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# Newz Forum: OTHER: NFL, NCAA.. Mythical Picks for the weekend of 2/5/06

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posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 04:25 PM
If you simply have to bet on the coin toss (heads or tails) I have it on good authority that it has come up tails the last three years. Now if you do not understand probability theory at all, you are probably calculating that the odds of coming up tails 4 times in a row are 1 in 16 and so it has to be heads this year. If you do understand probability theory even a little bit, you have to realize that the odds this year are 50/50 just as they are in every other year...

Mythical Picks was profitable two weeks ago. The total for the season is still negative and that illustrates the point I always try to make about betting on every game out there. Don't do it! The vig will eat you up. Look at the season totals in the chart here. I was at or above .500 in my picks everywhere except in trying to pick NFL underdogs to win games outright when the odds were tempting. And still the mythical bankroll wound up in the red. Naturally, no one would think of using any information here as the basis for making a wager on the Super Bowl this weekend. Anyone doing that would be so dumb that if they jumped off the roof, they'd have to ask for directions to the pavement.

Last Week Profit/Loss Season Totals Profit/Loss

NFL ATS 1-1 - 10 102-96-7 - 360
NFL O/U 1-0 +100 43-37-1 +230
NFL M/L 0-0 0 2-10 - 490
NFL Parlays 0-0 0 3-3 +480

NCAA ATS 0-0 0 27-26-3 - 160
NCAA O/U 0-0 0 9-9-1 - 90
NCAA Parlays 0-0 0 1-2 EVEN

Totals: 2-1 + 90 187-183-11 - 390

I read a report where early action on the Super Bowl was 'slow' at the Las Vegas books but there has to be some kind of action going on because the line on the game has moved a full point in the past two weeks and for a handle as large as will show up on this game, that is a very large move.

Now let me give you a piece of arcane stuff I came across in the past two weeks about the game this weekend. This shows exactly why we do not need two weeks to lead up to the Super Bowl game.

Someone did the research to come up with the fact that the Steelers have played in Super Bowl 10, Super Bowl 30 and now in Super Bowl 40. So what? They weren't in Super Bowl 20 so there is no trend here.

I did hear somewhere - sorry but I don't recall so I can't cite it properly - that if Bill Cowher tries to intimidate the refs by sticking his chin in their faces, Mike Holmgren can match that and raise him 3 chins. That's a decent line, but certainly not worth two weeks of hype.

In fact, here is a great essay question for a final exam in a sports journalism class at a university:

Compare and contrast the hype leading up to the Super Bowl with the hype leading up to the Winter Olympics. Please limit your answer to 50,000 words lest your answer appear to mimic some of the nonsense generated just prior to these events.

I never watch any of the halftime extravaganzas for the Super Bowl nor do I peek at the Lingerie Bowl. I tend to use halftime to pay the rent on the beer I consumed during the first half and to power down some more food. However, let me give you a heads up for this year. Be careful allowing young children to watch the halftime show alone. With the Rolling Stones performing, a 'wardrobe malfunction' might involve 'Depends' - - and that could be traumatic for children to see. What am I saying? It would be traumatic for anyone to see...

Mike Ditka said earlier that the key to the game is how Seattle handles the Steelers' blitzes. I think that's true on both sides of the ball because the Seattle defense is not too shabby at getting to the quarterback. In a previous Topical Rant, I suggested that the 'Sack Surplus' was an important statistic to note for NFL teams. For the season the Seahawks were +23 (gave up 27 sacks and sacked the opponents 50 times) while the Steelers were merely +15. Both offensive lines need to play well if their team is going to win.

In my futile NFL pre-season analysis this year, I said that it would not surprise me if Ben Roethlisberger regressed a bit from his fantastic rookie season. Well, he wasn't 15-1 as a starter, but any regression was marginal at best. And I think it's important to note that he was taken about a dozen picks after Eli Manning and maybe 10 picks after Phillip Rivers so comparisons there are interesting after two seasons. Rivers is still suffering from butt calluses on the bench in San Diego. Eli Manning didn't win a game away from Giants' Stadium until mid-way through his second season; Roethlisberger is 14-1 on the road in two years. Eli Manning lost his first playoff game - badly I might add - and it was at home; Roethlisberger has just guided the Steelers to three consecutive road wins in the playoffs.

There are hundreds of proposition wagers available for the Super Bowl. One place you can find a listing is at www.bodog.com. That is one of the Internet sportsbooks out there; I'm not recommending it nor am I recommending that you make any proposition bets, but if you want to see the panoply of things you can bet on with regard to the game on Sunday, here is a place to get a look at most of them. I do like one of the prop bets this weekend.

The over/under for Matt Hasselbeck's passing yardage in the game is 233.5 yards. I like that OVER.

Seattle at Pittsburgh - 4.5 (46.5): Shop both lines. You can find the spread as low as 3.5 at one sportsbook and you can find the total as high as 48 at several of them. I think this ought to be a really good game and it should go down to the final minutes. That being the case, I love the fat line here and I'll take the Seahawks with the points. I also like the game to go OVER 46.5. But I would not add a parlay on top of those wagers.

And for those of you who will mourn the passing or football from the sporting and wagering scene for the next seven months or so, you can go to the Las Vegas Hilton and check out the futures wagers for the winner of next year's BCS Championship Game. At the moment, the co-favorites are Ohio State and Notre Dame at 6-1. Texas A&M is at 100-1 despite the fact that they swear they always have a 12th man available. What does that tell you about their football team?

Good luck.

Curmudgeon

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