Thursday service plays

Thursday service plays

Mighty ! Quinn

Blazers +3

Kansas + 3 1/2


POINTWISE PHONE (2-5 LAST 3 DAYS)

2* KANSAS


Norm Hitzges

VaTech -3.5 vs Kansas


Spylock

3* Kansas


Indian Cowboy Early Release for Jan 3

Kansas/V Tech Under 53


Adam Myers from the Sportstracker

West Virginia and Oklahoma Under


Jeff Kline

100* Virginia Tech


THE SPORTS MEMO

Virginia Tech -3 (-120) vs. Kansas O/U 54

Recommendation: Virginia Tech


DR BOB

Kansas plus the points.


Arthur Ralph

Super Pick Thurs: Portland TrailBlazers

900 Blue Ribbon UCONN


Cappersaccess

Kansas +3-

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Scott Spreitzer Comp

Portland Trail Blazers at Chicago Bulls

The Bulls are smoking under Jim Boylan and I expect the hot streak to continue tonight. Chicago is on a 3-1 run with their only loss coming by two points in O.T. to Orlando. Boylan got Ben Gordon to buy into a six-man role, and Gordon has responded with his best basketball of the season. The UConn alumn is averaging over 29 PPG since being removed from the starting lineup. His FG percentage during the run is a healthy 52.4%, sparking the team's sudden surge on the offensive end that has them scoring 105 PPG in their last four. While Portland has been on a heckuva run themselves, they have yet to prove they can bring it night-after-night away from home, going just 4-10 SU on the road. They knocked off pathetic Minnesota on the road last night, but lost on New Year's Eve to Utah, 111-101 in Salt Lake. After last night's "gimmie" I expect another road loss for Portland tonight. I'm laying it with Chicago on Thursday.

Play on: Chicago

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Totals 4 U Comp

Although the Jayhawks and the Hokies are left on the outside looking in at the National Championship, this may be the best match up of the season. The crews of Mark Mangino and Frank Beamer each play with all kinds of heart and intensity, plus when would you ever get to see these clubs face off outside of bowl play? We don't expect this one to be easy by any stretch, but we'll give the nod to the arm of Todd Reesing and against the offensive line of Tech. Take Kansas + 3 1/2 and enjoy the game!

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EZ Winners

5 STAR: (540) ARIZONA STATE (PICK) over Oregon

3 STAR: (549) UCLA (-3) over Stanford

2 STAR: (551) USC (+1) over California

NBA

2 STAR: (503) SAN ANTONIO (+1.5) over Denver

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NorthCoast Powersweep

Play against a team on New Year's Day whose offense averaged 32+ points and they had 40+ days rest 17-6 74% ATS since 1998

play against Texas Tech play Virginia winner

UPDATED 18-6 75%

play against Kansas play Virginia Tech

Missouri while high profile games have been a norm for VT.

FORECAST: VIRGINIA TECH 30 Kansas 17 RATING: 4★

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Joe Wiz

Arizona State -1

Louisiana Tech +7


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Vegas Experts Tip Of The Day

The players have knocked the total on tonight's Orange Bowl down from 54 to 51.5. Do they have the right idea or is the value now with playing the over?

Kansas has gone under in four of its last six and for the season has held eight of 12 opponents to 14 points or less. Hokies have split their last six totals three and three but on the year have also played stellar defense, holding 11-of-13 opponents to 21 points or less and nine of those to 16 or less. In addition, KANSAS shows a 13-4 UNDER mark is last 17 vs. teams with a Win Pct. > 75%.

Play on: Under

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Wild Bill

Kansas +3 1 unit

Over 53.5 1 unit


Spritzer CBB 25* Illinois-Chicago


Burns Blue Chip Total: UNDER Va Tech/KU

Burns Pers fav: Minn Wild


Ness 24*: Va Tech

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John Ryan

Game: Kansas at Virginia Tech

Prediction: Kansas
Reason: Ai Simulator 5* graded play on the Kansas Jayhawks – AiS shows an 83% probability that Kansas will lose this game by 3 or fewer points. AiS also shows a 90% probability that Kansas will out gain V-Tech by 50 or more total yards. This puts Kansas into a perfect role knowing they are 6-0 ATS when they are outgain their opponents by 50-100 yards over the last 2 seasons. Supporting this graded play is a system that has gone 93-52 ATS since 1996. Play against neutral field favorites with a winning record on the season and in a non-conference game between two teams from major division 1-A conferences. This line opened at pick and has moved to V-Tech being installed as a 3 point favorite. The betting public has been wrong 71.6% of the time when loving the line in V-Tech games over the past 3 seasons sporting a 10-24 ATS mark. The break also helps Kansas as they have a very strong record when rested. Note that they are 15-5 ATS when playing with 2 weeks or more of rest since 1992. V-tech HC Beamers is not in a good role for this game. He is just 8-17 ATS off 2 consecutive wins by 10 points or more against conference rivals as the coach of V-Tech.

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AAA Sports

Thursday NHL System Picks
Yesterday 4-0 +560
Overall 97-84-10 +2390

Leafs over 6 -120 64%

Stars under 5 ev 61%

Stars +140 62%

3-teamer (10-16) Lightning +1.5, Oilers +1.5, Blackhawks +1.5 = +230

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Brandon Lang
THURSDAY

10 Dime
Virginia Tech

5 Dime
Marquette
Arizona State
Southern California

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Rockdeman Sports

Bowl - Va Tech

NBA - Spurs - Under

CBB - N Colorado

NHL - Wash Caps - Over

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Cannon

30 VT buy the half point if you have -3.5
10 Villanova
10 Xavier


Drew Gordon:

1. 300,000* Virginia Tech
2. 50,000* California
3. 50,000* Utah State


BIG AL

Kansas

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Gamblers World Tip Of the Day

Prediction: Virginia Tech


Ethan Law

Singledime

VT/Kansas under-

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Sports Monitor

MATCHUP: San Antonio Spurs (21-8) at Denver Nuggets (18-12)

WHEN/WHERE: Thursday, January 3rd 9pm EST

THE LINE:
San Antonio is -2 and the total is 199 points

TRENDS: The under is 7-2 in San Antonio's last nine games. Theunder is 15-7 in San Antonio's last 22 road games. Theunder is 23-5 in the last 28 meetings between these clubs.

GAME SUMMARY: The San Antonio Spurs own the best defense in the WesternConference, but injuries to some of their key players havecaused their play on the other end of the court to be less consistent.

SPORTS MONITOR
PREDICTION: San Antonio and Denver under the total

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Drew Gordon:

1. 300,000* Virginia Tech
2. 50,000* California
3. 50,000* Utah State

1. Virginia Tech- Despite their 11-1 record and 10-1 mark ATS this season, I'm far from convinced this Kansas team is the "real deal." Instead of focusing on their record, let's examine their schedule, which will tell us a lot more about this Kansas team.

First of all, despite playing in the Big 12, they didn't face Texas, Oklahoma, or Texas Tech. And in the games they did face some real competition, Kansas, and especially QB Todd Reesing, looked very beatable. Just pop in the tape of games at Colorado, at Texas A&M, and against Missouri and you'll see a much different Jayhawks team. One that averaged a pedestrian 22 ppg over that span... Now you want them to get it done against the best defense they've seen all season?!

Second, if there's one thing Virginia Tech needed this season, it was progression from their QB position. In the early going, both Glennon and Taylor struggled with consistency and injuries among other things, but down the stretch, both players found their rythmn and it showed. Not only does their two differing styles of play make it that much tougher to gameplan, but the Hokies offense has been averaging 35 ppg over their last 3 games - a marked improvement from their seasonal average.

Finally, let's talk about the Hokies defense, which is one of the best units in the country, bar none. They've locked down countless offenses this season, including Matt Ryan and his Eagles in the ACC title game. Hokies were on fire down the stretch, winning and covering 5 straight against REAL competition. Forget about running the ball against this front 7 (allowing 59 rushing yards per game L3), while the Hokies ball-hawking secondary and agrressive pressure defense will have Reesing second-guessing himself after the first couple series.

Bottom line, Kansas gets exposed by an surging Virginia Tech team in tonight's Orange Bowl. Virginia Tech has no fear of big games, while this is Kansas first ever BCS bowl game. All in all, the Hokies defense controls the tempo, while an improved Va. Tech offense gets the job done against a relatively untested Jayhawks stop-unit.
Take Virginia Tech over Kansas as your top-rated play of the day.

2. California- There's no question this Trojans team has a lot of talent in their starting five, including Mayo, who's one of the more exciting players in college right now. But don't confuse talent with results, as despite their 9-3 record, this Trojans team has several big disadvantages in this contest.

First, the Golden Bears size will be a problem. While Jefferson and Gibson are both solid players, Jefferson is only a freshman and gets lost at times, while Gibson has seen his averages drop almost across the board in his second season. Cal's frontcourt of F Anderson and C Hardin is nasty to say the least. Both players are big and play like it, dominating the glass and protecting the painted area. Anderson has become as good a frontline player as there is in the country and will be looking to prove it against Mayo's Trojans.

Second, while USC did show some promise at South Carolina early this season, they haven't been tested in hostile territory since. I'm just not ready to trust such a young team, on the road, in rivalry game, against a more physical Cal team that's 8-1 SU at home. Say what you will about USC's neutral court cover against Memphis, but you better believe the Haas Pavilion will make for a much tougher place to play than the neutral court of Madison Square Garden.

Finally, let's not forget there's some payback is in order for the Trojans, as they beat the Bears twice last season, including a tough 76-73 loss in Berkeley January 27th of last year. Make no mistake, this is a much better Cal team this time around, dropping in about 12 points more per game than USC does this season. End result: The Bears use their size and motivational edges to protect their house and grab the cash Thursday night!
Take California over Southern California in this college hoops match up.

3. Utah State- Okay let's make a couple things clear in this match up: First and foremost, Hawaii has been terrible in general, but especially against the number, going 1-8 ATS overall this season, including 0-3 ATS away. All 4 of their wins came against cupcake opponents at home, but tonight, they face one of the hottest teams in the WAC, which also happens to be 7-0 SU & 4-0 ATS at home this season.

The Aggies have been rolling, winners 5 straight, burning up the nets averaging 81 ppg on 53% shooting (40% from 3-point). Not only that, but their defense has been downright nasty at home, allowing 59 ppg on 37% shooting over that span. They're led by sharpshooting star G Carroll, who's the ONLY player in college shooting over 50% from the field, 3-point, and free throw line. After him, the Aggies are anchored by 3 strong frontline players, and a point guard in Klara, who's got a solid 87 : 29 assist to turnover ratio.

Hawaii's problems begin on the defensive end, where they're allowing a mind-boggling 85 ppg on 59% shooting (52% from 3-point) on the road this season! Needless to say, its no surprise they can't win on the road. Also, their offense, which has some decent players, bogs down on the road as well, mainly because they find themselves scrabbling for points once their down by double digits.

Bottom line, Utah State keeps it's perfect home record intact with a lopsided win and cover against a road-weary Hawaii team in this one. Warriors have been useless on the road, while the exact opposite is true of the Aggies at home (4-0 ATS). More of the same tonight, as the Aggies romp!

Take Utah State BIG over Hawaii in this college hoops match up.

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THE GOLD SHEET

ORANGE BOWL
KANSAS (11-1) vs. VIRGINIA TECH (11-2)
Thursday, January 3 Night at Miami, FL (Grass Field)
TEAM GP SUR PSR PF PA YR YP T-R-P YR YP T-R-P TO DIFF OPR
Kansas 11 10-110-1 43 17 195 295 61-25-32 103 238 24-7-16 +19 8.0 13.6
Virg. Tech 12 10-2 7-4 28 17 134 203 40-19-15 93 203 24-13-9 +10 6.0 9.8

*Virginia Tech 27 - Kansas 19—The “strength of schedule” argument is hardly
a foolproof one, especially as it relates to successful teams having faced a lessthan-
demanding slate. It doesn’t necessarily mean that squad can’t meet a
serious challenge when presented. How, then, should we evaluate Kansas, a
revelation in winning its first 11 games (and covering the first ten vs. the
number), but undoubtedly the beneficiary of a woeful non-conference schedule
and fortuitous Big XII fixture list that avoided all of the heavyweights (namely
Oklahoma, Texas, and Texas Tech) from the southern half of the loop?
As it relates to this bowl matchup vs. Virginia Tech, we believe more might
be learned from the Jayhawks’ November 24 loss vs. Missouri, when KU was
outclassed for much of the night before a belated late rally vs. the Tigers’
prevent defense made the final score look a bit more respectable. Not to
mention the fundamental challenge presented by the Hokies, whose defensive
presence is far more menacing than any the Jayhawks were forced to confront
during the regular season.

And how the KU attack fares vs. a typically disruptive Bud Foster Hokie “D”
is paramount to any analysis of this matchup. Although Jayhawk soph QB Todd
Reesing (32 TDP vs. only 6 picks!) was certainly marvelous in ‘07, it’s worth
noting that he and the potent KU attack didn’t post big numbers vs. the moredemanding

tests on the schedule. The Jayhawks scored only 19 points at both
Colorado & Texas A&M; Reesing netted less than 200 passing yards vs. both
the Buffs and Aggies; KU’s usually-robust infantry gained only 42 rushing yards
in that Big XII North showdown vs. Mizzou.

Indeed, we are a bit more impressed with what VT has accomplished,
especially down the stretch when the Hokies were definitely one of the nation’s
hottest teams, winning and covering their last 5, and 7 of their last 8, avenging
their only defeat in that span by beating BC in ACC title game. VT’s offense,
which struggled in September and much of October, began to jell as its young
OL matured and sr. QB Sean Glennon returned to the lineup following an earlyseason
stint on the bench. And HC Frank Beamer seems to have found the
proper balance by rotating Glennon and more-elusive true frosh Tyrod Taylor at
QB, creating a awkward change-of-pace for opposing defenses. Hard as it is to
imagine anything being too big a bite for Jayhawk HC Mark Mangino to swallow,
the combo of VT’s harassing “D” and now-capable Hokie “O” will cause the KU
coach lots of indigestion.

(DNP...SR: FIRST MEETING)

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WINNING POINTS

ORANGE BOWL

VIRGINIA TECH over KANSAS by 7

OK, it is way too easy of a reference to Dorothy looking wide-eyed and saying“We’re not in Kansas anymore”, but that really is a proper way to start this one.While Mark Mangino’s team was one of the truly great stories in college footballthis season, the Jayhawks have had one of the easiest schedule rides ever for a teamto get to a BCS bowl. Now they have to do all of their prep for this game after suffering their first loss of the season, which can create some confidence issues, and the big-time spotlight is also thrown on a team that has precious little experiencein such settings. They have only been to two previous bowls in Mangino’s six seasons,and in the only underdog appearance for rocked by 30 vs. N. C. State fouryears ago. Now they are in against the real thing both in terms of talent and experience.Virginia Tech was just a late rally by Matt Ryan and Boston College of havinggone 12-1, and the Hokies had to earn their way, facing the likes of LSU,Clemson, Georgia Tech and Virginia on the road, and then handling BostonCollege in a rematch on a neutral field to earn this trip. They bring more speed andaggressiveness on defense than Todd Reesing faced in what was a soft Big 12 thisseason, and if he is a half step late with the ball it can mean the kind of game-turningmistakes that Tech has made a routine part of the game under Frank Beamer,with this saosn no different – the defense and special teams directly scored sixtouchdowns. And with Sean Glennon and Tyrod Taylor both healthy, there is theopportunity to throw entirely different looks at a Jayhawk defense that in realitymay be nothing special.

VIRGINIA TECH 29-22.

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SPORTS MEMO

Virginia Tech -3 (-120) vs. Kansas O/U 54 Recommendation: Virginia Tech
What a season it has been for the Kansas Jayhawks. Predicted to finish
fifth or sixth in the Big 12 North by most, this team exceeded expectations
and was ranked No. 1 in the nation late in the season. A closer look
though potentially exposes this team as a fraudulent upper echelon
team. Buoyed by a ridiculously soft non-conference schedule, believers
did not come around until the Jayhawks defeated Kansas State, Colorado
and Texas A&M on the road in the month of October. Those three
wins would prove to be the Jayhawks’ biggest accomplishment. Until
the season finale meeting for a division championship against Missouri,
Kansas had remained unbeaten and talks of a National Title were increasing.
Kansas played from behind as Missouri dominated the game,
limiting KU to fewer than 50 rushing yards while holding an overall yardage
advantage of 519-391. Looking back over the season we can see that
Kansas played one of the softest schedules in the country. They did not
have to face either Oklahoma or Texas and the non conference slate
consisted of four home games against weak competition. Virginia Tech
will be the toughest defense the Jayhawks have faced. The Hokies held
good opposition with solid running games like Clemson, Virginia and
Miami to fewer than 3.0 yards per carry. In half their games this season
the VT defense held the opposition to 2 or less yards per rush. This is
a huge advantage. While Kansas also had success defensively, it was
not nearly as dominant and the overall success was more a product of
the lack of quality competition. Virginia Tech was not only a defensive
stalwart this season as the offense improved each week. After early
season struggles and non-descript offensive play over the first quarter
of the season, the Hokies won seven of eight and were a fluky rain
soaked comeback away from playing for a National Title. They scored
30-plus points in six of those victories and 40-plus in four of the wins.
Quarterbacks Sean Glennon and Tyrod Taylor provided multiple looks
and styles making it extremely difficult for defenses to have success.
Combined the tandem threw/rushed for 23 touchdowns while throwing
just five interceptions. Glennon especially performed well down the
stretch, throwing just one interception over the last 10 games. Statistically
these numbers pale in comparison to Kansas quarterback Todd
Reesing who threw for 3,259 yards and 32 touchdowns. While Reesing
was quite impressive the bulk of those numbers came against inferior
competition. In their toughest games Kansas relied more heavily on the
running game and defense. On the road or in neutral site games against
solid defenses (Colorado, Texas A&M, Kansas State and Missouri) Kansas
averaged 24 points per game. In their other eight games they averaged
55 points per game. Part of the reason for the big numbers was
a huge +19 turnover margin. Virginia Tech is not likely to be victimized
by this offense because they do not turn the ball over and they too
dominate the turnover margin. This game is simple as Virginia Tech
has the better defense and offense and a significant edge in special
teams as well. With a short price and a better more battle tested team,
we’ll lay the number as Virginia Tech gets the win and spread cover

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