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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Wednesday, September 13, 2017


Marc Lawrence Best Bet College and Pro Underdogs, SEP 16-17


For the ninth consecutive year, HorseRaceInsider.com will post Marc Lawrence's Best Bet College and Pro Underdogs. Why underdogs? Consider: When betting favorites, two of three things that determine point-spread results are bad, whereas two of three things that can happen when backing the underdog are good. Hence, Underdog Best Bets.

Below are "technical" selections, defined as those based on historic trends. Marc gave us a look at the secret sauce in 2008. Suffice to say it is the most detailed sports data base I have ever seen. HorseRaceInsider is proud to post his weekend plays throughout the season.

Plays are based on opening lines; note line moves that can erase the edge Marc's research provides when backing the underdog.


KENTUCKY over South Carolina by 7

While he’s no threat to be invited to this year’s Heisman Trophy ceremony, South Carolina WR Deebo Samuel can play. He snared a pair of TD passes in the Cocks’ opening win over NC State, scored on a 25-yard rushing play against Missouri, and ran back a kickoff for a touchdown in each game. But those big plays mask a serious fl aw in South Carolina’s 2-0 start: the 31-13 win over Missouri marked the second straight week where Will Muschamp’s team won on the scoreboard despite being outyarded on the fi eld. As a result, they enter today’s fray allowing 158 YPG more than they’ve gained – a defi nite no-no. Kentucky HC Mark Stoops is feeling some heat in Lexington after posting a 19-30 SU mark in the previous four years and even though the Wildcats have managed a 2-0 start, both games were in doubt until the late going. Fortunately for Ashley Judd and UK nation, Stoops is 3-1 ATS in SEC away openers and the Bluegrass Cats own a 3-1 SU and 4-0 ATS log in the last four series meetings with SC. Our well-oiled machine pumps up the volume by telling us undefeated 17 returning starter dogs off consecutive wins like Kentucky are 5-1 ATS against undefeated foes since 1990. Considering the Cocks are a limp 3-9 SUATS with revenge when playing off a SU underdog win, we’ll take the touchdown from a South Carolina team ripe for a letdown. THE CLINCHER: Wildcats head coach Mark Stoops is 4-0 ATS following a win versus an undefeated opponent off a SUATS win.



MISS State over LSU by 8

We know it’s early but Dan Mullen’s Bulldogs (53 PPG and 502 YPG) behind blossoming QB Nick Fitzgerald appear to be a sleeper team in the SEC this season, and could leave LSU head coach Ed Orgeron mumbling more than usual tonight in Starkville (for those who haven’t seen Orgeron interviewed, he’s harder to decipher than a dyslexic sign language aide). Lucky for us, our multilingual database has this SEC opener sorted out, noting the Bulldogs are 3-0 ATS in their initial conference home game, 7-1 ATS as conference home dogs of more than 7 points (check this line) and 10-3 ATS with conference revenge while the Tigers are 0-4-1 ATS in their fi rst road game of the season and 0-3 ATS as conference road chalk of more than 7 points. In addition, Mullen is 6-2 SUATS at home versus SEC rivals when owning a .900 or greater record and 3-0 ATS in this series of late, making him the epitome of a live home dog. Especially when we factor in THE CLINCHER: Orgeron is 2-18 SU in his head coaching career against winning SEC opposition.


MEMPHIS over UCLA by 11


We hope the remnants of Hurricane Irma don’t rain this one out as it has the makings of an intriguing intersectional matchup. The whole world should be on the Bruins here since the public suddenly feels they’ve returned to elite status in the Pac-12 following a dramatic 2-0 start to the 2017 season. It began with a 34-point Josh Rosenled comeback for the ages in a 45-44 win over Texas A&M, and continued with a 33-point romp over Hawaii last week. Meanwhile, the Tigers struggled to a season-opening win over UL-Monroe (won by 9 as 29-point chalk), then sat out last week when their game against UCF was fi rst moved to Thursday, then fi nally cancelled. Second year HC Mike Norvell can lean on his team’s 16-4 SU success in their last 20 home games and their 15-6 ATS mark as home dogs versus foe off consecutive wins – 15-3 ATS when grabbing 3 or more points, including 6-0 ATS in non-conference scrapes. A closer look at UCLA’s quick start shows that coach Jim Mora has not fi xed last year’s defensive problems as the stop-unit has allowed 494 YPG in its two outings. A 12 Noon ET kickoff (10:00 AM PT body clock start) time doesn’t bode well, either, not with a conference opener versus Stanford looming on deck (Bruins 0-6 ATS as road favorites before the Cardinal). All of which leads us straight to THE CLINCHER: UCLA is 0-6 ATS in games following consecutive wins under Jim Mora if the last win was by less than 42 points.

PRO Picks

Washington over LA Rams by 10


Oy vay. Did Sean McVay ever enjoy his post-game celebration last week, or what? It was not only his fi rst win as a NFL head coach, but also the largest win of the week in the league as well. But to that measure we are quickly reminded that what goes up usually comes back down… in a hurry. Not only were the Rams able to overcome a dismal 9-16 ATS mark of late as home chalk, they blew the Vegas oddsmakers’ assessment of their team right out of the water. Next up: a revenge affair with the 49ers, which puts them in a perilous spot today considering the horned ones are 8-20 SU and ATS mark in games before facing San Francisco, including 1-7 SUATS during the fi rst four games of the season. Enter the Redskins, off last week’s disgusting defeat to the Eagles. They bring a neat 8-1-1 ATS away record against NFC West opponents that are off a win into the battle today. Finally, if the fact that the Rams are 2-10 SUATS the last twelve meetings versus NFC East opponents isn’t enough, then the welloiled machine supplies THE CLINCHER: NFL teams who scored 40 or more points in a season-opening game are 2-12 ATS in Game Two1 when facing a non-division opponent off a SUATS loss, including 0-7 SUATS if they won 8 or fewer games the previous season.

Green Bay over Atlanta by 10

If meaningful revenge works in the NFL we’ll fi nd out Sunday night. Last year the Falcons punched a ticket to the Super Bowl at the expense of the Packers when they sent Green Bay packing in a 44-21 blowout win in the NFC title game. Before we go any further, we’ll admit that QB Matt Ryan, last year’s league MVP, was 8-0 SU and ATS in homeopening games until losing to Tampa Bay last year. Ryan, though, was 0-6 SU in his previous six games against NFC North opponents until the aforementioned championship game victory. Green Bay takes the fi eld with a bevy of outstanding numbers, including 4-0 ATS the last four games when seeking double revenge-exact and 6-1 ATS as a Sunday night road dog with revenge. In addition, the Packers are 6-0 SU in games following Seattle, including 2-0 SUATS as an underdog. And we haven’t even hit on QB Aaron Rodgers’ 9-1 ATS record in his last 10 games when seeking revenge against greater than .750 opponents. However, we saved the best for last with THE CLINCHER: Atlanta is 0-10-1 ATS as a home favorite during the regular season following a win when facing avenging opponents.

Minnesota over Pittsburgh by 3

Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer continued his mastery against nondivision opponents in Minnesota’s season opening 10-point win over New Orleans, improving his career mark to 19-13 SU and 25-7 ATS in games outside the NFC North. Included in that tally is a perfect 6-0 ATS log in away games at AFC sites. And to compliment his success, his newest gunslinger, QB Sam Bradford, has also enjoyed a good measure of success against AFC opposition (see THE CLINCHER outlined below). On the fl ip side the Steelers bring good numbers in the fray with Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin and QB Ben Roethlisberger each 9-1 SU and 7-3 ATS in home opening games. However, the Black-and-Gold is just 4-13 ATS as favorites following a division contest when tackling a non-conference off a win, including 2-8-1 SU and 1-10 ATS during the fi rst twelve games of the season. Given the fact that teams in Game Two off a win-no-cover as a season opening double-digit favorite are 2-10-1 ATS, we obliged to follow the Zim $$$ train today, especially knowing THE CLINCHER: Vikings QB Sam Bradford is 7-2 SU and 9-0 ATS in his NFL career away against AFC opponents, with the two SU losses by a combined total of 5 points.

Written by Marc Lawrence

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