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Topic: Odds, Lines and Bumbling Personalities On the Tube

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Odds, Lines and Bumbling Personalities On the Tube
« on: November 13, 2018, 09:49:40 AM »
Kentucky Football has done something this season only those who pay attention could have expected.  They are well coached, and hungry.   They have decent components across the roster and moral anchors offering great on-field leadership on both the O and D.  Several programs over the years were similarly constructed and went further than the Wildcats have in a season, but those teams didn’t face the threat of Mt. Saban and the certainty of being pitted against his minion Kirby.   It turns out another branch of River Saban has brought the ‘cats woe too- in the name of Pruitt.  
Last weekend’s game between the Wildcat’s and the Vols is just the one being picked on here, and because it’s a prime example of how projections just don’t mean a thing, and as hindsight proves what should have been the obvious all along.  Hang with me a minute to explain: 
If the movie “Casino” held any exploratory value into the world of sports wagering, one would believe some sort of chieftain savant is held under strict control of clearing houses that accept bets on games.  This person is supposedly capable of determining outcomes prior to competition, and is accurate enough consistently enough to warrant his name and location to be held in complete blotted out secrecy.   
As tantalizing a picture as that paints, it ain’t so.   If this ‘person’ had a name, it would be ‘Windows’ and the language they spoke would be Excel.  This is to say it’s simply a numbers game and based solely and completely on how those persons placing bets move the line, and Mr. Window’s is tasked exclusively with keeping the risk the house as even as possible- paying winner with the losers moolah alone .  The process is shrouded in confusion and emotionally driven application of rationale, and clarifying the function is purposely avoided, but rest assured this is the game they play.  When a line shifts or a spread increases, the ‘house’ recognizes the effect, and acknowledges news of a team’s components becoming known as the cause, as an example, and in contrast to the order it usually appears (cause/effect). 
It’s important that folks realize the initial position and then the fluidity of betting lines and projections are based off of public reaction to information, not some chieftain savant with an unusual and valuable gift sitting in some posh desert home with one degree of separation from Sharron Stone.  
And here comes the important part in regards to the purpose of this post: 
Q: Where does the public get information deemed actionable enough to move a betting line?  
A: The boob-tube… or the monitor.  Mr. Windows, if you would.  Some guy or gal sitting in some studio parsing reads about whatever teams promise them the higher ratings.  They speak of ‘insider’ information and they crunch data as if it projects what’s coming.   
As reports are presented, bettors, believing themselves better informed, take that opinion and adopt it as their own and wager accordingly.   Wager they do, and the line moves accordingly, and this self licking ice cream cone turns and influences further wagering as the spread widens or closes, and the o/u or outright solidifies nearing the game.  A ratio of people close to their program argue against those close to the opposing program in a forum they can only ‘see’ by chasing the numbers as the line moves.  The really strange part of this is that this invisible forum of arguing participants are generally pretty damn good at predicting games… and which begs the question: “Who is the Savant here?” 
And, alas, as the games conclude we pass judgement.   Some folks who rely solely on the house’s opinion are either rewarded for their loyalty, or really pissed off and seeking another clearing house.   Some people (Like myself- who abhor wagering on sports along with the entire enterprise of exploiting kids playing a game) don’t really care what ‘lines’ offered in the first place, but still buy into the idea there was an ‘upset’ when the house fails.    
Back to UK @ UT this weekend past:
UK hasn’t taken a win from UT in Neyland Stadium in a generation.  This is a mental barrier the Cats had to overcome and anyone with any sense had to consider.  The Cats were coming off of a soul-crushing loss against UGA, which the impact of such should never be ignored.  The Vols are playing better in the second half of the season under Pruitt, appearing fully purchased in his vision at this point, and beyond the happenstance of having a poor offensive line they’re realizing the potential of all other components.  
UK was favored by Six.  
UT won decisively.   
The media responds with talk of ‘upset’ and ‘UK being emotionally flat after the prior loss’.   My question to you guys is “where was this emotional bankruptcy discussed while predicting?” it’s not like that news just came to them.  So, they blame the coaches for lack of focus or ability to ‘charge a team’.   That’s bunk.  It’s bunk because it’s a flat out copout the talking heads are using for their wrong assessments.  It’s only an upset because it was unpredicted by them, and opinion supported by the house.  Meanwhile, anyone who pays attention to the game and the programs realized this was a helluvalot more likely to go UT’s way than UK’s, and based off of something intangible that lives in this sport and gives it spark of interest to all.  This isn’t to say UT has a better team, but UT fans knew they were embattled, and they had history of intangible on their side that was worth a lot more than six points.  
While we’re preparing for the showdowns of rivalry week, consider these comments.  Don’t be surprised if Auburn plays Bama to the bone even though we’re assimilated to believe Bama superior to anyone.  Don’t let the house’s set the mood that tOSU stands no chance against UM when we KNOW how bitter they play.  Don’t think for a second that the savants speaking in binaries have any true notion of what can happen that is superior to the quiet contemplation between your own ears.   This is a game that isn’t decided until that fourth quarter horn sounds, and ‘upsets’ to true students of the game rarely happen.  It would likely be better if we ceased tossing that word around. 
Wanna really be smarter about this sport?  Take discussions to the forum, where those guys know their business (but leave conversation about betting slide- it’s not something we condone). 


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