posted on Nov, 12 2005 @ 08:14 PM
Well, I was sort of right. I said 3 points was too many for Alabama to be getting at home in this game. And indeed, LSU didn't cover the
spread--sort of. Ditto for Bama--sort of. But having watched the highlights on ESPN, it looks to me like Bama failed abysmally to take advantage of
first-half chances, then was real lucky to not lose bigger after halftime.
But I am really peeved about my other pick, Cal plus 19 against USC. Cal ran 31 times and averaged 5.4 yards per carry. USC ran 47 times and
averaged 4.0 yards per carry. Clear, and important, advantage to Cal. Meanwhile, Cal passed 23 times and averaged a lousy 5.5 yards per attempt; USC
passed 32 times and averaged a fair 7.2 yards per attempt (figures include sacks). Clear, and important, edge to USC. BOTH TEAMS averaged 5.5 yards
per play. Dead even on the most important team offensive stat.
But Cal didn't even cover a 19-point spread, let alone the kickoff spread of 17, much less become the third or fourth team to threaten the Trojans'
endless winning streak, and instead almost lost 35-3.
Why? The game's most crucial stat:
Southern Cal: One
UC Berkeley: Six
That kind of b.s. is why I quit betting on sports. Now, I was playing Duplicate Bridge and did not get home until 5 p.m. Pacific Time, so I didn't
see the game. But it's obvious from those stats that Cal outran USC, because I doubt Cal was running constantly against a prevent defense while down
28-3 and 35-3. All their rushers except Forsett ran for good averages, so it's not like one huge run bloated their averages, as PASSES during garbage
time often do for a losing team in a one-sided game.
Yup, this kind of game makes me glad I am in sports-gambling retirement--until at least the bowls and NFL playoffs. Getting 17 points and losing
because of a 6-1 turnover ratio would have driven me freakin' nuts. Especially when my other big play, Bama, dominated the first half on its home
field, carried only a 10-0 lead into the locker room, then got outplayed badly enough in the second half (from what the "play-by-play" on the Net
shows) that they were lucky to lose only by 3 points, pushing the spread.