I wasn't involved in any of the Thursday bad beats in college basketball. But make no mistake, this was one of those night where underdogs in overtime proved to be pretty nasty for those who were backing them.
Elon was +10 at home against Northeatern. The Huskies ended up winning by 11 in the OT.
Hofstra and William & Mary played a three overtime thriller. Only the final score might have been too thrilling for those who took the underdog Tribe late, as the game closed Hofstra -2.5 and landed on three.
SIU Edwardsville actually went off -1 at Tennessee Tech after being dogs of as much as 2.5. In the end, you were doomed regardless of the price as Tech ended up winning by nine in the extra session.
USC was the dog at Oregon State. This line closed at +2 when it was determined Oregon State star Tres Tinkle would miss the game. The Trojans were widely available at +4.5 prior to that news. USC went down by five on overtime.
And then there was Monmouth-Quinnipac. This ...
Quick blog tonight. Wednesday worked out nicely as Florida and the NHL Flames came through. The Gators frittered away another big second half lead but managed to hang on at Arkansas. The finish of the Calgary game provided a big swing of emotions. I manufactured a =1 play here on Calgary. Up 4-2 late, they miss an empty net goal by a couple inches. Colorado streaks down the ice and score to make it 4-3, and I go from win to push. But with about ten ticks remaining, Calgary finds the empty net and I go back in the win column. Nice!
Anyway, 2-0 +2.25 and the good results continue here. The current special is my +5 guarantee, shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org for complete details.
The Wednesday free play missed, let's see if this one works out a little better. As of now, just a lean but that could change. If this gets added to the card, I'll post at Twitter (@davecokin).
701 MONTANA STATE at 702 IDAHO
Take: IDAHO +1
Kliff Kingsbury is the new head coach of the Arizona Cardinals. Thus ends the Kingsbury regime as offensive coordinator at USC.
The Kingsbury hire means two things to me right off the bat. One is that USC can't seem to do anything right with its football program. The entire PAC-12 is suffering through hard times, but it's getting downright embarrassing at USC.
As for the Cardinals opting for a head coach who couldn't win consistently at Texas Tech, make no mistake. This had ZERO to do with Kingsbury's ledger at Lubbock. It had everything to do with Patrick Mahomes. The Cardinals are hoping that Kingsbury will be able to work similar magic as he did with Mahomes, as he tries to get Josh Rosen on the right track.
The honeymoon grace period figures to be at least a couple of years for Kingsbury. The Cardinals do not have a good roster and there's not much likelihood they're going to even be close to contending next season. The hope for them is that he can get Rosen straighte...
Let the debate begin! I know where I'm weighing in on the discussion as to whether the national champion Clemson Tigers are the best college football team ever. In a word, yes.
Here's my case for the Tigers. Prior to this season, my highest ever power rated college team was the Leinart-Bush USC entry going back a handful of years. That Trojans team got surpassed on my numbers by the Crimson Tide. But its important to note that Alabama was just a tick better than Clemson on those rankings and after last night's slaughter, the Tigers moved atop my rundown, doing so with my highest finishing number in all the years I've tracked this stuff.
What's downright scary is that next year's Clemson is very possibly going to be even better than this year's Clemson. Good luck to any team having to line up against this monster. They're going to need it!
Clemson ended up as my only Monday play. That capped off a very profitable college football season. Everything is running really well ...
We're down to the NFL version of the Elite Eight after a weekend where the road teams did a number on the home teams in the Wildcard Round. Three of the visitors won outright and all four guests got the money from a spread standpoint.
Quick take on the Sunday games was that none of the four teams involved looked like Super Bowl material. The Chargers and Eagles survived. One cannot help but wonder what might have happened had Ravens head coach John Harbaugh made a couple of different decisions. I'm not sure Joe Flacco would have fared any better than Lamar Jackson, although there's plenty of sentiment that the rookie should have been yanked. I thought the decision by Harbaugh to try a long field goal on a 4th and 1 in plus territory while trailing 12-3 was a real head scratcher. Maybe the result remains the same, but that was a potentially critical mistake that sure didn't help the Baltimore cause.
As for the Eagles and Bears, Cody Parkey got the rest of the team off the hook ...
Condensed thoughts on the two Saturday NFL playoff games.
I'll start with Indy-Houston. It probably wouldn't have made much difference, but I just don't understand why the Texans stubbornly stayed with man coverage while they were getting torched by Andrew Luck early on. Colts receivers were wide open throughout the first half. Not only was it 21-0, but probably should have been 28-0. Luck actually made a mistake on the interception, as he had Inman wide open for what would have been a touchdown. The Chiefs should take note of what Indy was running offensively and be prepared with a better scheme than the one utilized by the Texans.
Meanwhile, that Indianapolis defense continues to improve. Their defense might be the most surprising unit in the entire NFL this season, as it was supposed to be horrendous. The D will have to be at its absolute best next week for obvious reasons, but that's a very confident bunch right now.
As for the Seahawks-Cowboys, the final margin was ...
My usual quick late Friday evening blog. There's nothing to recap from Thursday as I had no plays in CBB or the NHL. Things have been going extremely well for quite some time now, and I'm set for Saturday with one NFL playoff selection and four sides in college basketball. The NHL will be determined in the morning.
Meanwhile, for anyone wishing to get all my plays, take advantage of the current special offer to the right of the page at the Cokin's Picks menu. I'm actually going to be posting a new offer with the next few days if you prefer to wait. Or you can always contact me at email@example.com with any questions regarding how the personal service works.
IUPUI was not a service play for me on Friday but I was still pleased to see them with outright as a dog. The free plays have been producing nicely and here's one for Saturday that I've already played. Note this is strictly a value play based on my game projections, so no analysis that matters.
759 NORTH DAKOTA at 760 ...
Going to make this a quick blog tonight. But I'd be remiss if I didn't mention there was some great entertainment provided on Thursday night from Samford coach Scott Padgett. His team ended up losing an overtime decision at East Tennessee State. What put this one in the spotlight was an encounter during the game where one of the officials decided to go after Padgett. Thoroughly unprofessional on the part of the ref. The best stuff took place after the game in Padgett's postgame press conference. Search it online, it's definitely worth checking out. Sound bite of the year to date courtesy of Padgett and one that might be tough to top.
My Thursday went very well. NC Wilmington came out on top in a double OT thriller at James Madison, while Austin Peay came out of the locker rook on fire and destroyed Eastern Kentucky, 2-0 and what has been a pretty lengthy hot run continued with the mini-sweep.
The deal on the menu at Cokin's Picks that runs through the Super Bowl should be a ...
Time for some straight talk. The main sports attractions in Las Vegas today are the Golden Knights and the UFC. The Raiders are on their way here.
UNLV basketball was the franchise throughout what was a fabulous run as a perennial powerhouse. The Runnin' Rebels remained the focal point for the locals even well after the glory days were history. But those days are gone and this is now a program that is rapidly becoming page two material.
The UNLV athletic department is faced with a critical decision they're going to have to address in short order. Simply stated, UNLV has to choose between accepting mid-major status and dwindling support moving forward, or doing what is patently clear to get back on the front page.
Translated rather bluntly, they either have to continue to sink with Marvin Menzies or put together the right offer to attract a big name to rebuild the basketball program and put butts back into seats.
That's really not an opinion on the ability of Menzies as ...
A fee days ago, I expressed an opinion here that Notre Dame was rightfully deserving of a spot in the four-team college football playoff. Consider that viewpoint now validated.
If you're asking me whether or not I thought the Fighting Irish were actually one of the four best teams, my answer was that they were not. But based on the criteria used to select the participants, Notre Dame belonged and Georgia did not.
The Bulldogs had a chance to make a statement last night in their Sugar Bowl matchup with Texas. Sure it was a potential flat spot off the demoralizing loss to Alabama in the SEC title game and then getting left out of the playoffs.
But the bottom line is that a great team would have responded with a big effort to send a message they belonged. Instead, Georgia was outplayed throughout the game and lost by a wider margin than the 24-17 final score indicated.
I split my two New Year's Day Bowl games, winning with LSU and losing with Mississi...
Happy New Year!
Nice finish to 2018, with a 4-1 overall heading into the late play on Texas A&M in the Gator Bowl. Regardless of how that one turns out, a successful day and that wraps up a third straight really positive month. Here's a quick free play on a New Year's Day CBB game and I'll be back on Wednesday with the more detailed blog and analysis on the comp.
605 MARQUETTE at 606 ST. JOHN'S
Take: ST. JOHN'S Pk
Quick heads up on the blog and radio schedule for the next couple days. I'll be only posting the daily free play on this page, with regular blogging to resume on Wednesday. Ditto for The Las Vegas Sportsline. No shows on Monday or Tuesday, back at it on Wednesday at 2PM Pacific ESPN Las Vegas and lvsportsnetwork.com.
HAPPY AND HEALTHY NEW YEAR TO ALL!
763 NORTHERN COLORADO at 764 PORTLAND STATE
TAKE: NORTHERN COLORADO -2.5