In CBB betting, don't overreact to win streaks 

February, 5, 2010

This Week's College Basketball Winning Thought With Alan Boston: Don't Overreact.

I'm going to stay out of the way and let Boston do his thing:

"Chapter 1 of any book on gambling is don't overreact. I'm talking about power ratings and not changing them when a team gets on a roll. Look at South Florida lately. It beat Georgetown as a 13-point underdog. And yet, I didn't adjust either team's rating even half a point. Not changing is the most important thought you could have when you are trying to handicap.

Now, how could it be that I didn't tweak anything? South Florida has now won four games in a row, all as underdogs, and I haven't moved their number at all. Well, the line I have had for South Florida vs. the closing line has always indicated I think South Florida is better than the bookmakers do. When Pitt was minus-3 at South Florida, I thought Pittsburgh should be favored by one. Since South Florida won the game and played closer to my number, I didn't make a change. When it played Seton Hall the bookmakers had the Hall at minus-2 and I had it as only a point better. South Florida won by two in OT. I had it closer to the way the game played out. The game before that the Bulls were getting six points from Providence. I felt it should be six, too. With a minute to go South Florida was down by 11 and, after a furious comeback, won in overtime.