Monday, December 15
Steelers vs. Jets @ Meadowlands, 1:00 PM ET
Both teams are hanging onto slim playoff hopes. The game opened Jets - 3 (-110), and has moved very little. Jets are coming off a tough loss last week to the Bills and are in a little better position that the Steelers for a playoff birth. The Public is currently betting the Jets at a ratio of 3 to 1. The Wiseguys have paid little attention to this game. The House will be rooting for the game to land anything but "3". With the chance of snowfall on the horizon for this game, a Jets' win by 3 is not an unlikely possibility.
Cowboys vs. Redskins @ Fedex Field, 4:15 PM ET
We made this game a little higher than the boys did in Vegas. The game opened Cowboys -1.5, but some early Wiseguy money moved it down to a pick. The Cowboys are coming off a tough loss in Philadelphia but are currently in position for a Wild Card birth, if they play hard the remainder of the season.
The Redskins are virtually eliminated, and have shown little sign of improvement the last few weeks. Hasselbeck will get another start in place of the injured Ramsey, but it's highly unlikely he will make a good showing against the league's #1 defense. The Public agrees and continues to bet the Cowboys - 1 at a ratio of 3 to 1.
Expect to see this game go higher. If the Public continues to play, we should be using -2 or -2.5 by game day. Nasty weather is also in the forecast, so keep a lookout for some Wiseguy money being played on the under 35.5.
Vikings vs. Bears @ Soldier Field 1:00 PM ET
Rex Grossman will get his first start this week since the Bears are officially eliminated from the playoff picture. Every bookmaker remembers Grossman for all the money he and the Gators cost us in college. With a strong performance this week, he might make some of that money back for us.
The game opened Vikings -1 and the Wiseguys played it up to -2. It came down off the board when the Grossman information was released and was reopened at -3. The Public is currently burying this game at a ratio of 6 to 1. The inexperience of Grossman, and the fact that the Vikings are looking to wrap up their first division crown in three years, should continue to entice more Vikings' bets. Expect to see this game Vikings -3 (-120) by game day.
Falcons vs. Colts @ RCA Dome
Michael Vick comes back for the first time last week and rushes for 141 yards against a tough Panthers' defense. There are few players in the NFL who could make such a big impact on a team's success as this phenom quarterback.
Normally, we would be writing tons of Colts' money on this game, but it has been relatively quiet. The game opened up Colts -8 and moved a half point as a result of some early Wiseguy money on the Falcons. The Public seems split on whether Manning and the Colts will cover the -7.5, or Michael Vick will come up with another huge game against a Colts' rushing defense, that is ranked 15th in the league. The only agreement on this game is the total. The league's #2 offense against the league's #1 scrambling quarterback equals points, points, and more points. The total opened 47.5 and currently sits at 48. The Public is betting the over at a ratio of 10 to 1, so don't expect to see the 48's much longer.
Seattle vs. Rams @ Edward Jones Dome
Rams are looking to clinch the NFC West and the Seahawks are looking to stay in the playoff hunt. Seahawks have been horrible on the road and the Rams have been perfect at home.
The game opened Rams -7, but some early Wiseguy money on the Seahawks moved the game to -6.5. The small play was the result of a large spread for two divisional rivals fighting for the playoffs. Normally, I would favor the underdog much like the Wiseguys, but knowing firsthand how quickly the Rams can put up points, the -6.5 might be a bargain. The Public agrees and continues to play the Rams -6.5 at a ratio of 4 to1. The game could go back to seven, as a result of the Public money, but the Wiseguys won't let it go much higher
Detroit vs. Chiefs @ Arrowhead Stadium
A two-touchdown pointspread is a lot to overcome in the NFL. The Public doesn't seem to care as they continue to lay the Chiefs -14 at a ratio of 4 to 1. The game opened 14, but has not moved at all, even in the face of the Public money being played. Could the Wiseguys be waiting for the Public to push the number to -14.5??? Possibly, considering the fact that the Chiefs have shown some holes in their armor the past few games.
Keep in mind that the Chiefs rank 28th in total defense and the Lions are fighting to avoid breaking the 22 road-loss record, currently held by the Buffalo Bills. The game will continue to attract the die-hard Chiefs' supporters, who could move the game to 14.5. If the 14.5's do show their face, catch a quick glimpse, because they shouldn't be there very long.
Ravens vs. Raiders @ Oakland Coliseum
It's always a shame to see a team completely fall apart from one year to the next. The Raiders AKA, "the dumbest team in America," are going up against a Ravens' team that currently sits in 1st place in the AFC North.
The pointspread on this game has attracted a huge amount of early attention. The Ravens opened a modest -5.5 point favorite. The Wiseguys quickly pounded the game and it moved to -6.5. The Wiseguys came in early because they had the foresight to know that the Public would also be pounding down hard on the Ravens as well. We are currently being bet Baltimore, at a ratio of 6 to 1, with huge money coming in on parlays as well as teasers at a pick. If you have plans to bet the Ravens, bet early. The game should continue to move higher, and you might end up having to pay the extra 10 cents to get the Ravens at -6.5.
Sunday Night Preview
Giants vs. Saints @ Superdome
This Sunday night matchup could have been highly anticipated. Instead, the Giants are eliminated from playoff contention and the Saints are barely alive. To add insult to injury, the Giants will be starting rookie quarterback, Jesse Palmer, in place of the injured Kerry Collins. With so little on the line, the game has still attracted some heavy betting action.
The Public has pretty much given up on the Giants and they are betting the Saints at a ratio of 15 to 1. At that ratio, expect to see the game go to Saints -7.5 on Sunday. Statistically, these teams match up pretty good, but penalties continue to hurt the Giants. If the game does go to -7.5, the Wiseguys might be enticed enough to play the Giants.
Monday Night Preview
Eagles vs. Dolphins
Philadelphia is 0-5 all time in Miami. Four of the five games have been decided by three points or less. Miami would love to make it 0-6, as they continue to fight this Monday night for the AFC Wild Card. The Eagles have wrapped up a playoff spot with their convincing win over the Cowboys, but can still secure home field advantage throughout the playoffs, with three more wins to finish out the season.
The game opened Dolphins -2, and has seen little movement. The Public is betting the Eagles at a ratio of 2 to1. Add the fact that Jay Fielder is a little banged up, and Ricky Williams has had trouble running the ball, I don't see this game going to -3. The Dolphins need this game more and will benefit from home field advantage, but the money coming in could push the game to -1, or even a pick. Expect a close, low scoring game full of excitement. This should be one of the best MNF games of the year.
Saturday, December 13
The Houston Astros can see the writing on the wall. This past week they made their biggest acquisition of the year and signed left-hander, Andy Pettite, to a three year, $31.5 million dollar deal. The move puts them in good position to challenge their divisional rival, the Chicago Cubs, who currently boast the strongest starting rotation in the NL Central and, arguably, the entire league.
With that deal secured, many MLB insiders have begun to circulate rumors that Roger Clemens may not be far behind. Clemens, although recently retired, has been spotted lately working out with Pettite, and has expressed interest, in the past, of playing in Houston.
"I don't know what he is thinking, but he has been working out with me all week, and he's in shape," Pettite told Dan Patrick on ESPN Radio. "He could pitch right now. I can tell you thisâ€¦if he expressed to me at all that he wanted to play, I would be all over him."
There has been so much interest from the Houston area that KKRW-FM "the Dean and Rog show" actually tried to entice Clemens, a Houston resident, to sign a deal by offering a Free Hummer. Clemens received a Hummer a few months back as his going away present from the Yankees. The Hummer being offered by KKRW was in response to Clemens concern about losing the Hummer given to him by the Yankees if he came out of retirement.
"The Rocket would be a great fit for the Astros this season," says BetCBS CEO, Dave Johnson. "Clemens and Pettitte together on such an offensively strong team could give the Astros that extra edge that they need in the playoffs. The Astros need a few players who have been there, and done that. Personally, I could not think of a better duo that could bring this type of needed experience to the Astros."
BetCBS oddsmakers have posted the following odds on whether or not Clemens will come out of retirement and pitch for the Astros this season:
Yes, Clemens will be on a 2004 MLB opening day roster +200
No, Clemens will stay in retirement -400
Wednesday, December 10
The Sporting News has named an NFL Coach of the Year every season since 1947. The coaches who have distinguished themselves this season, by motivating their teams to the top of their divisions, will be the obvious choices for this prestigious award.
"The Coach of the Year award attracts a whole lot of attention at this time of the season," says BetCBS.com CEO, Dave Johnson. "The playoff-caliber teams begin to separate from the pack, and the strong coaching performances shine through brightly. Parcells is obviously the favorite for the turn-around he has created in Dallas. However, Marvin Lewis and John Fox have also attracted some attention for the magic they have performed for their respective franchises. This should be an extremely close vote this year. There have been some phenomenal turn-arounds, and it will be a very tough decision"
BetCBS.com Linesmen have released the following odds as to who will be named the Sporting News Coach of the Year:
Bill Parcells Even Money
Marvin Lewis +200
Bill Belicheck +300
John Fox +300
Dick Vermeil +400
Tony Dungy +400
Andy Reid +600
Jeff Fischer +600
Mike Martz +600
Monday, December 8
"The Heisman Trophy is the most anticipated award during the college football season," says Dave Johnson, CEO of BetCBS.com. "Fans across the country follow the race for the Heisman in the same way they follow the BCS Standings."
Votes for the winner are determined as follows:
The nation is split into six electoral sections, i.e., Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, South, Midwest, Southwest, and Far West. Each section consists of 175 media voters culled from the print, radio and television ranks. Every past Heisman winner casts a vote as well. Each elector casts a ballot showing his top three choices. The elector's top choice receives three points, the second receives two and the third receives one. The player who receives the highest number of points across all three choices is the winner.
The current odds at BetCBS.com on who will win this coveted award are as follows:
Jason White (Oklahoma) +100
Larry Fitzgerald (Pittsburgh) +250
Eli Manning (Mississippi) +350
Chris Perry (Michigan) +350
Kevin Jones (Virginia Tech) +450
Philip Rivers (NC State) +450
Field (All Others) +600
Explanation: In the Odds listed above Jason White is the current favorite to Win the Award. A $100 bet on Jason White pays back the player $100. A $100 bet on Philip Rivers to win would pay the player back $450.
Although it was speculated earlier that Solich's job was in jeopardy, many people still do not believe that the firing was justified, especially based on the job that Solich has done the last few years.
Solich coached Nebraska to a 58-19 record over the past six seasons, but fell way short of a chance to play in the Sugar Bowl this year, or even the Big 12 Championship.
Pederson was quoted as saying, "I refuse to let this program gravitate to a level of mediocrity. We will not surrender the Big 12 Conference to Texas or Oklahoma." And so, the search for a new Nebraska Head Coach has begun, and speculation has arisen in the Cornhusker community, as well as throughout the college football community, as to who will be named.
"We have received numerous requests by players to post odds on the outcome of the Nebraska Head Coach search," says BetCBSports CEO, Dave Johnson. "Many diehard college football fans were shocked by the firing last week. The disbelief adds much anticipation and speculation as to who will be named to take over the prestigious Head Coach spot. Often, the results of such an appointment prove to be extremely surprising. Already, we have seen a lot of attention on Steve Spurrier taking over at +5000. Many players feel that risking $100 to win $5000 on Spurrier, particularly after his recent downfall, is an appealing wager."
BetCBSports linesmen have released the following odds as to who will be named to the Head Coach position:
Turner Gill(Nebraska Associate Head Coach) +200
Bo Pelini (Nebraska Defensive Coordinator) +200
Walt Harris (Pittsburgh) +300
Joe Glenn (Wyoming) +400
Rich Rodriguez (West Virginia) +500
Urban Meyer (Utah) +500
Kirk Ferentz (Iowa) +700
Les Miles (Oklahoma State) +600
Jeff Tedford (California) +600
Mike Bellotti (Oregon) +800
Monte Kiffen (Defensive Coordinator Buccaneers) +1500
Steve Spurrier (Redskins) +5000
Jimmie Johnson (Fox Sports Studio Analyst) +8000
Rick Neuheisel (Former Washington Coach) +10000
Mike Price (Former Alabama Coach) +15000
Field (Any other Coaches not Listed Above) +200
The following games were selected for review because they have received attention from either, the Wiseguys, or Public players, throughout this past week.
Bowls at Stake Once Again
#5 Georgia vs. #3 LSU
The Georgia Dome
This game will be an extremely tough defensive matchup. Georgia and LSU both rank in the top ten in rushing defense and are #1 and #2 in scoring defense. LSU opened early in the week as a 2.5 point favorite. We moved a half point to LSU -3, mostly as a result of some early heavy money being bet on LSU by the Public. The current ratio of LSU bets to Georgia bets is 4 to 1.
Georgia, however, has a few small advantages in its favor. First, the Bulldogs will have the benefit of home field advantage since the game is being held at the Georgia Dome. In a close, low scoring game like this, fan support plays a huge factor. Although each team is allocated tickets, you can expect any remaining seats to be filled with Georgia fans.
Second, and no less important, is the revenge factor. They lost a close game by seven points in September to LSU. Expect the Georgia players to be mentally ready to exact some revenge.
On the other side of the ball, LSU is hungry to gain a chance for a birth in the coveted Sugar Bowl. A convincing win vs. Georgia, and a loss by USC, could seal the deal. Quarterback Matt Mauck is not a stranger to big games. The star quarterback was the 2001 Title game MVP. Expect him to rise to the occasion again with a big game.
Factors in favor of both teams should make this a close game. Don't expect to see -3.5's on the game, unless the Wiseguys discover some valuable LSU information.
BIG 12 Championship
#1 Oklahoma vs. #13 Kansas State
Kansas State and Oklahoma come into this game ranking in the top 20 in both rushing and passing defense. Oklahoma opened early in the week as a huge 14-point favorite. I was a little surprised by the two-touchdown spread, considering that Kansas State has been consistently dominant on both sides of the ball this season.
The 14's quickly disappeared as early Wiseguy money soaked up the two-touchdown spread. The game has already moved a point and a half and currently sits at -12.5.
Kansas State has a strong pass defense, which could prove to be big factor in this game. The Oklahoma pass offense, specifically the White-Clayton duo, comprises 62% of their total offensive output. If Kansas State can contain the pass, the game could be kept close, and could come down to running the ball. If it does come down to running the ball, Kansas State can turn to their leading rusher and Conference rushing leader, Darren Sproles. If Sproles can find some holes in the Oklahoma rush defense, things could get mighty exciting.
On the other side of the ball, Oklahoma has been nearly flawless all season. Like most great teams they have risen to the occasion against all obstacles and have overcome each one convincingly.
Expect White to come out passing. A big game like this one, against a tough Conference rival, could seal the deal for the Big 12 Championship, a birth in the Sugar Bowl, and ultimately the Heisman Trophy itself. Sounds like a lot to swallow, but White has proved himself and handled the pressure well, week in and week out this season.
Kansas State has a few intangibles that could work to their advantage, if they come ready to play. The Public was happy when the Wiseguys took away those 14's, and they continue to lay the favorite -12.5 at a ratio of 7 to 1. The money could drive the game back to 14, but don't expect to see it go any higher. The wise money won't let this spread go past two touchdowns.
The Hurricanes winning by 14, and SMU covering the 24.5 point spread, knocked down some big Teaser money for the House. We needed every bit of it to sustain devastating wins by the Bulldogs and Volunteers.
Licking our wounds we headed into Sunday with great optimism. The optimism was crushed when the Seahawks, Eagles and Rams exploded offensively with lopsided victories. A late Flutie TD and a 48-yard pass by Leftwich, sealed the deal late, and the House snuck by miraculously with a small winning weekend.
#9 FSU vs. #11 Florida
This game had it all - bad calls, acrobatic catches, suspense and ultimately fighting. The PK Sam 52 yard TD reception, with 55 seconds left, helped the House cover on all the Florida Public money we wrote at +1 and +1.5. We lost small on Teasers when FSU +4.5 and Florida +7.5 connected, but then knocked down a lot of Parlays.
Result: Medium House Win
#5 Georgia vs. Georgia Tech
The Bulldogs needed a big win to earn a shot at the SEC Championship game next week vs. LSU. They have done just that, eliminating the Yellow Jackets easily by 17 points. The Public bet on Georgia -7, -7.5 and -8. The Wiseguys came in at post and laid us -8.5, moving the game to -9.5 and -10 before closing. Reggie Ball never played the second half, and Georgia covered easily.
Result: Huge Player Win
#10 Miami vs. #20 Pittsburgh
The Hurricanes ran the ball through Pittsburgh on their way to the Big East Conference Title. Payton and Moss both had explosive days, and exposed the weak Pittsburgh defense against the run, along the way. The Public favored Pittsburgh +3 in this game, but the Wiseguys came in and laid the Hurricanes at post. The game went to Miami -3.5, but we were still taking more money on Pittsburgh. Pitt looked good their first series, but in the end, the game wasn't even close. Hurricanes won by enough to knock down the 10 point Teasers at +13.
Result: Medium House Win
#19 TCU vs. SMU
The fact they knew they were not going to a Bowl Championship Series game may have had a little to do with the lethargic play of TCU on Saturday. A huge favorite at -24.5 they barely escaped with a win. The game opened TCU -23, and we wrote business from -23 to -24.5. This extremely close game was a huge win for the House. Although SMU lost, they covered sufficiently to help the house knock down all the Teasers across the board, including 6, 6.5, 7, 10, and the 14 points.
Result: Large House Win
#7 Tennessee vs. Kentucky
The largest move of the day was also the largest loss for the house. Tennessee opened a 10-point favorite and quickly went through the roof. The Wiseguys slammed this game at -10 and -10.5 early in the week. The Public followed, and continued to bet the game driving the number up to -12.5.
On game day a large Wiseguy outfit came in and laid the -12.5, driving the number farther up to the closing line of -13.5. When so much money comes in on one side of a game, a Bookmaker must decide to move the game higher in the hopes of taking back money, or to continue writing business at the same number.
Common sense would tell the inexperienced linesman to move the game and protect the business, but often people fail to realize that by moving the game, we run the risk of being middled. Well, that risk became a reality. We wrote the majority of business from Tenn -10, through Tenn -13, and the game landed -13. All players who laid Tenn -13 or better won, and the few players who came in late on Kentucky +14 (-120) won as well.
Result: Huge Player Win
Bills vs. Giants
Bledsoe was feeling a little woozy, but he was in there long enough to connect on 19 passes against a hapless Giants' defense. The Giants managed to put 7 points on the board in the third quarter, but it was not enough to win this game, and perhaps secure Fassell's job. The game looked like a possible "3 count" game before it started, but that thought was quickly diminished. Bills won easily, and the House won on Straights and Teasers with this lopsided victory.
Result: Medium House Win
Chiefs vs. Chargers
Somebody ate his Flutie flakes. The late TD scored by Flutie, as time expired, saved us from a devastating loss. The Public laid the Chiefs -7 and -7. They Teased the Chiefs -1 and -1.5. The Teasers still connected, but the late TD pulled the Chargers within 4 points and knocked down all the Straight Bets for the House. There were also a few happy Wiseguys out there, who came in late and took the Chargers +7.5 at post.
Result: Medium House Win
Vikings vs. Rams
Under normal circumstances, we would be rooting for the Vikings to lose. However, playing the Rams on the road are not normal circumstances. The Public still loves to bet the Rams as they came in strong on Straight bets and Teasers at a pick and -1. The game was never close. Daunte was sacked eight times…yes, I repeat, eight times. We lost everything on this game, right across the board, including Straights, Parlays and Teasers.
Result: Large Player Win
Patriots vs. Colts
The hottest team in the NFL and they were bet heavily. The game opened Colts -4, and the Public were betting the Patriots at a ratio of 3 to 1. A little before post, a Wiseguy play came out on the Patriots +4, and we moved the game to 3.5.
When the game started, we were buried with Patriots' money. Colts started slow and made it close towards the last whistle of the game. Towards the end of the game, we actually started to root for the Patriots. If the Colts score at the end, and go up by 3 points, both sides of the Teasers (Colts +3 and Patriots +10) would have pushed or won. The game ending on the 1-yard line, with the Patriots up by 4, at least ensured us that all the Colts' +3 money was knocked down.
Result: Large Player Win
Eagles vs. Panthers
This game was packed full of missed opportunities. The Wiseguys came in early in the week and took +2.5 on the Eagles. The Public bet the Eagles heavy at +2 and +1.5. The majority of the Teasers were on the Eagles at +7.5.
We assumed this would be a close game, but mistakes and missed opportunities killed us on the Panthers. Three missed field goals, and an unsuccessful 4th and 1 before the end of the first half, killed any chance the Panthers had to cover the spread. They lose by 9 points, and the Eagles Straight and Teaser money cover.
Result: Large Player Win
Buccaneers vs. Jaguars
Going into this game, we still had a bad taste leftover from the Eagles, Colts and Rams. The House was down for the day with those wicked afternoon losses. Players were hitting us hard on the Bucs -3.5 even and the Bucs in seven point Teasers +3.5.
The Bucs needed this game, but hardly played with any sense of urgency. Jacksonville went up early 7-0 to start the game, and we got a little overly excited. The excitement was dashed when the Bucs came back with 10 unanswered points to go up by 3 in the second quarter. We knocked down a little money at halftime when the Jaguars nailed a 28-yard field goal with 12 ticks left on the clock.
The second-half line opened Bucs -3 (-110), and we got buried again. More money came in on the Bucs, but there was nothing that could be done. We were rooting that the game would not land Bucs -3.
A missed Gramatica field goal in the third quarter, followed by the 48-yard Jimmy Smith TD reception, made the game land 7, and the House had its biggest win of the day. In addition to all the Straight and Teasers money, we got all the Bucs second-half money -3. This game made the day and the weekend. Without the win, we would have lost for the week. Overall, this was not a great week for the House, and there will still be plenty of payouts.
Monday Night Forecast:
Public has been betting us at a ratio of 8 to 1 on the Titans. Game opened Titans -1.5, when McNair was doubtful. Since being upgraded to probable, the Wiseguys and Public have been coming in heavy on Tennessee. The House will be rooting for Pennington to have a big night. This will be two consecutive nights where the House has needed big games from Marshall quarterbacks.
Monday, December 1
"Rookie of the Year is a huge honor," says BetCBSports CEO, Dave Johnson, "Our players love to bet on the rookies from their favorite teams. The odds on favorite at the current time is the Cardinals Anquan Boldin, who could challenge the rookie record for receptions currently held by Keith Jackson in 1988. However, there is a lot of value in the other players as well. Byron Leftwich has had some big games recently, including the Sunday night win over the Buccaneers. We expect to see some action coming in on the +400 this upcoming week for Leftwich."
Last season's winner was Jeremy Shockey of the New York Giants. Shockey led all NFL tight ends with 74 receptions and 894 receiving yards, while breaking the New York Giants' records in both receptions and receiving yards by a player in that position.
The current odds on the winner of the prestigious award at BetCBSports.com are as follows:
WR Anquan Boldin (Cardinals) +EVEN
RB Domanick Davis (Texans) +200
QB Byron Leftwich (Jaguars) +400
CB Terence Newman (Cowboys) +400
WR Andre Johnson (Texans) +400
OLB Terrell Suggs (Ravens) +500
MLB Nick Barnett (Packers) +600
CB Marcus Trufant (Seahawks) +600
CB Charles Tillman (Bears) +1000
FS Ken Hamlin (Seahawks) +1000
DE Kevin Williams (Vikings) +1200
OLB Boss Bailey (Lions) +1400
OLB Lance Briggs (Bears) +1800
OLB Pisa Tinoisamoa (Rams) +2000
FS Rashean Mathis (Jaguars) +2200
Field (All other rookie players) +600
Explanation of the odds: A $100 wager on Anquan Boldin would payback $100, if the player wins the award. Comparatively, a winning $100 wager on Nick Barnett would payback $600.