Marc Lawrence

Marc Lawrence has authored thousands of articles expounding on the three primary forms of sports handicapping: Fundamental, Statistical and Technical. To be a successful handicapper, blending all three forms of analysis into the handicapping equation. Marc relies heavily on a proprietary powerful database of scores, stats and results of games played since 1980, both College and Pro Football and College and Pro Basketball.

Marc has been handicapping sports professionally since 1975, having won more documented Top 10 Handicapping Achievement awards than any handicapper in the nation. He won the 2005 STARDUST FOOTBALL INVITATIONAL Contest and was a SEMI-FINALIST in the 2006 $100,000 LEROYS' MONEY TALKS Contest last season. He finished the 2006 season as the No. 1 handicapper in the NFL as documented by SPORTS WATCH in Las Vegas. Marc also finished No. 1 in the nation in College Football win percentage in 2005 as documented by both the SPORTS MONITOR in Oklahoma and SPORTS WATCH in Las Vegas. He was named HANDICAPPER OF THE YEAR in 2005 by FOOTBALL NEWS.

In 2008, he finished No. 1 in NFL win percentage according to SPORTS WATCH and also captured 1st place honors in the 2008 PLAYBOOK WISE GUYS CONTEST.

Marc has hosted a national radio show "MARC LAWRENCE AGAINST THE SPREAD" for each of the last 16 years on over 100 stations syndicated in the USA. He is a tireless handicapper who works a minimum 60-hour week during the football and basketball seasons. As a handicapper he firmly believes that three things can happen when you bet an underdog, and two of them are good. He enjoys helping others to become better informed.

Marc married his high school sweetheart 40 years ago and has one son, Marc Jr., who works with him in the industry. Aside from publishing the PLAYBOOK Football Yearbook magazine and Weekly Newsletters, Marc enjoys golf and horse racing.

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Saturday, January 21, 2017

NFL Final Four

GREEN BAY over Atlanta by 1

Other than Arthur Blank’s wife, who will likely be on ‘Depends’ detail if this game is as close as we anticipate, the scoreboard operator fi gures to be the busiest person in Atlanta this Sunday. And for good reason: the Falcons have scored a league-best 540 points this season, including 36.6 PPG since their Week 11 bye, while the Packers are tabling over 32 PPG during their eight-game win skein. In fact, the 60.5-point opening number (and rising) is the highest total in NFL playoff history. Thus, with much more than ‘Blanks’ expected to be fi red from the opening kickoff, the question becomes can Matt Ryan (14 TDs, 0 INT last five) match darts with Aaron Rodgers (21 TDs, 1 INT last eight) as the high-fl ying Birds make their fi rst NFC title game appearance since 2005. Atlanta’s 1-5 ATS mark versus greater-than .444 opposition as home chalk under Dan Quinn says no! As does the Falcons’ 3-9 SU and 2-9-1 ATS log in the playoffs following a SU win. And remember: NFL home favorites are a worn-down 20-36-6 ATS after facing Pete Carroll’s Seahawks, including 1-7 ATS from Game 14 out. That doesn’t bode well against a Green Bay group that is 6-1- 2 ATS as a playoff underdog of fewer than 7 points and 5-3 SU and 7-1 ATS as playoff visitors since 2011. In addition, our NFL QB database reminds us that the visitor in Rodgers vs. Ryan rumbles is 5-1 ATS. Adding to the bizarre intrigue is the possible return of Jordy Nelson and the questionable status of Julio Jones. However, before fully taking the ‘Lambeau Leap’, we should point out that the Packers are 7-14 ATS versus the NFC South under Mike McCarthy. Still, we should all ‘Hail’ Rodgers as he improves to 7-1-1 ATS as a playoff dog while the Pack improves to 7-2 SU and 7-1-1 ATS against playoff foes this season. In the immortal words of the late, great Jerry Reed, “When you’re hot, you’re HOT!”

New England over Pitt by 3

After last week’s ‘disappointing’ 18-point win, the Patriots return to the conference title game for an unprecedented sixth straight season. However, it’s this next number that has both the Pats and Steelers licking their chops: the winner goes to the Super Bowl for a record ninth time. Speaking of nine, that’s how many wins Pitt has reeled off since a mid-November loss to Dallas – their fourth straight at the time – saw them drop to 4-5 on the season. Included in those defeats was a 27-16 setback to New England as 7-point HOME DOGS (of course Big Ben did not play). However, the Killer B’s are back at full strength and have even added a fourth member, kicker Chris Boswell. Boswell accounted for all of Pittsburgh’s points (six FGs) in last week’s 18-16 win over KC. And though the Patriots’ offense wasn’t razor sharp in last Saturday’s victory over Houston, seven trips to the red zone without a touchdown won’t work tonight. Not after hearing this jaw-dropping stat: since 1981, home teams who failed in the conference championship game the previous season are 38-4 SU and 30-11-1 ATS as playoff hosts the following season. And when these same teams fi nd themselves favored by more than 4 points, they zoom to 34-1 SU and 26-8-1 ATS. Then why aren’t we smiling with Tommy Veneer, who is a polished 15-3 SU at home in the playoffs, including 8-0 SU against .722 or better opposition? Especially with Brady 6-2 SU and 5-2-1 ATS in his heads-up duels with Roethlisberger, including 3-0 SU and 2-0-1 ATS in Foxborough. Simple – the Pats are just 1-6 ATS in their last seven conference title tilts while the Steelers are 7-1-1 ATS in their last nine roles as playoff road dogs… not to mention 2-0 SUATS in AFC Championship games under Mike Tomlin. Thus, the AFC’s version of the white-hot Packers secures our vote to claim the ATS payout.

Written by Marc Lawrence

Marc Lawrence can also be found at - One Click Handicapping
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Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Playbook College & Pro Best Bets

Alabama over Clemson by 3

A rematch of last year’s title game in Glendale, Arizona which saw the Tigers score a late back-door cover (lost, 45-40, as 6.5-point dogs) shifts to Tampa but we don’t need any financial advisors telling us who to back tonight in Raymond James Stadium. Not when we have our all-knowing database reminding us that the dog is now a jaw-dropping 13-1 ATS in Clemson’s last 14 bowl games following the Tigers’ dominating win last week over Ohio State. In fact, that number tightens to 7-1 SU and 8-0 ATS since 2010. Thus, it should come as no surprise to learn that the striped ones are 5-0 ATS as bowl dogs versus SEC opposition. Speaking of the SEC, they’ll need a ‘Bama victory just to even this year’s bowl record (5-6 SUATS to date). Meanwhile, the ACC is 8-3 SU and 9-2 ATS this bowl season, including 2-0 versus the SEC (NC State over Vandy, Georgia Tech over Kentucky). Now, this is no knock against the Tide as they are for all intents and purposes in a ‘league of their own.’ (On a side note – if we manage to land Tom Hanks in the role of a drunk Steve Sarkisian, who in the world is going to play Nick Saban?) Getting back to reality, it will be fun to see how Sarkisian reacts (a few F-bombs, perhaps) after getting chewed out by Saban after the fi rst three-and-out! And in a matchup of Top 10 defenses, there will be more than a few of those. As for Saban, if he has one Achilles heel, it is this: a career 1-3 SU and 0-4 ATS mark in postseason games versus a foe off a SU underdog win. He is also a mortal-like 5-5 SU and 4-6 ATS as a post-season favorite of 6 or more points. In addition, teams with the better record are just 2-4 SU and 0-6 ATS in the last six BCS title games. Nonetheless, the Tide are still 44-5 SU under the ‘Nic-tator’ when they are ranked No. 1. That has us believing that Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney will improve to 7-1 ATS in his career as a dog against undefeated opposition – but still remaining win-less against Alabama since 1905 (0-13). Can you say overtime?

PITTSBURGH over Miami by 14

Talk about bad timing for the Dolphins. Way back in mid-October, 1-4 Miami played host to the 7-point road chalk Steelers. Thanks to a mistake-free outing by QB Ryan Tannehill and a 200-yard rushing outburst by RB Jay Ajayi, the Fish dominated Pittsburgh, 30-15. Now Miami must travel to Heinz Field with Matt Moore at QB instead of Tannehill, and while Moore may be a 9-year NFL veteran, he has never taken a snap in a playoff game. Enter Big Ben Roethlisberger, a Hallof-Famer for sure, who stands a perfect 4-0 SUATS in the playoffs when avenging a same-season loss from an earlier meeting. Even worse for the visitors and their No. 29-ranked defense, dual-threat RB Le’Veon Bell is healthy enough to make his playoff debut after being sidelined by injuries the previous two years. As for Miami’s Ajayi, expect the proud Pittsburgh rush defense to make serious amends for their no-show in October and shut down the Dolphins RB today. Still, laying doubles in an NFL playoff game is not for the faint of heart but our tireless database tells us not to worry here. Pittsburgh is 4-0 ATS in playoffs with revenge versus a foe off a SUATS loss and same-season revengers like the Steelers are a profi table 25-12-3 ATS when playing at home in Wild Card round showdowns. Meanwhile, Miami is just 1-7 SU and 2-6 ATS away in the postseason since 1991, and matches up poorly in terms of playoff experience. However, we’ve saved the best for last: the Dolphins are only 1-14 ATS in playoff games when they lose straight up. Another warmweather challenger goes belly up in the frigid west-Pennsylvania winter

Written by Marc Lawrence

Marc Lawrence can also be found at - One Click Handicapping
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Thursday, December 22, 2016

Marc Lawrence Best Bowl and NFL Upsets Dec. 23-26

ARMED FORCES BOWL Amon G. Carter Stadium • Fort Worth, TX

Navy over Louisiana Tech by 6

With the Bulldogs and Midshipmen each arriving on 2-game losing skids, we wouldn’t be surprised to see Janet Jackson singing “What Have You Done For Me Lately” prior to kickoff. In fact, we were all set to take a pass today in Fort Worth as both the Techsters and Middies fall into the same scenario that saw teams go 0-8 SUATS last bowl season – that being squads who lost their conference championship game. That was until the invaders from Ruston went to favorites in this Armed Forces Bowl. That’s just not right! More importantly, it now has Skippy (Holtz) laying points and Playbook vets know he is a lousy favorite as opposed to a terrific dog. Yes, the Midshipmen have put more guys under center than Chippendales but if they get their QB situation settled in time, we’ll look for Ken Niumatalolo’s club to reel off its fourth straight bowl win and cover. It also doesn’t hurt that Military bowlers are 4-0 ATS off a SU favorite loss while CUSA bowlers are 1-4 ATS off back-to-back losses. And remember, this Navy team was 9-2 before their recent slide, knocked off a Top 10 team this year for the first time since 1984 and punted ONE time during the entire month of November. And while we’re at it, we may as well hear from THE CLINCHER: Military teams are 29-13 ATS as bowlers, including 18-5 ATS if they average 300 or more rushing yards per game.

Colorado State over Idaho by 3

With each of these teams riding a 7-0 ATS win skein, the Rams and the Vandals hit the Potato Bowl loaded with carbs. The difference is the Fort Collins crew arrives off a 63-31 thrashing of San Diego State and that brings into play this little gem: teams who score 60 or more points in their previous game are a famine-like 1-6 SU and 0-7 ATS in bowl play since 2011. We realize that the Rams won’t hurt themselves (only 6 turnovers in their last 11 games) but we’re not comfortable laying double-digits with a team that is 8-16 ATS as road chalk of 7 or more points and 2-5 SUATS as bowlers since 2002, including 0-4 ATS versus a foe off a SU win. And remember, the Vandals are playing with house money as this was supposed to be their swan song in the FBS after the Sun Belt announced it wouldn’t renew its membership following this season. However, they got a one-year reprieve from the NCAA (Idaho will be returning to the FCS level in 2018) but still played every contest like they were on death row, winning more games this year (8) than they did in each of the four previous seasons combined (4). And if you can get your hands on that juicy money line (+400), we should also point out that since 2000 there have been a total of 27 double-digit underdogs that have won bowl games in SU fashion – with 2011 and 2015 being the only two seasons during that span when one of these big dogs didn’t bite. We see this as being a great opportunity for the in-state Vandals to add that to that number, especially after hearing from THE CLINCHER: Idaho is 5-0-1 ATS off a conference game when facing a foe off a SUATS win under head coach Paul Petrino

New Orleans over Tampa by 14

If ever a case were to made for never discarding a future Hall of Fame quarterback from your play list it was last week when New Orleans QB Drew Brees kept the Saints’ faint playoff hopes alive with a 48- 41 win at Arizona when he passed for 389 yards and 4 TDs. Yes, we understand the Saints are 3-8 SU and 4-7 ATS in final home games of the season the last eleven years but in none of them were they fighting to stay alive in a playoff race as they were either ‘in’ or eliminated in the postseason chase in those games. We realize they are clinging to an oxygen mask at the moment, but the bottom line is Brees is alive and breathing. Tampa checks into Bourbon Street sporting a lousy 1-6 SU and 0-7 ATS mark in its last seven games on Saturdays, while just 1-5 SUATS in this series when New Orleans is out looking to avenge a loss from the most recent meeting (the Bucs beat the Saints, 16-11, two weeks ago). And because the swashbucklers have covered the spread in each of their six straight games, the price on this affair is just what bargain hunters are looking for this time of the year. Finally, just in case you need more, here is THE CLINCHER: Brees is 22-12-2 ATS with division revenge in his NFL career, including 7-0 SU and 6-0-1 ATS at home after his team surrendered more than 31 points in its previous game.

Detroit over Dallas by 4

The Cowboys are making their FIFTH straight primetime appearance and since the first four weren’t prosperous from an ATS standpoint (3-1 SU, 0-4 ATS), we’re not going to try to fi x what looks like is starting to break down (the ‘Boys are 1-3 ‘ITS’ over that span). Not when we’re backing a Detroit team that is 5-1 ATS in its last six Monday affairs, 4-0 ‘ITS’ in its last four games and looking to fend off the Packers for the NFC North title while holding onto a Wildcard spot if necessary. And why should we? The carefree Cowboys are 2-11 ATS at home off a previous home game, including 1-7 ATS following a win, and 3-8 SUATS in LHGs the past 11 years. With the Lions in control of their playoff destiny, that makes these ‘primetime points’ a bonus, especially after hearing from THE CLINCHER: The Cowboys are 11-25 ATS as home favorites under HC Jason Garrett, including 1-12 ATS off an ATS loss.

Written by John Pricci

Marc Lawrence can also be found at - One Click Handicapping
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