1. #1
    Bill Dozer
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    SBR's Peter Loshak interviews BetJam & Bookmaker on Superbowl Betting

    A great set of interview question from Mr. Loshak to Bookmaker and BetJam linesmen.

    Nothing like getting it straight from the horse's mouth, or in this case the oddsmakers'. Discover the view from BetJamaica's and Bookmaker's side of the window.
    Just a day away what will probably be the biggest Super Bowl ever, the excitement is building and the world's financial markets are bracing for the fallout of various prop result disaster scenarios.

    I was able to pose a few questions to the BetJamaica Lines Department and Shane from BookMaker on Friday about how the betting has transpired over the last few weeks.

    SBR: First off, everyone is saying this will be the biggest Super Bowl ever in terms of handle. Vegas has never officially cracked $100 million bet on the Super Bowl, which is thought to be less than 1% of the total bet worldwide, but they're expecting it this year. Are you seeing or expecting that?

    Bookmaker: Yes we are, if only because of the size of our business and how it has grown. Overall we’ve grown approximately 30% from last year to this year, so just for that reason alone I’ll say yes, we are expecting the best ever.

    BetJamaica: Yeah, annual gaming volume is growing in general, but obviously a very popular team for years going for an undefeated season combined with the high-profile New York audience, and all the big names – Manning, Brady, Moss, etc., etc. – that’s certainly a recipe to break all previous records.

    SBR: So where's most of the money coming in? I've been hearing a figure of 80% on the Giants all week long. Does that square with what you're seeing?

    BetJamaica: So far we have approximately 65% early Giant money which is often the case for early dog wagering on such a public marquee game.

    Bookmaker: I’d say closer to 60% so far on the Giants for us. The Super Bowl with a line of +12 is great value and will always attract money, but I’m sure there will be more than enough bet on New England up until kickoff.

    SBR: How's the over/under betting looking so far? The conventional wisdom is that the public loves to bet the over in Super Bowls, which then pushes the total higher and higher. But this year interestingly, that hasn’t happened, the total has stayed right around 54 the whole time, which is even stranger considering these teams played to a total of 73 just a month ago. What do you make of that? Why do you think the number has stayed put up to now? Are you getting equal public action on both sides of the total? Are you expecting it to ever get the old public push to the over? Has your sharper action had anything to say about the total yet?

    BetJamaica: Not really much sharp total action here yet. Normally the public action tends to bring the total up a bit closer to game time than where we are right now.

    Bookmaker: We have actually already had more bets on the over, but it’s not a huge amount of difference. 54 is still a pretty big number, and I think when it comes down to it, I’m thinking that the public will still bet the over from now until kickoff. The sharper money has been on the under, but I think there is enough public over money to keep that total pretty close to where it is now, or maybe even push it up higher.

    SBR: Have there been any surprises or unexpected patterns in the betting this year?

    BetJamaica: For a point spread this tall it is surprising to see the amount of NY money line wagers.

    SBR: Really? Wow that’s interesting, and it leads right into my next question topic, which is one that I find pretty fascinating. It's been said that in the Super Bowl the public likes to bet the underdog on the ML and the favorite on the spread. Do you find this to be the case? This can cause warping of the relative lines, can't it? Since you have to move the lines in opposite directions, right? Sharps supposedly exploited that in Super Bowl XL with New England and Philly, when the Pats were 7 point faves or so and about -230 on the ML, when they would normally have been -280 or -300 at that price, right? So sharps middled that Super Bowl by taking the Eagles with the points and the Pats on the ML, exploiting the value caused by the public's contradictory betting tendencies. And they won, getting about +325 that the Pats would win by a TD or less when it should have been more like +250. It's looking like a similar situation could be possibly be brewing again this year, with the Pats again as a big favorite. What's your take on all of this?

    BetJamaica: No question, that very same type of scenario is currently building with this Super Bowl from what I’ve seen.

    Bookmaker: I think what you’re saying about the numbers is right. That line is traditionally lower than it should be. To us though, we just try and walk away with a win, and usually we combine all the money to ensure two-way action. We just try and have a winner on both the spread and money line regardless of which team wins and who may be exploiting line inconsistencies.

    SBR: Amazing. So how do you set the odds for all those props? Are there any you don't feel confident about but hang anyway? Some of those player props, where a player has had an inconsistent statistical year, like Randy Moss this year for instance, must be tough to set a line on. How tight do you feel the prop lines are in general?

    Bookmaker: All you can try and do is put up a number which you feel best gives you the chance for two way action, or move it hard enough early to get that action.

    Bet Jamaica: Yeah, props obviously can be volatile, but bettors love them. We use limits, bigger movements and bigger juice to protect ourselves. We currently will take only a dime per hit on most Super Bowl props. But sure, we offer nearly 200 prop lines, and some of them do come with significantly less confidence than others.

    SBR: Interesting. I've heard that 60 to 70% of offshore books' customers' deposits are in play on Super Bowl Sunday! Does that sound right to you?

    Bookmaker: I have no idea about this.

    BetJamaica: Honestly I’ve never seen a majority of client total escrow riding on any one single event volume. However we may be the opposite of other shops, no telling.

    SBR: Ok, guess not. So where do you think the lines will wind up closing?

    Bookmaker: 12 seems right, but I can see it going to 13 before seeing it drop to 10. If I had to guess, I’d say 12.

    BetJamaica: Guessing 11-12 points with a total of approximately 56.

    SBR: Have any of your sharps or big players made any big bets a certain way?

    Bet Jamaica: Yes some big guys did come early. However to me it seems sharps are still waiting for the advantage numbers to show.

    Bookmaker: So far, we have received a $350,000 bet on New England, and some sharp early action on the Giants, and I would guess that will continue in that way.

    SBR: What's your personal lean on the coin toss?

    Bookmaker: I always take Heads.

    BetJamaica: I’ll take some Heads.

    SBR: Heads huh? Well thanks for taking time out to talk, I know our readers will appreciate it.
    Peter Loshak

    SBR Bash
    Punta Cana
    Attendee 1/31/2015

    SBR Founder Join Date: 7/12/2005

  2. #2
    SBR Lou
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    Very interesting.

    The last question was too good. I got myself some heads the other day also. Popped it at -101 before all the sharp action brings it to -500.

  3. #3
    Cee's Avatar Become A Pro!
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    Good read

  4. #4
    hawk 5
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    Great read

  5. #5
    mofome's Avatar Become A Pro!
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  6. #6
    teazeman's Avatar Become A Pro!
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    very good read.

  7. #7
    bigboydan's Avatar Become A Pro!
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    Great read Pete.

    SBR Founder Join Date: 8/10/2005

  8. #8
    LLXC's Avatar Become A Pro!
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    Heads it is!