Articles

What does "Laying the Points" Mean in Sports Betting?

by Big Al Staff

Tuesday, Nov 03, 2020

What does laying the points mean in sports betting? When you start sports betting, you will hear some terms fly around your ears.  It might begin simply with just the different betting options:  point spread, moneyline, or over/under.  After getting familiar with the basic lingo, you’ll then start to encounter other terms like juice, vigorish, round-robin, bad beat, run-line, puck-line, teasers, prop bet, and on and on.  Slowly, your knowledge will accumulate, and you’ll get more comfortable with the slang.To accelerate your education, we are here to provide a thorough understanding of all the terms that you need to know in your sports betting career -- from a simple moneyline bet to a complicated hedging strategy.  Perhaps the quintessential bet in the North American sports betting industry is the point spread wager.  It's easily the most popular form of football and basketball wagering for many sports bettors out there.  There are many different terms related to spread betting (e.g., cover the spread).  Here, we'll discuss the term 'laying the points.'It's a term used by experienced bettors for any sport where you can use point spreads such as the football and basketball.  We'll dive into the term and then give you a handle on how to implement it into your sports betting strategy. Getting started with point spread betting Alright, so we're focusing on point spreads here.  It's a form of betting where you pick a side in a matchup, and the winner is determined by adding or subtracting a set number of points (the “point spread”) to the final score.  Note that this betting option is only available for sports that work with an incremental, point-based scoring system.  So, let’s illustrate the point spread with an example.  We'll take the Super Bowl 53 matchup between the Los Angeles Rams and the New England Patriots.  The betting lines at GTBets Sportsbook were: Los Angeles Rams +2.5 New England Patriots -2.5 In this example, similar to the moneyline bet, you have a favorite and an underdog.  The point spread favorite in this game was New England, while Los Angeles was the underdog.  To cash a ticket on the Rams, bettors needed them to not lose the game by three or more points.  A Patriots bettor, meanwhile, needed New England to win by three or more points to cover the spread.Now, let’s do a deeper dive into gambling slang, and talk about some of the terms that go along with this type of bet.  You should know that bettors love to come up with colorful phrases, and shorthand abbreviations to incorporate into their gambling conversations.  Two common expressions are ‘laying the points,’ and the related term, ‘taking the points.’Laying the points with the favoriteWith point spread betting, you have a favorite and an underdog.  When you hear a sports bettor say they're 'laying the points,' they are talking about betting on the favored team to win by an amount greater than the point spread.  In the example above, if you laid the points, that would mean you bet on New England minus the 2.5 points, and you would need it to win by at least three points to cover the point spread.Taking the points with the underdogThe opposite of laying the points is taking the points.  Instead of betting on the favorite, you're betting on the underdog.  When betting on the underdog in our Super Bowl 53 example above, you’re getting 2.5 points with the Rams.  So, you would win your bet if the Rams did not lose the game by three or more points.  As you can see, an underdog does not necessarily have to win the game, straight-up, to cover the point spread.  It can also cover the spread if it loses the game by an amount less than the point spread. How to use laying the points in your sports betting strategy? Alright, so you now know two of the most important sports betting terms when it comes to point spreads -- laying the points and taking the points.  It's useful jargon that you need when hanging out with gambling buddies, having a chat, and discussing the sporting events you're wagering on.  Beyond knowing how a point spread works and being familiar with gambling terms, you also need to know various wagering strategies.  We'll give you some tips to get you going in the right way.Create rules and be disciplinedAs a sports bettor, you're in the business of putting your money on the line.  You're not just predicting which team wins or who scores the next touchdown for fun -- you're in this to accumulate an enormous amount of money.  So, you have to create some rules for yourself, and establish boundaries and limitations.  The exact rules, of course, are completely up to you.  But we can start you off with some questions to ask yourself: What is the maximum amount of money you are willing to lose while betting on sports? ​What is the maximum amount of money that you are comfortable with losing on a single bet? How often do you want to wager? On which sports do you want to wager? Do you prefer to bet on moneylines, point spreads, over/unders, or prop bets? Are you comfortable with exotic bets like parlays, or do you prefer straight bets? These questions create a firm list of rules and boundaries for your sports betting career.  You can take things as far as you want, but it's good to be disciplined.  Otherwise, your adrenaline may get the better of you and you may wager more than you should on a single bet.  It’s good to constantly review and reflect on your betting patterns to see whether you're still adhering to your own rules.  Additionally, many bookmakers have wagering limits, which can also be handy to keep you in control.Be aware of line movementWe're assuming that you are aware of point spreads, and you made some outlines for your sports betting career.  You're not afraid to lose money anymore, and you're comfortable with putting some money on the line.  From this point, it's time to learn more about point spreads and the way bookies handle these types of wagers.  As you saw in the Patriots/Rams example, a football or basketball matchup has certain point spread numbers.  But be aware that these numbers may change.  This change is called line movement.When a bookmaker wants to open up betting on a game, it will publish its odds.  The initial point spread is called the opening line.  As time passes, gamblers place their bets and, depending on the money flow, as well as any new information, the numbers will change.  This happens right up until game time, when the odds on a game are taken down, and the final number is known as the closing line. This line movement system creates value for bettors and sportsbooks at the same time.  It’s crucial for gamblers to always keep a close eye on the lines, in order to be among the first to notice when a sportsbook changes its numbers.  When the odds significantly change, it’s an indication that something critical has happened to the match-up.  Maybe an important player became ill, sustained an injury, or was traded to another team.  Whatever it might be, the oddsmakers are generally up to speed and likely know more than you do.  In this case, you should do your research to find out what happened.  If nothing newsworthy happened, but the lines materially changed, it's probably due to a betting syndicate placing large wagers.  When a sizable bet is made by sharp gamblers on one side, the bookies will usually move the line to try to curtail the betting action on that one side and/or attract wagers on the other side.The importance of a sportsbookWhen you're working hard to research the games, you also always want to catch the best betting numbers.  The sportsbook plays an essential role in this situation since it’s the one which will eventually pay you.  You're trusting this betting site with your money, so you need to be sure it's safe.  We’ve thoroughly researched the world’s leading sportsbooks to come up with the most trustworthy, reliable and beneficial sportsbooks to recommend to our visitors.  We derived our Top 10 Sportsbook rankings after considering many factors, including longevity, payout record, wagering menu, user interface, sign-up bonuses, and odds.  Our current top sportsbooks include BetAnySports (#1), BetNow (#2) and Bovada (#3).  But each bettor has a different set of factors that are most important, so read our reviews to help you determine the three to five sportsbooks you want to play with.Call for help when you're lostOne always feels great after winning a bet, and then seeing one’s bankroll swell.  We get it.  It’s exciting to see a prediction come true, and earn money on top of that.  Sometimes, however, one goes on a losing streak, and is unable to handle the downturn.  One could react by taking unnecessary risks, such as betting on games that didn’t offer value, or wagering an outsized percentage of one’s bankroll.  That's where many gamblers go wrong -- they’re undisciplined, and not loyal to their own rules.  Eventually, they hit rock bottom, and feel depressed over losing money, and acting irrationally.  However, it doesn't have to be that way.When you start to notice that you can't win on your own -- either because you don’t have the time to do proper research and monitor the odds, or you lack the discipline to only bet on the best games -- you should be able to call for help.  There are reputable professional handicappers in the industry who will gladly help you out.  The reason you're reading this article is to gain knowledge, so why not approach someone who already possesses this expertise.  Handicappers can answer any question you might have, share their insights and analysis, and even provide you with their picks.  Hiring a professional handicapper might be your ticket to success -- and it might turn around your losing streak.You now know how to lay the points and take the points.  But the most important thing is to dive right in by experimenting with some wagers, and learn more as you go!  We're always here to guide you throughout your gambling journey and give you all you need along the way!

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Ness Notes: Monday, Nov 2

by Larry Ness

Monday, Nov 02, 2020

This column will be available Monday through Friday (posted no later than 1:00 ET), EXCLUSIVELY at BigAl.com. I like to call it my daily 'random thoughts' on the sports betting world, although I'll pass along that my therapist refers to it as "thoughtful commentary."Sunday NFL highlights: Pittsburgh (7-0) remains the lone NFL unbeaten by winning 28-24 at Baltimore. The Ravens had a 457-221 yardage advantage over the Steelers but had FOUR giveaways, including a 'pick-6!' The NY Jets (0-8) remain the lone winless NFL team with a 35-9 loss at Kansas City (Jets are 1-7 ATS). Dallas led Philadelphia 9-7 at the half Sunday night but went scoreless in the second half and fell 23-9 to the Eagles, remaining a very 'IM-PERFECT' 0-8 ATS. New England (2-5) lost its FOURTH straight (longest skid since 2002), 24-21 at Buffalo. The Bills snapped a SEVEN-game losing streak to New England, which has won the AFC East in each of the last 11 seasons. Buffalo is 6-2. Full Week 8 recap on Tuesday.MNF: The 5-2 Tampa Bay Bucs are at the 1-6 NY Giants at 8:15 ET on ESPN. Has Tom Brady found "the Fountain of Youth" in Florida? He has thrown 15 TD passes against just ONE interception over his last five games, with Tampa Bay going 4-1 in that stretch (exception being a 20-19 loss at Chicago in Week 5). He's sure being helped out by a Tampa Bay defense allowing the fewest yards in the league (291.3 YPG) and a modest 20.3 PPG. The Giants' lone win of 2020 was a 20-19 victory over Washington, which was sandwiched around a 37-34 loss at Dallas (Week 5) and a 22-21 loss at Philly (Week 7). Tampa Bay is favored by 13 points and the over/under is 45.CFB recap: There was only ONE game this past weekend in which ranked teams played each other. No. 3 Ohio State was at No. 18 Penn St last Saturday night and the Buckeyes won 38-25, a final that was also good enough for an Ohio St ATS win. That result continued an on-going trend in meetings between ranked teams this season. The higher ranked team has gone 15-1 SU and 14-2 ATS (the lone SU loser was then-No. 3 Florida losing on Oct 10 at then-No. 21 A&M). However, the dynamic of ranked teams against unranked opponents has seen markedly different results. Ranked teams did win 14 of 18 such matchups last weekend but were still a highly unimpressive 10-8 ATS The Y-T-D tally sits as such; ranked teams are 68-22 (.756) SU when taking on an unranked opponent but remain a 'money-burning' 36-53-1 (.404) ATS. Will this trend continue throughout the 2020 season? So far, we are still waiting.The four ranked teams to lose SU to an unranked opponent were then-No. 6 Oklahoma St 41-34 (OT) at home to Texas, then-No. 13 Michigan 27-24 at home to Michigan St, then-No. 15 North Carolina 44-41 at Virginia and then-No. 16 Kansas St 37-10 at West Va. The Longhorns' win at Oklahoma St was Texas' first win on the road over a top-10 opponent since 2010. First-year Michigan St head coach Mel Tucker joined Nick Saban (1995) as the only two MSU head coaches to beat Michigan in their first-ever try. On the flip side of that rivalry, 'the incomparable' Jim Harbaugh is now 1-6 SU at home against Ohio St and Michigan St (as if those two rivalries mean something to Michigan fans and alumni!). New AP poll: Trevor Lawrence was held out of Clemson's game vs Boston College and the Tigers barely survived, coming back from a 28-7 halftime deficit to win 34-28. Clemson had 52 first-place votes the previous week but fell to just 33 on Sunday, edging No. 2 Alabama (29 votes) by just TWO total points. Ohio St remained No. 3 and Notre Dame at No. 4, after the Irish won 31-13 at Ga Tech in less than impressive fashion (note: Notre Dame owns the longest-active winning streak among FBS schools at 12). Speaking of less-than-impressive efforts, Georgia held onto its No. 5 ranking, despite a 14-3 win at Kentucky (the Bulldogs were favored by 17 points). Cincinnati routed Memphis 49-10 for its 17th straight home win and is ranked No. 6, the school's highest since it finished 4th in the final AP poll of 2009 (can you say Brian Kelly?). BYU handled Western Ky 41-10 and the Cougars moved into the AP top-10 (at No. 9) for the first time since Nov 7, 2009. Indiana is ranked 13th, the school's highest since being ranked 11th in 1987. Okla St fell from No. 6 to No. 16 with its loss to Texas, while Michigan fell from 13th to 23rd with its loss to Michigan St. No. 14 North Carolina, No. 16 Kansas St and No. 18 Penn St all dropped out. Penn St had been ranked for 64 straight polls (not including when it was ineligible earlier this year to be considered), which was the 4th-longest active streak. If interested, the top-three active streaks are Alabama (205), Ohio St (138) and Clemson (94).New to the poll are Texas (22nd) and Auburn (24th) which are both back in. Auburn routed LSU 48-11! Special mention goes to 6-0 Liberty, which had a bye but moved into the final spot (25th), for the first time in school history. Of course, Liberty is in just its THIRD season as an FBS member. Liberty replaced Coastal Carolina at the No. 25 spot, as just like the Jeffersons, the Chanticleers are "movin' on up!" Coastal Carolina 'trashed' Georgia St 51-0 on the road this past Saturday and are also 6-0 (5-1 ATS) on the season, moving up to No. 15 in the latest poll.Tuesday's Notes will concentrate on NFL Week 8 and then it's mostly CFB on Wednesday and Thursday, before returning to the NFL on Friday, as the 17-week season hits its midpoint with Week 9.Good luck...Larry

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Big Al's Daily Angle: EPL and NFL Preview

by Big Al Staff

Monday, Nov 02, 2020

The Monday sports card features Monday Night Football in the NFL, along with two matches in the English Premier League.Two teams moving in the opposite direction will challenge bettors in the Monday Night Football game on ESPN. Tampa Bay has won five of their last six games after their opening week loss at home to New Orleans. They play their third game on the road in four games after victory last week in Las Vegas over the Raiders by a 45-20 score as a 3.5-point favorite. Tom Brady completed 33 of 45 passes in that game for 369 yards with four touchdown passes and without an interception. The ageless wonder is completing 65.7% of his passes in his year operating head coach Bruce Arians’ offense. He has thrown for 1910 yards with 18 touchdown passes, which began the week as the second-most in the NFL.  New York will be playing their second straight game on national television in prime-time after they lost at Philadelphia in last week’s Thursday night game by a 22-21 score. The Giants’ leading rusher in that game for the fourth time this season was quarterback Daniel Jones who gained 92 yards on four carries. New York is just 1-5 on the season yet remains only 1 1/2 games out of first place in the NFC East. BookMaker lists Tampa Bay as a 13-point favorite with the total set at 45. The kickoff is shortly after 8:15 PM ET.The English Premier League completes their seventh week of the season with two matches involving all three of the promoted sides. At 12:30 PM ET, West Bromwich travels to Fulham in a battle of two of these that made the step up from the Championship League. The Baggies come off a 1-1 draw at Brighton, which was their third draw in six EPL matches. West Brom has yet to bring home a victory since their promotion. Fulham looks to rebound from a 2- 1 loss to Crystal Palace last Saturday. The Cottagers have managed only one point in their six league matches, so relegation concerns are already developing. BookMaker rates Fulham as a slight favorite (PK, -135) with the over/under set 2.25. The NBC Sports Network has the broadcast.At 3 PM ET, Leeds United hosts Leicester City. The Whites have been one of the biggest surprises in the EPL this season with their opening match shootout with Liverpool that ended in a 4-3 loss before later earning a 1-1 draw with Manchester City. Under manager Marcelo Bielsa, Leeds has won three of their six EPL matches. The Whites defeated Aston Villa by a 3-0 win last weekend. Leicester City has won four of their six games this season after their 1-0 victory at Arsenal. After finishing in 5th place last year, the Foxes feel a top-four finish with a Champions League qualification is in sight.  BookMaker favors Leeds United slightly, as the Whites are PK, -114.  This match will be on the NBC Sports Network.

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NFL Monday Night Football: Buccaneers/Giants Preview

by Big Al Staff

Monday, Nov 02, 2020

Two teams moving in the opposite direction will challenge bettors in the Monday Night Football game on ESPN.Tampa Bay has won five of their last six games after their opening week loss at home to New Orleans. They play their third game on the road in four games after last week’s victory in Las Vegas over the Raiders by a 45-20 score as a 3.5-point favorite. Tom Brady completed 33 of 45 passes in that game for 369 yards with four touchdown passes and without an interception. The ageless wonder is completing 65.7% of his passes in his year operating head coach Bruce Arians’ offense. He has thrown for 1910 yards with 18 touchdown passes, which began the week as the second-most in the NFL. While Brady gets most of the attention for this team, the Buccaneers defense may be the best in the league. Tampa Bay is allowing 20.3 points per game, along with only 271.7 yards per game. They are holding opponents to just 4.8 yards-per-play, which is the stingiest mark in the NFL. The Buccaneers also lead the league in points differential, total yards differential, and with their net sack differential of +17. The Bucs have held five of their six opponents to 20 points or less. New York will be playing their second straight game on national television in prime-time after they lost at Philadelphia in last week’s Thursday night game by a 22-21 score. The Giants’ leading rusher in that game for the fourth time this season was quarterback Daniel Jones who gained 92 yards on four carries. This franchise did not draft Jones in the first round two years ago for him to be their leading rusher. The season-ending injury to running back Saquon Barkley threw a monkey wrench into the vision of what this offense could be under rookie head coach Joe Judge. The Giants signed free agent Devonta Freeman off the street after that injury, but he seems to have lost a step from his time in Atlanta and is now dealing with an ankle injury that has him questionable for this game.Jones is completing 61.9% of his passes for 1410 yards, yet he has only five touchdown passes and has thrown seven picks. He leads an offense that is scoring only 17.4 points-per-game while averaging 282.4 yards-per-game. New York is just 1-5 on the season yet remains only 1 1/2 games out of first place in the NFC East. New York has six players on their Injured Reserve, including linebacker Lorenzo Carter and rookie safety Xavier McKinney from Alabama. Guard Will Hernandez tested positive for COVID earlier in the week, which forced the Giants to put all but four offensive linemen into quarantine. They have not had an additional positive COVID test since then as of Sunday, so he may the only starting lineman they are without for this game. Tampa Bay will be without wide receiver Chris Godwin who is out with a finger injury. The Bucs signed wide receiver Antonio Brown to add depth with a potentially huge upside this week, but he has yet to be cleared by the league to play. Tight end O.J. Howard is out the season with an Achilles’ injury, and defensive tackle Vita Vea is on Injured Reserve with his ankle. This game will be the first appearance for the Buccaneers on Monday Night Football since 2018. These two teams played last year with Jones outdueling Jameis Winston on September 22nd for a 32-31 victory for the visiting Giants, who were a 5-point underdog. BookMaker lists Tampa Bay as a 13-point favorite with the total set at 45. The kickoff is shortly after 8:15 PM ET.

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What does "Off the Board" Mean in Sports Betting?

by Big Al Staff

Monday, Nov 02, 2020

What does "off the board" mean in sports betting? The sports betting industry consists of many different parties, and they're not just located in Las Vegas.  You have millions of bettors throughout the United States, and worldwide who place their wagers at online sportsbooks.  These bettors do their research by reading up on websites, watching television shows, and listening to radio programs and podcasts.  All these media outlets have journalists who dig deep into everything about a single matchup.  Each game is different, and the journalists and bettors know that information is the way to get an edge over others.There are hundreds of thousands of sporting events every year.  And the sportsbooks try to make sure that every game that's being played is available for wagering.  However, sportsbooks also want to limit risk, and make money.  That's why sportsbooks, on their end, have a lot of professionals to do research as well.  When they determine there’s enough uncertainty surrounding the odds on a game, they will take measures into their own hands.That's when the term 'off the board' comes into play.  Off the board refers to a sporting event where the sportsbook refuses to take any bets on that particular event.  Since sportsbooks and bookmakers operate on their own terms and conditions, they are allowed to take any bet off the board when they feel the need.  We'll dive into several reasons why this could happen, and what kind of bets can be taken off the board. Why do games or events go off the board in sports betting? The reasons why a game can be taken off the board can vary, but it all comes down to the sportsbook not wanting to assume undue risk.  They like to be in control of the situation and guarantee some sort of profit for any betting line available on their site.  After all, they're a business which needs to generate profit to stay afloat.  To make a profit, they need to foresee what's coming in and what's going out.  The moment they start to lose control and find it challenging to set betting odds for an individual sporting event, it could lead to a game taken off the board.Imagine you have an exciting match in the NBA coming up between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Dallas Mavericks.  Both teams are in great shape, and there's no clear underdog or favored team.  It's time for the sportsbooks to list the betting lines, but rumors have it that key player LeBron James might be suffering from an injury.  They're not sure whether LeBron James will be able to play or miss the game entirely.  It's hard to set a betting line at this point.  So, a sportsbook has three options; Don’t post an opening number, and keep the matchup off the board entirely to avoid any uncertainty. Post odds on the game, but perhaps with lower betting limits, at least until there is clarity about LeBron James’ health. Don’t post an opening number, and keep the game off the board until there is clarity about the injury and playing status.  Only when there is clarity does the sportsbook publish its line. When a game is taken off the board, it might be that people already placed their wagers.  In that instance, those bets are valid, and at the odds at the time of the wager.  However, anyone who still wants to bet on the game has to wait until it comes back on the board, and the odds at that point could be different. What kind of bets can go off the board? The most common games to be delisted from sportsbooks are football and basketball games.  Although injuries also occur in baseball and hockey games, a single player -- especially a star player -- will usually have more of an impact in a basketball or football game.  Thus, the odds will change more in football and basketball when a key player’s status changes.  To take one step back in the sports betting process, we'd like to give you some explanation as to what kind of bets there are, and which bets might be taken off the board.  We'll provide a quick description per bet type.  And also note that each bet type can be taken off the board at any time when the sportsbook has uncertainty.MoneylineThe moneyline wager is the most straightforward bet you can make.  All you do is pick which team will win the sporting event of your choice.  It's also referred to as a straight bet.  For example, sports bettors can bet the Patriots to win straight-up over the Bengals, which means the sports bettor predicts the Patriots will win the game.  The typical moneyline betting lines might look something like this: New England Patriots -165 Cincinnati Bengals +145 There's always an underdog and a favored team that you can tell by the minus and plus sign alongside the odds.  The underdog carries the plus sign, while the minus sign is associated with the favored team.  This is common in most bet types, not just straight bets.Over/underThe over/under wager is also referred to as the totals bet.  Instead of picking a winning team, you're betting on whether the final score of the match will be relatively high-scoring or low-scoring.  The sportsbook sets a number, and you have to predict whether the final score will be over or under that number of points.  To give you an example, we'll take an NBA match between the New York Knicks and the Los Angeles Lakers. The betting lines might look like this: Knicks/Lakers Over 210 Knicks/Lakers Under 210 You have to decide whether both teams will score enough to bring the final score over or under 210 points.Point spreadOne of the most common and popular bets is the point spread. When you're doing a little digging in sports betting, you've probably seen the terms 'against the spread,' 'cover the spread,' and ‘ATS’ thrown around a lot.  They all come down to spread betting.  With a point spread bet, you bet on the margin of victory in a game between two teams.  We'll illustrate this with an example: New England Patriots -3.5 Cincinnati Bengals +3.5 Similar to a moneyline wager, there is a point spread favorite and an underdog. The Patriots are the favorite, and the -3.5 number means that they need to win by at least 4 points to cover the spread.  On the other hand, the Bengals need to either win the game straight-up, or lose by 3 points or less to cover the spread.Spread betting is most popular for football and basketball, but it's also possible for other sports like baseball, hockey and soccer.  However, because scoring is much, much less in a baseball, hockey or soccer game, sportsbooks usually fix spreads in those sports at +/- 1.5, and adjust the associated moneyline odds from there.  Also, in those sports, this bet type is referred to as run-line (baseball), puck-line (hockey) or goal-line (soccer), rather than point spread -- but it operates the same way.Prop bets and other exotic betsAnother category of wagers is exotic bets.  A perfect example of this is a prop bet -- short for proposition bet.  Prop bets are made on a wide range of subjects.  It could be on which team will score first in a game, or what color of Gatorade will be poured on the winning coach.  There are also teasers, futures bets, round-robins, and many other wager types that we cover in other articles thoroughly.ParlayAll the bets that we mentioned before are all based on the outcome of one single sporting event.  With parlay bets, you're wagering on the outcome of multiple events in one single bet.  You're creating a multi-legged wager that only succeeds if every single individual bet wins.  So you could have your parlay bet look like this; New England Patriots -165 New York Knicks/Los Angeles Lakers Over 210, -110 Los Angeles Lakers PK, -115 These are individual straight bets, all with different betting odds.  The parlay bet combines these betting odds and can bring you very lucrative returns.  The risk you're taking is very high, but the return on investment can be tremendous. How to win at sports betting ​When you're active as a sports bettor, you know there's competition at every turn.  There's a competition among bettors to get down at the best odds; there's a competition between the sportsbooks and the bettors to see who will win the bets; and there's a competition between the teams that are the subjects of the bets.  In the end, the outcome of the matches we're wagering on is out of our control -- you can only watch and hope for the best.  However, when you're looking for trustworthy handicappers, and a reliable, customer-friendly sportsbook, you are in control.Finding the right sportsbookWhen you're shopping around for the best sportsbook that matches your needs, you'll find out that there are a lot of options.  However, not every single sportsbook might offer what you're looking for, and it can be overwhelming to analyze every single one.  We've done the hard work for you and have determined which sportsbooks offer the most to their clients.  We have a long list of factors on which we judge sportsbooks, including: How competitive are the betting odds of the sportsbook?  In other words, what is the vigorish they charge for each wager? Is the sportsbook an established entity, which has a long history of reliable payouts?  How is their reputation? When you sign up, does the sportsbook offer a nice welcome bonus or promotion offer?  And does it have generous reload bonuses? How is the user experience?  Is the website modern, and easy-to-use? Are the wagering limits big? Does the sportsbook have unique odds, which is important for line shopping, or does it copy the odds of other sportsbooks?   These factors are among the most important for our Top 10 Sportsbook rankings.  We recommend creating accounts at multiple sportsbooks since you want to be able to shop around to find the best lines.  Our current #1-rated sportsbook is BetAnySports, which offers reduced juice (-105 odds, rather than -110).  And other great sportsbooks are BetNow, which has the best sign-up and reload bonuses, and Bovada, which has the best website.  For big players, who want to bet 50,000 dollars on an NFL match, then BookMaker would be the best option.Find a professional handicapperSports betting can be stressful if you're mired in a losing streak.  And proper research takes a lot of time.  So, why not follow someone who handicaps sports events for a living?  Some handicappers sell their picks to allow other bettors to capitalize on their research and expertise.  You could compare it to stock traders sharing their signals, or even famous chefs cooking your food in a restaurant.  When you choose a handicapper, make sure you always look at his track record, and also his analysis to see if his methodology matches your beliefs.  Most handicappers offer free picks to start with, so you can get a feel of his performance before making your first purchase.  The beauty with purchasing picks is that the return on investment is usually way higher than the cost of the picks!After reading this article, you know the basics of sports betting, and understand why a bet could be taken off the board.  Right now, find a game which is on the board, and walk up to the betting window!

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Big Al's Daily Angle: EPL and NFL Preview

by Big Al Staff

Sunday, Nov 01, 2020

The Sunday sports card features the continuation of Week 8 of the National Football League, along with four matches in the English Premier League.The NFL has 12 games scheduled for Sunday. Eight games begin the card at 1 PM ET. The primary game on CBS has the Pittsburgh Steelers traveling to Baltimore to face the Ravens in an AFC North showdown. Baltimore is a 3.5-point favorite with the total set at 46.5. Tennessee (all NFL odds from BookMaker). The national game on Fox has the Minnesota Vikings traveling to Green Bay in an NFC North rivalry game. The Packers are a 6.5-point favorite with an over/under of 50. Another three games take place in the second window of afternoon games. At 4:05 PM ET, the Los Angeles Chargers travel to Denver with the Broncos a 3.5-point favorite with a total of 44.5. Seattle hosts the San Francisco 49ers at 4:25 PM ET. The Seahawks are a 3-point favorite and the over/under at 53 in this NFC West battle. The national game on Fox at 4:25 PM ET features New Orleans traveling to Chicago to play the Bears. The Saints are a 4-point road favorite with the total set at 43. First place in the NFC East will be at stake in the Sunday Night Football game on NBC despite it being a battle of two teams with losing records and a long list of injuries.Dallas has lost two straight games as well as four of their last five games after they got beat at Washington on Sunday by a 25-3 score. The Cowboys’ offense managed only 142 yards against the Football Team’s defense. Since the season-ending ankle injury to quarterback Dak Prescott, Dallas has scored only 19 points in their 24 offensive drives. Andy Dalton has been declared out for this game after he was on the receiving end of a brutal hit from Washington’s Jon Bostic that knocked him out of the game. The Cowboys will turn to rookie Ben Dinucci as their starting quarterback. Dinucci was a 7th round pick from James Madison, who led the Dukes to the FCS Championship Game against North Dakota State last year. He completed over 70% of his passes in his senior season for 3441 yards with 29 touchdown passes. He also rushed the ball 122 times for 569 yards last year with seven touchdowns, so offensive coordinator Kellen Moore might be able to draw up some plays to take advantage of those skills. Philadelphia snapped a two-game losing streak on Thursday Night Football last week with their 22-21 victory at home against the New York Giants. That win put the Eagles into first place in the division with a 2-4-1 mark. To the victor of this game will go at least a share of first place with three victories on the season. After Dalton was declared out, Philadelphia moved to an 11-point favorite with the total at 43. The game time is 8:20 PM ET.   The four matches on the English Premier League schedule begin at 7 AM ET with Southampton traveling to Aston Villa in a pick ‘em match with the total set at 3. The NBC Peacock app has the game. At 9 AM ET on the NBC Sports Network, Newcastle United hosts Everton with the Toffees a 0.5 goal line road favorite with the over/under set at 2.75 by BetOnline. Manchester United hosts Arsenal at 11:30 AM ET for a match on the NBC Peacock app. Man United is a -0.5 goal line favorite at BetOnline with an over/under of 2.75. At 2:15 PM ET on the NBC Peacock app, Brighton and Hove Albion visit Tottenham with the Hotspurs a 0.75 goal line favorite with an over/under of 2.75 at BetOnline.

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What is No-risk Matched Betting?

by Big Al Staff

Sunday, Nov 01, 2020

What is no-risk matched betting?Anyone who is fond of surfing around the internet probably knows there are tons of ways to earn some extra dollars.  You could start your own business, or find ways to sell your belongings, or teach your profession.  All of the above require lots of effort and might even take a pretty significant initial capital investment.  But what if there was a way to earn extra money which required very little time or investment?That means we're aiming for free money, tax-free money, and a large amount of money.  We'll do so by using the matched betting method.  When you do a quick google search on finding ways to earn money online, you'll immediately stumble upon the no-risk matched betting method.  It might sound too good to be true, but with some smart techniques, you can start exploiting the sports betting industry's loopholes.In this matched betting guide, we'll take you step-by-step what you need to get you started today!  Matched betting is widespread and, if done correctly, can generate some extra cash which goes far beyond your hourly rate at your current job. How does matched betting work? The first thing you should know is that matched betting is legal and not kind of scam.  Indeed, it's a way to take advantage of a loophole in the online sports betting industry due to its free bets and promotions.  As you know, there's strong competition among online bookies.  Thus, they all attempt to create generous promotions to bring in new bettors.  To them, they are new customers.You probably have seen these promotions: 150% bonus on your first deposit (sign-up offer or reload offer) Free $50 wager when you deposit $100 or more (free bet offers) 50% bonus on your first bet (sign-up offer or reload offer) What if we told you that with some smart techniques, you can ensure a risk-free, guaranteed profit?  We'll show you exactly how.  First of all, let's distinguish between back bets and lay bets, both essential parts of the matched betting technique.Back betsThe back bet is pretty simple.  It's the most traditional sense of betting where you pick the winner.  Thus, you're wagering on a team, player or horse you think will end up with the win.  One option could be the New England Patriots to defeat the Indianapolis Colts, or perhaps Nadal to win the Belmont Stakes.  Your bet is simply a win bet.Lay betsWhen online betting exchanges came into the sports betting industry, many new bet types started to gain popularity.  One of these is the lay bet.  Instead of betting on the outcome, you find most likely, you predict an outcome which will not happen.  In other words, which team, player or horse will lose.  And if you’re correct, your lay bet wins. How to get started with matched betting? Okay, so what we're doing here is essentially hedge betting, but in a different form.  Instead of wagering your precious dollars -- your real money -- you’re wagering the sportsbook’s promotional dollars, or free bets, from its sign-up offers.  There are a few steps you need to take to start placing your first risk-free bets.Find the right bookmakerThe first thing to do is find the right bookmaker, betting exchange, or online sportsbook.  Search for the sportsbooks in the gambling industry that offer the best promotions and bonuses.  You don't have to be too picky, because if you find out how this method works, you can try your luck with multiple sportsbooks.  So find yourself a good promotion and sign up straightaway -- this is where you will place bets with a guaranteed profit!Note: You want to place your back bet at a traditional bookmaker and your lay bet at a betting exchange.  The exchange is different from a traditional bookmaker since you're betting against other gamblers rather than a specific bookmaker.Place your qualifying betWhen your account is all set up and you're ready to rumble, it's time to find the right sporting event.  Ask yourself which sport you prefer and look for some proper odds.  We want the lay odds and the back odds to be close to each other.  And the closer the odds are to each other, the more money we'll make from our matched betting offer.  Remember, one method is to trigger a free bet with a qualifying bet.  That bonus could be something like bet $25 to get $50.  That means you need to wager at least $25 with your qualifying bet to trigger the free bets.So, once your free bet is triggered, search your market for an event which meets the no-risk, matched betting criteria, and go ahead and place your bets at both the bookmaker and the betting exchange.Time to take your free profitsWhen both your back bet and lay bet are in place, it's time to sit back and enjoy your game.  There are two possible outcomes in the game, but regardless of which occurs, you will profit.  You will lose one bet, but the overall profit will still be more than your initial stake.  As you can see, it doesn't require that much hard work or complicated math; all you need is some brains and understanding of the matched betting strategy. One thing to be careful about is to make sure your bonus or the free bet has been activated.  There are always specific terms and conditions that you need to live up to before your bonus is activated.  So always double-check before you place your lay bet -- otherwise, you're not making any profits! Matched betting example To truly understand matched betting, we'll show you an example of a matched betting offer from start to finish.  We're not naming any sportsbook, in particular, so let's just use the term bookmaker X for the example.  We'll start with the promotion:Bookmaker X offers $25 free if you deposit and bet $25 of real moneyThen it's time to find the right match.  There are certain sites like oddsmatcher or oddsmonkey that let you scan through multiple markets to find the matches with odds you're looking for.  You want to search for your bookmaker in combination with the minimum odds required to place your qualifying bet.  Let's say the match that comes out is New England Patriots vs. New York Jets, with nearly identical odds.Then it's time for you to start placing your lay bet and back bet.  You place your back bet at the bookmaker and your lay bet at your betting exchange.  This leaves you with the opportunity to hedge your bet and guarantee your profit.  You might wonder how much you need to wager with your lay bet, but there are some tools.  Some call it a lay betting calculator, or a matched betting calculator that helps you to decide how much you need to wager on both sides of the bet.Don't forget there's always the vigorish, juice, or betting exchange commission that we shouldn't forget.  That requires you to stake a little more than you might think initially, but the calculator considers all that.  Now, when both our bets are in place, we'll have two possible outcomes: Your back bet of $25 on the New England Patriots at bookmaker X wins, and your bet on the betting exchange loses Your lay bet of $25 on the New York Jets wins at the betting exchange, and your back bet at bookmaker X loses. In both cases, the most you could lose is a tiny amount, which represents the bookmaker’s or betting exchange’s commission.  However, if your back bet wins, you're also in for $25 in free bets.  So you are guaranteed not to lose any significant money.  But you have the real possibility to make a lot in free bets that you can, later on, turn into even more profits! Matched betting FAQ Before we leave you to it where you can start trying your luck, we want to make sure you have some questions answered that you might still have wandering around your head.  You might read this guide and think it's too good to be true.  Well, it isn't.How much time do I need to spend on matched betting?The beauty of matched betting is that you don't need to spend hours researching before you can place a bet.  With actual sports betting, you need to thoroughly research and make your choices based on statistics and facts, combined with your gut feeling.  In matched betting, you're only relying on the guarantee of making a profit.  The strategy is sound, and also doesn’t require much time to be successful.All you need to do is take a couple of hours to set yourself up to get everything in place.  Once you do, you can spend as much time as you want.  And, the more time you spend, the more money you will make.Is matched betting legal?When something seems too good to be true, and people do not fully understand it, people start looking for a catch.  People do not trust something that's supposed to be a gamble, but you're making it work in a way where you're not taking any risks.  That's weird -- yet not impossible.  In fact, matched betting is entirely legal since you're not doing anything against the regulations.  A spokesman for one of the world's biggest bookies, William Hill, once said: "There's no illegal element to matched betting.  It's a free bet, and you can do what you like." You could compare matched betting to hedge betting, although this is across multiple sportsbooks, and you're taking advantage of the system.  Bonuses and promotions are there for a reason, so why not use them in your favor?How much money do you need to get started with matched betting?It depends on how much money you want to make.  Just kidding, of course.  Anyway, you can first start with as little as $25.  But if you want to start with more, that’s fine, too.  Just understand that, as you take the maximum advantage of more bonuses and promotions, you need more capital.  And there’s no limit to how much money you can put into play.  It's simple as that.If you’re just starting out, our recommendation is to start small and slowly work your way up.  When you start small, you can eventually start reeling in the big bucks and bet on multiple matched bets instead of just one.With that being said, our matched betting guide is complete, and you're all set to give it a shot.  It's exciting if you do it the right way since you're earning easy money!  Have fun, and know that all you need is some capital and an internet connection to start earning some extra cash on the side!

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Assessing Football Home Field Advantage without Fans

by Team Del Genio

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020

It is generalized that oddsmakers assign a standard home-field advantage in football of three points to the host team. The coronavirus pandemic has challenged this working assumption, with many football teams playing in empty stadiums. Even with limited fans allowed in some cities, it is unlikely that their cheers and boos have the same impact on the game as a jam-packed stadium of emotionally-charged fans in a playoff game. How should oddsmakers adjust in the pandemic when taking into account less-than-full stadiums?Even asking the question illuminates that these circumstances are not so different than situations that oddsmakers commonly encounter. Assigning odds to a home team without a vocal or vibrant fan base is not unusual in football. It would be more accurate to suggest that certain home field situations offer their team more of an advantage because their fan base is consistently louder and more disruptive to the opposing team. Every oddsmaker would likely agree that the home team edge is not as strong with capacity limitations to audiences due to COVID concerns. The challenge for oddsmakers (and then bettors) is determining what, if any, home-field advantage still exists for the home team. Some observers have gone so far as to say that COVID has eliminated the home field edge in football. The current win/loss numbers of home versus road teams offer support for that position. However, these observers should be careful of the limited sample size. There are three reasons why home teams retain an edge even without a cheering crowd backing them up.(1) Familiarity. Home teams simply have more experience playing in their stadium and on their field. This familiarity breeds comfort. A lack of familiarity plants the seeds for potential discomfort. This intangible certainly applies to how the home team feels inside their building. However, the weather and climate also play a significant role that should very much be considered. Dome teams may not be as comfortable playing outdoors and on grass fields. Cold weather teams may not be as comfortable playing in hot weather. Teams used to playing in sunny conditions may struggle in the cold. (2) Situational. Teams playing at home get to stay in their own beds. They stick to their routines. Road teams are in hotels and unfamiliar environments. Sometimes the visiting team has been away from home for an extended period of time. The preparation for the road team may have already put them at a disadvantage relative to their opponent even before setting foot on the field that lacks a cheering section. (3) Territoriality. Do home teams feel a higher sense of purpose in defending their home turf? Some psychological studies suggest this is the case. It is fair to assume that there is a higher expectation for teams playing at home to perform well. There perhaps is a built-in excuse for road teams to underperform when playing away from their “home base.” Perhaps for some visiting teams, these negative expectations create a self-fulfilling prophecy.In conclusion, it is reasonable for oddsmakers do not assign full value to home teams when playing in stadiums without enough cheering fans to impact the play of the visiting team. Maybe this adjustment should have already been made in environments that are not as loud and rabid as others?However, bettors beware if they conclude that a home team no longer retains “any” edge when playing at home.Good luck - TDG. 

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Go For It on 4th Down? We Need Better Analytics!

by Hollywood Sports

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020

When Mike McCarthy was auditioning for a new head coaching gig after being let go by the Green Bay Packers, he made it known that he spent his year away from the game camped out in his basement lair studying tape and immersing himself in “analytics.” After Jerry Jones hired him as his next head coach of the Dallas Cowboys, McCarthy made it seem that he had added the new-age analytics to his arsenal of coaching weapons. This new-found knowledge was tested right away in his first game as coach of the Cowboys. McCarthy found his team trailing by a 20-17 score in the fourth quarter. When the Dallas offense stalled at 4th-and-3 on the Los Rams’ 13-yard line, McCarthy bypassed attempting the 30-yard field goal since the “analytics” on 4th down attempts apparently provided a one-size-fits-all answer that required going for the 1st down to keep a potential touchdown drive alive. Unfortunately for the Cowboys faithful, Dallas failed to convert the 1st down and eventually lost the game by the same 20-17 score. I'm agnostic as to whether or not Mike McCarthy made the right or wrong call going for it at 4th-and-3 rather than kick the game-tying FG. However, the litany of defenses for his decision exposed one of the most flawed applications of analytics in football. Attempting to apply the "historical" probability odds of the success-rate on 4th-and-3 (or any other 4th down situation) to the Cowboys' specific chances in that spot represents deductive logic run amok.Here a just a few intangibles that would impact Dallas' success rate at that moment: (1) their field position; (2) the moment in the game; (3) the quality of the opponent’s defense; (3) their credible 3-yard rush play options; (4) their credible 3-yard pass play options; (5) the injury status/health of key offensive players. Each one of these considerations either impacts the specific success rate of the Cowboys’ 4th down play at that moment or contextualizes the risk calculus regarding the ramifications of the probability matrix if they settled for the field goal attempt. These intangibles expose the need for more precise data to identify qualitative factors that contextualize the "actual" probability. Head coaches conduct this additional level of analysis. And this inductive logic is even considered conventional wisdom in other situations! What are the "NFL history" odds for the probability of making a 45-yard field goal? 60%? Imagine that argument trotted out in a situation for a kicker who was struggling through out that very game in making chip-shot field goals (as was the case the next night for Monday Night Football when the Tennessee's place kicker Stephen Gostowksi made a game-winning field goal after missing kicks earlier in the game)?If the NFL history for success rate on 4th-and-3 is, say, 51% (guessing), that does not mean the Cowboys' had that same probability in that specific (statistical) moment. Maybe it was higher!It is indicative of football analytics still being in its infancy stage that this deductive logic is advanced so heavily. Imagine this argument being made after a hypothetical World Series moment: "Stolen base success rate is 55% -- so take your chances with (the relatively slow and non-base stealer) Cody Bellinger stealing 2nd (with two outs)!"Football coaches may, in fact, be better served by being more aggressive on 4th down. Citing general league-wide data that is even attempting to get more specific to being analogous to the situation at hand is flawed. Best of luck for us — Frank.

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Problems in the Kitchen when you “Let Russ Cook!”

by Hollywood Sports

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020

Seattle Seahawks fans, as well as the “you already lost if you did not pass on first down” football analytics crowd, have been vocal with their claims regarding how good that team would be if they passed the ball more in past seasons. This sentiment has evolved into the catchphrase “Let Russ Cook.”Yet when these critics call on the “old-fashioned” Seahawks' offense to run less and pass more (as offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer did in the first two games of the 2018 season before head coach Pete Carroll intervened), they typically fail to address Carroll's reasons for wanting to run the ball more. The direct and indirect benefits of running the football are under-appreciated by the football analytics community. Their arguments would strengthen if they better engaged with the rationale of (Super Bowl-winning) head coaches who find subtle advantages in running the football that transcends the yards-per-carry metric.First, “Russ can't cook” if Russ is on the sidelines with an injury. Carroll is very cognizant of the number of hits made on the quarterback.  He has this number tracked by his coaching staff. Carroll speaks of "not taking the sugar" when it comes to the short-term allure of relying on Wilson to make yet another pass. Every drop back risks another quarterback hit. Have there been studies in the analytic community regarding the correlation between the number of QB hits and injuries? I have not seen any (and I pay attention). These stats are not cited in the "you already lost if you ran on first down" genre of analytics.I would be surprised if this area was not being studied by internal analytics departments. Is there is a threshold where QB hits correlate with a higher risk of injury (like the 400 carry threshold pointing to RB regression the next season)? That seems to be a fascinating subject to investigate. Second, Carroll thinks his team has a better chance of winning close games if he can manage the game to put his coaching staff and Wilson in that position. This belief runs counter to the conventional wisdom in the analytics community that winning close games is random.In general, that conventional wisdom makes sense: close games tend to be decided on a small number of plays (or decisions including by the refs) that would seem to even out over time. However, there is some interesting work being done in basketball suggesting winning close games can be a skill. Certainly, the eye-test watching Wilson, Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Patrick Mahomes, et al, supports the notion that "you don't want those QBs to have the ball last." Do these QBs behave differently in crunch time? For Wilson, that becomes the time he is allowed to "cook."What is fascinating about Seattle is that they began a rebuild for the '18-19 season after missing the playoffs. Rather than eating a couple of losing seasons, they made the playoffs. One would think that Carroll would get credit for "reloading" on the fly. Instead, implicit in the "Let Russ Cook" argument is that this team was closer to winning a Super Bowl these last two seasons than suffering 6-10 records. In college basketball, Carroll's tactics would elevate him to the genius level in the conventional wisdom of that sport.Now in Year Three of the rebuild, I was of the belief that Seattle would pass more this season — just as they did when they were making Super Bowl runs with Wilson (with a better defense and overall roster). I await the 538 dot com article where credit is taken for Seattle’s shift in tactics.I'm not a Carroll stan. I have issues with his approach to the offensive line. Rather, I am a stan for answering arguments -- both explicit and implicit. Fortunately, the misguided conventional wisdom on the Seahawks has contributed to point spread value in the last two seasons. So that has been good!As we now approach the halfway point of the NFL season, what if one of the unintended consequences of "Let Russ Cook" was a decline in play by the Seattle Seahawks defense? More early-down passing shortens Seattle's time of possession on drives. Consider these defensive numbers:2020 Seattle Defense (after Week Six): 27.0 PPG, 471.2 total YPG. 6.4 Yards-Per-Play allowed. 2020 Offense Average Time of Possession: 28:21. 2019 Seattle Defense: 24.9 PPG, 381.7 total YPG. 6.2 Yards-Per-Play allowed 2019 Offense Average Time of Possession: 31:26.Last year, the Seahawks had a 30/32 average run-to-pass play ratio during the regular season for a 51.6% pass rate per offensive snap. Now in the Let Russ Cook era, Seattle enters Week Eight of the NFL season with an average run-to-pass play ration of 25/36 fora 59.0% pass rate per snap offensive snap.Some defensive coaches claim that their players only have about 50 plays in them per game. When defensive players go beyond that point, then their energy level begins to decline. Of course, these defensive coaches can not code R to save their lives. Was "establishing the run" Carroll's method to elevate a mediocre defense?  A closing thought from two-time Super Bowl champ (but failed R coder) Jimmie Johnson: "How you protect a defense is you eliminate the negative plays, and you increase your time of possession by running the football." Best of luck for us — Frank.

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Is It Over for the Early Season NFL Overs Trend?

by Team Del Genio

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020

The 2020 NFL season began as the highest-scoring in league history, with the average combined scores topping the 50-point threshold after the first five weeks of the season. The oddsmakers were slow to adjust as overs had a 43-33-2 (57%) mark after these initial five weeks. Yet in Week 6, nine of the thirteen games finished under the total. Then in Week 7, the under finished 7-6-1. After the Thursday night game between Atlanta and Carolina that finished under the number, the over is now just 53-50-3 (51%) going into November. Are the trends changing? Did the oddsmakers over-adjust The answers to both these questions is probably yes. There were three main reasons that drove the early season higher scoring games. First, the lack of large crowds for these games given COVID-19 precautions and guidelines has prevented loud stadiums. Less crowd noise helps the visiting quarterbacks who no longer have to resort to silent snap counts. This dynamic has not changed even with many stadiums allowing limited crowds. Noise remains a non-factor for the opponent. Second, the referees are calling fewer holding penalties which helps the offense in several ways. Not only are offenses not being penalized ten yards but the interpretation of the rules is helping quarterbacks avoid getting sacked so they can make successful passing plays down the field. Third, the defenses have been behind the offenses when it comes to schemes and cohesion. It was thought that the offenses may start slow without a normal training camp and preseason but, in practice, the evolving offensive philosophies that give the quarterback flexibility to make adjustments on the fly seem to have given the advantage to the offenses. But as defenses get more-and-more in-synch, this factor will continue to be mitigated. With bettors continuing to push the line up by betting overs while defenses get caught up, the under will likely continue to offer value to sharper bettors. As always, maintaining a proper perspective remains essential. The recent market correction is not a reason to start only betting the under just as the early-season over trends were not a reason to only bet overs. The circumstances at hand should always be considered.Good luck - TDG.

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Big Al's Daily Angle: EPL and NCAA Football Preview

by Big Al Staff

Saturday, Oct 31, 2020

The Saturday sports card features a busy slate of college football games along with the English Premier League. The college football schedule has 38 games between FBS opponents. Eleven games kick off the college football slate at noon. The ABC game has Clemson (playing without Trevor Lawrence after his positive COVD test) hosting Boston College. The Tigers are a 26-point favorite with the total set at 58 (all odds from BookMaker). Michigan State travels to Ann Arbor to play Michigan for the Fox game with the Wolverines laying 21 points with an over/under of 51. ESPN has Memphis playing at Cincinnati with the Bearcats a 6.5-point favorite with the over/set at 56.5. West Virginia hosts Kansas State on ESPN2 with the Mountaineers as a 5.5-point favorite with a total of 45.5. FS1 has Iowa State’s trip to Kansas with the Cyclones a 28-point road favorite with an over/under of 51. Georgia State hosts Coastal Carolina on ESPNU with the Chanticleers a 3.5-point favorite and the total set at 61.Another thirteen games are scheduled between 2 PM ET and 4 PM ET. Four nationally televised games start at 3:30 PM ET. The game on CBS features LSU’s trip to Auburn. The Tigers are a 1.5-point road favorite with the total set at 62.5. The ABC game has Notre Dame traveling to Atlanta to play Georgia, where they are 20.5-point favorites with an over/under of 59. Iowa hosts Northwestern on ESPN with the Hawkeyes a 2.5-point favorite and the total set at 44. TCU travels to Waco to play Baylor on ESPN2, with the Horned Frogs a 3-point road favorite and an over/under of 46.5. At 4 PM ET, Fox has Texas’ trip to Oklahoma State where the Cowboys are a 3.5-point favorite with a total of 58. UL-Monroe hosts Appalachian State on ESPNU at 4 PM ET with the Mountaineers a 31-point road favorite and the total set at 56.5. Eleven games take place in the window between 6 PM ET and 8 PM ET. At 6 PM ET, Air Force hosts Boise State with the Broncos as a 14-point road favorite with a total of 49. At 7 PM ET, Mississippi State travels to Alabama, where the Crimson Tide are a 30.5-point favorite with an over/under of 63. San Jose State hosts New Mexico at 7 PM ET on FS1, with the Spartans laying 13.5-points, and the total is 55. The game on ABC at 7:30 PM ET features Ohio State’s trip to Happy Valley to face Penn State. The Buckeyes are a 10-point favorite with an over/under of 64.5. SMU hosts Navy on ESPN2 at 7:30 PM ET with the Mustangs a 13.5-point favorite with the total set at 59.5.  Oklahoma plays at Texas Tech as a 15-point road favorite with an over/under of 67 on Fox at 8 PM ET. UL-Lafayette travels to Texas State, where they are 16-point road favorites with a total of 56.A final three games close out the college football card. At 9:30 PM ET, Utah State hosts San Diego State on the CBS Sports Network with the Aztecs an 8.5-point road favorite and the total set at 44. At 10:15 PM ET, Western Kentucky travels to Provo play BYU, where the Cougars are a 30.5-point favorite with the over/under at 51.5. UNLV hosts Nevada at 10:30 PM ET on ESPNU in the first football game that will have fans in the new Allegiant Stadium. The Wolf Pack are a 14-point road favorite with the total set at 60. The English Premier League has three matches scheduled for Saturday. Manchester City travels to Sheffield United on the NBC Peacock app that starts at 8:30 AM ET. The NBC Sports Network broadcasts Chelsea’s trip to Burnley at 11 AM ET. At 1:30 PM ET, Liverpool hosts West Ham for the match on NBC.

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