Hello. You must be asking, "Who or what the hell is EM Sports?" GOOD QUESTION. I would be asking the same thing. Last football season, I went 112-68 ATS, or 62%, in a football pool played amongst a bunch of my buddies (it involved no $$$ of course, just for fun, wink). It involved picking a mix of NCAA and NFL games. Too good to be true? Don't believe me? Understood, I wouldn't either, and you shouldn't believe anyone on the internet you don't know. But I know it's true, I was there and have the records (Excel spreadsheets).

Anyway, I thought I'd release my picks this season on the internet to prove to myself it wasn't a fluke. Going 62% ATS on 180 picks is statistically significant in my mind, but I'm not an expert on statistics so will look to extend that sample size this season right here. You can either benefit, or not, pending on how things go. The usual caveats apply: for informational purposes only, in no way am I endorsing any illegal activity, past performance no guarantee of future results, I take no responsibility for anything, etc.

As a bit of background, I've been handicapping for many years, have been on the receiving end of scams early on, I know all about the chicanery that is all too common in the tout business. Over time, you learn the only way to consistently win is to discover method(s) on your own -- that's what I did, and you learn that the hard way.

Anyway, I'll be posting my picks at the following link:

Occasionally I will write something up here on the blog, but to get my picks you must go to that web site. And it's all free.

I will say that when I went 62% ATS last year, I did go "just" 60% on units. What does that mean? It means I went 112-68 on selections but 700-470 on units. The selections were graded from 5-10 units and as you can see, I did better on my lower rated selections. You'll see that my "premium" selections are rated 5-10 units, but I will have 3-4 unit plays.

I think that's it, enjoy and good luck!

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Super Bowl XLVIII: Denver vs. Seattle

I thought I'd post my take on this Super Bowl. I wrote my analysis as an email to my brother, for the most part I didn't change a thing, just copied it below. Enjoy and good luck!


Truth be told, I am sort of rooting for Peyton, he's a great player, not a jerk, and frankly in my opinion he deserves more rings than Eli, but that may open up whole other can of worms.... HOWEVER, as I mentioned before, the Vegas "gods" typically don't care about who deserves anything, or "needs it for legacy" stuff -- if anything they work that subjective opinion stuff into the line, meaning the line typically negates all that public sentiment on one side of things. And here it's clearly all about Peyton. 
Must say much of the analysis in your email to me falls under the Peyton-trap I've been writing about.... We all know he has a good offense to help him execute and win, and we also know this game means alot to him, to get monkey off back, to get ring vs. Eli, his legacy -- all that stuff. But that can be said about any QB in the SB, they all want to win it, badly! So Peyton really, really, really wants to win it?? As in Spinal Tap, he's turned up to 11 (with 10 highest)?? It gets silly.... And the fact is for better or worse, he has come up short in big games in the past, a fact... tomorrow may be different, but facts are facts.... (granted, this Denver team different than past Indy versions, but wasn't like those Colts teams sucked....)

I still think the line is overly skewed towards Denver. Don't forget, this game actually opened Seattle -1, favored by Vegas, and Vegas ain't dumb. The line quickly moved to Denver, in large part due to "dumb" public money playing the 1) Peyton destiny-legacy-story thing, and 2) siding with offense over defense. The public often does go with the fireworks of a scoring machine (Denver) over the more boring stalwart defense (Seattle), believing the offense will simply outscore the opposition. But typically I believe great defense vs. great offense -- the defense typically wins out, esp. at this level of play. And I don't just look at typical yardage metrics but also combine them with points scored metrics, often more revealing. Yes, Seattle has a very good D, but whereas their secondary is the best in league their rush D is just a bit better than average. Yet where their D really excels is not just in doing a good job of giving up minimal yardage to foe, but even better they give up fewer points, which ultimately is what matters! Meaning the Seattle D is very efficient, allowing teams to get yardage more midfield but the closer teams get to red zone, the more Seattle buckles down and stops them from scoring TDs, forcing more often FGs. These kinds of Ds are deceptively very good because much of that efficiency and getting better depending on where you are on the field is often lost in overall team statistics. Compare this to Denver's D, which arguably has a better rush D than Seattle (!) but just an OK secondary. BUT, when it comes to efficiency and allowing points, Denver's D comes nowhere near Seattle's. Denver's defense is much more soft and porous regarding points scored, even within the red zone, allowing foes to score much more often than does Seattle. This weakness doesn't hurt Denver as much when they're facing a team that 1) has a mediocre-to-poor offense and can't exploit Denver defense, and/or 2) the foe has a mediocre-to-poor defense meaning Denver can just outscore the foe. Neither of those two conditions apply here. Seattle has a top defense, negating point 2, but they also have a very good offense (which is getting overlooked because of Peyton & Co. offense), negating point 1. Both Seattle's rushing and passing game has outperformed stat-wise versus the level of defenses they've faced, meaning they should do just fine versus Denver's D.

Two other points. As for turnovers, you may be right that they don't become a factor, but I tend to doubt it. Seattle has averaged 1.1 turnovers and 2.4 takeaways for +1.3 differential. Denver has averaged 1.6 turnovers and 1.4 takeaways for -0.2 differential, or a whopping +1.5 combined differential favoring Seattle. Just in this post-season, Seattle has a +3 TO differential and Denver has -2 TO differential. I know, I know, turnovers can't be predicted, they tend to be random, etc., and mind you Denver is in SB despite -0.2 TO differential (they often overcome TOs). But have to think the way Seattle D plays, they're always looking to strip ball and create turnovers, so less by chance or random. And turnovers at this level, in the Super Bowl, is a huge game changer. Look at last year's SB, SF was just -1 in TO differential, enough to tip scales. And consider the team with the fewest turnovers in the Super Bowl is now 35-3 straight-up. In fact, I think one of the better props is which team will have more turnovers, with Denver at -150 and Seattle +120. Even Vegas has Denver as a strong favorite to be the team with more turnovers, undoubtedly based on the numbers I just cited. However, it's interesting that Vegas has this -150 line on the prop, and the team with more turnovers is 3-35 in Super Bowl, and yet Denver is favored to win the game.... I guess Denver is expected to once again overcome turnovers, or Denver as the favorite more a result of "dumb" public money (I heavily lean to latter, as already discussed above).

Finally, I also wanted to mention the playing surface. Much is being written about the weather, but it's supposed to be a balmy 50 degrees tomorrow afternoon in north Jersey, getting down to 40 degrees for much of the game -- not bad, or MUCH better than what was feared. And wind is supposed to be 5-7 mph, again not bad. So weather shouldn't be a factor. However, for what it's worth, Denver is 11-6 ATS overall, very good, but just 1-3 ATS in games played on turf. Right, those games are on the road and takes away home field edge, but this is ATS, not SU, which factors that in, and also this SB, to be played on turf, is an away game (neutral field). The last three years, Denver is 3-7 ATS on turf, meaning 1-3 this season, but still still bad 2-4 in two prior seasons. Hmmm. Meanwhile, Seattle is 9-6 ATS on turf this year and 25-13 ATS on turf last three years. Also note Seattle is 13-2 SU on turf this season and 26-12 SU on turf last three seasons (just thought I'd mention since they're getting +2). Can make the case Seattle's team is better built for speedier turf than Denver's. Also note Seattle's takeaways on turf are 2.7 on average (11 games) versus 2.4 overall average, meaning they seemingly take advantage of the faster, harder surface to create more turnovers.

Ok, that's enough. Over-analysis? Perhaps. But if Denver wins easy, I'll at least know that they overcame much of what I wrote above and thus clearly deserve it! I still think the "true" line should be Seattle -6 or even -7, and this SB reminds most of the TB vs. Oakland SB XXXVII game, where TB was the dog and had the #1 ranked D and Oakland had the #1 ranked offense, again much like this game. Also, that game had the big sideshow storyline of Gruden facing his old team, blah blah blah, similarly this game has the Peyton sideshow story. TB ended up winning easy 48-21 (and for what it's worth I do think this SB goes Over 48), in large part due to Rich Gannon's five (!) INTs, a SB record. Make no mistake, Peyton by no means is a Rich Gannon (!!), he's far superior, but it's interesting that the SB MVP for that game was TB secondary Dexter Jackson -- could history repeat with Seattle's Sherman? Smile. Call it 28-24 Seattle. Good luck!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Returning for NCAA tourney

I took a break a few weeks ago. In fact, when it comes to basketball and baseball, I'm starting to think I should stop making selections at their half point marks, meaning at their Allstar breaks (and for college baskets in January). I tend to do well in first half of these seasons, but then seem to progressively get worse as the seasons progress into the second half. My guess is the lines become sharper and tougher to beat as the season plays out. 

I have not found this to be the case for football, mainly because football does not have enough games for the lines to eventually get too sharp to beat. With less than 20 games played per team in football, that's not as big enough sample for the number crunchers to get fine-tuned numbers.

Anyway, I will be making plays for the next several weeks.

Friday, February 8, 2013

2012-2013 Football Record

I finally got the chance to update my record for this past football season (see above). In short, not all that great. I focus on the Premium selections as that's what did so well in 2011-2012 in my FB pool with buddies. The NCAA picks were at least profitable, but I expect to do better than 54% ATS. It's the NFL that killed me, going just 46% ATS. But I don't feel all that bad given Vegas also got killed in the NFL (meaning the squares/public had a terrific NFL season -- a rare occurrence).

I'm confident things will revert-to-norm next FB season wherein I should return to form and do well.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Updated Record

57% ATS in all selections, both NCAA and NFL, pretty good I would say for 117 plays. All premium plays (5-10 unit) are 56% ATS. 

All NCAA selections are 54%, and premium plays are 57% ATS.

All NFL is 66% ATS, but the premium picks are just slightly above break-even at 53% ATS.

Bottom line is it's a winning record so far this season, glad to see. But hope to see it improve to 60% ATS level attained last year.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Passing on Monday. Will update record tomorrow. Good luck!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

We went 8-5 ATS yesterday, but 6-2 ATS on premium plays. On 9-0 ATS run in NFL. Plays for today posted, 6 in all, 3 premium.

Monday, September 24, 2012

I went 8-0 ATS yesterday in NFL. Hopefully a sign things are picking up as I've been plodding along at about 50% ATS till then.....