College Basketball Betting Free Play: Dartmouth Big Green at Fort Wayne Mastodons
|Submitted by Andrew Lange|Tags: College Basketball Dartmouth Big Green Fort Wayne Mastodons Andrew Lange
Dartmouth at Fort Wayne -6.5
Recommendation: Fort Wayne
Following Illinois' 57-55 win over Fort Wayne, head coach John Groce had nothing but praise for the Mastodons.
“I saw that over the past two days (of watching film),” Groce explained. “I thought ‘Oh boy, these guys are a team.’ They really gel well together at both ends of the floor.”
“They were really physical,” Groce said. “They beat us to loose balls. They played really, really well.”
IPFW should have won the game had it not been for a 2-of-13 effort from the free throw line.
This showing however wasn't an isolated incident as IPFW lost on a buzzer-beater three at Dayton to start the year – and we know the Flyers are a quality basketball team.
But as with a lot of mid-major teams, getting up for the big boys isn't hard, it's staying focused against comparable competition – hence why IPFW has losses at Texas A&M Corpus Christi and Miami-Ohio. The loss to Miami last time out was a home run spot for the RedHawks though IPFW had a 16 point second half lead but faltered late. Now off back-to-back losses and at home, I think we'll get the "good" Mastodons this evening as Dartmouth comes rolling into town.
The Big Green will play its second game in three days after losing at Northern Illinois 64-57. This is really only the second quality opponent Dartmouth has faced after losing to Bryant at home by 10. The Big Green were extremely young last season and appear poised to be more competitive in the Ivy League but I'm concerned about their level of talent and athleticism on the road against a quality foe. And despite playing only four games, it is alarming to see how little Dartmouth goes to the line (14.4% of their points) and how unsuccessful they are once they get there (60% as a team). We'll lay the moderate price here with the home squad.
College Football Championship First and Second Half Betting Numbers
|Submitted by Rob Veno|Tags: College Football Rob Veno
In last night’s Mid-American Championship Game, Bowling Green continued its torrid 2013 run cashing as a second half “under” play for the 11th time in 13 games. Always looking for hidden gems, here’s a look at the season’s results for each team involved in Saturday’s Conference Championship Games.
Conference USA - Marshall at Rice
1st Half ATS – Marshall 8-4-0 / Rice 9-3-0
1st Half Total – Marshall 5-6-0 / Rice 4-6-2 (Note: The Marshall-Gardner Webb game did not have a 1H total but had a 2H)
Notes: Marshall is currently on a 5-0 1H ats streak defeating opponents by 14 or more in all five games. Rice is also a red-hot 1H play going 7-1 ats in their last eight games winning all seven of those contests by double digits.
2nd Half ATS – Marshall 6-6-0 / Rice 5-7-0
2nd Half Total – Marshall 7-5-0 / Rice 2-10-0
Notes: Of Marshall’s six road games this season, five of them resulted in 34 or more 2H points and a 5-1 “over” mark. Rice started the season playing nine consecutive 2H “unders” before going “over” twice and then ending the season with an “under”. Only Texas A&M and UAB scored more than 14 points in the second half against the Owls.
SEC – Missouri vs. Auburn (Georgia Dome-Atlanta, GA)
1st Half ATS – Missouri 8-4-0 / Auburn 7-4-1
1st Half Total – Missouri 4-7-0 / Auburn 8-4-0 (Note: The Missouri-Murray St. game did not have a 1H total but had a 2H)
Notes: Missouri had a 7-0 1H ats streak broken by Texas A&M last week but the 7-1 mark overall mark has been dominant with the seven wins all in the range of 10-25 points. Auburn has been on a 1H side and total tear the past eight games going 6-1-1 ats and 6-2 “over” with all six “overs” posting 35+ points.
2nd Half ATS – Missouri 9-1-2 / Auburn 7-4-1
2nd Half Total – Missouri 6-6-0 / Auburn 4-7-1
Notes: Missouri has been one of the nation’s most profitable second half plays going 9-1-2 ats. Meanwhile, Auburn was only away from home four times this season but they went 4-0 ats in those games. All four contests were against SEC opponents and all four saw Auburn score at least 21 points and win by at least seven.
ACC – Duke vs. Florida State (Bank of America Field-Charlotte, NC)
1st Half ATS – Duke 6-5-1 / Florida State 8-4-0
1st Half Total – Duke 7-4-0 / Florida State 9-2-0 (Note: The Duke-NC Central / Florida St.-Bethune-Cookman games did not have 1H totals but had 2H)
Notes: The Blue Devils came on at the end of the season going 4-1 ats in 1H action (3-0 as an underdog) and winning versus what were arguably their three toughest opponents this season. Florida State has been an “over” juggernaut in the 1H this season. They’re on a current 8-1 1H “over” run which has seen their offense score an AMAZING 85.9% of the points produced (outscored foes 274-45)
2nd Half ATS – Duke 10-2-0 / Florida State 9-3-0
2nd Half Total – Duke 5-7-0 / Florida State 9-3-0
Notes: Each of these teams have been remarkable 2H ats money makers this year. Duke has not lost a 2H bet since September 28 against Troy as they swept October & November going 7-0 allowing just one team to score over 10 points (North Carolina State). FSU has also shredded 2H opponents covering the number by more than a field in eight of their nine wins. Their offense continued to send 2H totals “over” by scoring 292 points which is 18 more than they scored in 1H play.
PAC–12 – Stanford at Arizona State
1st Half ATS – Stanford 6-4-2 / Arizona State 8-4-0
1st Half Total – Stanford 5-7-0 / Arizona State 8-4-0
Notes: While Stanford’s first half results haven’t proven to be solid plays either against the spread or totals, ASU recorded a 67% winning rate ats and “over”. The Sun Devils have been especially strong the last seven games going 6-1 ats covering the spread in those six wins by an average of 19.8 ppg. At home this season, they are 6-1 ats in the 1H and 5-2 “over” the total.
2nd Half ATS – Stanford 5-7-0 / Arizona State 4-8-0
2nd Half Total – Stanford 6-5-1 / Arizona State 6-6-0
Notes: Neither of these teams posted anything in the way of steady results if you backed them in second halves this season. ASU has however been a good “go against” in 2H action failing to cover 8 of their 12 games and not even their strong home field advantage could save them as they went 3-4 ats in Tempe. Stanford was a solid situational road “under” play in the 2H going 4-1 in those spots.
Big Ten – Ohio State vs. Michigan State (Lucas Oil Stadium-Indianapolis, IN)
1st Half ATS – Ohio State 7-5-0 / Michigan State 6-6-0
1st Half Total – Ohio State 9-2-0 / Michigan State 3-8-0 (Note: The Ohio St.-Florida A&M / Michigan St.-Youngstown St. games did not have a 1H total but had a 2H)
Notes: As you would expect, each of these teams were strong ticket cashers in the totals department but for opposite reasons. OSU was a tremendous 1H “over” play covering 9 of 11 with their boarded 11 games averaging 39.7 points. The Spartans were a 72.7% “under” 1H team this season and only three of their 11 opponents reached 10 points.
2nd Half ATS – Ohio State 6-6-0 / Michigan State 7-5-0
2nd Half Total – Ohio State 6-6-0 / Michigan State 4-8-0
Notes: Ohio State closed the season on an 0-3 ats string due to their porous defense which allowed 21, 14 & 20 points after allowing 14 2H points just once in their first nine games. They enter this game 5-2 “over” in the 2H of their last seven games. Six of those seven totaled 28 points or more. Michigan State has shut out six of their last eight opponents in the 2H but only went 5-3 ats in those games. The strong offenses of Indiana and Nebraska were the only ones who got the Spartans defense for 7+ 2H points this season (they scored 14 and 21 points respectively).
Mountain West – Utah State at Fresno State
1st Half ATS – Utah State 7-5-0 / Fresno State 7-4-0 (Note that Fresno State’s game at Colorado on Sept 14 was cancelled)
1st Half Total – Utah State 5-6-0 / Fresno State 5-5-0 (Note: The Utah St.-Weber St. / Fresno St.Cal Poly
SLO games did not have a 1H total but had a 2H)
Notes: It’s worth noting that Utah State was 4-1 “over” the 1H total on the conference road this season and the one “under” saw 29 points scored against San Jose State. Fresno was on an unlikely 4-0 “under” streak before their 42-41 1H half against San Jose State last week. Surprisingly, the Bulldogs defense has allowed 14 1H points or less in eight of their 11 games.
2nd Half ATS – Utah State 7-4-1 / Fresno State 2-9-0
2nd Half Total – Utah State 2-10-0 / Fresno State 7-4-0
Notes: Some extremely strong numbers are found in the second halves of these teams as Utah State has been an “under” gold mine while Fresno State has been a mechanical pointspread “fade”. USU’s 2-10 “under” record is attributed to their defense which has given up seven 2H points or less in nine of their last 11 games. Fresno’s defense is the main reason for their 2H pointspread woes as they’ve given up 20+ points in nine of 11 games. Combined with their high octane offense, FSU second halves have averaged 40.7 ppg.
College Football Handicapping: Week 15 Injury Report
|Submitted by Brian Edwards|Tags: College Football Brian Edwards
Missouri starting strong safety Duron Singleton is ‘questionable’ for Saturday’s SEC Championship Game against Auburn. Singleton missed last Saturday’s win over Texas A&M with a hip injury.
UL-Lafayette will most likely be without its outstanding quarterback Saturday at South Alabama. Junior Terrance Broadway is ‘doubtful’ against the Jaguars due to a wrist injury. Broadway has a 19-10 touchdown-to-interception ratio, in addition to eight rushing TDs. Redshirt freshman Brooks Haack will most likely get his first career start under center for the Ragin’ Cajuns. He had only appeared at garbage time until playing in the second half of last week’s 31-28 home loss to ULM. Haack has completed 16-of-21 throws for 175 yards and one TD without an interception. Also, UL-Lafayette starting safety Darius Barksdale is ‘questionable’ with a hand injury.
SMU quarterback Garrett Gilbert (21-7 TD-INT) has been downgraded to ‘doubtful’ for Saturday’s game vs. UCF due to a sore knee. Without Gilbert last week, the Mustangs lost 34-0 at Houston. It was the first time a team coached by June Jones had EVER taken a bagel. On Wednesday, Gilbert told the Dallas Morning News, “I’m doing everything I can to play Saturday.” By Friday, however, Gilbert’s condition was downgraded. SMU owns a 9-4 spread record in 13 games as a home underdog during Jones’s tenure. UFC is favored by 11.5 at most books.
Arizona State RB Marion Grice is ‘out’ vs. Stanford in Saturday’s PAC-12 title game in Tempe. Grice has rushed for 996 yards and scored 20 TDs (14 rushing, six receiving) this year, but the offense was fine without him in last week’s 58-21 clubbing of Arizona. Back-up RB D.J. Foster produced 124 rushing yards and two TDs on 23 carries.
Texas starting MLB Steve Edmond is ‘out’ for the rest of the season, including the bowl game, with a lacerated liver. Edmond leads the Longhorns in tackles with 73 and he also has a pair of interceptions, including the game-sealer in overtime at West Virginia. Another starting LB Kendall Thompson is ‘questionable.’ On the bright side for Texas, which is 6-2 ATS as a road underdog since 2004, RB Daje Johnson is back from a suspension.
Fresno State WR Josh Harper has only practiced on a limited basis this week, according to the Fresno Bee. He remains a question mark and will likely be a game-time decision after leaving last week’s loss at San Jose St. with a strained groin. Harper has 79 receptions for 1,011 yards and 13 TDs this year.
Oklahoma QB Blake Bell won’t start at Oklahoma State, but he has been cleared and will be available for the Sooners.
Rice will be missing some depth in the backfield for the C-USA Championship Game and its bowl appearance. Turner Petersen is out for the rest of the season. Petersen had rushed for 262 yards and also had 26 catches for 348 yards and four TDs.
Marshall RB Kevin Grooms has been suspended and won’t play at Rice. Grooms is the Thundering Herd’s third-leading rusher with 503 yards and six TDs.
LSU senior QB Zach Mettenberger has taken his last collegiate snap. Mettenberger was injured in the fourth quarter of a win over Arkansas in the regular-season finale. The knee injury – believed to be a torn ACL – will keep him out of the bowl game, so Les Miles will turn to true freshman Anthony Jennings, who had a 49-yard TD pass with 1:15 remaining to lift his team to a 31-27 win over the Razorbacks.
San Jose State star WR Noel Grigsby might be able to play in the Spartans’ bowl game. Grigsby tore his meniscus way back in Week 2. In 2012, Grigsby had 82 catches for 1,307 yards and nine TDs.
NFL Betting Podcast 12-6-2013 with Handicapper Erin Rynning
Tags: NFL Erin Rynning
Friday's Sportsmemo Podcast featured NFL Week 14 Every Game on the Board discussion with handicapper Erin Rynning. ER broke down the entire slate of games from a betting perspective.
Erin Rynning - NFL Every Game on the Board
To listen to past shows, be sure to visit our Sportsmemo Podcast Homepage.
ITunes users can subscribe to the show by searching "Sportsmemo" in the podcast directory.
College Basketball Gambling: Arizona State's Carson probable but far from healthy
Tags: College Basketball Arizona State Sun Devils DePaul Blue Demons Arizona State -3.5 at DePaul
According to Sports Options, Arizona State's Jahii Carson (ankle) is probable for tonight's game at DePaul. However, it doesn't sound as if he'll be even close to 100 percent
. Carson was hobbled (8 points, 2-of-14 FGs) in ASU's 60-57 loss to Miami last Sunday and has been severely limited in practice. After DePaul, the Sun Devils don't play again until next Saturday – a situation that leaves the door open for Carson potentially sitting out this evening.
“I definitely live off my speed and my explosiveness,” Carson said. “I’m a two-foot jumper, so not having the explosion off both feet definitely limited me offensively and defensively. Shots that I’d normally make I couldn’t quite hit, plays defensively on the ball that I’d normally make I couldn’t quite get.”
College Football Gambling: Teams on the rise according to Sagarin Ratings
Tags: College Football USA Today
talks about college football teams that have made the biggest improvements this season based on Jeff Sagarin's power ratings. A handful of those "gainers" are in play this weekend: Auburn, Missouri, South Alabama, Bowling Green, Baylor, and Florida State.
College Football Betting Preview: Oklahoma Sooners at Oklahoma State Cowboys
|Submitted by Rob Veno|Tags: College Football Oklahoma Sooners Oklahoma State Cowboys Big XII Rob Veno Oklahoma at Oklahoma State
Saturday, 9 am PT - ABC
Oklahoma State -10.5 O/U 58
Oklahoma State -10 O/U 56.5
Rob Veno's Power Rating:
Oklahoma State -8.5
Rob Veno's Recommendation:
Weather will likely play a role here as frigid conditions are expected (15 degrees at kickoff) for this 11 am local start on Saturday morning. Oklahoma State has plenty of incentive here as the Big XII title along with the affiliated BCS berth into the Fiesta Bowl are theirs if they win. Oklahoma meanwhile cannot win the Big XII and they appear virtually locked into the December 30th Alamo Bowl. With no opportunity to upgrade their status, the Sooners will be playing strictly for pride in this edition of “Bedlam” and their intensity level has already shown to be extremely high this week. Senior center Gabe Ikard refused to recognize his team as playing the spoiler role in Saturday’s rivalry game and said that OU does not see itself as the underdog.
Since the Texas loss, Oklahoma has become an even heavier run oriented team and it’s led to 4-1 marks straight up, against the spread, and “over” the total. In their first six games, the Sooners play calling percentages were 59.5% run and 40.5% pass. Their last five games however have seen those numbers pushed to 63.9% run, 36.1% pass and the results suggest OU is a better team playing this style. Their 5.8 yards per carry average during the current ticket cashing streak is up from 5.2 and their 261 rushing yards per game are nearly 35 better than the 226.7 average they had through the first six contests. With Trevor Knight back at quarterback the past two games, OU has kicked their offense into an even higher gear averaging 7.1 yards per play and 497.5 total yards. While the recent offensive and season long defensive numbers each look very strong, it must be noted that Oklahoma has struggled with all of its Big XII bowl bound opponents. The Sooners best league win was the 41-31 road victory as +4 point underdogs at Kansas State two weeks ago. Whether OU is a better team right now or the same one that got smashed by Texas and Baylor is a legitimate question. It’s hard to believe they’re just going to line up and run consistently successful against the stacked fronts OSU’s defense is going to use. The Cowboys have allowed just 3.4 yards per rush in league play this season but Oklahoma did gouge the stingy run defenses of Notre Dame and TCU for over five yards per carry and over 200 rushing yards in each of those games.
Oklahoma State has the same offensive dilemma as their preferred mode of moving the football is through the air but the Sooners boast the league’s second best pass defense allowing just 214.8 yards per game. Led by future NFL cornerback Aaron Colvin who’s expected to return for this game, Oklahoma has the tools to make things tough on the Cowboys passing attack. The 17 sacks recorded by Oklahoma in their last five games indicate their ability to apply pressure could help the pass defense as well. Even though Oklahoma State likes to throw, they’re extremely well balanced and will force OU to respect everything and play them honest. The multi-pronged rushing attack averages 167.0 yards per game and has come up huge at times this season.
Taking the double digit price with Oklahoma seems like the obvious thing to do in a rivalry of this magnitude with opponents that aren’t that far separated. There is a pair of keys to this game and the first is in the trenches where each of these teams is stout on both sides of the ball. The other is the takeaway category where Oklahoma State thrives. OSU is #8 in the nation with 29 takeaways for the season and they’re #2 in turnover margin at +16.
Oklahoma has been terrific at protecting the football committing just nine turnovers in their last nine games. All considered, this shapes up as a very competitive game where home field and added incentives seem like enough to get Oklahoma State the win, but not by the necessary amount. Knight and his solid receiving corps figure to provide a couple of significant plays that keep them within the ten points.
College Basketball Handicapping: Kentucky prepping for Baylor's zone defense
Tags: College Basketball Kentucky Wildcats Baylor Bears Kentucky -4 vs. Baylor
Kentucky's John Calipari is expecting Baylor to play plenty of zone
during tonight's game in Arlington, Texas. Calipari claims his team is more fluid against a zone rather than man-to-man. For opposing teams, forcing UK to slow down and shoot from outside (31.8% 3-pt.) isn't a bad philosophy but it also exposes them on the glass. The Cats are tops in the country in offensive rebounding percentage at 48.0.
"Against man (to-man defense), we don't seem as cohesive as we do against a zone," Calipari said. "You can't just come down and make a play. You have to pass-pass, drive.
"I really don't care if people play zone. It makes us come together. ... We're playing off one another way better."
"My feeling is they'll play 95 percent zone," Calipari said of the Bears. "They're like us. They're so long, you're not getting the looks you think you'll get in that thing."
NBA Handicapping: Boston assistant has team playing solid defense
Tags: NBA Boston Celtics
Offensively, it isn't always pretty for the Boston Celtics, but they've managed to stick around in games (11-9 ATS) thanks to an under-the-radar defense
. The Celtics are 7th in the NBA in points allowed (96.8) and 8th in defensive efficiency (100.5). The players credit assistant Ron Adams who held the same post under Chicago Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau.
"From where we started from and where we're at now, is a big difference," Sullinger said. "Especially after the first couple games, I just thought it was going to go down hill from there. Guys really locked in. As a team we came together and understood that we have to play as a team to win basketball games. Defensively, we're making the right rotations defensively for us to put ourselves in a position to win."
"The little things, have a hand up, make the pass harder, help-side, close out on shooters ... the extra effort parts that make the defense better."
College Football Betting: Oklahoma State, Baylor, and Texas still live for Big XII crown
Tags: College Football Oklahoma State Cowboys Baylor Bears Texas Longhorns Big XII
With no conference title game, the Big XII Championship
and a berth in the BCS will come down to this weekend's two season finales between Texas-Baylor and Oklahoma-Oklahoma State. Three of those four teams still have a shot. If Oklahoma State beats Oklahoma, the Cowboys are in. If OSU loses, then the winner of Texas-Baylor is in. Note that the OSU-OU game starts at 9 am PT while UT-BU goes off at 12:30 pm PT.
NBA Handicapping: Take a look at the Leastern Conference
Tags: NBA Stat Intelligence Submitted by Stat Intelligence
I’ve heard a lot this year about how bad the Eastern Conference is in the NBA, once you get past league powers Miami and Indiana. What I haven’t heard much about is how to differentiate all the teams below the Heat and Pacers.
Thought it might be fun to kind of invert our occasional “SuperLeague” strategies and see what’s happened this year when “the bottom 13” in the East have played each other. The raw standings overall might not be a fair assessment because not everybody has played the same number of games against the West. And, some teams have had only one game against the Eastern powers while Charlotte, Toronto, and Orlando have already played Miami and Indiana three times.
What you see below are won-lost records for everyone in the East but Miami and Indiana counting only the games played within that subset.
NBA Leastern Conference (the bottom 13 vs. each other)
New York 4-5
Charlotte’s 8-4 jumps out. And, Boston’s over .500 even though they were supposed to be terrible. New York’s slightly less of a disaster after crushing Brooklyn Thursday night. Brooklyn’s still a disaster, but must be playing a tough schedule overall to have only seven games in the Leastern Conference. Milwaukee’s played a whopping 13 games in this easy subset and has the second worst record.
NFL Gambling Preview: Miami Dolphins at Pittsburgh Steelers
|Submitted by Teddy Covers|Tags: NFL Miami Dolphins Pittsburgh Steelers Teddy Covers Miami at Pittsburgh
Sunday, 10 am PT - CBS
Pittsburgh -3.45 O/U 41.5
Pittsburgh -3 O/U 40.5
Rob Veno's Power Rating:
Teddy Covers' Recommendation:
Both the Steelers and the Dolphins are fundamentally flawed football teams, yet both remain very ‘live’ in the AFC Playoff picture. The 6-6 Dolphins are currently tied with Baltimore for the #6 seed in the AFC, while the Steelers rank just one game behind with four left to play. That being said, neither team can like their chances if they lose this week. We should expect a maximum intensity playoff-level showdown as a result.
The Steelers chances took a real blow last week with their loss at Baltimore, unable to convert the game tying two point try at the end of regulation. But that defeat didn’t end their season, not by any stretch of the imagination. QB Ben Roethlisberger following the loss: “I don't expect any quit. We haven't quit to this point… I'm going to fight my butt off all the way to the end.”
Both teams have serious and significant offensive line issues. Miami is the only team in the NFL to have scored 27 or less in every game this season. Ryan Tannehill has taken more sacks than any QB in the NFL this year. The Dolphins offensive line, already without Jonathan Martin and Richie Incognito, is likely to be without starting guard John Jerry this week. Leading rushers Lamar Miller and Daniel Thomas average less than four yards per carry and barely 75 yards per game between them.
The Steelers offensive line has been a disaster for extended stretches this year, and their cluster injury problems are getting worse, not better. Pittsburgh will be down to their third string center this week after Fernando Velasco just went on IR. Guard David DeCastro and tackle Kelvin Beachum are both banged up as well, neither a sure thing to suit up on Sunday. Top back Le’Veon Bell isn’t healthy either, bad news for a team that has averaged a paltry 3.3 yards per carry this year – only Baltimore and Jacksonville are worse.
While both offenses continue to struggle to put touchdowns on the board, both defenses are in excellent current form. Miami has given up only five touchdowns in their last four games, a stop unit that has consistently stepped up in the red zone. And it’s surely worth noting that the Dolphins QB rating allowed of 72.7 ranks among the top three pass defenses in the NFL this year. The Steelers offense ranks #27 in the NFL in red zone touchdown percentage, consistently settling for field goals.
Meanwhile, the Steelers stop unit is well above the league average at forcing red zone field goal attempts, including last week’s shutdown effort against the Ravens. For a Dolphins offense that has been mediocre at best this season, playing in the cold on the lousy Heinz Field surface, it’s easy to picture another sluggish offensive showing here.
20* CFB MWC Championship [46-30 61% +22.7 CFB YTD] $39
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NFL Gambling Preview: Detroit Lions at Philadelphia Eagles
|Submitted by Brian Edwards|Tags: NFL Detroit Lions Philadelphia Eagles Brian Edwards Detroit at Philadelphia
Sunday, 10 am PT - FOX
Philadelphia -2.5 O/U 53
Philadelphia -2.5 O/U 54
Rob Veno's Power Rating:
Brian Edwards' Recommendation:
With four games left in the playoff chase, every game is crucial. Two NFC contenders will square off Sunday afternoon when the Eagles and Lions collide in the City of Brotherly Love.
As of Thursday afternoon, most books had Philadelphia (7-5 straight up, 6-6 against the spread) favored by -2.5 (offshore) or -3 (Las Vegas). The shops at 2.5 are attaching a -120 price, while those at three have the Eagles at -105 or even money. The total is 54, while the Lions are +125 on the money line (risk $100 to win $125).
Chip Kelly’s team is in a first-place tie with Dallas in the NFC East. Philadelphia has won four consecutive games and six of its last eight. The Eagles are coming off a 24-21 win over Arizona as 3.5-point home favorites. They disappointed their backers by going into the victory formation and kneeling on the ball at the Arizona two-yard line with 1:12 remaining.
Nick Foles threw for 237 yards and three touchdowns without an interception against the Cardinals. The University of Arizona product has 19 TD passes for the season and has yet to be intercepted.
Kelly’s offense has excellent balance thanks to the production of RB LeSean McCoy, who is second in the NFL with 1,088 rushing yards. McCoy has five rushing scores and a 4.7 yards-per-carry average. The speedster out of Pittsburgh has hauled in 39 receptions for 436 yards and one TD.
When Jeremy Maclin suffered a season-ending injury in training camp, it became imperative that DeSean Jackson stay healthy and Riley Cooper step up and become a reliable No. 2 target. Both of those scenarios have come to fruition.
Jackson has a team-best 61 catches for 1,021 yards and seven TDs, while Cooper has 34 receptions for 638 yards and seven TDs.
Detroit (7-5 SU, 6-6 ATS) had lost back-to-back games both SU and ATS until dealing out a 40-10 beatdown to Green Bay on Thanksgiving Day. The Lions easily hooked up their backers as seven-point home favorites, while the 50 combined points slipped ‘over’ the 48.5-point total.
Although he did throw two more interceptions, Matthew Stafford had 330 passing yards and three touchdown tosses. Reggie Bush rushed 20 times for 117 yards and one TD. Bush also had five receptions for 65 yards, while Calvin Johnson had had a team-high six catches for 101 yards and one TD.
Jim Schwartz’s squad goes how Stafford goes. The University of Georgia product is second in the NFL in passing yards (3,825) and has a 27/14 TD-INT ratio. However, Stafford has been intercepted in five straight games and has six picks over the last two weeks.
Johnson is the league’s premier wide receiver, leading the NFL in receiving yards (1,299). ‘Megatron’ has 72 receptions for 12 TDs.
Bush’s addition has provided this offense with its first reliable back since Stafford became the starter. Bush has run for 854 yards and three TDs, while also catching 45 balls for 448 yards and two more scores.
The ‘over’ is 7-5 overall for the Lions, but the ‘under’ is 4-2 in their six road assignments. They have seen the ‘over’ go 5-2 in their last seven outings.
Totals have been an overall wash (6-6) for the Eagles, but they have watched the ‘under’ cash at a lucrative 5-1 clip.
These clubs met in Philadelphia last season, too, with the Lions winning 26-23 in overtime. Detroit collected the outright victory as a 3.5-point underdog, while ‘over’ backers cashed tickets thanks to the extra session because the field goal eclipsed the 47.5-point mark.
Stafford and then-starter Michael Vick threw for 311 yards apiece.
In this contest, I think the number for the side is correct. We have even teams for the most part (I personally think Detroit should be favored by 1.5 on a neutral field) so the home team is a short favorite at 2.5 or three.
Therefore, I’ll stay away from the side. The value I believe is with an ‘under’ play. As I pointed out above, the ‘under’ has been gold in Philly’s home games (5-1) and solid when the Lions are on the road (4-2).
As of Thursday, the weather conditions were calling for a 40-percent chance of snow or freezing rain and a little bit of wind (5-10 mph). Those factors led me to make the total 49.5 and we’re looking at 54. I’ll take the ‘under.’
Sports Betting Podcast 12-5-2013 College Football Every Game on the Board
|Tags: College Football Brian Edwards|
NFL Handicapping: Drive Point Averages Week 14
Tags: NFL Stat Intelligence Submitted by Stat Intelligence
Here are per-game Drive Point averages on offense and defense for all 32 teams…arranged in schedule rotation order. If you’re new to the website, Drive Points are only those scored on drives of 60 yards or more. Special teams and defensive scoring isn’t counted, nor are “cheap” points scored off field position. The goal is to get a clean a read as possible on “pure” offense and defense in terms of driving the field for points, and preventing the opposition from doing so.
Strength of schedule rankings from Sagarin at USA Today and Football Outsiders are in the first parenthesis (in that order) to provide some extra context for you, followed by this season’s turnover differential in the second parenthesis…
Houston: 10.8 on offense, 13.5 on defense (6-15) (-12 turnovers)
Jacksonville: 6.2 on offense, 16.7 on defense (2-10) (-4 turnovers)
(Houston is 10.1 and 13.2 in the games started by Keenum…and he’s been better in the turnover department than Schaub was. Has somebody already made a comparison between Schaub and Jake Delhomme? Could he have just lost it in the same way? Jags are 24-24 in this stat the last two weeks combined, after an eight-game stretch that was 47-173 the wrong way. Burke values the AFC South schedules much more than Football Outsiders does)
Kansas City: 11.2 on offense, 12.8 on defense (28-32) (+14 turnovers)
Washington: 14.9 on offense, 15.9 on defense (16-12) (-3 turnovers)
(Forgot to mention this the other night. Watching Russell Wilson of Seattle scamper around Monday Night vs. New Orleans really drove home the point of how RGIII is no longer able to scamper. He can kind of “scoot” if he sees an opening…but he can’t turn on a dime and fly. Big difference…and something that really jumps out if you watch those guys play on back to back nights)
Minnesota: 16.1 on offense, 19.1 on defense (17-9) (-9 turnovers)
Baltimore: 11.3 on offense, 10.9 on defense (32-23) (-3 turnovers)
(Minnesota has a terrible defense…and is coming off back-to-back overtime games after visiting Settle. Third road game in four weeks too. Brutal. Can Baltimore’s offense take advantage? Not a sure thing. Baltimore has only reached 17 drive points in a game once in the last six weeks…against similarly poor Chicago. Baltimore hasn’t topped 17 in a game all season, despite playing a soft schedule)
Cleveland: 9.8 on offense, 8.1 on defense (29-25) (-9 turnovers)
New England: 15.9 on offense, 11.1 on defense (24-11) (+8 turnovers)
(Still haven’t heard who’s quarterbacking the Browns)
Oakland: 9.4 on offense, 13.8 on defense (22-28) (-2 turnovers)
NY Jets: 7.0 on offense, 12.7 on defense (19-8) (-18 turnovers)
(You have to be really bad to be under 10.0 on offense in this stat this year. Both of these teams have suffered that fate. The Jets have combined it with a turnover disaster. Abysmal)
Indianapolis: 13.8 on offense, 13.4 on defense (7-18) (+6 turnovers)
Cincinnati: 13.8 on offense, 9.5 on defense (27-26) (-1 turnovers)
(Nice profile for Cincinnati, but it’s spoiled by that very soft schedule. It’s been awhile since they faced a playoff team. Bengals were outscored in this stat 41-35 by GB/NE/Detroit in the only three games they played against opponents who definitely seemed to be playoff caliber at kickoff. Indianapolis may not qualify any more as badly as the Colts are playing. If wins were based on drive points, Indy would have been 5-0 in the first five weeks vs. a decent schedule, but 1-6 the last seven games vs. a weaker slate)
Carolina: 14.3 on offense, 7.9 on defense (11-5) (+10 turnovers)
New Orleans: 16.6 on offense, 12.3 on defense (18-3) (+3 turnovers)
(Helpful to have Carolina and NO this close to Cincinnati for comparison, because some analytics places have them clustered somewhat nearby. The Panthers and Saints have played tougher schedules. Carolina’s +6.4 against a tough schedule with plus turnovers is a red flag for a Super Bowl sleeper. New Orleans isn’t far off…but shut down defenses typically have more control over their destiny in the postseason. As we mentioned last week, Football Outsiders seems to value the NFC North schedules more than Burke does)
Detroit: 18.0 on offense, 14.3 on defense (30-20) (-8 turnovers)
Philadelphia: 16.5 on offense, 13.7 on defense (21-27) (+6 turnovers)
(Very interesting game. Detroit is explosive, but a sloppiness machine. Their defense isn’t as tough as their press clippings would suggest. Philadelphia’s numbers were warped by a 42-17 result in this stat against an Oakland team that no-showed an afternoon. The Eagles fall to 14.2 for the year without that…which is enough to damage against the Lions defense you’d think)
Miami: 10.6 on offense, 10.9 on defense (20-14) (+2 turnovers)
Pittsburgh: 13.1 on offense, 12.8 on defense (31-30) (-4 turnovers)
(Tough for Miami to play back-to-back weeks out of climate)
Buffalo: 11.5 on offense, 12.4 on defense (23-13) (+2 turnovers)
Tampa Bay : 8.2 on offense, 13.3 on defense (3-1) (+10 turnovers)
(Tampa Bay turned back into a pumpkin for a week at Carolina. Very tough schedule this year for the Bucs, who haven’t been embarrassing themselves lately when not playing powers. Miami’s got to be wondering why they have to play in NY and Pittsburgh on consecutive post-Thanksgiving Sundays while division rival Buffalo gets to play in a Toronto dome and in Tampa Bay)
Tennessee: 13.1 on offense, 12.5 on defense (15-24) (+2 turnovers)
Denver: 23.3 on offense, 14.5 on defense (14-31) (-4 turnovers)
(Will Broncos get juices flowing? Last four games have been three in the division plus the road game at New England. Tough spot for Tennessee though because this is their third straight road game. Unfair at altitude! Some football feng shui on Denver’s schedule…it’s either been about league average or second-easiest depending on who you ask.)
St. Louis: 14.4 on offense, 14.8 on defense (1-7) (+8 turnovers)
Arizona: 13.1 on offense, 10.2 on defense (5-4) (-1 turnovers)
(Arizona’s profile took a bit of a hit with a 17-14 drive point loss at Philly last week. But, that’s still a solid stat line considering the brutality of the schedule. Mentally project what those differentials would be vs. league average schedules. Killer division)
NY Giants: 12.0 on offense, 9.4 on defense (8-6) (-11 turnovers)
San Diego: 14.3 on offense, 16.8 on defense (10-29) (-4 turnovers)
(The Giants would also grade out like a sleeper vs. a league average schedule if not for all those early turnovers. The problem is, the turnovers were coming against the playoff caliber teams in the first half of the schedule…and the “clean-up” came when they stepped down in class. San Diego’s been a clock eater in our Pace Factor stuff this year…which means the offense is a bit more lethal than the number above makes it look, but the defense is even more hapless. More feng shui on the schedule strength for SD. Similar to Denver from the same division)
Seattle: 15.4 on offense, 8.9 on defense (13-19) (+12 turnovers)
San Francisco: 12.1 on offense, 9.9 on defense (12-16) (+6 turnovers)
(A potential flat spot for Seattle who went all out to virtually cinch the #1 seed Monday. They don’t need this game at all…and going to war with a physical team may actually be kind of dumb. Can they resist the urge to have a rumble? Seattle’s +6.5 differential vs. a league average schedule with a defense that forces turnovers is lethal in terms of Super Bowl potential. Interested to see if Crabtree’s return for SF can stem their season trend of looking awful vs. playoff teams while crushing everyone else. I think it was Grantland who had an article today about the Niners being a playoff sleeper. They’re not one until they stop getting squashed in the stats by playoff caliber teams. Crabtree has to be the guy who lifts the offense past the 4.1, 4.8, 2.9, and 3.5 yards-per-play they had against Seattle/Indy/Carolina/New Orleans)
Atlanta: 14.8 on offense, 17.4 on defense (4-2) (-11 turnovers)
Green Bay: 14.9 on offense, 15.5 on defense (26-22) (-4 turnovers)
(Will the weather allow for the shootout those stats are suggesting?)
Dallas: 13.2 on offense, 20.0 on defense (9-17) (+12 turnovers)
Chicago: 17.3 on offense, 18.8 on defense (25-21) (+7 turnovers)
(Can say the same thing here. Might have been another 45-41 type game if this were in Arlington, which is what the Bears did in Washington against a similarly soft defense. Still kind of befuddled at all the pro-Romo press this year. That 13.2 isn’t anything special in this particular season. The only time the offense topped 5.5 yards-per-play in the last seven weeks was the 5.6 they got indoors against Minnesota’s awful defense. I guess he showed leadership in their one-possession wins over Minnesota, NYG, and Oakland. They were favored by -9 in two of those)
College Football Betting: Fresno State's defense hoping to show up vs. Utah State
Tags: College Football Fresno State Bulldogs Utah State Aggies Mountain West Utah State at Fresno State -3.5 O/U 60
Just how bad was Fresno State's defensive performance against San Jose State last week? For starters, the Spartans punted only once. In terms of drives, San Jose posted the following:
79 yards, TD
71 yards, TD
75 yards, TD
75 yards, TD
77 yards, TD
75 yards, TD
52 yards, TD
37 yards, FG
58 yards, TD
49 yards, FG
Of course Fresno is saying all the right things
in regards to bouncing back for Saturday's Mountain West Championship against Utah State. The two squads did not meet during the regular season.
"We have to play like we did the other nine weeks when we were the No. 1 or No. 2 defense in the league in third-down defense," defensive coordinator Nick Toth said. "We've been really good at that. They run the ball and their effective in their offense they don't play many third-and-longs. They play third-down-and-1, 2, 3, 4 and 5's, which is why they're so good at it.
College Football Gambling Trends: Favorites are 9-2 SU in SEC Championship
Tags: College Football SEC
Quick look at the historical betting results of the SEC Championship. Favorites have fared well at 9-2 straight up but they are only 6-5 against the spread. Auburn is currently a 2-point favorite over Missouri. This is only the second time since 2002 the title game has been lined at less than a field goal.
|SEC Championship Betting History 2002-12|
ALA 32, UGA 28
LSU 42, UGA 10
AUB 56, SC 17
ALA 32, FL 13
FL 31, ALA 20
LSU 21, TN 14
FL 38, ARK 28
UGA 34, LSU 14
AU 38, TN 28
LSU 34, UGA 13
UGA 30, ARK 3
Former Vegas gambling exec runs into trouble for playing at Pinnacle
Tags: Las Vegas
Because of his ties to Pinnacle Sports, former Golden Nugget owner Timothy Poster had his application to work in the gaming industry rejected
by the Nevada Gaming Control Board. Funny that despite residing in Las Vegas, Poster placed bets at Pinny simply because its limits were higher.
Burnett told Poster, "I've heard you're a really good guy. I like you personally." But the board cannot ignore these violations.
Board member Terry Johnson said he could not approve the license because of "his associations with certain persons" and his online wagering with an illegal sports betting service.
Johnson said he had "trouble accepting that you (Poster) did not know it was an unlawful act."
Banks say no to New Jersey online gambling transactions
Tags: Las Vegas
New Jersey is in its second week of online gambling and as expected there are still a slew of issues
. Only 25% of gamblers trying to use TropicanaCasino.com have been verified due to glitches in the system. Then there is the problem of loading up money into an account. American Express and PayPal are reportedly not allowing any sort of gambling transactions.
“I would say a quarter are getting on,” Callender said yesterday, noting there’s a positive side to that: “We don’t have a situation where people who are outside the state are getting on.”
College Basketball Handicapping: Zone defense becoming a thing
Tags: College Basketball
According to one study
, college basketball are playing zone at a higher rate this season. One theory behind that is teams are looking to avoid picking up perimeter fouls or hiding players in foul trouble. It also could have to do with how many mismatches there are during non-conference play. It isn't however slowing down the pace of games. Last season only two teams (BYU and Northwestern State) averaged less than 15 seconds per offensive possession. This year 20 teams can lay claim to that including Michigan State, Purdue, and UCLA.
NBA Handicapping: League-wide pace slows slightly, scoring remains up
Tags: NBA Marty Otto
We’re now a couple weeks removed from when I first took a look at the pace of NBA play and it’s a good time to revisit and see how things are shaping up. Back in mid-November we had six teams playing at over 100 possessions per game:
LA Lakers (102.77)
Golden State (102.37
As it stands now only two teams can still boast that type of tempo as Philadelphia (102.07) and Minnesota (101.03) continue to run with reckless abandon. The other four teams have slowed down a bit and we can filter out their possession numbers since that last blog was posted.
LA Lakers (97.36)
Golden State (96.35)
The scoring, however, hasn’t seen a decrease league wide since we first looked at these numbers. Back in mid-November the average game had seen 198.5 points; an uptick from 2012’s season average of 195.9 points. Since the time of that blog game scoring has actually seen a small uptick to 198.9 points on average. To date overs are hitting 51.7% across the board compared to 2012 at 50.5%.
NFL Gambling Preview: Carolina Panthers at New Orleans Saints
|Submitted by ICC|Tags: NFL Carolina Panthers New Orleans Saints Ian Cameron Carolina at New Orleans
Sunday, 5:30 pm PT - NBC
New Orleans -3.5 O/U 44.5
New Orleans -3 (-120) O/U 45.5
Rob Veno's Power Rating:
New Orleans -3.5
Ian Cameron's Recommendation:
Use Carolina in 6-pt teaser
This should be a terrific Sunday Night Football showcase as the Panthers and Saints battle with 1st place in the NFC South on the line.
New Orleans is clearly not a team I like betting against at home at a short price particularly off a brutal performance like they suffered in Seattle. The Saints are 6-0 SU, 5-0-1 ATS at the Superdome however only one of those wins (San Francisco) came against a team of the Panthers’ caliber. The Saints only managed to beat the 49ers 23-20 on a last second FG as they didn’t sniff a lead by more than a touchdown throughout that entire game.
Carolina is 8-0 SU, 7-1 ATS in its last 8 games – the single hottest team in the NFL right now. They have notched quality wins against New England and San Francisco and should own a distinct edge in the trenches over the Saints. Carolina averages 129.3 ypg on the ground which ranks 9th in the NFL. They face a somewhat vulnerable Saints defensive front that got pushed around on both sides of the football by a very physical Seattle Seahawks team. Carolina’s recent run is in large part due to playing a very similar brand of smash mouth, hard-nosed football.
Carolina’s defense has been remarkable allowing just 13.1 points per game which is tops in the NFL. They have the 6th ranked pass defense and the 2nd ranked run defense. That terrific Carolina defense gets a very big weapon back this week as DE Charles Johnson returns after missing the last two games with a sprained right MCL. Johnson leads the Panthers with 8.5 sacks and will be a challenge for the Saints offensive line to contain. It’s worth pointing out that New Orleans was stuck overnight in Seattle and was forced to wait until Tuesday to depart for New Orleans. The Saints didn’t arrive back home until late afternoon which wiped out most of a day usually reserved for game planning. New Orleans already had the disadvantage of preparing for Carolina on a short week and now because of travel delays, it pushes the process of getting ready for this mammoth divisional showdown even further.
Overall, the game price seems right but using Carolina in a 6-point teaser has value (using +9.5 the preferred option). The Panthers have lost only one game by double-digits this season (at Arizona) due to four turnovers. I expect them to play a clean game in this spot and keep it competitive from start to finish.
College Basketball Betting Free Play: Boston College Eagles at Purdue Boilermakers
|Submitted by Andrew Lange|Tags: College Basketball Boston College Eagles Purdue Boilermakers Andrew Lange
Boston College +4 at Purdue O/U 151.5
Recommendation: Boston College
Purdue hasn't done much of anything this year to be deserving of this price range for tonight's game against Boston College. The Boilermakers struggled against the likes of Northern Kentucky, Rider, Siena (twice), and also lost outright by 15 points to a bottom-tier Washington State squad. Head coach Matt Painter on his team's struggles: “I’ve never, as an assistant or a head coach, been with a team that can show such promise in one half and the other half lose their focus or not make winning basketball plays, not tough it out on a certain possession,” to this extent, Painter said. “It’s a hard thing, and it’s a positive that you show that you can be successful, but it’s also a negative in terms of when things don’t go your way, you’re not able to right the ship. You have to show more consistency.”
The reason for the inconsistency as well as last year's sub .500 finish is easy to pinpoint – Painter just doesn't have the talent he's accustoming to working with in West Lafayette.
Boston College meanwhile is probably disappointed to be 3-4 but the Eagles have shown far more ability than Purdue. BC lost its season opener at Providence in overtime. On one day rest wore down against a UMass squad that is playing as well as any team in the country. They then lost to a quality Toledo squad by three and fell by two to UConn who already has wins over Maryland, Indiana and Florida (albeit by very slim margins). Boston College was a very young team last year but still had three quality road wins (Penn State, Virginia Tech, and Clemson) and also tight losses by 4, 3, 5, and 3. They have a tendency to be outclassed at times by bigger, more athletic teams but I don't see Purdue being able to overwhelm them in that department. Also note that Boston College is currently the nation's top free throw shooting team at 84% while Purdue shoots only 65% – a huge edge given the current climate of college hoops.
There isn't a huge gap between these two squads but Boston College is the better of the two teams and has been far more challenged schedule-wise. I see them as a very live dog.
NBA Handicapper Free Play: Oklahoma City Thunder at Portland Trail Blazers
|Submitted by Teddy Covers|Tags: NBA Oklahoma City Thunder Portland Trail Blazers Teddy Covers Oklahoma City +2.5 at Portland O/U 205
Recommendation: Oklahoma City
Here’s the quote from Pacers head coach Frank Vogel, following Portland’s four-point win over Indiana on Monday: “They made big shots all game long. Hopefully that's what it's going to take to beat this team – making impossible shot after impossible shot."
Portland isn’t the best team in the Western Conference, and their 15-3 start to the season might well be their high point of the campaign. I’m not saying the Blazers are bad, but I am saying that this team isn’t going to hit contested jumpers to the tune of 105 points per game average for the entirety of the season. The Blazers have only one way to go from here, from a SU and ATS perspective, and that’s down!
Oklahoma City has come on like a freight train since their sluggish start to the season, reeling off eight straight wins (6-2 ATS) coming into tonight. That stretch includes victories over the likes of the Clippers, Spurs, Warriors, Nuggets and T-wolves – quality foes. They’ve absolutely dominated this series in recent years, winning each of the last seven meetings between these two squads (6-0-1 ATS in those games). Wrong team favored here!
T. Covers 10* NBA Offensive Outburst O/U [5-1 83% NBA O/U YTD] $20
Teddy hasn't released many totals so far this NBA season but when he has they've been nearly unstoppable. To date his NBA O/U reports are a sweet 5-1 83%. Grab this one for $20 and it's guaranteed to win or his next hoops report is free.
College Football Handicapping: Cold temps and rain expected for championship Saturday
Tags: College Football
It's gonna be cold (and rainy) this weekend, college football bettors!
Oklahoma at Oklahoma State: 7 pm local, 27 degrees, chance of snow
UCF at SMU: 11 am local, 27 degrees, ice pellets
Texas at Baylor: 2:30 pm local, 29 degrees, ice pellets
Utah State at Fresno State: 7 pm local, 34 degrees, cloudy
Also note that while the temps are expected to be moderate, rain is in the forecast for the following games...
Stanford at Arizona State
UL-Lafayette at South Alabama
Duke vs. Florida State (in Charlotte)
Louisville at Cincinnati (Thursday)
Marshall at Rice