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bad beats

The Weekend In Bad Beats: A Meaningless Tip-Drill Hail Mary In Ohio Kills Under Bets

Thomas Casale September 24, 2018
Bad Beats Bowling Green

Each week, TheLines will take a look back at some of the worst sports betting “bad beats” from the weekend of college and pro football. These incredible moments caused a swing in money at sportsbooks, resulting in jubilation — and plenty of pain — for bettors everywhere.

Miami (Ohio) 38, Bowling Green 23

Total: 55

It’s never easy betting the UNDER in college football. It’s even harder when teams combine for 14 points in the final 30 seconds.

Miami (Ohio) was in complete control leading 31-3 with just under six minutes to play. Then Bowling Green scored two touchdowns in a minute and 21 seconds to make it a 31-17 game with 4:13 remaining.

The total closed at either 55 or 55.5 at most sportsbooks across the country. UNDER bettors couldn’t allow another touchdown and it looked like they were in the clear when Miami running back Alonzo Smith busted a 29-yard run on 4th and 2 but got tackled at the 3 with less than a minute remaining.

Remember all those times you bet an OVER and a team had an opportunity to score late but instead took a knee to run out the clock?

Well, this wasn’t one of those times.

Instead of just running out the clock, Miami handed the ball off twice and Davion Johnson scored a touchdown with 34 seconds left in the game. Wow, that’s either a tough push or a close win, depending on which line you got.

If only that’s how the game ended. Remember Miami opting to not take a knee? It ended up being a costly decision for many.

In what will go down as one of the worst beats on an UNDER all season, Bowling Green got to the Miami 40-yard line with time for one last play. Quarterback Grant Loy threw a Hail Mary that got tipped into the arms of receiver Justin Sawmiller with zeros showing on the clock. Instead of a push or win, UNDER bettors were left stunned looking at a losing ticket.

By the way, it was the first touchdown of Loy and Sawmiller’s careers.

The two teams combined to score 27 points in the fourth quarter, four touchdowns in the last 5:34 and two touchdowns in the final 34 seconds. To rub salt in the wounds of bettors, the books came out ahead on the final play with 61 percent of the money wagered on the UNDER.

Stanford 38, Oregon 31

Line: Stanford -3
Total: 59

How about two bad beats in one? In one of the craziest games of the season so far, Stanford beat Oregon 38-31. However, the Ducks aren’t the only ones who suffered a tough beat Saturday.

Oregon led this game 24-7 at the half and was about to tack on another touchdown late in the third quarter when they fumbled in the red zone and Stanford’s Joey Alfieri returned it 80 yards for a touchdown. Instead of being down 24, the Cardinal cut Oregon’s lead to 24-14. While the fumble changed momentum, it wasn’t the biggest fumble in the game. Not even close.

Oregon only scored one touchdown in the second half but it appeared to be enough as the Ducks were up 31-28 and running out the clock late in the game. After a key first down run by quarterback Justin Herbert, the Ducks could essentially end the game with Stanford down to one time out. Oregon bettors could rest easily and UNDER bettors would have to settle for a push.

Then CJ Verdell happened.

Verdell fumbled while fighting for extra yards with just 51 seconds remaining. Of course, Oregon could have just taken a knee but apparently, teams don’t do that anymore. The Cardinal recovered the fumble and Oregon bettors could have written the ending to the story.

Stanford kicked a field goal as time expired to tie the game at 31. The kick also put the game OVER the total. Then after striking first in overtime, Stanford picked off Herbert on fourth down to secure the win and send Oregon -3 backers into counseling. According to ESPN, Ducks had a 99 percent chance of winning the game on two separate occasions.

The percentage of bets were split evenly on the game. However,  sportsbooks took a beating on the total with 72 percent of bets and 74 percent of the money bet on the OVER.

An honorable mention goes to bettors who had the Wisconsin/Iowa UNDER 44. Wisconsin scored twice in the final 57 seconds, including a 33-yard end around to fullback Alec Ingold when they were just trying to get a first down and end the game.

Giants 27, Texans 22

Total: 44

You may notice a trend here. It was an awful weekend for UNDER bettors. There weren’t many bad beats on Sunday, although the worst came on the final offensive play of the New York Giants/Houston Texans game for UNDER bettors.

The Giants led the Texans 20-9 midway through the fourth quarter in a sleepy kind of game when disaster struck. The Texans scored with 7:37 remaining on a Deshaun Watson to Will Fuller touchdown to cut the Giants lead to 20-15. The Giants responded with an Eli Manning touchdown pass Sterling Shepard with 2:08 left in the game.

UNDER bettors were still one Giants stop away from cashing a winning ticket. Houston faced a fourth and goal from the four-yard line. The total came down to one play. Watson scrambled in the pocket and hit running back Lamar Miller in the end zone with one second left on the clock. The two teams combined to score three touchdowns in the final eight minutes.

One play. That was the difference between UNDER bettors winning and losing. The books took a loss on the final touchdown as well with 69 percent of bets and 80 percent of the money going to the OVER in this game.

The Weekend In Bad Beats: A (Near) Mississippi Whitewash And A Missed XP

Thomas Casale September 17, 2018
Bad Beats

Each week, TheLines will take a look back at some of the worst sports betting “bad beats” from the weekend of college and pro football. These incredible moments caused a swing in money at sportsbooks, resulting in jubilation — and plenty of pain — for bettors everywhere.

Alabama 62, Ole Miss 7

Total: 71

What if I told you one team will score a touchdown on the first play of the game. The other team will score 62 points. The total is 71. Would you like your chances of cashing the OVER?

The worst beat on Saturday took place in the Alabama/Ole Miss game. Over bettors couldn’t have asked for a better start. The Rebels scored on the first play just 11 seconds into the game. Then Alabama answered with seven straight touchdowns to take a 49-7 halftime lead. That’s 56 points in the first half. If you bet the OVER, the money is already spent. I mean, 17 second-half points is nothing, right?

As thrilling as the first half was for OVER bettors, the second half was just as devastating. One non-offensive touchdown and two field goals by Alabama. Not a point from Ole Miss. Not even a measly, “Let’s kick a meaningless field goal down by 50” to help OVER bettors. Nothing.

Alabama kicked a field goal with 12:16 left in the game to go up 62-7. OVER bettors needed just two more points that never came. The worst part for many bettors is the line opened at 66.5 but went up quickly. The books were a big winner with 69 percent of the bets and 75 percent of the money wagered on the OVER, according to Sports Insights.

Some beats stick with gamblers forever. They tell stories about them for years. This is one of those beats for OVER bettors.

Dolphins 20, Jets 0 (Halftime)

First Half Total: 21

The first half total in the Jets/Dolphins’ game was 21. Unfortunately for OVER bettors, that was one point too many.

Miami led 14-0 late in the second quarter. At this point, OVER bettors will take one more touchdown and a push. Anything else would be gravy. Then, with 42 seconds left in the half, they got it when Ryan Tannehill threw a touchdown pass to tight end A.J. Derby.

That was a close one. Just need the extra point now. Most Sundays, bettors don’t have to sweat every single extra point but this was no normal Sunday for NFL kickers. Jason Sanders missed the extra point, keeping the game UNDER the total. That alone is a bad beat — but there’s even more to the story.

Sam Darnold led the Jets down the field in the final 42 seconds of the first half, giving OVER bettors one last chance to cash. With 10 seconds remaining, Darnold hit receiver Chris Herndon at the 2-yard-line. Herndon fumbled, picked it up but was tackled at the one.

Hurry call time out! Wait, the Jets are out of timeouts. OVER bettors were forced to watch the final seconds click off the clock, one yard and one point away from victory.

Vikings 29, Packers 29

Line: Vikings -2.5

This game was two bad beats in one. The line didn’t get released at many sports books until Sunday because of the uncertainty surrounding Aaron Rodgers’ status. The Westgate SuperContest make the Vikings -7 earlier in the week but when it was announced Rodgers would start, Minnesota closed between a 1.5 and 2-5-point favorite.

Green Bay led this game 23-14 with 7:35 left in the fourth quarter. Minnesota cut the lead to 23-21 just 17 seconds later when Kirk Cousins hit Stefon Diggs for a 75-yard touchdown. Two Mason Crosby field goals gave Green Bay an eight-point lead with 1:45 remaining.

The fourth quarter madness continued when Cousins hit Adam Thielen for the tying touchdown in the final minute. Vikings backers needed the two-point conversation, then a field goal to cover. They got the two-point conversion. The field goal? Well…

It wasn’t a good day for kickers and this game was no different. Crosby missed a 52-yard field goal as time expired to send the game into overtime and keep Minnesota backers alive.

Vikings bettors finally got their shot at a cover in overtime. If Daniel Carlson connects on a 49-yard field goal, it would cap off a comeback that saw Minnesota score 22 points in the fourth quarter and give Vikings bettors a half-point cover.

However, as we already mentioned, this wasn’t the day to rely on a kicker.

Carlson missed his field goal attempt, securing a tie and Packers cover. The 31 fourth-quarter points also put the game OVER 45. It was a big win for sportsbooks, as 77 percent of the dollars wagered were on the Vikings and 67 percent on the UNDER, according to Sports Insights.

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