WHO officially declared the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak a global pandemic.

Because of this a number of sporting events and leagues have taken measures to prevent further spread of the disease either by limiting live attendance or total/temporary suspension of the games.

Among those leagues are all the major Soccer leagues, the MLB, NBA, the NCAA, NHL, and many other smaller leagues and less popular sports. 
It’s a massive hit, not only for Bookmakers, Las Vegas and companies, that work in Sports Betting market,…but also for sports bettors around the Globe. 

These times can be hard now for all involved in this industry, but we also must understand that those times will pass. When such things happen, we usually have two choices.

We can blame a situation on which we don’t have any influence anyway, or we can focus on small things, that we can do. The question is not only when the sports and all major leagues will be back, but also how many bettors will respond to the situation now. 

Two things are for sure: Bettors will not stop betting and Bettors have a lot of times now sitting at home with their phones and computers. 
What can we bet on and what can we do during this global pandemic times?

  1. Online Casino and Poker

Most people bet just for fun and we know that. Casino in the first place is fun and the house will always win, because we basically know the chances for most games and entertainment is what they also describe and promote their business.

Everyone can try luck and there are a lot of people in the past who made a lot of money by playing Casino.

There is of course much more of those who lost, but the fact is, that during pandemic times, when people are at home, they will find a way to have fun and some excitement. Many of them will try luck and most of them understand that this is it. If you can control how much you lose and how much fun money you can afford, online casino can be pure fun. 

Completely another story is poker, which is already very popular online. Many sports bettors will take a sit and play poker too – online.

2. Entertainment Props Politics Betting (Celebrity, Film, Movie, Weather)

When it comes to politics, everyone has an opinion and more and more people bet on such events.

Nothing will change for upcoming U.S. elections 2020. It is expeceted that even more people will make a bet now, especially after the Brexit betting and Trump vs Clinton Elections.

The Metro reported, that Vincent Tchenguiz won $1.5 million thanks to betting on Trump. According to the Independent(UK), one unknown gambler won $622,00 on a bet on Trump, and many other bettors placed several six-figure wagers other candidates. With market growing, more and more people bet such things too. Not all like to bet or predict the events from sports. 

3. UFC and fighting Betting

UFC and fighting sports are more and more popular in the World. Some of the highest paid sportsman comes from fighting World.

It is Worldwide phenomenon and despite the latest news show that UFC will postpone its next events as the coronavirus outbreak continues, Dana White insists that show must go on. UFC will be one of the first sports back in the action. It is of course much easier to organise such event in quarantine, where small group of people are needed. 

4. Racebook

Horse racing is there for centuries. It started in the UK in the early 1600s during the reign of King James I and I don’t see it going anywhere soon. Some of the best and richest gambler experts come from horse racing World.

There are countries that postponed their events, but some countries (like Ireland) is set to continue behind closed doors despite coronavirus. This is another great opportunity for many bettors to bet on those events. 

5. Virtual Sports Betting

With no “real events” many bettors will turn to virtual sports. The great thing about virtual sport is that can be played nonstop. 24 hours, seven days a week. Virtual sports is simulated using computer graphics and all events are protected by complex algorithms. Betting on those events is a new phenomenon supported by new technologies.

6. eSports

eSports is a new beast and we should not confuse it with virtual sports. Virtual sports is simulated, while eSports is played by real people. Total eSports viewership is expected to grow at a 9% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) between 2019 and 2023, up from 454 million in 2019 to 646 million in 2023, per Business Insider Intelligence estimates. Markets rely on the growing popularity of the virtual gaming world, which is getting bigger and bigger. Sports and video gaming are already bigger than Music and Movie Industries Combined. We have real players, real teams and the teams have even coaches. Their events are very popular and millions of people watch those events. This is another great opportunity for this market to become even bigger. With very small amount of other sports and leagues, eSports betting is one of the best solutions to bet online. eSports has definitely great future in betting too. Many bettors will start betting eSports now. 

7.Learn How to Bet

Hard times will pass and we will be back again. Sometimes life show us what we need to do and sometimes we need to take a step back, so we can then move two steps forward. 

This is something people always forget. Sports betting World became a crazy World with social media in last years. It is basically the combination of the hype, marketing and the dopamine, which is very dangerous and has almost nothing to do with the real analytical betting, investing and generating extra income.

If we look around we see everyone selling picks, wrong hopes, locks, winners and all kind of crazy things. There is much more marketers and very good sales persons then good bettors. I explained this here. Not many can show enough big level of knowledge when it comes to betting (understanding the market, probabilities, using models and algorithms for projecting the lines, yield, closing line value,…). After all this was not needed. There was enough hype anyway. 

With all those sports, all those leagues, flashy things all around us, Las Vegas stories and all kind of handicappers, that have that huge winner for you,… we all forget what is most important. The knowledge and understanding betting market in the first place.

We forgot that there is no such term as a winner, but only the value and if you can find it. We forgot that the odds are always expressed in the numbers and we need to start using statistics if we want to have a chance to win at sports betting.

The problem of sports betting market is that anyone with 5 minutes free time, can bet on games. This is why the market is considered as a dumb market, this is why 97% of bookmakers win and this is why this market is getting bigger and bigger every year. Many new bettors dream about becoming professional bettors who will have the edge against the market, but not many are willing to invest time, money and effort to learn the basics in the first place.

It is also unique business and the market, where many people are considered as experts, despite they lack of knowledge. It is called a survivorship bias and most people fall into the trap of wrong illusion and false hope. I am sure that lack of sports events and leagues hit hard many bettors, gamblers and those who dream about being a professionals. 

But now is the time to learn. Bettors sit at home, with a lot of time and the difference is making now. Some bettors will become better than others. And I hope we already understand that when we are winning at the market, we are winning against others. 3% of people make money because of other 97% lose.

This is how it is and on the long run, we don’t need to focus on “winners”, but on the vlaue and beating closing line, which is directly the result of the market. In other words, if you want to win at sports betting on the long run, you need to outsmart the market. 

And this is the best way to become smarter than the rest of the market. Most bettors don’t use statistics in betting at all and they have no clue how to project the odds, lines or totals before they bet. This is a chance for many now, who want to learn and improve. This will have positive consequences later. Most gamblers will not improve at all in the meantime. 

Sports and the leagues will come back and we will be back in that race of daily bet again, but the time and the effort you put now for being a better bettor will pay off on the long run.

Remember that most handicappers promote only short term results, which creates hype. The reality is that only 3% will have positive lifetime record. And those are bettors who have knowledge and skills. Like in any other sport or business. The Best Professional Athletes work hard during off-season and they are training hard now too.

This is what the best and professional bettors should do now too. There was no better time to learn. Plenty of time. No sports to bet. Whole population is at home. 

There is more ways to start learning about the betting market and probabilities. There are couple of great free courses, where you can learn about basic statistics, like khanacademy or edx.org.

Or you can start with MY FREE BETTING COURSE, where you can learn how to start using statistics in google sheets. It is up to you how you will deal with this crisis. But definitely, nothing is lost, soon things will be normal again and this is the best time to learn about betting. There was no such opportunity in the past, because of constantly daily betting.

We also don’t know if we will have such opportunity in the future once we come back to normal life. Focus on things you have in control. Sometimes the things that looked very bad at the start, turned out to be the best. I believe this is the time to learn and become better bettor. 

I wish you and your families all the best during. Keep safe. Stay strong. Take Care. We will be stronger and wiser when this mess finish.




Who are participants of Sports Betting World, who fund the market and who profits the most?

Why followers who look always for other handicappers picks are the biggest losers of Sports Betting World?

Where are you in this story?

The global online gambling market is anticipated to be valued at more than 94 billion USD in 2024. The current size of the market is almost 46 billion U.S. dollars, which means, that is expected to double in upcoming years. (statista).
Another prediction was made at investors event sponsored by Stanley Morgan. Sports Sports betting market is expected to reach $8 billion by 2025 in USA (predicted by executives from MGM Resorts, Hard Rock and Mohegan Sun). The number is even bigger if we take into account the whole World and if we take into account, that USA might legalise sports betting in next years.
Now imagine that we add to this all the services, that are connected to betting (picks services, sports tipsters,…), but don’t accept bets.
The whole market is bigger and bigger every year. With the marketing, internet and social media this is a huge beast now.
But the question is – who are participants, who really profits and who lost.
Who brings the money to the market? Who built the market?
Which group is the most vulnerable group of all participants and why they have almost zero chance to win?
The market alone doesn’t create anything useful or something that would make the World a better place. The only value is the pleasure on one side and a lot of profit on the other side.
There is someone, who brings the money to the market and those people bring it a lot. This is why market is so big.
Who are the winners and who are the losers of this market?
We are not talking about winners of short periods, but the winners when the show is over. Most bettors will have negative lifetime balance in sports betting. 97% of them lose and this is a fact.

A) THE WINNERS – Those who profit from Soprts Betting World

1. Bookmakers

Bookmakers (and other services that accept bets, like exchanges, bet brokers,…) run the show. They win because of couple of reasons . We understand that the odds represent the probabilities turned into the number.
We also know from our high (or basic) school that P(A1) + P(A2) + … + P(An) = 1 . But when we turn bookmakers odds into probabilities and we put the numbers in equation, you can see that P(A1) + P(A2) + … + P(An) is never 1. The difference represent the margins or the commission that they take every time anyone bet.
Even if we understand the odds, probabilities and how market works and even if we have a bettor, that is very disciplined, patient and has investment mindset (which is the main problem for most bettors anyway), bookmakers still have the edge.
They have time, they have marketing, they have experts and they know they will win. Yes, they will lose to some bettors small amount of money, but overall profit is theirs. They don’t care for  tiny 3% that win, because they know the other 97% will lose.
  • Bookmakers = Big winners of sports betting World
  • How they are funded: from people who bet on sports

2. People who don’t bet, but are involved in betting world

Those are the people who are hired from bookmakers, from services, from the sites and they don’t bet. All kind of developers, marketing experts, mathematicians, data scientists,… They just work for them, but they are paid by the people who bet. The money first go to bookmakers or the services and one part of this is then released to them.

  • Risk = none

  • Reward = depends on salaries

  • People who work in this business, but don’t bet = Winners

  • How they are funded: indirectly from people who bet on sports

3. Affiliates

Affiliate marketing is the process of earning a commission by promoting bookmakers sites (also betting services, handicappers,..). US affiliate marketing spending increases annually by 10.1% and it’s expected to reach $6.8 billion by 2020 (Source: Digital Global).
Usually when we see sites, that promote bookmakers or their banners, those are the sites, that take commission from bettors. Usually they provide some info about bookmakers, reviews and they even give some exclusive bonuses. They understand the marketing and that most bettors will bet a lot, but in reality most bettors have no discipline, no knowledge or the advantage against the market on the long run. It is only a matter of time, when they start earning.
Commissions are paid either by how much money sports bettors lose (they share profits with bookmakers) or based on turnover. Bigger affiliate marketing sites are also paid by bookmakers for marketing.
Sport betting affiliate marketing is such a huge business and a community, that they even run their own conferences and seminars how to run successful sites, attract players and more. In 2016 there was an article about Paruyr Shahbazyan, who makes millions just by sending players to bookmakers sites.
  • Risk level = none (Affiliates will always make money. No risk.)

  • Reward = big to huge

  • They are winners.

  • How they are funded: indirectly from people who bet on sports

4. Betting Portals and forums and chat groups

Sports betting communities re bigger and bigger. And those portals build communities os sports bettors. They share information about betting, share picks (paid or free), they even let bettors to bet with imaginary money.
With the internet and user-friendly apps (fb, twitter, instagram, telegram,…) it is even easier to connect all those bettors.
Once you have community, you can either sell your product or take a commission from bookmakers. Most betting portals are funded by bookmakers commission (affiliate marketing). The difference between them and strictly affiliate marketing sits is that they also provide sports betting tips, information and they “talk” about games, bets, etc… Every time we see banners on their sites for example, this is how they make money.
Many portals/forums/chat groups are also funded by selling services (picks,…) with combination of bookmakers or even other betting sites commissions. Even if an average bettor thinks, that they do the job completely for free, there is no such business model. Free business model is always a bad business model.
I personally saw and was part of completely free forum, which had no chance to survive. Time is at the end too valuable to do the work completely for free all the time. Not to mention that money is crucial for improving and growing. No matter if this money is from donations, money is crucial and it is only a matter of time when free portals die. The intention of most betting portals are good and to create environment for pleasure.
And this money comes again – from sports bettors. Bettors that lose, bettors that pay for the service, bettors that are part of communities.
  • Risk level = none

  • Reward = good

  • They are winners.

  • How they are funded: indirectly from people who bet on sports and click on their affiliate links and banners. Or directly from selling their services (picks,…)

5. Pick Monitoring Sites

Selling picks and other advice services in sports betting becomes bigger and bigger business. With this also so-called monitoring sites were born. They try to monitor picks from picks services and paid handicappers.
They charge handicappers and picks services to monitor their picks. And this money comes indirectly from bettors again. Bettors pay first betting services, then they pay picks monitoring sites.
Some pick monitoring sites sell picks too. One of the problems with those sites is that we are never sure if they are honest. There were couple of complains in the pat that they work together with handicappers. So, if handicapper pays them more, they can rank him higher and manipulate with the results. Not to mention all other manipulation with bookmakers odds, yield, not tracking clv,… Monitoring service is imperfect service because of many reasons….but this is a topic for another time.
  • Risk level = none

  • Reward = small to medium

  • They are winners.

  • How they are funded: indirectly from people who bet on sports. They pay handicappers first and then they pay monitoring sites later.

6. Sports Handicappers, Touts, Tipsters and Betting Services

Those are the people or sites, that sell so-called betting advice. Most popular are the picks. This business is bigger and bigger and it is huge opportunity for many.
In general we can divide them into two groups.

First group are very good marketers and they sell hype. 

They use rule 80/20 where 80% of their work is based on marketing and creating hype. 20% is based on actual betting analysis, researching the market and the knowledge.
They can be big betting portals selling picks or services, social media handicappers or any other handicappers that sell picks.
The problem with this group is that many of them are just a product of survivorship bias and once their results regress to the mean, they turn into the marketers and sell based on hype and marketing. Every time we see anyone creating a hype based on small sample size of bets (“he is 37-14 in last 51 games”, “boom boom winners yesterday”,…) it is probably built on marketing.
If we understand that sports betting market is similar to financial market and that the odds are basically prices that we pay, then we must also understand that there is no such term as a “winner”. The term “winner” is just marketing tool that creates false illusion about betting success.
There is only a “value” or “no value”. The odds are represented in numbers on betting market and this is how we should come to the market – with our numbers. Information turned into the numbers are the odds. And those information move the market price.
Most (probably all) of those handicappers or services have no ability to calculate the most important thing – their own price, which can be compared to bookmakers price.
Sports betting success is always a combination of skill and luck. The problem is that many confuse luck with the skill. And to see skilled bettor that has the edge against market we need to look at his results from different angles. The profit alone or w-l record will not tell anything if you don’t have thousands of betts organised in a table to show.
Better theory is closing line value theory that can tell us much more about the bettor and his future results on smaller sample size.
The problem is that none of them show detailed results, including closing line, yield,…
Some have the knowledge and understand this, but can not show honestly everything, because they lose costumers. This would destroy the complete illusion and make them lose most of their customers.
And some simply don’t have a clue how market works, what are the odds, closing line and we can not blame them. It is a matter of time, when they start losing and this is where marketing comes into a play.
Many of them don’t bet at all and they make most money by selling picks, not from betting on sports. Most of them don’t have lifetime profitable balance. Their bets are funded from their costumers, but by actual building a bankroll.
  • Risk level = Small to none

  • Reward = medium to big

  • They are winners.

  • How they are funded: directly from people who bet on sports and pay for their service

The second group is a tiny group of betting services,

that are honest, that have the knowledge, that provide projections and calculated probabilities (which are crucial), that talk honestly about all problems of sports betting World and they also show detailed results including closing line value.
They spend much more time for actual betting and researching, than just marketing.
Most of those in second group are unattractive, boring and they don’t create enough illusion and hope for most gamblers out there. Imagine one follower who dreams about living from sports betting, making a lot of money and then this group of people told him ugly truth,  that in fact sports betting is much harder than most people think.

Risk level = small

Reward = small to medium

They are winners.

How they are funded: directly from people who bet on sports and pay for their service and some part of their betting winnings (profit from betting on sports)

The whole idea of paying and following picks (free too) is imperfect and is almost not possible to find anyone, with such edge where paying for the service, plus following his picks (and dropping odds) can still be profitable. Anyone who doesn’t understand this will be a disappointed a the very end making summary of his betting career.
Most of these services (no matter if good or bad) are just a waste of time and money, selling something that can be hardly achieved by anyone. Not to blame anyone. The model of selling picks is simply too bad for an average bettor without a deeper understanding of how the whole thing works (probabilities, odds, market efficiency, closing line, projections,…).

7. Sharp bettors (incognito)

Those are bettors that bet for themselves and create extra income with betting in their life. Usually those are very smart people, who probably have strong background in math, statistics,… (after all sports betting has more in common with finance and statistics, than with sports alone).
Bookmakers are the only one who have their information. Not social media, not forums, not people from blog, … but only bookmakers have the information who they are. Period.
The term “sharp” is used too many times in sports betting world from the people who are creating a wrong illusion for foolish people.
Anyone can tell that he is professional, sharp or that he is +EV bettor, but at the very end, bookmakers are the only ones who really see who took their money.
What bookmakers say about them?
Pinnacle’s Head of Trading Marco Blume has made it clear that a reliable indicator of whether a bettor holds long term profitable expected value – that is to say they are sharp – is whether they can beat the closing line.
Sharp bettors are bettors that simply outsmart the market. Bookmakers will pay them their profits. And from all the losses that other brings to the market this is just a tiny amount of money. After all, bookmakers need them too, because they can balance the price and create efficient market.
Most of those bettors are smart enough to understand that sports betting is high risk business and it is irresponsible to rely only on only one income stream and especially relying if this is high risk business like sports betting.
  • Risk level = medium to big

  • Reward = small to medium

  • They are winners, if they work hard and smartly re-invest money to lower risk business as well.

  • How they are funded: directly from bookmakers

8. Social media handicappers

In last 10 years the social media becomes a huge beast. Not only from sports betting perspective, but in all other businesses. Social media becomes the main tool for marketing and businesses to build their brand.
People spend less and less time with the books, reading articles or any other “hard work” and they find much more pleasure in social media apps that are easily accessible with the phone.
Those flashy things create a lot of pleasure. People create wrong illusion about many things and their brains become addicted to the things they don’t have, but want o have.
To understand this phenomenon we need to understand little bit how our brains work.
Neuroscientists are studying the effects of social media on the brain and finding that positive interactions trigger the same kind of chemical reaction that is caused by gambling and recreational drugs. According to an article by Harvard University researcher Trevor Haynes, when you get a social media notification, your brain sends a chemical messenger called dopamine along a reward pathway, which makes you feel good. Dopamine is associated with food, exercise, love, sex, gambling, drugs … and now, social media (source: Northrop Group).
New York University professor Adam Alter explains what happens to your brain on  social media platform.
All of those experiences produce dopamine, which is a chemical that’s associated with pleasure.
One of the problems with social media is that everyone presents the very best versions of their lives. What that means is, every time you look at someone’s life, you’re getting only the very best aspects of their lives, which makes you feel like your life, in comparison with all its probably isn’t as good.
Social media is used now to trigger our brains, which create wrong illusion of everything and our brains say – “We want this”. This is how the things are sold.
So we have created a World of followers who bring money and the rest who live because of them.
The same is with sports bettors and handicappers on social media. None of them have detailed results with all information needed to see if they are really +EV bettors. In fact they are good marketers and they know how this “dopamine game” works. They push that button in our brains talking about “winning picks” and the lifestyle anyone wants to have.
The idea of getting rich quick or getting an information about the next “winner” is pure dopamine. And this is what people want now. Like hot girls, like idea of easy success, like the idea of good living. But not many are willing to work or learn to achieve that.
20 years ago, when I started betting, there were mostly forums and we were reading a lot. We didn’t use phones like now. We need to sit down and read the content.
With phones and social media revolution, nobody sits down and reads anymore. With one finger you can fill your brains with full of pleasure, dopamine and free picks. You can even bet with the phone.  And honestly,  who is crazy enough to spend hours and hours with numbers and information, when quick pleasure is available anytime and anywhere with just one finger.
And all businesses use social media for selling products. Costumers don’t buy products, that they badly need. The best selling products are those who sell the hope.
The brains respond differently when you expect to lose and when you expect to win. There were couple of gamblers brain researches and how they respond to gamblers pictures.
(Picture: nrmscience.org)
And many social media handicappers understand this well. If you have million followers and you can create a lot of dopamine and false hope with social media hype and pictures, you can sell millions of picks, despite you don’t have advantage in sports betting market.
Those handicappers (like many above – portals, tipsters,…) use words like “guaranteed”, “winner”, “boom boom” to create perfect environment for dopamine. They even create false hope of passive income, which sports betting is NOT.
The hope and the pleasure is what people buy. This is the phenomenon of modern society, which brings on one side a lot of wealth for some people and a lot of lost money by all kind of followers.
If your only source of information and the most time where you spend your day is mobile phone and social media or groups like telegram, discord, etc… you have very small chance to win by actual betting on sports.
  • Risk level = small to none

  • Reward = small to big (depends on marketing skills, not betting skills)

  • They are winners

  • How they are funded: directly from bettors – followers

9. Scams

Most of the groups above are not scams. Sports tipsters, handicappers, portals, even most of the social media handicappers are not scams.
Many of them were simply lucky and are the product of survivorship bias. Some of them are still winning, despite they don’t have the edge agains the market but they don’t understand the whole thing and they truly believe that they will continue to win in the future. Not to blame them. For most of them it is only a matter of time, when they start losing.
But there are also scams. People who lie, who sell something that doesn’t exist. Their intention is to take money from people and then run away with fake accounts.
In last 20 years I saw couple of such scams, but with social media those people have couple tools now that makes their job easier:
They can access to large number of people with fake social media accounts
They also know that more and more people are affected by illusion and dopamine and with good marketing you can sell them anything.
There were couple of exposures about those scams, I even saw some journalists who made a deeper research…
So how they work?
Those so-called scams usually come from poor countries, where instinct for survival is much bigger and many of them would do anything to survive and make that extra money. The pattern I saw and many of them contacted me trough social media too, is that they struggle with money.
The problem is much bigger and it is a Worldwide challenge for all of us, but if we focus strictly on sports betting, those people usually offer:
  • Fixed games
  • Sure games 
  • Guaranteed games
  • and similar (dopamine, pleasure false hope) words
They build a group of followers, mostly on social media and then they say they have fixed game. The game and the 100% winner. They also say that they will send them this winner for free, so they proove that they are not scams.
Then they split this group of followers into 2 (it can be more) groups. And let’s say that we have a  baseball game between Boston and Yankees for our explanation.
They will then send BOSTON bet to one group and YANKEES bet to the second group.
One team wins of course, so one group is sure they have “winners” and the second group lose. They block second group.
But they still have the first group of people, who got “the winner”.
Then they tell them that they have another “100% sure winner” but this is not free anymore. They need to pay $100 for example for the next game. Of course those followers who created wrong illusion about them will pay, because they are sure about the next winner.
Scammers simply split this group into 2 groups again and send them different bets. And they can do this until they are out of people. Then they can close account and create new one.
The whole thing is a combination of naiveness of people, social media and false hope, pleasure and dopamine.
Some of them say they have connection with criminals who set those games. But anyone who has just little common sense, knows that criminals would never sell picks (even if they would have them) on social media for $50.
And even if they have connection with them, I believe many people are smart enough not to have any business with any criminals. Crime is a crime. Period.
  • Risk level = small to none

  • Reward = small

  • They are still some kind of winners, because they always find some foolish people and take them some money

  • How they are funded: directly from bettors – followers

B) LOSERS – Those who bring the money to betting World

Those are people who bring money into the sports betting World. The word “losers” is not here to describe their characteristics or even how those people live. Many of them run successful businesses, they are successful family people, students,… but we want to see who are the people, who bring the money to the market and how this market which is expect to reach more than $90 billion USD in next years funded. Their lifetime balance against betting market is negative. So they have losing lifetime record. This is why losers, not because I want to insult someone.
Who are those people who pay bookmakers, handicappers, tipsters, affiliate marketers, betting portals,…and even scams. Who are those people who are basically f****d by everyone in terms of profit/loss of their betting career.
Profit is not a profit if you die with negative balance. I hope we all agree here. This is why the whole thing about making a hype about last 100 games, last day, last bet,… is crazy. It is pure marketing, wrong illusion, wrong celebrating or even wrong panic. Not many people see bigger picture.
Most bettors are happy that they had one positive season, but they keep betting and their lifetime balance is negative. At the very end they bring more money to the market than the market bring them.
We could divide them in three groups (recreational bettors, gamblers and followers), but because many followers are also gamblers in most cases, I think classification into two groups is completely ok.

1. Recreational bettors

Those are bettors who bet for fun. They are probably the most sympathetic group here.
They control their money, they bet only what they can afford to lose. I saw many recreational bettors in my life and they bet because of fun. They don’t read betting articles, they don’t follow or pay other handicappers for advice. They are not even in sports betting groups, sports betting chat forums, they are more sports fans, who just have fun and don’t make a big deal of it.
They simply bet their games and then brag about their winnings with their friends. They know they will not win on the long run, but the pleasure they get from this is worth the money. After all, people spend money for different things, excitement and pleasure. Why not betting?
They fund the market. At least one piece.
The only difference between them and the group below (followers and gamblers) is that they control their money and they only fund bookmakers. No one else.

2. Followers and gamblers

This is the group of people who basically fund everyone and makes sports betting huge. They are the main reason why betting market will reach more than $90 billion USD in next years. They are the reason why many handicappers, services, marketing experts, profitable bettors, developers and all other that are involved in betting world have salaries.
They are also the reason why winning bettors are paid by bookmakers. If bookmakers would not get the money from them, they would be out of business.
So why they are most vulnerable group and why they bring the most money to the market?
Most of those bettors/followers/gamblers (I will call them followers) are heavily affected by false hope, dopamine, which is created trough social media and they are connecting with other similar followers.
With all this they start creating this hope and looking for information about betting, about picks and human mindset is set so, that we always look for shortcuts and how to minimise the amount of money/time put into something, but at the same time we profit the most.
The handicappers (most of them don’t have results history and the edge anyway) push the button on their brain system with amazing marketing (“Join our winning team – we won yesterday again”. “Joe Sharp is 46-17 in last 63 games and is the hottest handicapper out there. Join now and start winning”, “Guaranteed pick = $75”…)
This is what is promised these days trough social media or on some betting sites and portals. And this article will not change this, because most followers will not read whole article anyway and will not get this message.
On the other side I will probably get a lot of hate from people who’s business is based on marketing…and their survival depends on those followers.
However, if we go back to the topic… those followers bring the most money into the betting World, because:
  • They bet without any understanding about the market, about probabilities and with no edge
  • They focus always on picks. If you’re actively looking for betting picks and ask yourself all the time what other people bet (no matter if paid or free) – you are a follower, because of many reasons including that you don’t understand how market works, what are the odds and how those prices are changing and why. Anyone who understand this – does not follow anyone. And those who think they are following successfully don’t have big enough sample size or are just product of survivorship bias and it is only a matter of time when they start losing. Period ! (topic for another time). With looking for picks and looking how other people “win” (most of them don’t anyway) you motivate your brains even more to do stupid things. But the knowledge level and the actions of followers are almost never aligned with their dreams. You can not make millions by spending 10 minutes on your mobile phone as a follower per day and following other people’s hard work (no matter which business)
  • Their brains are always targeted by huge marketing beast from all sides (bookmakers, handicapping services, affiliate marketing,…)
  • They act like most followers who fund rich people (celebrities, businesses,…), that means that they fill their brains with quick hope and pleasure on social media or other groups. Either by looking at someone who is successful or in our case “had winning picks”.
This is then motivation for betting more and more money. Looking for more and more social groups and seeing “other successful bettors” to convince themselves that there is still hope and they can do it. Some handicappers will tell you that the only thing you need to win is to open their email (and of course pay them). So, any average smart guy understand that this makes no sense, but once you are affected by marketing and dopamine even the smartest guys fall.
Many of them become addictive gamblers, which is very dangerous thing. We can see first signs of addictiveness in social groups, when followers obsessively look for the picks, when they start acting very emotionally no matter if they win or lose.
They also never see the big picture, which must be basically “lifetime record”, but quick and short term results, which is typical of dopamine, pleasure and addiction.
Recreational bettors from the group above who bet for themselves and are not affected by social groups, forums and all kind of betting picks are also not affected by false hope and dopamine like this group.
The biggest problem gamblers are so-called followers. Not only that they fund bookmakers, they also fund portals, social media groups, handicappers,…
Followers are the main source for all participants of the sports betting world.
If you become winning bettor and if your lifetime record is positive, you were paid by recreational bettors and followers. I hope we all understand this. You didn’t beat bookmakers. They needed you and you are just part of their equation. After all they also need to show some “winners” so followers get the hope.
Bookmakers are paid by both recreational bettors and followers/gamblers
All other participants are funded by followers only. Followers will build most of the $90 billion market in next few years.
I know many handicappers and betting portals, even betting chat groups will hate me because of this article. But if you are one of them, you don’t need to worry, most followers who are affected by quick pleasure and are looking for quick winners (betting picks)  either on social media, either they pay betting services, they will not read whole article anyway.
It is the general problem of today’s society. The companies and good marketers will tell you that you need Rolex watch and with social media they easily create this hype and they know how to target your brains. Your brains respond – I need this, I want this. The biggest money is made on things we really don’t need in our life.
Pretty same process is in sports betting World.
Here is the funny thing and how we can see followers. I run email list with some free betting course and I see what kind of emails people open the most. When I send – FREE PICK, the ratio of opened emails is much larger than when I send the article about betting.
To learn something or read something requires time and energy. It is not pleasure. While reading about the hope or getting quick picture about success (like betting picks) is easy and fun.
The average follower will always look for picks and most of them don’t see any passion in math, statistics, investing combined with sports. Most of them like the dream about better life and quick money. They don’t love betting. And this is exactly one of the biggest problems of modern society.
Whole betting communities were build on picks and followers who look only for picks.
But who can judge them or who can blame them for that? At the very end the foolish average Joes get what the foolish average Joes deserve.
Most followers are looking for picks anyway. Looking for someone who will give them winners. They want everything for free or to pay pocket money but expect professional work from others and at the same time they don’t do anything or bring any value for themselves.
If they bet or even if they follow someone, they jump from services to services, from social media groups to other social media groups,… but at the end the result is the same:
They fund the whole betting World.
Both followers and recreational bettors fund this huge betting World. The difference is that recreational bettors fund only bookmakers, they usually control their money and their brains are not affected by social media, betting chat groups, following picks and addictive gambling.
Followers on the other side fund bookmakers, because they almost for sure don’t have the edge against the market. Most of them can not identify what makes you a sharp bettor in the first place (finding a value and beating closing line). They can not stop betting because they are affected by dopamine and hope, which is served on social media and the internet. The marketing beast is so big that they can not even fight against it. And we should not judge them.
I got a message that I need to focus more on winners, not on beating the line. This message is heavily affected by social media and marketing and despite I send huge email with reference articles and explanation, I never got the answer. The answer I got – it is just my opinion.
Followers create a lot of opinions and don’t back them with any facts or deeper understanding. And those opinions are based on information that you absorb during the day. No matter if this is betting, business, sexy girls, cars, clothes,… This is how things are sold easily.
If you spend your whole day on the instagram, where thousands of accounts target you with yesterdays “winners” of course your brain will respond differently comparing to my boring “projections and probabilities”.
We can not blame them. It is a huge problem of our society.
We are all followers somewhere. Expensive cars, sexy girls, villas, travelling,… and all those things are affected by social media and the hype.
The only difference is that when you buy an expensive car, that you don’t really need, you at least drive that car. When you are a follower in a Complex Sports Betting World  full of probabilities, numbers, prices and experts, which looks more like a math world, than sport world alone, you will lose. Period.
Quick Summary:

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I received an email from our member if I can create a simple model, where he can project College Basketball games and with this tool he can make a better decisions. He said, that there is a lot of value betting those games.

Honestly I never bet on college basketball. It is a league with a lot of teams, with a lot of players and probably some “betting rules” that I am not familiar with. After all, we Europeans follow mostly major league sports and college is still little bit far away.

But I believe that every sport can be and must be described with numbers before you bet. It is a market of numbers and if you don’t have the numbers, then you are just guessing. And if you are guessing, then it is only a matter of time, when you will see that you are wasting time.

I am also not a fan of jumping from sport to sport and I always recommend that if you bet, you should stick with one sport, one league and even one bet type is enough if you are good. Especially if you don’t do this as a full time job like me. I bet on my sports (MLB = main sport), but at the same time I also research betting market, learn, improve all the time and challenge myself in other sports and then I share this knowledge with our members. My goal and my full time job is to help bettors to understand market, to use numbers before they bet and become independent handicappers. So they don’t send me messages like: “Hey, what is your play today?”  . I hate those questions. Because I know that those people don’t want to become better, they are just looking for “winners” and there are no winners in sports betting world. Only different probabilities of outcomes.

And this is how I decided that I will spend part of my time for CBB to help our members who already bet CBB. I researched the market, I have created simple betting model, that anyone can use and I think it is very useful especially for those who already bet on CBB.

I wanted to describe games with simple basketball ideas that were already implemented fo NBA and European basketball. With this I wanted to project the games, where I will get my:

  • spreads
  • totals

And then I will compare my numbers with bookmakers numbers.

Here is the example (on my site all projections are free every day and I show 10pts diff projections – read below for more info):

Because of simplicity of the model, where you basically need 10 seconds to prepare after it is already created, I started to track bets based on:

  • 5pts difference (or more) between my projected spread and bookmakers spread (Exaple: my projected BYU -15 Bookmakers BYU -10; I would take BYU -10 because it is 5 pts difference or more)
  • 6pts difference (or more) between my projected spread and bookmakers spread (Exaple: my projected BYU -15 Bookmakers BYU -9; I would take BYU -9 because it is 6 pts difference or more)
  • 7pts difference (or more) between my projected spread and bookmakers spread (Exaple: my projected BYU -15 Bookmakers BYU -8; I would take BYU -8 because it is 7 pts difference or more)
  • 8pts difference (or more) between my projected spread and bookmakers spread (Exaple: my projected BYU -15 Bookmakers BYU -7; I would take BYU -7 because it is 8 pts difference or more)
  • 9pts difference (or more) between my projected spread and bookmakers spread (Exaple: my projected BYU -15 Bookmakers BYU -6; I would take BYU -6 because it is 9 pts difference or more)
  • 10pts difference (or more) between my projected spread and bookmakers spread (Exaple: my projected BYU -15 Bookmakers BYU -5; I would take BYU -5 because it is 10 pts difference or more)

So far I have projected 631 games. I will make projections up to 1000 analysed games and then I will stop doing this. It takes a lot of time, because there is a lot of teams and I track a record with different pts spreads and also closing spreads. With other sports, that I already successfully bet I will not bet CBB in the future, because I simply don’t need it. But I think it is great tool  for CBB bettors who love this sport. With this model they will get projected numbers before they bet on a very simple way and with this they get the picture where they have value and where they don’t have a value.



  • Record: 260-229 +10.20 Units
  • Spreads:139-118, +9.88 Units (BTL: 53.15%)
  • Totals: 121-111, +0.32 Units (BTL: 45.13%)


  • Record: 203-189 -2.24 Units
  • Spreads:113-97, +6.96 Units (BTL: 53.07%)
  • Totals: 90-92, -9.22 Units (BTL: 48.03%)


  • Record: 155-140 +2.60 Units
  • Spreads:85-74 +4.20 Units (BTL: 52.55%)
  • Totals: 70-66, -2.60 Units (BTL: 61.22%)


  • Record: 115-99 +6.80 Units
  • Spreads:65-53, +6.80 Units (BTL: 50.00%)
  • Totals: 50-46, +0.00 Units (BTL: 52.50%)


  • Record: 89-67 +14.88 Units
  • Spreads:49-38, +7.08 Units (BTL: 45.33%)
  • Totals: 40-29, +7.80 Units (BTL: 51.79%)


  • Record: 57-45 +7.44 Units
  • Spreads:34-26, +5.28 Units (BTL: 49.02%)
  • Totals: 23-19, +2.16 Units (BTL: 51.35%)


Record is based on -108 odds. You can probably get better or worse odds, but in general betting on the odds of more than -110 vs -110 is not recommended, because you probably don’t have such an edge against market. 5Dimes has -105 vs -105 or -105 vs -107 for most games, so the record could/should be even better. But I took -108 which makes my record worse.

BTL = beating the line and the tracking of BTL here is flawed, because I just check closing spreads/totals without adding the odds. I also use pinnacle closing odds and take those lines from early other bookmakers that are on the market, so it is definitely not perfect tracking. I should track actual odds, nut just spreads. -7 can be at -115 or at +102. Secondly, it is also not the same if you bet the line 60% of times with CLV +6% and 60% of times with CLV +0.01%. But if you have time and if you bet only CBB it would be great if you compare your taken spreads with odds and then compare with actual pinnacle closing odds. Some lines change quickly and it looks like that there are games where lines can be easily moved. Still BTL number is not good so far. Those numbers should be better.

What have I learned after 631 analysed games?

Bet only CBB if you decide to bet CBB

There is a lot of games every day. With 353 teams we also have a lot of games every day. I believe that if you go really wide with this league I think this is the only league you should bet at a time. Lines also move very quickly and the odds can open later or not at the same time for all games.

Team Names

In first games I struggles little bit with team names. Now I am little bit more familiar. I used google to check every single team. For example somewhere we have Virginia Military, somewhere we have VMI and there is couple of such examples. Of course this is new for me and I believe that if you bet CBB for long time you don’t struggle with this. Definitely I would recommend new bettors to take first year to get familiar with the league and bet tiny amount just to feel the bookmakers, numbers and how much time they need to do this on a daily basis.

Home Field Advantage

A lot of games are played on neutral field and because if this I need to check every single game. Some games are played in Jamaica, Bahamas and then I need to adjust this without home field advantage where I use 3 pts advantage for all teams. This takes extra time.

Small vs Big/important games

Our members who bet on CBB told me, that some games are not that important and the limits are much lower. But still I projected the lines for every single game. My goal was to create a simple model, where you can project your own spreads and totals and then make better decisions. I simply tracked my projections versus bookmakers spreads.

The best results

The best results so far are on games, where I look for 9 pts difference between my projections and bookmakers numbers. Both for totals and spreads. With bigger difference I am more selective and we exclude games that are “too close” with bookmakers numbers. It also makes sense that when we are more selective we also have better results.

  • 9pts diff ROI (Yield) = 9.5%
  • 10pts diff ROI (Yield) = 7.3%

I would definitely stick with 9-10 pts difference. On my site I show projections with 10pts diff.

Around 10% of all analysed games are qualified bets

I also track percentage of qualified bets based on my model. We have analysed 631 games so far and if we look at the best results (9pts and 10pts) we have:

  • 9pts: 156 qualified bets (out of 631 analysed and every game has 2 options – spread and totals this is 1262 “opportunities”), which is 12.36%. In other words cca 12 out of 100 analysed games is qualified for betting.
  • 10pts: 102 qualified bets (out of 631 analysed and every game has 2 options – spread and totals this is 1262 “opportunities”), which is 8.08%. In other words 8 out of 100 analysed games is qualified for betting.

CBB is definitely one of the main sports for betting in USA and it can be very attractive for bettors from USA, especially if you have access to low juice odds. With betting model I wanted to help our members and I will keep doing all projections until I reach 1000 analysed games. You can find all info here. For me it takes a lot of time to complete these projections, because I am not familiar with team names and many times I have to use google to check if I used the right names. For example we have 7 or 8 different Florida teams. Florida State, North Florida, South Florida,… and all kind of other Floridas. I also need to check every single game if they are playing in their home field or if they are playing on Bahamas. I am not sure why students travel so much, because I think they should study, but it looks like this is now huge business as well. And this makes for me job even harder. I need to check every arena and google it if this is their home field, so I can use home field advantage or not. BTL is not really good, but also use flawed tracking system for this, because I simply don’t have time to go with every closing odds and percentage. It already takes a lot of time for me to complete those projections checking team names and home fields.

But definitely it is very useful for those who already bet on CBB. If you want to get CBB template it is ready to download and explained how to use it in our membership area. You can become a member if you join our A Journey betting course.

Cheers MB



🇺🇸🇨🇦NHL Boston -156 (0.36 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA Portland Trail Blazers at Golden State Warriors – Over 222.5 -105 (1 Units)

🇺🇸 NFL Packers at Chargers – Over 47 -108 (0.5 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA Los Angeles Lakers at San Antonio Spurs – LA Lakers +1 -109 (0.5 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA Dallas Mavericks at Cleveland Cavaliers – Dallas Mavericks -4.5 -105 (0.5 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA Dallas Mavericks at Cleveland Cavaliers – Over 215 -108 (0.5 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA Utah Jazz at Los Angeles Clippers – Over 211.5 -114 (0.5 Units)

🇺🇸🇨🇦 NHL – Pittsburgh -169 (0.54 Units)
🇺🇸🇨🇦 NHL – Boston -345 (0.46 Units)
🇺🇸🇨🇦 NHL – Carolina -189 (0.33 Units)
🇺🇸🇨🇦 NHL – Vegas -208 (0.47 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA – Philadelphia +1.5 -105 (0.5 Units)

🇺🇸🇨🇦 NHL – San Jose -141 (0.48 Units)

🇺🇸 NBA Cleveland Cavaliers at Indiana Pacers – Over 212.5 -112 (0.5 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA Los Angeles Lakers at Dallas Mavericks – Over 216.5 -104 (0.5 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA Utah Jazz at Sacramento Kings – Over 213.5 -106 (0.5 Units)

🇺🇸🇨🇦 NHL – San Jose -147 (0.38 Units)

🇺🇸 NBA – Miami -6 -108 (0.5 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA – SA/LAC Over 225.5 -110 (0.5 Units)

🇺🇸🇨🇦 NHL Columbus -137 (0.67 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA New York Knicks at Orlando Magic – Over 207 -108 (0.5 Units)
🇺🇸 Philadelphia -6.5 -106 (0.5 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA Chicago Bulls at Cleveland Cavaliers – Over 214.5 -109 (0.5 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA Milwaukee Bucks at Boston Celtics – Over 222 -109 (0.5 Units)
🇺🇸 NBA Los Angeles Clippers at Utah Jazz – Over 214.5 -114 (0.5 Units)