The Vegas Sports Informer has been providing Doc’s Sports Service with his expert sports picks for over four years now. He has also provided some keen insight into what it is like behind the counter at the Mecca of the sports gambling world.
As part of an ongoing weekly series, we decided to sit down with The Informer in an effort to explore the entire Las Vegas sports betting scene as only a true insider can see and understand it. Our goal is to give you a unique glimpse into the world behind the counter of Las Vegas books as well as some insight into what it really takes to successfully handicap the games.
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Doc’s Sports: It was another wild weekend in both college football and the pros, so what were your main takeaways from last week’s action?
VSI: For the second week in a row, most of the books in town took it on the chin in both college football and the NFL. It started with Saturday’s Kansas State at West Virginia game and the beating that the Wildcats unexpectedly put on the Mountaineers. The betting public obviously jumped ship on West Virginia after its crushing loss to Texas Tech by going extremely heavy on Kansas State. These losses spilled over into Sunday with the public hammering the favorites, especially when it came to Green Bay and New Orleans. This was a complete reversal from last week when the underdogs were the toast of the town.
Doc’s Sports: Speaking of underdogs and favorites, where does the early action in the NFL seem to be headed this week?
VSI: The week is off to a relatively slow start as the public continues to study the lines, but the early money that has been coming in is on teams such as San Diego, Atlanta and the New York Jets. The Chargers are probably due, and who knows what Philadelphia team will show up on Sunday. However, the most intriguing play is on the Jets. They obviously impressed a lot of bettors with their gritty performance last week against New England. The Giants vs. Cowboys game is attracting some attention due to the revenge factor from New York’s opening day loss at home. I would also look for Sunday night’s line to continue to shift in the Broncos’ favor after New Orleans gave up 28 points to Tampa Bay last week.
Doc’s Sports: The big game this week in college football is Notre Dame at Oklahoma. Any thoughts on this matchup as well as the Irish’s chances to move up in the BCS rankings with a win?
VSI: I have been impressed and rather shocked so far at Notre Dame’s success, but this game is where the rubber meets the road for Brian Kelly’s squad. Their only chance is to keep Oklahoma out of the end zone, which is no small task considering that the Sooners have put up a combined 156 points in their last three games. If Oklahoma builds any kind of early lead in this game, the party is over for the Fighting Irish as they do not have the kind of offense that can play from more than seven points behind. If they somehow do pull off a straight up win, it will not be a guaranteed ticket to the top of the BSC rankings unless something crazy happens with the current Top 3 teams. Notre Dame could move to fourth if the first three teams win, but that is about as high as it gets right now.
Doc’s Sports: The World Series gets underway this Wednesday with Game 1 of a best-of-seven series between Detroit and San Francisco. Which team do you like and in how many games?
VSI: This has the makings of a great series with the never-say-die attitude of San Francisco, but, as usual, it still all comes down to pitching. If the series does go seven games that will mean that the Giants would probably have to beat Justin Verlander three times, which is not going to happen. Overall, the Tigers’ arms are just better than the Giants’ arms and it will show over the course of this series as Detroit wins in six.
Doc’s Sports: Finally, the NBA is gearing up for the start of its regular season, which has to be great news for you, considering your current six-season winning streak picking the games. Is there anything interesting right now with the Las Vegas books when it comes to the NBA?
VSI: Most of the action I have seen is on the projected win totals which are now available with just about every major book. A couple of teams that have piqued my interest on the “over” play are Milwaukee and Phoenix. The total on the Bucks is 30.5, and it is at 33.5 for the Suns. While neither of these teams will be a factor come playoff time, they each have enough talent to beat-up on the bottom feeders in the league as well as pull off enough upsets to clear these numbers. The team that I see staying “under” its total is the New York Knicks. The Knicks are just too old to win more than 46.5 games and could easily become unglued if injuries start to take their toll.
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