Behind The Betting Lines Nov 15 2003

Nov 15 2003
By Wilson King
Football Sports Betting – Inside the college football betting lines

To quote Hunter S. Thompson, “Those of us who had been up all night were in no mood for coffee and donuts.  We wanted strong drink.”  After all, we are members of the international betting culture.  And there are plenty of us.  Those who had been up all night, that is.  Despite my diminished capacities, it did not take a hit of the devil ether to understand the complexities of the situation we had emarked upon today.  We had been beating the public to the punch this entire month, but our good fortune had created an unenviable situation.  To give anything back today would be to feed into the public’s delusion that can beat us.  To keep taking their money would be to violate the sacred bond we had created.  We had one toe over the line, and a step in the wrong direction would leave us both with a feeling of fear and loathing.

“It’s ‘one TOAK over the line,’ you idiot.  One ‘toak.’  Not one ‘toe,’” a voice quickly interrupted.  Unaware that others could intercept my internal monologue, I quickly ceased communication with myself.

After two valium and a quart of rum, I realized that the voice was that of Steve Stone, and despite his cosmic ability to sense a major line change, I was almost certain he could not read my mind. But there was no time for this worthless self-evaluation.  The games were about to start, and I had to grab hold of myself or someone else would.

I knew I had regained some sense of reality because we needed favorites across the board, and that scenario does not exist in any altered state of consciousness, no matter how strong the acid.  We needed Wisconsin and Minnesota, but this did not bode well for us because I never had much luck with in the Midwest.  My fears were confirmed when both were losers, and the day was off to a bad start.  However, things began to come together as the day unfolded.  We gained some momentum with predictable covers by South Carolina, Eastern Michigan and Syracuse, all hosting prohibitive favorites.

Apparently last week’s tribute to Alex English and the U.S. Military Academy did not impress many, as the public bet against both the Nuggets and Army this week.  I began to think that perhaps they were the ones on the strong ether.  But when Army failed to cover an eight point spread at home, costing us a major decision, I realized I was wrong.

Despite our military misfortune, we managed to go into the late afternoon games up a modest sum.  We then quickly capitalized on an Oregon win and Baylor cover, which provided the afternoon’s two biggest decisions.  Purdue took The Ohio State University to overtime, giving us a win on the side; however, exotics hit and depleted our spoils.

While a few minor decisions went our way, the fate of the day lay in the hands of  Alabama getting seven and a half at home against LSU.  A ‘Bama victory would double the day’s earnings.  A loss would leave us reeling

When ESPN featured a segment with Joe Namath in the broadcast booth talking about his teenage daughters, I knew the gig was up.  I decided to get out of town.  At best, I could only hope for a few hours of precious sleep before coming back tomorrow.  And this time, I’ll try it without the acid.  Either way, I think I’ll keep the Acapulco shirt.