign.  There’s not much debate with the betting community about how to rank the five remaining unbeatens.  The New England Patriots are power rated at least a field goal higher than any other team in the league right now.  Behind the Pats come the Green Bay Packers, followed closely by the Cincinnati Bengals.  The Denver Broncos rank #4 on this list; with Peyton Manning’s ongoing struggles carrying more weight than the Broncos elite level defensive stats in the current betting markets.  Last on the list is the Carolina Panthers, still searching for market respect even after their win and cover against the Eagles on Sunday Night Football.

My goal of this week’s Wiseguy Report is to break down these five teams in terms of my probability of them producing a profit over the final ten weeks of the regular season.  Is it possible to make money with ANY of these teams moving forward, or have the betting markets eclipsed any semblance of future value?  Read on to find Read more

Tags: NFL Teddy Covers

Teddy Covers' Las Vegas Wiseguy Report: A look back and NFL Week 6

10.19.2015     08:29 AM     Teddy Covers     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Teddy Covers blog entry.
Week 6 of the NFL is in the rear view mirror as the 2015 regular season approaches the halfway point.  In this week’s Wiseguy Report, I’ll look to answer three questions that stood out to me following Sunday’s action.

How good are the Jets? 
In the midst of a season where there don’t appear to be a whole host of elite Super Bowl contenders, the Jets 4-1 start has bettors and pundits taking notice.  The Patriots, Bengals and Packers are the clear Top 3 teams in any reasonable set of NFL power ratings.  There’s a legitimate argument to be made that the Jets could be #4 on that list, ahead of or equal to other hot start teams like the Cardinals, Falcons or Panthers.

The Jets won only four games last year; their fourth consecutive non-winning season.  With Todd Bowles as the new head coach, New York was lined as a 7.5 win team here in 2015 in the offseason betting markets.  The training camp injury to Geno Smith left Ryan Fitzpatrick as the starting quarterback; a switch that the betting markets didn’t react to very much.  But Fitzpatrick has been a difference maker for New Read more

Tags: NFL New York Jets Miami Dolphins Seattle Seahawks Teddy Covers

College Football Betting Preview: Michigan State Spartans at Michigan Wolverines

10.15.2015     11:29 AM     Teddy Covers     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Teddy Covers blog entry.
Michigan State at Michigan
Saturday, 12:30 pm PT - ESPN
CRIS Opener:
Michigan -6.5 O/U 41
CRIS Current: Michigan -7.5 O/U 42
Recommendation: Michigan State

This is a fascinating game; a contest where the contrasts between Las Vegas and the mainstream college football world are on full display for everyone to see.  The pointspread itself has been a major issue in social media discussion this week, with the Wolverines getting bet up as high as -8.5 before some buyback on the Spartans, driving the line back down to the current -7.5 number as I write this on Thursday morning.  Of course, Michigan State is ranked at #4 in the Coaches Poll, while Michigan is #14, giving ill-informed TV commentators the right to call it an upset if Michigan wins the game – even if the Wolverines don’t cover the spread.

Last week at this time, the lookahead line at the Westgate Superbook here in Vegas for Michigan State – Michigan was sitting at pick ‘em.  Then Michigan did what they’ve been doing all year – blowing out foes in bad spots.  And Michigan State did Read more

Tags: College Football Michigan State Spartans Michigan Wolverines Big Ten Teddy Covers

College Football Betting Preview: USC Trojans at Notre Dame Fighting Irish

10.14.2015     10:44 AM     ICC     Printer Friendly
Submitted by ICC blog entry.
USC at Notre Dame
Saturday, 4:30 pm PT - NBC
CRIS Opener:
Notre Dame -4 O/U 61
CRIS Current: Notre Dame -6.5 O/U 60.5
Recommendation: Over

The USC Trojans will be looking to take the first step in turning the page on the Steve Sarkisian era as they travel to South Bend to face Notre Dame in this annual rivalry battle. USC fired Sarkisian this past week and stepping in for the second time as interim head coach will be Clay Helton who did the same when Ed Orgeron left the team after the 2013 regular season. From multiple accounts, the players have shown positive support for Helton moving forward. Kenny Bigelow: "We have a lot of older guys here now that are able and old enough and mature enough to step up and get everybody rallied behind Coach Helton as we go forward." Connor Spears: "We all kind of know what we have to do, and I think Helton's going to do a tremendous job of keeping us in line and making sure we perform."

USC’s last game was an ugly 17-12 loss to Washington last Thursday night as double-digit favorites. It’s unclear just how Read more

Tags: College Football USC Trojans PAC-12 Notre Dame Fighting Irish Ian Cameron


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