The Sports Information Buffet – TSP Content Changes & Updates

We have all gone to a buffet when we were ravenously hungry. You get your plate, you go up to the buffet ready to eat and everything looks good to you. You grab some chicken fries, a doughnut, an Uncrustable (PB&J), bacon, corned beef hash, potatoes, Polish sausage, shrimp, french fries, chicken tenders and some ketchup for flavor. Yum!!! Well, it all looks so good at the moment and it all tastes so good going down. The problem is, all those different flavors don’t work well in your stomach. Now the rest of the day you have an upset stomach. It’s just too many choices, too much food and it all looks so good when you’re hungry. In the moment you aren’t thinking that a peanut butter and jelly Uncrustable along with corned beef hash may not be a good combo.

Sports betting information can definitely be a lot like a buffet. When you are hungry for good information to bet, often ALL the information looks good. You sometimes don’t know exactly what you want so you just grab it all and bet it all. You are full, satisfied and excited for the day ahead. The problem is you took too much, too many different combinations and later in the day you feel sick!

For years the content I provided on Twitter was limited to just my personal plays and then breakdowns on the big bets going on offshore. The content was more for entertainment than betting purposes. However as my content has evolved, I am seeing it being used more for betting than entertainment purposes. Since that is the case and that is the majority of my audience (bettors looking for information) I want the content to evolve to best fit the audience.

The past weekend was my first full weekend of NFL and NCAAF doing the level of content you saw. As most of you know, I consult for a couple sportsbooks offshore. The work has me pretty much just sitting at the computer on major game days like Saturday and Sunday. I am basically watching my client’s systems to make sure the pot doesn’t boil over. The work can often have a lot of time where you can’t leave the computer but there isn’t anything happening that needs attention. It is in these windows of time that I occupy myself by updating content on Twitter, responding to things people tweet at me, answer DM’s, etc.

The good of having this free time while I am dialed into the book’s database is I can put a ton of information on Twitter. The bad of this is that many of you see this information and like the buffet example, feel the need to play EVERY bit of the information I put out. Gamblers often have FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out). So, when a gambler sees something they feel offers the potential to win money, they have to bet it. The average gambler feels the worst thing in the world is having information, not betting it and seeing it win! So, the average gambler bets EVERYTHING to avoid suffering from FOMO. Never a good idea!

The problem is, not all the information I post should be acted upon. For example, when I post big sharp bets, it is entertaining to know what large bettors (sharp and recreational) are taking. However it doesn’t mean every sharp bet should be followed and every recreational bet should be faded. Why? Because you don’t know why someone is betting. For example, there may be a “known” bettor taking $30K on Clemson. It looks good but maybe that Clemson bet is just someone middling the game between two books. So, it is not necessarily a sharp bet even if it is from a sharp bettor. Also, sometimes sharps will buy out of plays. Not because the other side is sharp but for some other reason. So you could have a sharp who bet Texas A&M at low limits across 10 different books to build a $30K position early in the week. Then on Saturday when limits are up, they realize they no longer want the Texas A&M position so they put $30K on Clemson in a single bet. Not because they like Clemson, they just want out of the Texas A&M bet. Alternatively, there are times I will report a “known” X-type bettor took Clemson -17 for $55K. I will go away and have lunch, come back to check the game and see later that another “known” X-type bettor took Texas A&M. Problem is the game has gone off. Who should you have followed??? The problem I laid out happens ALL THE TIME. Rarely is the big sharp action limited to just one side AND it comes it at all times and numbers.

Similar issues can occur for those who like to fade recreational bettors. A recreational bettor could be an awful bettor but maybe today he got a good tip from a friend on Ohio St. He takes the tip, unloads $88K on it and he gets the win. The point of this and the issues following big sharp bets is that unless you know exactly why these bettors were betting, using the data as an auto fade or follow is not a good idea. It is never advised to blindly fade or follow anything but especially when you don’t know the bettor’s intention behind a bet you are following or fading.

One of the reasons I do the sharp and public concentrations is because they help to zero in on what the public likes and what the sharps like. It is not a perfect betting system but is much better than the individual bettor action. When there are lots of sharps concentrated on a team, it lowers the potential that the reason for the bet is middling or buying out. Same goes for the public concentration. The public concentration will zero in on mass public perception. Hence why I would suggest looking at the concentrations as more valuable and better performing over the long term than the individual large bets.

Another thing I often get are requests. I totally understand requests and I am happy to help when I can. However please know, if you make a request for coverage of a specific league or specific game, chances are I saw that request. If I don’t reply or if I don’t post anything understand then it is probably because there is nothing valuable to post. I am not ignoring you. I am just not going to reply to individual requests, with “nothing good there” over and over. People often expect every game to have a sharp side and therefore that is the side to bet. Far from it. Most games have mixed action. Mixed action meaning there is sharp and public money on both sides of the game and not in any major concentration which could help you figure out which is the better side. So, trust me that if I don’t post something on a game, side, league or sport… there is probably nothing of value on that game, side or sport.

Also, I know many of you have notifications set for my account. So, when I reply to another tweet, when I post something, etc. you get an alert on your phone. I can only imagine how badly your phones were blowing up this past Saturday or Sunday. LOL, sorry! I want to make sure following through notifications is an enjoyable experience, not an annoyance. I know the past few weekends and perhaps at times over the summer you shut those notifications off. Starting today, I’m going to consolidate my information into fewer posts and only what I feel is the most important content out there. So, if you have turned notifications off due to the barrage of content recently, I welcome you to turn them on for this week, test things out and let me know what you think. I hope the content will be better and more efficient… even if through fewer posts/tweets. I want to make sure that having notifications set will be an enjoyable experience. So again, give notifications a shot this week and then please send me any feedback. You can send feedback through Direct Message on Twitter, through the Contact page on my website or simply sending me an email! Thanks for taking the time!

Summing this all up, I will be dialing down the content into what I feel is the best content/information for the sports bettor and for what I do. I also want to make that content very conducive to having notifications ON for my account. While it may mean fewer posts and replies, I think the content of the posts and replies will be more efficient and of better quality. What will the content be??

1) My Algorithms – Of course they don’t win all the time and sometimes they pick a value that looks silly (i.e. Dolphins). However over the long term, across all sports, they are pretty darn good! So, I will continue to post my algorithms as I always have. These will include the consistent algorithms I cover, those in testing and the occasional guest appearance of other algorithms I use in my betting & consulting.

2) Robin Hood Selections & Updates – I will tweet when I have a Robin Hood Selection or the Robin Hood Club gets updated. These alerts will not change as usually there are not that many. When the Club is open there are no more than three tweets each day when the Club is updated. When the Club isn’t open, there is maybe one tweet per day just to let you know of an upcoming play.

3) Public and Sharp Concentrations – I will do these for every major sport ONLY WHEN there are good concentrations to cover. If the concentrations are close and spread out over a number of teams in a sport for that day, that’s not worth reporting. If the concentrations are targeted and large, then I will cover that sport for that day. So, if you don’t see MLB in a given day, it’s not because I forgot their was MLB that day. It just means the concentrations are not worth looking at because of how they lay out.

4) Select Sharp Action – There is sharp action usually involved in some capacity in every single game… side and total. It is impossible to cover all the sharp action properly because it can be vast, double sided and ever changing. How is that useful for a bettor? It really isn’t. Instead I will only cover unique situations. What will make a unique situation? One would be what we saw with the US Open this week where the very late sharp action was spot on and targeted. Another example would be when perhaps multiple books are getting hit by sharp money or a betting group on a specific side, a.k.a. steam. So unless it is newsworthy or unique sharp action, I will not report on it.

5) Large “Known” or “Recreational” Action – Most people do not comprehend the type of betting that goes on offshore. Most gamblers log into their sportsbook account, click on NFL to place a bet and see the limit is $5000. What they don’t realize is these are window limits that anyone can bet. They don’t realize that sportsbooks will routinely authorize bets WELL ABOVE the window limits. Betting offshore on any given weekend includes countless bets of $25K and $50K on games. There are just too many to report. I tend to pick and choose whatever pops up in the moment I am looking. Instead, moving forward I am only going to report “known” or “recreational” bets that achieve high thresholds. Those thresholds are above $100K in football and soccer, $50K in NBA, $25K in NCAAB, NHL, tennis and MLB. Using the limits I outlined tends to dramatically limit the content out there that can be posted and will dial down the single bet action I report to only the largest bets going on in the different sports.

6) Novelty Action – Mr. Poison falls into this category. The Dodgers bettor from this past week falls into this category. Novelty action is just screwy bets or crazy bettors putting down action that in my opinion is fun to watch and track. Mr. Poison is a good fade but first and foremost, he is entertaining. It may not be for everyone but I know it isn’t just me who finds a bettor who has the worst luck possible like Mr. Poison (see Detroit bets this weekend) entertaining. I won’t bombard with the novelty stuff but there will be some.

7) Betting News and Information – Pretty straightforward category. Anything interesting in the world of sports and specifically sports betting. Retweets of other content, general news and information.

Now I realize that 7 categories of information is a lot but a typical day will have 1-2 algorithm tweets, 1-3 Robin Hood tweets (usually just 1 when not RHC time), 1-3 concentrations, 1-2 select sharp action updates, 1-2 large bet breakdowns and 1-2 novelty action posts, 1-2 betting news posts. Add it all up and it is 7-16 posts per day, spread out over 12 hours. Not too bad on the phone in terms of notifications you will receive and it still delivers great content! Compare 7-16 posts on a Saturday or Sunday to the 51 tweets, NOT INCLUDING replies to people, that I did on Saturday alone! LOL! It’s a big difference and I am confident that content quality will not be lost, it will actually be made better and more efficient!

Speaking of replies, I am a reply nut. Years in the gambling business, which prides itself on taking care of people, has built into to me that if someone has a question, you reply. Unfortunately, this often doesn’t work well on Twitter or with notifications. So, if I think replying would be beneficial to the majority of followers on my account, I will definitely reply with the information. If I have nothing of value to reply on or if the answer is something that has been answered many times or can be found on my website, sorry, I won’t reply. Nothing personal, just working to be efficient. If you want to DM me, feel free as I have my DM set so anyone on Twitter can DM me. Just realize I get a lot of questions so my reply time can be delayed. Not replying will probably be the hardest part of this change for me! LOL!!

Also, on the topic of content, I am often asked, if there is a Mr. Poison, there has to be someone who is just an amazing bettor. Why don’t I post their action too? It’s simple. Mr. Poison is super easy to post. He usually bets once or twice a day and puts all his action in at one time. Sharp bettors are betting throughout the day making it very difficult to follow and post their action as they bet it. If I find a sharp bettor who would be easy to post, trust me, I gladly will do it. There are definitely plenty of sharp bettors but the key to sharp bettors is you need to bet all their action, at the lines they get, to secure their edge. So, if I could not guarantee I would be able to consistently post all of a sharp bettor’s action or post it in a timely manner, I won’t post. It serves no purpose.

Long message today but it should cover the bases. Summing it all up, starting today my content will be dialed into roughly 5-15 messages spread throughout the day. All of this is a work in progress but I think these changes will make following, digesting the content and using notifications a better experience. I also feel it will greatly increase the effectiveness/value of the information I publish for you, my audience! People ask why I care so much, why I invest the time to put out messages like this for something I basically do for free. The answer, it’s just how I am. If I am going to do something, be it for business or for fun, I am going to do it right and all the way! If I am not willing to do something the right way and all the way, I will not do it. I love doing The Sharp Plays stuff and even if 97% of it is for free and in my free time, I want it to be the best!

Thanks for following and good luck in your action!
~ The Sharp Plays