The professional handicapper, what makes them tick and what does it take to show a profit week in and week out, year after year and how many of these guys are there?
Well I’ve been in Vegas over 25 years, behind the race and sports counter over 20 of those years and I have dealt with some of the smartest guys in the business. Betting sports for a living is no easy task as we all well know, but there are a few people in the past that bring back some very fond memories. What does it take, well its no different than any thing else it takes dedication and a lot of willpower. Just look at what it takes to be a pro golfer or a pro at any sport, it takes dedication, a gift and a complete and total desire to succeed.
There have been several successes in the past that I myself have witnessed but I will just tell you about some of the ones that I myself made money on.
First in the early to mid 1980’s there was "Sam the Plumber," this guy was a legend in college hoops, people would just die to get his plays. After he would bet all of us at the book would run out to get down on his games. Sam would never leave his house for about 6 to 7 months and never took off his PJ’s , he would send his wife out to make his bets for him. This was before computers so the only way he could stay ahead of the game was to study sports pages from the cities that his favorite conferences were in. Sam’s expertise was that he just wasn’t greedy and only stuck to certain small conferences and college hoops was the only sport he bet on.
Another favorite of mine was Pete White who was a college basketball handicapping master. Pete made most of his bets over our phone. It was on Saturday that I really remember, it was one of those huge schedules, over 100 games and Pete bet on 20 of them. I had all the plays and took my break went to another book and bet 55/50 on each. That night I was getting the results and wrote down all W’s, now that is hard to do. I don’t think I ever thanked him, thanks Pete. Pete was another that only bet college hoops.
My third favorite was a guy by the name of Blackie, who only bet on the NFL, talk about a tough game to beat, but beat it he did and with gusto. Blackie was a limit player so after he bet a game you could almost never find the same point spread that he got but it usually didn’t matter. There were people that would give anything to get Blackie’s plays. I think he is retired now living the high life and just golfing his life away at the best courses.
So what did these guys have in common? They all stuck to one sport and the greed that gets to most of us who bet every sport every day just didn’t get to them.
I guess that leaves me out, I like betting every sport everyday and as many races as I have money in my pocket, life is short and I need action and these books need guys like me to pay the help. Help!