I’m gambling in poor form right now.

Just like poker players or horseplayers — or horses, for that matter — sports bettors experience form cycles.

At times, the handicapping process is simple and the winning rotation numbers leap off the page after only a quick look at the day’s betting menu.

Other times — like now — nothing goes right and you lose confidence while doubting every thought and second-guessing every decision.

Take last night, for example.

I played Oklahoma plus the points against Baylor.

I watched OU play last week and witnessed a miserable defensive sequence in which the Sooners allowed an easy offensive putback after an opponent’s wide-open three-point shot missed the mark. To make matters worse, the offensive rebounder was fouled by an OU defender to complete an old-fashioned three-point play.

I made a mental note to downgrade the Sooners after seeing their defense surrender the worst sequence in basketball: an unguarded “3” followed by an offensive tip-in.

Unfortunately, I also watched Baylor against Missouri last weekend and the Bears were beat to every loose rebound and every 50-50 ball in losing a home game to the undersized Tigers.

I thought taking the points with the well-coached home team was the way to go last night, but I was wrong.

Baylor never trailed and finished the game on a 15-5 run to win going away, 77-62.


BRIEF FRESHENING…..I’m taking a 48-hour sabbatical to re-evaluate my play and review my wagers in hopes of making a few adjustments prior to Saturday’s big slate of NCAAB action.

Also note, the pairings for the 10th Annual BracketBusters, an event featuring some of college basketball’s top mid-major programs, will be announced early next week for games scheduled over a three-day period, February 17-19.

Lots of work to done over the next couple of months.

LEGACY-KILLER…..EOG contributor Munson15 felt I was too harsh in my recent criticism of the late Joe Paterno. I rarely find myself on the other side of Munson’s arguments, but here are two probing questions about JoePa:

Why did he lead the football program at Penn State like a controlling CEO, then suddenly transform into a powerless middle-manager when hearing stories about sexual molestation at PSU’s football complex?

And this hypothetical question: what if the little 12-year-old in the shower with Jerry Sandusky was JoePa’s grandson, not an at-risk youth from a charitable organization?

GAMING THE GAME……My favorite line in the book written by Sean Patrick Griffin dealt with the coded language employed by former NBA referee Tim Donaghy when talking on the phone with Tommy Martino, a lifelong friend and betting partner.

Donaghy often asked Martino how much money was due him after a series of winning NBA selections.

Fearing someone was listening to the conversation, Donaghy would ask, “How many apples are in my basket?”

Griffin reported every apple was worth $5,000.

DONAGHY INTERVIEW……If you missed last night’s 50-minute conversation with disgraced NBA referee Tim Donaghy, you can download the program by visiting www.eogradio.com.

COMING THURSDAY…..Complete details of a Super Bowl proposition contest featuring a prize package in excess of $2,000.

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