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Kick-off comin’!

Aug 12, 2003 6:51 AM

The upcoming football season marks the 27th consecutive year that GamingToday will provide full-blown coverage of both college and pro football with an emphasis on News You Can Bet On!

Topping the list of GT’s popular features is the exclusive Bookies Battle the PointspreadTM, in which sports directors from Nevada’s major casinos every week select the pointspread winners for every NFL game.

Last year, nearly 70 Nevada "bookies" participated in the Bookies BattleTM. As a group, their selections were a modest 51.7 percent against the spread.

But several performed well for their followers, including Johnny Spot at the Barbary Coast, whose winning record of 152-103 (59.6 percent winning margin) was good enough to top all the other bookies.

Taking second in the competition was Glynis Mickelian of the Primadonna Resorts, who amassed a 150-105 record for a winning margin of 58.8 percent.

This year’s Bookies BattleTM kicks off with GT’s Sept. 2 edition, marking the start of the regular NFL season.

More great football coverage will be provided by renowned handicappers Jim Feist and Andy Iskoe, while newcomer, Doc’s Sports Service, for the first time brings its expertise in college football to the pages of GamingToday.

"I think we have the best line-up of sports handicappers and analysts of any publication, radio or TV show or online sports service," said GamingToday publisher and founder Chuck Di Rocco. "Our writers have proven their ability where it counts — at the betting windows, on both sides of the counter."

Indeed, GT’s stable of experts have paid their dues.

Andy Iskoe, who spearheads the newspaper’s NFL coverage, finished in third place in last year’s prestigious Las Vegas Hilton Super Contest.

Iskoe also claims top three finishes in citywide contests sponsored by Coast and Station resorts, recently finished second in the Stardust Invitational, and once hit 17 of 17 selections to win a weekly prize in the Stardust’s All American Football Contest.

Most important to GT readers, Iskoe last year "ran the table" one week with his NFL selections, which were a perfect 14-0 against the spread!

Jim Feist has won virtually every football handicapping contest in existence, and has been a pioneer in the sports gaming field since he arrived in Las Vegas in 1976.

Feist’s sports service features up-to-the-minute information, predictions and insights not found with any other service.

In addition, Feist’s rotation schedule has become the norm for the industry, and sports directors regularly seek his counsel on line movements.

The GamingToday staff also features award-winning columnists and handicappers with a combined experience of more than 60 years in the sports gaming field.

Absent this season from the pages of GamingToday will be two long-time writers, Joe Marcin and John Bennett.

Marcin passed away last year and will be dearly missed, both for his sports insights and wit, as well as his compassion for the industry he loved so much.

And John Bennett elected to "hang them up" after 26 years of service to GamingToday and his longtime friend, Chuck Di Rocco.

Of course, Bennett said he will still be "hanging around" some of Las Vegas’s race and sports books. You might even spot him at the Stardust race book, where he’s been known to hit a quiniella or two. If you’re lucky, John might even offer some advice on what to bet. It won’t be easy to jettison 26 years of sports gambling savvy!