Submitted by Wayne Root on Friday, February 24, 2017 at 5:00 PM
As the undisputed KING OF UPSETS (more documented upset calls than any other handicapper in history), I want to alert you to a field that’s ripe for the picking right here in the final few days of the college basketall regular season.
We are going to see A LOT of upsets between now and the start of postseason tournaments. Why is that?
All the top teams are looking ahead to the tournaments!
It’s very hard to get young players motivated for relatively meaningless late season games when the excitement of the tournaments is just around the corner. They know the stuff that REALLY matters is coming up soon. Many players (and coaches) just can’t bring peak emotional and physical intensity to a generic regular season game. And, that’s particularly true if they’ve already had success in so many generic regular season games. The juices do not flow.
Of course, for the OPPONENTS of elite teams…they recognize a great opportunity to take a scalp. They get fired up to score the upset, particularly if it’s on their home floor. There’s still no shortage of those huge group hug celebrations after students storm the court following a headline-making shocker.
I don’t want to suggest that emotion is everything in college basketball. Talent still rules the day in the long haul. But, in the short haul (these last few games), emotion is likely to get the best of it more often than the 52.5% you need to earn a profit as a sports bettor.
So, make a list right now of all the major conference teams who are locked into the Big Dance. See if you can find spots on the schedule where they’re likely to be flat as a pancake against a fired up underdog.
And, while you’re making lists…also compile all the “bubble” teams who still have to earn their way into the March Madness brackets. I’m going to give you some advice that sounds counter-intuitive…you want to pick upsets AGAINST these guys too!
Why? Because teams in a “must-win” situation are often overpriced by the betting market. TV pundits really focus on the bubble late in the season, so there’s a lot of publicity regarding the borderline teams. That scoots the line up at least a point or two (sometimes more) when they’re favored. At worst, you’re getting a point or two that shouldn’t be there. At best, you’re fading a team that’s about to choke!
*Bubble teams often play too conservatively because they’re afraid to lose.
*It’s harder to win big when you’re playing conservatively
*Bubble teams are inconsistent to begin with, or they’d already be Dance locks
*Bubble teams often struggle late in close games because of nerves and a lack of weaponry
Nervous, inconsistent, overly conservative teams are upset fodder to be sure. But, even if they only win by 3-4 as favorites of 6-8 points…you’re getting important value by investing in the opposing underdogs.
If you’ve made these lists, you’re going to have plenty of options to choose from in the coming days. How do you narrow those down so you don’t overexpose your bankroll? How do you isolate the true “cream of the crop” options that would qualify as “Game of the Year” or PINNACLE caliber bets? Some quick tips…
*Focus on underdogs who are still playing hard based on recent results. Cull teams who appear to have thrown in the towel on their seasons. Just because the favorite looks like a good fade….that doesn’t mean the underdog is a great take! Some underdogs have given up, and will get squashed even by flat favorites.
*Focus on underdogs who have a variety of scoring weapons. I always emphasize this to you in our discussions about picking upsets. Teams have to be able to SCORE to beat superior on-paper opponents. Underdogs with a few weapons can actually dominate flat favorites. You just saw that Thursday night when Ohio State ran up the score on Wisconsin. The Badgers barely showed up mentally for the game after their big TV win over Maryland. Ohio State had a few players who were ready to take advantage.
*Focus on underdogs in rivalry games. These dogs are more likely to give you 40 minutes of peak intensity. Many of today’s major conferences are so spread out geographically that it discourages late-season motivation. But…against a long-time rival? Feisty underdogs will be showing their teeth!
I’m really looking forward to these final days of February and the Madness that awaits in March. If you’d like to win alongside the only man in the sports betting industry with a star on the Las Vegas “Walk of Fame,” sign up for service today!
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See you again after the weekend. Some mid-major tournaments will be getting underway by midweek! Then next Friday will see the tip off of the West Coast Conference tournament right here in Las Vegas. If you’ve been dilly-dallying since the end of football, snap out of it! It’s time for you to go to W.A.R. alongside WAYNE ALLYN ROOT!