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  • Created On:
    09/07/2011 9:56 PM
  • Last Update:
    01/17/2019 7:25 AM

Are you ready to bet some football?

Every year the crowning of the NBA Champion, followed up by the MLB All-Star Game is the precursor leading into the greatest time of the year; football season.  Before the explosion of being able to wager online, football betting was done via a phone call to the local bookie that had certain hours, little options and a fraction of what is available now when betting sports. Instead of the usual game "tips and trends" review, we should look at some areas to gamble that pre-internet were basically non-existent or not offered by an average local bookie.

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Betting halftimes and quarters: I remember in the late 80’s/early 90’s knowing I had to get all my early and mid-day action in to “Ed” before 1pm on Saturday because he was not back in the office until 3pm for the 3:30pm games (and back at 6:30 for the late action). There was no betting halftimes or quarters. Side, total, parlay and basic teasers were the extent of my betting options. This all changed when gambling went online allowing bookmakers to offer action on almost every aspect of a game, including creating a side/total for quarters and halves. When setting the line for quarters and halftimes, the sportsbook tend to use a basic chart and set these numbers based of the overall game side and total. Granted, there are exceptions for big T.V. games where the flow of the game can be factored in, but on a college football Saturday, the majority of lines are set using a basic formula. Here is where the edge for the sharper or even casual player (who understands patterns for certain teams) comes into play. For example, during the USC Pete Carroll era they would start slower versus above average or better teams, but Pete would eventually make adjustments and put the rout into effect (IE Rose Bowl vs. Michigan). When you look at the 2nd half, the sportsbooks have limited time to put up a line and total and are forced to use the current score in conjunction with the overall game odds (tossing in trying not to get double sided), which gives a huge edge to someone watching the game that can see the flow, adjustments and reasoning behind what the score is at half (sloppy play, bad call, etc). Besides the basic examples above, halftime lines allow for you to hedge out of a game (bet on dog +7/tied at half/ take fav  -4 in 2nd half), which allows you to lock in a profit or sometimes (holy grail of betting), winning both wagers (using example, dog +7 loses game by 6) by taking the other side with the halftime line. Out of anything I can pass on, be careful on jumping on the -1/2 1st half with high juice in the NFL on small favorites, since close to 10% of all NFL games will be tied at the half.

Understanding the moneyline: Before the internet, players and local bookies tended to shy away from moneylines because it seemed confusing. This is one reason betting on MLB did not get mass appeal until sports betting went online. Anyone ever try calculating a moneyline parlay by hand? With the internet, the money needed to wager plus the payout is all displayed without you having to figure anything out. When talking moneylines over with some offshore bookmakers, it is a general policy not to jump and move the moneyline with the pointspread in every instance. This is usually true in big games, such as the Super Bowl where they get an overwhelming amount of money on a certain game line. The year the Patriots beat the Eagles in the Super Bowl, based off the game line movement, the moneyline should have been at -290, but it stayed static at -230. So even though you may not want to lay $230.00 to win a $100.00, in this instance you have an edge because you are paying -230 for something that should be -290 (especially since the Patriots only won by 3).

Here is a basic odds conversion chart you can use (NFL : CFB):

-2 -130/+110 :  -130/+110
-2.5 -140/+120 :  -140/+120
-3 -155/+135  : -155/+135
-3.5 -175/+155  : -175/+155
-4 -200/+170  : -185/+165
-4.5 -220/+180  : -200/+170
-5/-5.5 -240/+190  : -220/+180
-6 -270/+210 :  -240/+190
-6.5 -300/+220  : -270/+210
-7 -330/+250  : -300/+220
-7.5/-8/-8.5 -360/+280  : -330/+250
-9/-9.5 -400/+300  : -360/+280
-10 -450/+325  : -400/+300


In the coming weeks, I plan to put up tons of blogs about trying to get some type of edge going into football season. If you have any questions, feel free to post here or email me at


Johnny Detroit, Co-Founder and Vice-President
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Johnny Detroit has built an impressive winning record: He has been booted or had limits lowered at 9 offshore sports books, has numerous documented Top 5 finishes in both NFL and College Football and his... Read more

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