The Sharp Plays Newsletter – Week #1

Recap & Week Ahead –  Can you believe we are back here again?!? It was very weird pulling out the newsletter template from last year. I can’t believe it is that time of year again. Just feels off given the way 2020 has gone along. Never the less, football season is here and let’s hope we can see it through to the finish line! It’s a limited football schedule this week with only 8 games expected to generate any sort of action. Still, it’s some NCAA football! So, let’s get into the Week #1 issue of The Sharp Plays Newsletter! First, let’s discuss some content changes as football begins.

We’ll start with bad news (for some). I do want to cover one thing that sometimes people don’t like to hear… adjusting content. As I say all the time, I may seem like a robot, but I am not. There is only so much time in the day and only so much time I can dedicate to The Sharp Plays (I do like to go outside from time to time). So, as football begins I am going to wind down horse racing content (TSP Power Ratings & Matchups) and the golf algorithm. I love the golf algorithm, but this season it has not been on point and it takes more time than most of the other algorithms to put everything together and run. I will still cover sharp action for golf. Sharp action is much less time consuming to report on. Those of your looking for a golf fix will still get it, just in the from of sharp betting and outside the algorithm. Let’s face it, you aren’t missing much this year. Now for horse racing. I know there is very a loyal following who LOVES betting the ponies. Trust me, I do too. However, once football begins the weekends are non-stop chaos. It might not be as chaotic as previous years, but I expect it to still be pretty busy. Once the weekend is over then the weekdays become recovery and preparation for the non-stop chaos to occur all over again. I wish I had the time to cover and do everything, but it’s just not there… even with the robots. I already probably dedicate too much time to The Sharp Plays, but it’s a labor of love so I overlook it! Still, I have to make adjustments given the time I am willing to dedicate. You can always trust though that I will do my best to put out the best content I am able. Don’t worry, if the world comes to an end again, horse racing will be back to fill the void on a daily basis… just like it was since March! Not to mention, I will also always still cover the major races like the Preakness, Breeder’s Cup, etc. So, I will put the horse racing coverage on the shelf for a little bit after the Derby this weekend. Again, I do apologize!

Here we are, the moment we have all been waiting for and the reason Robin Hood Members and March Madness Bonanza participants have been holding their credits! The first weekend of football on a material level is here and it is time to think about using those credits (remember they do expire on September 30th). So, what are my plans for the paid content this week? I pride myself on having quality free content and volumes of it (sometimes maybe too much). Of course I will still have plenty of free content covering football each weekend (sharp action, “known” bettors, public, etc.). What will I reserve for paid content? It is now when I hope all the prep work and testing that went on for TSP Live this spring & summer pays off. I have been working and testing features since April with TSP Live and I look forward to seeing it in action for the big show… football! Paid content will vary week to week. I will discuss it in this section of the newsletter each week to let you know what’s on the menu. For this week, paid content will be as follows… TSP LIVE CONTENT FOR SATURDAY & SUNDAY (SEPT 5th & 6th) will cover Soccer, NBA, NHL, MLB & NCAAF. Content will include the following angles: any Top LJP Score of the Day, Just Missed Top LJP Score of the Day, any Wild or Late LJP Moves as well as any Sharp Consensus action. I do not guarantee how many angles will be reported as part of TSP Live. Some TSP Live sessions there may be 4 to 5+ angles reported. Other TSP Live sessions there may only be 1 or 2 angles. Be aware your purchase may only provide you 1 betting angle over an entire TSP Live session (in this week’s case, the weekend), or it could provide 5 or more betting angles. I let the action dictate the content, not an arbitrary quota. All a quota does is incentivize forcing angles/reports that aren’t really there. If there is not a single angle that gets covered on Saturday or Sunday combined (unlikely, but possible), your TSP Live subscription will continue for the following week. Last year the content everyone wanted for football was the Sharp Consensus. A 42-19 record over football and NCAABB in 2019-2020 for +21.10 units will get people interested. It’s a very short football card this week, so I am not sure if any Sharp Consensus will materialize for football, but I fully expect some next week when NFL gets going! As always thank you for your support on the paid content. I do not take advertising and I do not run a daily sports service. Your paid content purchase supports everything I do at The Sharp Plays, expands the content and technology utilized and supports things important to me. I am grateful for your support! To signup for TSP Live click here or visit TheSharpPlays.net/tsp-live.

For the week ahead overall… yes it is the first week of football, but again, it’s not much action. I expect more US Open sharp action than football sharp action. Next week we will have some more opportunities to sink out teeth into things. Still, I look forward to watching some of the games and reporting on the public and sharp action, along with any major wagers (sharp or public) that get placed. It should be fun and I thank you for being a part of it with me!

Early Sharp Buys (0-0 YTD) –  For those new to the newsletter, Early Sharp Buys cover what the sharp bettors are buying at a decent level when this newsletter goes out. I know everyone is curious where the sharps are nibbling early in the week. So, this section of the newsletter covers that action weekly. What is the sharp money nibbling on this week? It’s a very quiet week as not all the lines are up. Combine the lack of lines with a short card and the buffet of NCAAF becomes more like a hor d’oeuvres tray. So be aware, a top early sharp buy when there are five active games on the board is not like a top sharp buy when there are 50 games. Disclaimer out of the way, sharp money has been buying BYU on the spread to 2.5 and then they shifted to the moneyline. Smart strategy (well of course, they are sharp for a reason) as, over time, taking the moneyline when the spread is +2.5 and lower will result in fewer wins, but a bettor ROI due to the plus money! Public has since followed along with this move starting around +2.

Early Algorithm Look (0-0 YTD) –  You know I love my algorithms, the Early Algorithm Look section checks out what my primary football algorithm is showing as the top value among sides and totals. The Early Algorithm Look does not take into account sharp action. Instead, the algorithm just takes a statistical view of the action, and locates the best value available. For this week, the algorithm is showing the best value as… MTSU/Army UN54.5. It’s a tough week to analyze given there are so many variables we have never witnessed before in college sports. HOWEVER, let’s take a little shot and see how the algorithm does.

My Handicapping (0-0 YTD) –  I suck as a handicapper, I admit it! If it weren’t for sharp action and some decent algorithms here and there to use, I would not be The Sharp Plays, LOL!! However, I did have a winning record for the “My Handicapping” section of the newsletter last year (the first year of this newsletter and a fact I am very proud of). So, if you want to know how my genius brain looks at this weekend’s card (LOL!!) strap in! For this weekend I am looking at MTSU +3.5. I always find it tough to pass up a +3.5. Army seems to be overvalued this year based on how they started out last season. Whereas MTSU is being undervalued because last year, well, they sucked overall. However, it is spots like these where you can find good value the next year. Remember, this year isn’t last year. Simple, but often gamblers use last year as a 100% guide for this year and it is to their detriment. Perhaps it’s why sharp money is so good early in the season… sharp money makes the adjustments. While sometimes performance will carry over in pro sports, often in college sports there is major change year to year. So, my handicap here is simple… you have an overvalued team going against an undervalued team. I think this game should be a PK and the bookmakers are giving me a super juicy +3.5. I am going to take it and see how it goes! Right now it is not seeing any sharp action, BUT that can change and hopefully sharps affirm my decision by following on later in the week. However, I am grabbing the +3.5 right now! Go MTSU!!

My Two Cents –   I love this section. It is very cathartic for me. “My Two Cents” was the section of the newsletter where I rant and rave on a topic or topics each week. I just found the section something fun to do to end the newsletter to wrap things up and thought people would be indifferent to it. Well, last year it was a hit! I could not believe all the laughs and discussions it generated. So, of course it’s back for another season. “My Two Cents” allows you to peek into the lunacy that goes on inside my head. If you are strapping in for my handicapping, this section will require therapy!

Where am I going this week? Purported professional bettors! No, I don’t mean the guys and girls you see all throughout Twitter who claim to be professionals. Most of those folks at least post their plays, win or lose. I am talking about the guys who are looked at by the media as professional gamblers. These folks get on their soap boxes to proclaim how incredible they are as gamblers, yet they see everyone else as peasants in the betting world. I won’t say who I am talking about, but I am sure you have come across their pages on Twitter from time to time. These folks will speak in the media about being professional bettors, but when you visit their social media pages, they NEVER discuss bets they are making (even after the fact)! All these “professionals” do is provide commentary of sports events going on (at the same time avoiding discussing angles they would bet in those events). These “professionals” will instead post pictures from their latest vacation or dinner out, random commentary about gambling and life, etc. Some will attack touts. I get the attack, but at least that tout you are attacking is posting plays, however bad they may be. At least that tout is willing to put himself and his theories/strategies out there for ridicule after a loss. You, “Mr. Professional” are nothing but a Professional Pussy who hides beyond a facade of sound bite intelligence. You lack any real substance… or a spine. WHERE’S THE BEEF??? I don’t mean you have to post what you are betting every day, but at least discuss or breakdown some wagers from time to time. Your are a professional, wow your audience with the intricacies of being a professional and how you look at different betting opportunities. You know, maybe say that you like the Islanders in the series because your model prices them at -550 and they are -220. Then discuss in broad terms your strategy for series betting. You want to purport to have incredible intelligence as you hold your nose ever so high in the air, flex that intelligence! Don’t just put a lot of smoke and mirrors out there. Maybe post some power ratings or something that your model generated. You know, instead of just living on some house of cards reputation, actually show people why you deserve the title of “professional bettor”. Of all the gamblers in the world, only 4% qualify as professionals. It’s a title you earn, not one you bastardize. Well, you know why “Mr. Professional” won’t put himself out there? It would blow open his facade! If they don’t show how or what they are betting, then there is no chance for people to see the lack of substance. Wimp! I know, I am fired up! When did this begin to annoy me?

On March 12th of this year the sports world (and the world as a whole) came to a screeching halt. It was unprecedented! We went from excitement of betting the NCAA tournament to… NOTHING! I saw many of these “processional” bettors simply say that was it for them and they would just be sitting back until normal US sports returned. Wimps!! A real professional in anything does not just quit. A real professional abides by one of the motto’s of the Marine Corp… Improvise, Adapt, Overcome. A real professional bettor is able to find angles in any betting opportunity. Whether it is cockroach racing or the Super Bowl, a true professional bettor just needs some data (even just a tiny bit) and they can attack any event! If someone says they are a professional bettor, but you ask them to analyze a sport they are unfamiliar… and they wave the white flag, call that phony out! A real professional’s answer should be… OK, what data do you have on the event? You don’t need to know the players… you need to know their stats and do some basic research on the game.

I am immensely proud that when the sports world stopped on March 12th, The Sharp Plays did not. Say what you will about me or my content BUT… THAT NIGHT, March 12th, I pivoted and covered cricket (the play won too) and I began discussing trading in the financial markets. The following day I covered horse racing… then table tennis, Aussie Rules, Belarus soccer and hockey, Russian event, and on down the list we went! Did everything win, of course not, but overall it resulted in a very healthy profit and provided us some good entertainment during a dark time. The lack of major global sports did not stop The Sharp Plays, hell, it didn’t even slow it down! I was putting out all this coverage, and at the same time would see all these “professionals” saying they were waiting for US sports to return so they could get back to betting. You piece of shit! Actually, calling you a piece of shit disrespects actual shit! You want to be called a “professional bettor”, act like one! No, this isn’t to puff up my chest. It’s to point out the chicken shits out there who were not willing to put their phony reputations on the line by actually showing they deserve the title of “Professional Gambler”. Even today, with major sports back, these “professional bettors” put out an aura of superiority in betting to everyone else. However, they still have yet to put their balls on the line and show why they have that superiority. Don’t disrespect the honor of those who truly deserve and achieve the title of Professional Gambler through hard work, failure, success, perseverance and putting themselves out there on the line… win or lose… all the time! I am by no means saying I deserve that title, but I sure as shit know these “Mr. Professionals” out there do not!

That’ll close out this week’s newsletter for me! Thanks for giving the newsletter here a read today! Stay safe & healthy out there! I am always open to any feedback you may have. I might not listen to it, LOL, but I am open to it!  😉

Good luck in your action!
~ The Sharp Plays