Super Bowl Betting: Five Best Prop Bets for Super Bowl 45

It’s been two weeks of analyzing, arguing, and pontificating about Super Bowl XLV. Finally, the big game is upon us, and you’re probably contributing at least a few bucks to the billions of dollars wagered on the Super Bowl. We’ve already been over some of the crazy prop bets available, so now it’s time for advice on the ones that will win you the money.

Going based on the 24 Super Bowl prop bet sheets posted at ESPN Radio 1100′s Super Bowl blog, here are the bets I think that have the chance of earning you some serious cash and sportsbook bonuses.

1) James Starks’ first run is set at 3.5 yards — I think that one goes under at -145. Pittsburgh’s vaunted run defense has earned its reputation for a reason; Starks won’t gain that kind of ground easily. Win. 1 yard

2) Likewise, under 50.5 yards at -110 is a great bet against James Starks. Again, not only do I not see the Packers running on the Steelers well, I don’t even see them trying to. Loss. 52 yards

3) The amount of total sacks in the game is listed at five at -110. I think that one goes over. Both defenses are swarming, and the Packers in particular have a strong pass rush. I think that either pushes or goes over. Loss. 4 sacks

4) I still think betting that the first score of the game will not be a touchdown is a good bet. I’ll take +155 that the first score is a field goal. Loss. Packers TD.

5) Longest touchdown of the game will be under 44.5 yards at -110. I know both offenses are capable of big plays, I just think it’s tough to say that will happen. Win. 37 yards longest.

And if you want to know my expert pick for the game, here it is.

Scoop Jardine Makes Syracuse Point Shaving Rumors Worse by Responding

Syracuse was 18-0 and a top-five team in college basketball, but the Orangemen have lost four in a row since starting the year strongly. They were wiped out at home last week 90-68 by Seton Hall, leaving many fans with questions. Apparently those questions have resulted in rumors, such as one posted on a gambling site saying Cuse players Scoop Jardine, Dion Waiters, and James Southerland have been shaving points.

Jardine hasn’t played his best in the four losses and was particularly awful against Villanova, but that in no way implies he was shaving points. Waiters and Southerland are both reserves and neither played in the loss to Marquette, but both have seen plenty of minutes in each of the team’s conference games. The DNPs were Waiters’ first of the year and fourth for Southerland, and the DNP seemed to be punishment for Waiters. Clearly Waiters’ status with coach Jim Boeheim is in question, but that is most likely due to his attitude.

Two speculative reports came out Tuesday suggesting the players were shaving points and that led to fans questioning the players on twitter. Rather than ignoring the bombardment, Scoop Jardine made what KC radio host Nick Wright described as an awful move. Here’s what Scoop wrote on twitter, as Wright alerted me:

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Super Bowl Prop Bets Are Always Fun

We’re getting closer to Super Bowl XLV, yet the media frenzy still hasn’t begun. We’ve talked about the hair war between Clay Matthews and Troy Polamalu but how their effectiveness in the game may be limited, and whether or not the world is ready to see Ben Roethlisberger become a three-time Super Bowl champion.

One area we haven’t covered in too much detail yet is the betting line. One look at the NFL standings can make you wonder how a 10-6 team is favored over a 12-4 team, but that is the case.

The simple explanation is that the Packers have been fantastic lately, winning at Philly, blitzing the Falcons on the road, and beating the Bears in Chicago. They’ve never trailed in a game by more than seven points this season, and they haven’t loss by more than four. They’re just a really good team and the public has recognized it. One area that is much less certain is the Super Bowl prop bets.

Jimmy Traina brought my attention to some of the fun ones available on Thursday afternoon’s Hot Clicks. Here’s a sample of my favorites:

- Will a punt hit the scoreboard during the game? — Yes: 10/1
- Will a Steelers player do the Aaron Rodgers Championship Belt Celebration during the game?

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Late Money on Oregon Makes Ducks Even, or Favorite Over Auburn

One of the fun games before the actual game is tracking the movement of the point spread. The line for the Oregon-Auburn BCS National Championship Game opened at Auburn favored by 1.5 points, according to the Las Vegas Sports Consultants. Most sports books actually listed Auburn as the favorite by 2.5 or three points. But much like super bowl betting where tons of people want action on the game, the line began fluctuating like crazy the day of the game. In fact, the line went in one direction — in Oregon’s favor.

So much money came in on the Ducks the day of the game that the point spread closed at a pick em, and in a few cases, Oregon as a one-point favorite. In case you’re not too familiar with the way sports betting works, it would take an overwhelming amount of money — multiple, multiple thousands of dollars — to move a line 3-4 points as it did Monday. That means either enough “wise guys” knew something and bet big on Oregon, or the public for some reason absolutely loves the Ducks. Either way, tons of dough came in on Oregon the day of the Championship Game meaning many people will be disappointed after they lose.

Leroy’s Sports Betting App Coming to Droid, Already on Blackberry

Great news for all you gambling degenerates out there (and yes, I know that’s like the entire LBS audience), there will be increasingly more ways to lose money betting on sports. For residents in Nevada, the Leroy’s sportsbook has been offering a betting app through the Blackberry since September. The app was approved by the Nevada Gaming Control Board last week and deemed “problem free.” The next step as pointed out by The Wiz of Odds is building and approving an app for Android phones. Not sure when it’s coming for iPhones.

In case you’re unfamiliar with Leroy’s, they run the sportsbook at Hooter’s, Sahara, and Riviera in Las Vegas. They often offer different odds from what’s available on the rest of the strip because most other hotel’s sports books are linked and thus share the same odds.

The one catch of course is that your phone’s GPS must say you’re in Nevada in order for the app to work. Though many people do their sports betting with offshore casinos, advancements like this make it more likely for people to do keep their betting with American sports books. And who knows? Maybe the droid app will be ready in time for folks who want to do Super Bowl betting.

Did Las Vegas Wiseguys Know Something About Titans Against Colts?

Two days later, people are still smarting about the infamous backdoor cover by the Titans Thursday night against the Colts. In case you’re unaware of what happened, the Colts were favored by 3-3.5 points against Tennessee. The Colts got out to a 21-0 lead and were up 30-21 and had the game in hand with two minutes left. In typical heartbreak gambling fashion, Tennessee scored a meaningless touchdown on the very last play of the game allowing them to cover the spread. The TD mattered little to the Colts who were winning the game either way, but it swung millions of dollars in favor of “The House.”

Two separate friends inquired about Doc Brown’s thoughts on the game, thinking it was a steal of a bet. Both Doc and Del locked the Colts in as a Top 3 selection this week. 88% of the public had the Colts covering, an absolutely overwhelming margin. Everyone thought the Colts would win the game and win it handily. Except for the Wiseguys.

A source informed Larry Brown Sports that some big money came in game day on the Titans from the Wiseguys. Did they know something nobody else did? Did they know that difference-making wide receiver Kenny Britt would be active for the Titans for the first time since hurting his hamstring? Did they know Indy’s top two CBs would be inactive? Or were they simply going against the public, which often times is a smart move in itself?

Here’s an even better question: does Tennessee covering even prove the Wiseguys in fact did know something? Was the public right about the game? Were the Colts, who were up 21-0 and won the game handily, easily the better team? Was Tennessee and the Wiseguys lucky to have it end as a two-point game? At this point I have to say that the public was right, that Indy was easily the superior team, and that they were only playing to win the game, not cover the spread, and that’s why they didn’t. Sometimes even Las Vegas gets lucky.

Your Guide To Excitement for the 2010 Home Run Derby

It’s no long basketball or hockey season. NFL training camp has yet to begin. The World Cup has ended. If you don’t get excited for the All-Star break, that three-day span where you have nothing to watch has arrived. What’s the best way to make the Home Run Derby somewhat intriguing? Gamble.

I’m not here to encourage people to blow their bank account on a meaningless event. If you’re against gambling, that’s your prerogative. If you’ve already watched this week’s Entourage and don’t feel like watching it On Demand four or five more times, you can always bet on the 2010 Home Run Derby.  Of course it’s nearly impossible to predict the winner, but that’s part of what makes it so fun to act on. For that reason, the payout for choosing any hitter to win is pretty decent. Here’s each hitter’s odds of winning the event from one sports betting site:

David Ortiz +250 ………………….. Nick Swisher +500
Miguel Cabrera +250 …………….. Vernon Wells +650
Corey Hart +500 …………………… Chris Young +800
Matt Holliday +500 ……………….. Hanley Ramirez +1000

Any of these eight sluggers — none of which is afraid to mess up his swing — could win the event. Why can’t Hanley Ramirez hit the most homers in a glorified batting practice session? Why not take a chance to spice things up a bit? If you ask me it’s worth at least $10 to have something exciting to watch, especially when you can potentially turn it into $100.  Sports Interaction also carries odds for each individual round for those of who who’d like to take it one step further. So give it a go. You might even thank me later.

Sports Interaction