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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Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Deep Six


As we continue to extol the virtues of playing with rest during the college football season, let’s expand our look into GAME SIX. It seems teams taking on a conference opponent fare rather well with a breather as evidenced by an overall 141-119-1 ATS in all games since 1980 when playing off a week of rest.

Bring them in off a SU loss and they improve to 81-57 ATS. We find four teams in that role this week, namely: Duke, Kansas, Marshall and Texas.

A rather nice tightener comes about when we bring the opponent in off a win, as GAME SIX rested teams playing off a SU loss are 45-25 ATS when taking on a foe off a SU win. The Marshall and Texas qualify this week.



The best of all roles occurs when our GAME SIX rested team is off back-to-back losses, including a spread loss in its last game, and facing an opponent off a win as these teams are 17-4 ATS! We find Texas awakening to the task this Saturday.

Don’t doze off and fall into a deep sleep this week. Wake up to the fact that there are some ‘devilish’ sides on this week’s card...


Written by Marc Lawrence

Marc Lawrence can also be found at Playbook.com - One Click Handicapping
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Friday, October 08, 2010


College and Pro Upsets for Oct. 9-10


WAKE FOREST over Navy by 3
The MedEvac will be on standby here today since neither of these teams
can seem to stop the bleeding. Navy’s inability to produce points in the red
zone surfaced once again in the Middies’ frustrating 14-6 setback to Air
Force. The Midshipmen came into the game ranked No. 117 nationally in
red zone effi ciency and their failure to reach paydirt left them with only
seven TD’s on 19 trips inside the opposition’s 20-yard-line this season. QB
Ricky Dobbs failed to record a rushing touchdown for the fi rst time in 17
career starts and Navy failed to score a touchdown in a game against Air
Force for the fi rst time since 1986. Meanwhile, Wake Forest found its offense
in the hands of 4th-string signal caller Skylar Jones following injuries to
Ted Stachitas and Brendan Cross and Georgia Tech took advantage of the
situation, rallying from a 17-6 4th quarter defi cit to steal a 24-20 decision
over the dumbfounded Deacons (scored winning TD with just 15 seconds
remaining). Fortunately for Wake coach Jim Grobe, starting QB Tanner
Price should be available after sitting out last week because of a concussion
sustained earlier against Florida State. But the main reason we’ll be siding
with the homeboys in this matchup is because of Navy’s fragile mental
state. The last time the Middies lost a game to a fellow military team (2002)
they were shell-shocked as they fell at home the following week. In fact, in
games after military losses, the Swabbies have sunk to an 0-4 SU and 0-3-1
ATS record since 1999. We’re also at a loss to explain Navy’s stumbling
offense: with the exception of a 37-point outburst against Louisiana
Tech, the Middies have scored just 11 PPG – not what we want to see in
a road favorite laying almost a touchdown. The Demon Deacons boast an
attention-getting 14-2-2 ATS mark as home dogs versus an opponent off
a SU and ATS loss, plus their defense held Georgia Tech to a season-low
339 yards. Deacs wake up and get revenge for last year’s 13-10 defeat at
Annapolis.




S CAROLINA over Alabama by 3
Simmer down. Yes, we saw last week’s game against Florida and
we know the Tide looked like it could probably have handled the
Arizona Cardinals or Oakland Raiders. But that was last week – and
even though the Gators may have been a tad overrated, we think the
Gamecocks might still have a little radar-dodging to do. We’ve shared
Steve Spurrier’s outstanding success rate in conference games but he
really excels taking on a foe off a SU and ATS win, going 38-16-1 ATS
(if the line drops to -5 or less, this tightens to an incredible 17-4-1
ATS). If that doesn’t get your rooster to crowin’ then how about South
Carolina’s 7-1 ATS mark as a home dog? The Cocks had a week off to,
err, lick their wounds following a 35-27 loss at Auburn and will be wellrested
and mentally prepared for today’s fi ght. If you’re still feeling
antsy after we tell you Bama is only 1-4 ATS in Game Sixes or just 2-5
ATS after Gator-wrestling, our database informs us that teams who
defeat an Urban Meyer-coached team are only 8-8 SU and 4-11-1 ATS
in their next regular season game, including 1-9 ATS the last ten. The
Tide is also up against it another way. This is the fi rst of seven seasonending
games – all against foes that will each have an extra week of
rest to prepare for the defending national champs. That’s not good
news considering Saban’s paltry 2-9 SU and 3-7-1 ATS college career
mark against .500 or greater rested opponents that allow less than 19
PPG on the season (where else would you fi nd a stat like that other
than in the PLAYBOOK!). We think South Carolina’s stud RB Marcus
Lattimore can keep his team close enough to allow the wily Spurrier
to engineer the year’s biggest upset. And down goes Bama!

FLORIDA STATE over Miami by 7
When these two bitter rivals meet, it goes without saying that you can
throw out the records. In fact, you can throw out the line… and you
should. The dog has won this game OUTRIGHT a remarkable seven
of the last eight seasons, including each of the last fi ve. That does
not bode well for Hurricanes’ HC Randy Shannon, who already is the
answer to week’s TRIVIA TEASER. Not only does Shannon take his
lumps in ACC affairs, his ‘Canes are un-Kosar-like 5-7 SU and 3-9 ATS
as home favorites of less than 10 points and just 2-6 ATS at home off
back-to-back road games. Even their 1-6 ATS mark in Game Six – along
with Jacory Harris’ penchant for the INT (word has it Harris’ shoulder
is not right) – is cause for concern against a Seminoles’ defense that
has really stepped in up since the lambasting at Oklahoma. In their
last three contests, FSU has held BYU, Wake Forest and Virginia to a
combined 24 points and all three to season-low yardage. Ol’ Bobby
and Mickey may have been chuckling a month ago but it’s now Jimbo
and company that are getting the last laugh. The names may have
changed in this series (even the Stadium is now called Sun Life), but
we’ll look for the dog to continue its winning ways. With the Orange
Bowl mystique no longer a factor, ‘wide right’ appears to be one part
of series history that will not repeat itself. Ponder as we take the generous points.

KENTUCKY over Auburn by 3
On our late phones last week, Michigan State delivered as our False
Favorite Game of the Month. If we weren’t still in October, Kentucky
would be under heavy consideration for that title. Forget that Tigers’
HC Gene Chizik is a pathetic 2-14 SU away with those wins coming by
three and four points, respectively. If you’d like, you can also let it slip
your mind that The Chiz has a pair of revengers with Arkansas and
LSU on deck. And while you’re at it, don’t even note that Aubbie is
just 1-5 ATS off back-to-back home games or 2-7 ATS as conference
road favorites off back-to-back SU and ATS wins. All of that is small
potatoes compared to the fact that the Tigers have the worst of it
in this week’s SMART BOX. That alone should have you sniffi ng the
blue grass… and we haven’t yet brought Kentucky into the picture.
For starters, our database informs us that the Wildcats are a perfect
6-0 SU and 3-1 ATS in the fi rst of three or more consecutive home
games. As if that’s not enough, our Midweek Alert points out
that Kentucky has held three foes to season-low yards this season,
including Ole Miss in last week’s 123-yard ‘inside-out’ stat win but
SU loss. Let’s also not forget that the ‘Cats limited Akron to 172 total
yards – the Zips’ 2nd lowest output of the season. Get the picture?
Repeat after us: FALSE FAVORITE.

Usc over STANFORD by 1
After Stanford stunned the home-dwelling Ducks by jumping out to a 21-3
lead last Saturday, the TV announcers spent the next few minutes praising
the swarming new ‘Baltimore Ravens’ defense that Cardinal head coach
Jim Harbaugh had installed this season with the help of his brother, John
(coach of the Ravens). Then Oregon’s offense unleashed a merciless 49-10
scoring barrage on the hapless visitors and the word ‘swarming’ was never
mentioned again. Defense also proved to be the undoing of the Trojans
in last week’s loss to Washington as the USC ‘D’ was unable to half a fi nal
scoring drive by the Huskies and the men of Troy fell 32-31 on a last-play
fi eld goal. Today’s matchup just so happens to be your classic ‘DIA-DIA’ play
Dogs In Action, Doing It Again): the Trojans have been favored in 33 of
the last 34 games in this series and the only time USC took points, they
won the whole game, 10-0. O.J.’s alma mater also brings some great ATS
numbers to Stanford Stadium. The Trojans stand 11-1-1 ATS as underdogs
off a SU favorite loss and 13-3 ATS as dogs versus a foe they defeated in
the most recent meeting (6-0 ATS if the opponent is also off a loss). That
fi ts perfectly with the Cardinal’s 0-7 ATS crash landings before taking on
Washington State and their equally depressing 1-6 ATS mark as Game Six
favorites. Another nail-biter for USC, but this time Kiffi n gets the cash.


Tulsa over SMU by 1
We thought June Jones had completely lost his mind when he traded his
island paradise job at Hawaii three years ago to move to Dallas and take
over a crippled program at SMU. But after reaching postseason play in 2009
and getting off to a 3-2 start this year, it seems there is a method to Jones’
madness after all. Recent series history certainly favors the Mustangs here:
they’ve cashed in the last six meetings and compiled a highly profi table 7-1
ATS mark when tangling with Tulsa at Gerald J. Ford Stadium. However, a
closer look shows that the Golden Hurricane have been favored in the last
seven roundups between these two. Jones’ recent success has also caused
the Ponies to carry a few too many points in their saddlebags when favored
and they’ve folded under the strain, posting an awful 1-7 ATS mark (have
actually gone 1-11 ATS the last 12 as chalk). Hmmm… with the Big Breeze
a ‘Mission Team’ this year – and dressing up as revenging road dogs here –
we’ll choose to show a little ‘favoritism’ to the visitors today.


PRO PICKS

KANSAS CITY over Indianapolis by 3
Look what we have here. An NFL powerhouse in a nasty mood, meeting
a team trying to reestablish its once-proud identity. No, we’re not
talking about the Colts. We’re talking about the 3-0 Chiefs, the NFL’s
only team to remain unscathed this season. The question begs whether
or not the week of rest Kansas City had last week was a momentumbreaker
or a time to better strategize. We remember all too well
Denver’s 6-0 surprise start last year, only to be foiled thereafter by the
dreaded Bye Week. We put our trusty historical database to work on
this stratagem and what we found was surprising, to say the least. It
seems that teams who open the season 3-0 or better have excelled with
a week of rest when taking on an opponent off a loss, going 13-4 SU
and 12-5 ATS overall since 1980, including a 10-1 SU and 9-2 ATS run
the last 12 years. FYI: the only team to lose in this scenario since 1998
was – you guessed it – last year’s Broncos. And, for what it’s worth, the
last nine dogs to take the fi eld off three straight up underdog wins in
a row are 6-3 SU and 7-2 ATS. These same three-straight dog winners
are also 3-0 ATS when taking points from a foe that lost straight up
as a favorite in its last game. Oh yeah. In case you were wondering,
Peyton Manning is 8-17 ATS in his NFL career in games off a SU favorite
loss, including 1-7 ATS when favored by seven or more points. History
lesson over. In stunning fashion, the Chiefs remain on the warpath.


NY GIANTS over Houston by 11
The G-Men got off the schneid with a convincing romp over the
Bears Sunday night. That’s not good news if you’re a true blue
Texan at heart, considering the Giants’ sterling 20-10 SU and 22-8
ATS mark in its last 30 road games, including 13-3 ATS when
playing off a SU and ATS win. In addition, Eli Manning has been
money in the bank as a starting quarterback in the league when
taking to the road off a win, going 18-8 ATS, including 14-6 SU
and 16-4 ATS the last 20. Meanwhile, Houston looks to improve
to 4-1 for the fi rst time in its franchise history while laying points
for the fi rst time ever in this series. Those are two tall hurdles for a
team that ranks dead last in the league in total team defense. Aside
from owning a rancid 2-6 SU and 1-7 ATS mark in Game Fives, Tex
is 1-6 SU and 1-5-1 ATS in games against teams from the rugged
NFC East. Dogs with over 100 yards the better defense have always
been to our liking. Houie’s 1-6-1 ATS mark as a home favorite in
games in which its sports a .500 or greater mark cements it. Look
out Houston, Eli’s coming.



ARIZONA over New Orleans by 6
Playoff revenge sets the table in this payback affair and we like the
look of the setting. While both teams appear a shadow of their selves
this season, it’s the Saints offense that has really regressed. Last year
in its Super Bowl run, New Orleans averaged 33 PPG on 393 yards
of offense per contest. This year they have yet to top 25 points in
any game while mustering up 49 YPG less. And through their 0-3-1
ATS effort to date, the Saints have been +2 in TO’s. Meanwhile, the
Redbirds, who have had problems of their own with an offense that
has yet to ignite behind former Pro Bowl QB Derek Anderson, need
only to look at last year’s 31-point playoff loss to the ‘Aints for extra
motivation in today’s contest. That and Ken Whisenhunt’s remarkable
10-0 SU and 9-1 ATS mark at home in games off a loss versus an
opponent off a win should work together just fi ne. One word of
caution: save room for dessert.



Written by Marc Lawrence

Marc Lawrence can also be found at Playbook.com - One Click Handicapping
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Tuesday, October 05, 2010


5-0 FAT CATS


It’s the time of the season in which undefeated teams in the world of College Football begin entertaining ideas of playing in the coveted BCS title game. Especially for those teams that have managed to open the season with five consecutive wins in their first five games.

Forewarned is forearmed, however, when it comes to ‘playing on’ these 5-0 clubs as Game Six is often times a major chuckhole on the road the the BCS title game for these Fat Cats. That’s confirmed by the fact that, since 1980, these teams are 222-100-6 SU and 130-168-4 ATS overall. Hence, the bubble bursts better than 30% of the time in Game Six situations for teams that start the season on a 5-0 note. Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Michigan, Michigan State, Northwestern, Ohio State, Oregon, and TCU will all take the field this week looking to improve to 6-0 this week.



Put the 5-0 Fat Cats up against foes that are not undefeated and the dip to 104-138-3 ATS. Better yet if these Fat Cats won 7 or more games last season and a taking on an opponent with at least one loss on the season the shrink up faster than a hemorrhoid staring at a tube of ‘Preparation H’, shriveling to 69-105-2 ATS. Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Northwestern, Ohio State, Oregon, and TCU will be bending over for an application this week.

Best of all, these particular Fat Cats who won 7 or more games last season, taking one a one or more loss foe, are just 12-34-1 ATS when playing off a win of 7 or more points and back-to-back ATS wins, including 1-13-1 ATS if the opponent is off a loss of seven or more points.

As one of our all time favorite bands - the Traveling Wilburys - once said, it just might be the ‘End Of The Line’ for the Auburn Tigers this weekend. Stay tuned.


Written by Marc Lawrence

Marc Lawrence can also be found at Playbook.com - One Click Handicapping
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