The coaching carousel goes around and around while college basketball teams jockey for position as the NCAA tournament picks their No. 1 March Madness seed – yeah I know its still three months out, but I can’t help but to be excited!
College football bowl picks have been made and the games starting to get good. Here are a few words on some of the stories happening across campus this week.
Let me take you back to 2005. The league was comprised of the haves and the have-nots. There were a handful of truly dominant teams: Carolina, Chicago, Cincinnati, Denver, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, the Giants, Pittsburgh and Tampa Bay. They all won 11 or more games with two (Indy and Denver) getting to 13+ wins. Every single one of these teams had winning ATS records and combined for a 84-50 ATS record – good for 63% ATS! Overall, favorites hit an all-time record 57% ATS in 2005. How crazy is that? Consider that in recent NFL history (25 years), favorites averaged about 48% ATS and prior to 2005, never finished above 53%!
The Mitchell report came out yesterday and although there were some surprises the report served as a document to end speculation on some and stir it upon others.
We are now part of a generation in baseball where the best pitcher in Roger Clemens, and the best hitter – Barry Bonds both cheated. This isn’t something that is immune to other sports, but baseball has become the poster child, and it is time for action.
When the Boston Celtics announced over the summer that they had pulled the trigger on a blockbuster trade that brought in Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett to play with Paul Pierce I think we all had some idea of how good the team might be. However, none of us had any idea that they would be THIS good.
Tavarius Jackson, Cleo Lemon, Tim Rattay and Vinny Testaverde. What has this league become?
Back in the day, the quarterback position was one the most glamorous position in football and the cornerstone of a NFL franchise. Now we’ve got GMs all over the league scrambling to fill the voids left by injury, incarceration – ahem, Mike Vick and overall ineptitude and just about every team that’s not the Patriots, Colts, Cowboys, Bengals or Packers are looking for help. In a league with 32 teams, it’s a very sad statement that you can count the number of quality QBs on two hands. The rest aren’t worth a fraction of their salary.
This unfortunate lack of consistent QB play is league-wide and could affect NFL odds. Like a starting pitcher in MLB, a starting quarterback in the NFL is where most bettors start when making their NFL picks. Even professional sports handicapping services are changing up their methods for their NFL expert picks.
Even with snow on the ground and that jolly fat man making his yearly rounds – John Madden, not Santa Claus – is it too early to talk big dance? Of course not.
Making college basketball picks has been getting bigger and bigger every year and with the increasing dollar amounts people who make their own March Madness picks or fill out their own NCAA brackets are always looking for an edge, even this early in the college basketball season.
One possible edge in determining the big dance winner is how some programs, particularly the mid-majors, are able to keep the core of their team intact year after year. Rather than dashing off for the big NBA money, mid-major players are staying in school.
With all the hubbub of the freshman phenoms year in and year out, we see a steady increase of one-and-done freshman playing one year for their major Division I schools then before spring semester grades are turned in, they are jumping ship for the NBA and all the extras that go with it. Extras like big-money contracts and giant ape shoe money.