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Is it time for sports media to pull out of Facebook activity?

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My wife and I were lying in bed on Wednesday night.

“It’s going to sound weird, but I have something I think I need to do for work,” I said. “I think I have to start betting on sports.”

She laughed.

My wife doesn’t care about sports. His dad was a Kansas basketball fan in the sense that he was happy when someone told him he won. Before you start living together, I think it’s a safe bet that no TV in her house has ever been on an ESPN network. There was never a time in her life that she cared about what was going on in a game unless one of our kids was on the pitch or the court.

His response shocked me and also confirmed my suspicions.

“I understand. It’s everywhere now.

This is how the game became ubiquitous. It is perhaps the most influential industry on our own. You don’t have to be a sports media professional to understand what sports betting has done for networks and stations across the country. Sit back and watch a game or listen to any show. You will lose track of the number of free play offers and bonuses available to you. I have called it a “silver cannon” in the past.

I live in North Carolina. Mobile betting is not legal here yet, so I opened an account with Bovada. I did a little math, made a deal with my wife on how much I could lose, and then started.

I’m doing this to better understand what information players prioritize and how they consume a game. Would I like to win? Sure, but that’s not really the point. I only bet on college football, the sport I’m closest to, and although I picked a few games that I felt were close to certain things, I also thought it was important to live a bit on the limit. and making choices in some games could go both ways.

I bet numbers. I bet money lines. I bet accessories. I even set up a few parlays. There are so many things that you learn best by doing. Betting on sports is certainly one of them, and there are so many ways to do it!

So how did I do it? Well…

Dated Rising Bet Type Odds Results
10/2 $ 20.00 State of arkansas Moneyline +105 Loss
$ 20.00 UConn vs. Vandy (51) WHERE -105 Loss
$ 30.00 our Lady Moneyline +100 Loss
$ 25.00 Non-offensive TD (Miss / Bama) To support +150 Loss
$ 10.00 Wake vs. Louisville (63) WHERE -110 Loss
$ 20.00 Fresno St vs. Hawaii (over 64) / UCF -16 vs. Navy / Charlotte +10 vs. Illinois / Michigan vs. Wisconsin Parlay +1258 Loss
$ 20.00 Aub vs LSU FG / Fresno St -10.5 / UL Lafayette -12 Parlay +902 Loss
TOTALS $ 145.00 – $ 145.00

Seven bets made. Seven lost bets.

Of course, I would have preferred to win even one of them, but winning wasn’t really the point. Besides, it’s a world of learning from the mistakes of the past. On top of that, I have a spectacular story!

Here are a few things I learned during my sports betting week.

  1. STATISTICS ON STORIES – It’s my least favorite thing that has happened during the week. Betting turned entertainment games into investments. So I found myself looking less for my favorite writers and VSiN a lot more. I think VSiN does a great job. This is usually not my thing.
  2. THIS IS THE BEST WAY TO TALK ABOUT A GAME WITHOUT MEANING – I put $ 20 on Arkansas State to beat Georgia Southern. I love college football, but it wasn’t even a game on my radar for the weekend until I was presented with information about Georgia Southern’s incompetence on offense and that ‘they fired their trainer in the middle of the week.
  3. TWITTER IS A NECESSITY – Interaction with the public is always a good thing. Add money to the equation and I was locked into what some of the writers and hosts I had followed throughout the week were saying on Saturday because I wanted to know what information I needed to reverse my luck or convince me to stay away from a game that intrigued me before it was too late.

My buddy Arky Shea writes for Paris Outkick. He was my shepherd through this world. One of the things he told me when I explained what I was doing and why the game makes you a more engaged fan. The information you are looking for is different than the guy who is a die-hard fan of a particular team or sport. If you know what you’re doing, you should already know what’s going to impress this guy.

While I understand Arky’s point of view, I’m not sure that’s entirely true. You certainly spend more time analyzing the numbers when trying to figure out how to allocate your money, but in just a few days I found myself seeing players and coaches less like people and more like trend lines. The game makes you do more homework. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you understand sports better.

Arky opened my eyes to something though. As the game becomes more popular, it gives those of us who talk about sports for a living a chance to reframe our content a bit. I still think it’s a bad idea for a presenter to assume that listeners know everything they are doing, but there is a lot of evidence that most of our listeners don’t need to be constantly guided by them. bases. If you’re doing a show in Nashville, you don’t have to constantly say “Titans running back Derrick Henry”. There’s a large chunk of people listening who not only know who he is, but are counting on him to be able to come out next weekend.

King Henry leads late Titans rally to stun Seahawks 33-30
Courtesy of: Associated Press

The last thing that became crystal clear in my first week of playing is that the addiction seems pretty easy. I absolutely had these “one more bet to break even!” ” thoughts. I never gave in, but, man, was that tempting!

The people and businesses who take the bets are the ones who have a responsibility to recognize and discourage problem gamblers. That’s why I wrote last week that the FanDuel / Craig Carton deal is a positive thing. For media professionals, it’s important to understand that, as with any hobby, the majority of your listeners probably won’t try it, but there is a group out there that really cares and wants as much information as they do. you can give it to them. It is up to programmers and EPs to help hosts find this balance.

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