One week after bettors gained a little traction in the sports books, things went back to normal as the books had a winning weekend. It wasn’t a big win – some books reported a push for Saturday and Sunday, but the others reported small wins with the bulk of the win stemming from UCLA getting whacked Saturday night at Cal and the Packers losing outright to the Colts on Sunday.
College football favorites went 27-22 against-the spread on Saturday, which is usually a good ratio for the bettors, but believe or not, with all the big games on Saturday, the most important win on the day for the sports books was Cal’s 43-17 win over UCLA as a 2 ½-point underdog.
But the biggest blow on the day was the Packers losing outright to the Colts as 7-point favorites. Not only did the Packers lose on the spread, but their loss wiped out the most popular teaser and money-line parlay bets of the day.
By being one of the final games of the day to kick off, it had a larger shelf-life than the other big games. It may not have been the most wagered upon game, but it definitely had the most risk attached to it once all the days other events were posted. UCLA was a very popular play with public money, while Cal found some sharp buy taking the points. As is the case in most of the big games, the books were rooting for the sharps.
With the game was one of the final kickoffs of the day, it also attracted all the “get-back”’ money from bettors chasing their losses and others that were trying to double up on their win from the day.
On Sunday there were only six early NFL games which forced plays on teams the public might not have sided with in other weeks where we have eight or nine choices on early kickoffs. The Bengals losing outright at home as a 3-point favorite to the Dolphins was bad for the bettors. The Chiefs getting the back door cover in a 9-6 loss at home to the Ravens killed some more parlays, as did the Steelers failing to cover -4 in their 16-14 home win over the Eagles. By the time the afternoon games rolled around, most everyone was busted, which helped the books avoid a disaster. (See gamingtoday.com for the entire Roberts story).
Micah Roberts is a former Las Vegas race and sports book director, and longtime motorsports columnist and sports analyst at GamingToday. Contact Micah at [email protected].