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South Carolina Fails to Cover Spread After Taking Safety on Last Play

South Carolina screwed many bettors Saturday when they decided to run out the clock on the game’s final play by taking an intentional safety.

The Gamecocks were up 14-10 and favored by 2.5 or 3 points in most sports books. They had a 4th and 12 with four seconds left in the game, and the ball at their nine. Instead of attempting a play, or kneeling down (the clock would have stopped and the ball would have been turned over on downs), they did the smart thing and had their quarterback run backwards until the four seconds ran off the clock.

Time expired on the final play, but the intentional safety counted in the final score. South Carolina ended up winning 14-12, screwing anyone who had the Gamecocks giving the points. It was the probably the smartest play for South Carolina, even if it hurt gamblers. Covers.com says 69% of bettors had the Gamecocks laying the points, so the move hurt a lot more people than it helped. And once again, Steve Spurrier is making many more enemies than he did in his press conference earlier in the week.

Thanks to The Wiz of Odds for the heads up


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  • Gene

    South Carolina had no other intelligent choice in the circumstances you described.  Too bad for the gamblers, but the “W” is all that matters.

  • http://twitter.com/IntheOT Chad Margulius

    I wagered on South Carolina at -3 for a nice play. Am I pissed about it yes. But the bottom line is these kids and coaches are trying to win games not cover spreads. It only made sense from a logical stand point to make that play and eliminate any chance of something worse happening.

    Bottom line is Miss State was driving and had just gotten picked off in the red zone. They could have easily scored a TD there and won straight up. So from a gambling perspective I felt good about my spot with the SC holding the ball and the cover under a minute left. 98% of the time in that spot I would get the cover. Im all about long term recrods and results. 

    I still ended up profiting on the day and thats all that matters.

  • Anonymous

    Taking the W on a smart play is part of the gamble.  The gamb;lers who lost simply lost.  they were not screwed.  Bad ananlysis