Daddy, don't hit me!
Cody Hawkins is back in black (and gold)... After Colorado starting QB, Tyler Hansen, ruptured his spleen this last Saturday, Cody Hawkins was called back into battle. Hawkins, a senior, was the Colorado starter for three seasons and also happens to be the coach's son. He's one of just two other guys in Colorado history to pass for over 6000 yards in his career; yet after three straight seasons as the starter, he was demoted coming into this season. Now it's his turn again...
Does this situation remind you of the one at Arizona? It should - The one time starter gets demoted only to be thrown back into the fight after an injury. Time and time again you'll see the demoted player step up big time. And in this situation we're talking about a Senior who certainly knows the ins and outs of the offense.
Hawkins has struggled all his career with decision making, but he's mobile, tough, and has an above average arm. As always, the line moves in favor of the opponent (Oklahoma) when the 2nd string is called to service, and just like last week... My claim is that this move is the wrong one.
I'm not saying the Buffs will roll into Norman and beat the Sooners, I'm just saying a 2.5 point move in favor of a dejected Oklahoma team is unjust.
... And Nothing excites bettors more than a team that "needs" a win.
They need to win, therefore they will... How often do you see columns, writeups, reports, and broadcasts from analysts that predict a victory based on motivation? It's especially prevalant with our Boise State's and TCU's of the world. Big spread after big spread, day after day, someone is out there using the logic "Boise will win by 40, because they NEED to make a statement."
Don't get me wrong, it happens in the NFL as well. Just this last week: "San Francisco will cover against Carolina, because they can't afford to start 1-6," "Dallas will win Monday night, because they need to," "Minnesota will beat Green Bay because they need to get back into the conference conversation." Point is... It happens all the time, and it's logic that no one should ever use...
Unless you can prove that their opponent has no stake in the game whatsoever, it really doesn't matter what (Boise, TCU, Dallas, Minnesota etc) NEED to do. Because at the end of the day, La Tech ( for example) NEEDS to not be embarrassed on National TV just as bad as Boise NEEDS to win by 50. And Green Bay NEEDS to beat Brett Favre just as bad as Minnesota NEEDS to turn things around... Anytime the best teams in the world NEED to win, there is always the inherent NEED for their opponent to make a statement against the best teams in the world. Motivation is not one sided.
"Sharp Money" steamed the hell out of that one!... Time and time again I see a commonly used phrase when referring to line moves early in the week. It's always "Sharps" did this, "Sharps" did that. Let me be clear - if you go into your offshore betting account at Cris/Bookmaker (one of the early release books) as soon as the lines are released for the next weekend... Proceed to "Max Bet" (1000, 5000, whatever it may be) a line within 5 minutes of the release.... the line will move. You could be an absolute nobody in the sports betting world, but if you lay big money on a Monday night, you'll move some lines.
Point being, the first move isn't always the sharp move. It can be a line adjustment, or just a reaction to big money; and big money does not necessarily equal sharp bettor. Square bettors come in the form of $10 bettors and $5000 bettors, just remember that a line moving one direction does not necessarily ensure sharp action on that side. Hell, it could just be Charles Barkley.