COVID-19 & Sports Gambling…

FILES-US-ECONOMY-EMPLOYMENT-TRADE-VIRUS

COVID-19 (corona virus) has impacted many individuals far and wide. The virus has affected each of us in its own unique way(s). Unfortunately, some of you are out of a job because of it; or even worse, have lost a loved one in lieu of this mysterious, yet contagious virus. I truly am thankful that I have not fallen victim to either of these two scenarios. Nevertheless, if you are spending your valuable time sifting through this blog than you too have probably been negatively affected by this pandemic. Obviously all of our sports have been taken away from us until further notice!!! And where there are no sports, there is no gambling. In fact, Casino bookie stocks have dropped, on average, 63% since the pandemic made its way to the states.

Along with many of you, I always look forward to MLB’s Opening Day. The timeless game has now become timed-out. So when will the season begin? For starters, there is much more than meets the eye when orchestrating the continuation of America’s pastime. The logistical side of the sport requires far more work than just a simple start-up date. Will the season be shortened? If so, will broken records be eligible? Will players and virus blogcoaches obtain full salaries? Will double-headers become a normalcy? So on and so forth. According to Vinnie Duber of NBC Sports, he believes that the MLB schedule in its entirety will need to be reconstructed. As far as I’m concerned, the season will have to be shortened. The league cannot allow for the season to extend into the winter months. Think about baseball games being played at Target Field (Minneapolis, MN) in the middle of January… Yeah, no thanks. Back to the anticipated, yet artificial MLB Opening Day; the players union and the association are hopeful for a June 1st start to the season. If the season were not shortened with its original 162 game schedule, than we would be watching playoff baseball in the month of December with a June 1st first pitch. It will be the MLB’s duty to decide if a 2020 All-Star Game/All-Star break is necessary, or if all 162 games are needed to complete the 2020 MLB season. These unanswered questions will be very interesting to take note of as they unfold. Now, if you are a baseball freak and you are on the verge of gouging out your eyes; than there is in fact a temporary “baseball-fix” for people like yourself. CBS Sports did us the honor of simulating each and every Opening Day game with superficial box scores. Click HERE to see how your team would have done on Opening Day!

I would like to use this platform to recognize those whom have passed away, been laid-off, missed out on their athletic seasons, and all others whom have been negatively affected in the ever bit slightest during these unusual times.

Blue bloods are blue in the face…

2020 march madness blog

Tournament action begins March 19th and their couldn’t be more questions that need to be answered going into this 2020 Madness of March. Is Kentucky’s young talent ready to make a run? Is this the year that a mid-major is crowned champion? Are Dayton and San Diego St. legit? Will the Tar Heels really miss the tournament? I could go on and on. You have to go back 21 years to the last time a mid-major school won the big tournament (UNLV).

As for this year’s tournament is concerned, I will lead by saying that the underdog spot may be quite beneficial in this year’s round of 68; even more so than other years. For additional information regarding this season’s parity you can visit a previous post at this LINK. For example, taking a look at the NBA’s mock draft, two of the first five picks are from mid-major programs (Dayton & Memphis). ncaab champions blog

Besides the obvious parity that exists every year in March, what other clues can we look for when making our plays? According to sport writer, Sascha Paruk, March Madness “survive-and-advancer’s” are not only good at winning their games outright, but also cover ATS at a higher clip than most. Nine of the last ten national champions covered at a 62% clip during their regular season match-ups. In addition, it is crucial to account for a team’s performance over their last three to six games. Far too often do we as the audience (including myself) take a team’s performance early in their season and put too much stock into a game or two that occurred over two months ago. If you notice that team with a weak record has won four out of their last five games is facing off with a squad that is 24-6 but has lost four of their last five. The team playing better might not be too bad of a play; especially if they are getting double digit pints. This next clue is obvious in nature, but is taken for granted by most. DEFENSE, DEFENSE, DEFENSE! Last year’s Virginia national champions were the best team in all of DI basketball at points allowed per game (56.1). Defense is superior during this time of the year. The most balanced and defensive minded teams are built to make a run. Take a second and third look at those mid-major’s that allow few points to not only cover the point-spread(s); but perhaps even make a run!

I believe that we are in store for a wild, and exciting March. The typical blue bloods such as North Carolina, Kentucky, Duke, Kansas, and UCLA are not at the caliber that these programs are typically at during this time of the year. Hence, leaving that “mid-major-window” much more open than it normally has been in recent years. Remember, do your homework! Just because a school that has had success in the past is facing a mid-major whose mascot is a mystery to you does not mean that they cannot win outright. As always, best of luck and Happy Madness!