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 27, 2017


Marc Lawrence College & Pro Best Underdogs SEP 29-30


College Picks

IOWA ST over Texas by 6


With October knocking on the door, it’s time to get serious in the league where they run for fun (not to mention cars, houses for their parents and the hottest girls on campus) as no less than 41 conference games dot the Week 5 slate. It begins in Big 12 country as Tom Herman and the visiting Longhorns look to build on a promising effort they put forth two Saturdays ago in a 27-24 overtime loss at USC. However, we’re not fully hooked on Herman’s ‘Horns just yet, and certainly won’t be ‘feeling the love tonight’ for them with Marc’s BETCHA DIDN’T KNOW article going googly eyes over the Cyclones. Our well-oiled machine is also looking to court the hosts as it notes their 8-0-1 ATS mark as dogs of 16 or fewer points against sub .500 foes and 6-1 ATS log in weekday play. We should also point out that Iowa State head coach Matt Campbell is 6-2 ATS as a home dog, including 3-0 ATS versus less than .800 opposition. Meanwhile, Texas is a ‘vagabond-like’ 1-4 SUATS in their last fi ve tries as conference road chalk. Worse, road teams playing with rest off an overtime loss are just 12-16 ATS all-time, including 0-3 SUATS against foes that scored 38 or more points in their last game. Still looking to back the wide-eyes wanderers? Better check out THE CLINCHER: Tom Herman is 0-7 ATS as a conference favorite when his team is not coming off a win of 29 or more points.


WASHINGTON STATE over USC by 8

While we didn’t show any love for the Cougars from Provo, the ones from Pullman are a different story. Like Iowa State, Mike Leach’s men take center stage in this week’s BETCHA DIDN’T KNOW article. Even if the restless warriors (1-6 SU in this series since 2006) didn’t garner that gossip (who needs the New York Post’s iconic Page Six when you have the Playbook’s Page Two?), we could certainly ‘Leach’ onto a squad whose coach is 15-5 ATS as a dog versus undefeated foes, including 9-1 ATS with Washington State, and a Top 10 ranked stop-unit that owns over 100 YPG the stingier defense. Our database also claws with the Cougars as Wash State is 6-1 ATS in Game Five of the season while the Trojans are 1-6 ATS in Game Five, an unprotected 1-4 ATS in weekday affairs and 3-7 ATS after clashing with Cal. All that and there’s still room for THE CLINCHER: USC is 7-26 ATS as a road favorite following a win against .500 or greater foes off a win, including 0-9 ATS the last nine.

PRO Picks


Baltimore over Pittsburgh by 11

Talk about a team with a chip on its shoulder – meet the Baltimore Ravens. After a 2-0 start to the season, they were little more than jesters in their game last week in London where they dropped the ball in a 44-7 loss as 3-point favorites to Jacksonville. Before jumping off the bandwagon, though, it should be noted that teams off a non-division spread loss of 40 or more points in which they surrendered 44 or more points in the loss are 10-2-1 ATS in follow-up affairs, including 8-0-1 ATS when seeking revenge against that day’s opponent. Toss in Pittsburgh’s 4-9 SU and 4-7-2 ATS in this series since 2011, including 0-3 ATS the last three games away, along with Baltimore’s 8-1 SU and 7-2 ATS in division games following the Jaguars, and it appears that ‘Chip’ should be coming to play today. And, by they way, there is also THE CLINCHER: NFL teams returning from London are 8-2 SU and 9-0-1 ATS since 2015.






Written by Marc Lawrence

Marc Lawrence can also be found at Playbook.com - One Click Handicapping
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Wednesday, September 20, 2017


Marc Lawrence Underdog Best Bets SEP 23-24


NORTH CAROLINA by Duke by 8

Backing a third straight road favorite is not in the offing in Chapel Hill as Marc’s Betcha Didn’t Know column on page 2 has us clicking our ‘Heels’ today on Tobacco Road. In addition to that juicy 23-4 SU and 18-3 ATS tightener outlined in the ‘Help!’ article, Duke’s 1-3 SUATS record in their last four ACC openers also has us believing that the hosts will right the ship and make amends for a pair of season opening home losses to Cal and Louisville. History also doesn’t favor the Durham Devils as they are an overconfident 0-4 SUATS when given the favorite label in this series and 1-3 SUATS in this building since 2009. And besides the Beatles’ Help, another reason we feel the Tar Heels will have a Fab (Game) Four comes courtesy of THE CLINCHER: North Carolina head coach Larry Fedora is 7-0 SUATS following a win in games in which his teams own a losing record.



IOWA over Penn State by 1

The latest AP Poll finds the Lions fl ip-flopping with USC and moving into the all-important cleanup spot (#4) but softball season (Akron, Pitt, Georgia State) is over and hardball is on the horizon for James Franklin and company with Michigan and Ohio State dotting the October slate. With that, expect a few curve balls along the way starting tonight in Iowa City. Sure, the Lions are 5-1 ATS as conference road favorites of more than 6 points and No. 2 in the nation in turnover (+2.33) margin per game. However, the ball seems to bounce Iowa’s way at Kinnick Stadium as the Hawkeyes are +6 in net TO’s at home each of the previous two seasons. They are also 9-3 ATS with conference revenge, 5-1 ATS as home dogs of 4 or more points and 8-2 ATS in Game Four of the season. HC Kirk Ferentz is probably not on the boosters’ good side after taking a knee on the final play of the game from the 2-yard line last week against North Texas, denying backers the cover. However, his 9-2 ATS log as a conference home dogs of more than 7 points, including 7-1 ATS with revenge – along with a 4-0-1 ATS mark at home with triple revenge-exact – figures to pay dividends this week. As does THE CLINCHER: Ferentz is 19- 5-1 ATS when playing with personal loss revenge with the Hawkeyes, including 10-0-1 ATS the last 11 games.

MICHIGAN STATE OVER Notre Dame by 10

If you feel Notre Dame finally awoke in last week’s blasting of Boston College then you need to know that as a favorite in this series, the Fighting Irish are just 2-9-2 ATS. They rushed for 515 yards on 51 attempts in a beat-down of the Eagles last week, and for 422 yards in the opening week against Temple, but against a good defense (Georgia), they managed just 55 yards on the ground. Now they head to East Lansing to take on the nation’s 3rd-ranked stop unit. Also, Brian Kelly is 8-16-1 ATS when favored off a win of 18 or more points and facing a .500 or greater opponent. On the Spartans’ side, HC Mark Dantonio has all the rushing weapons of a year ago at his disposal (L.J. Scott, Gerald Homes, and Madre London), so there will always be fresh legs in the contest. Sparty looks like the mission team we thought they’d be this season and the all-knowing database comes calling with this nugget: 2-0 undefeated home teams in Game Three, playing with a week of rest and are off an ATS win of 7 or more points, are 14-6 SU and 15-5 ATS since 1980. It also notes that home teams in Game Three of the season in a 4-game season opening home stand are 18-9 SU and 19-8 ATS when hosting a foe off a SUATS win.


PRO PICKS


DETROIT over Atlanta by 11

The Falcons have yet to fall prey to the Super Bowl loser-curse, opening the 2017 season on a 2-0 SU winning note following last Sunday night’s convincing win over the Packers (boo). There is still plenty of time for the dreaded curse to take hold and it’s our best educated guess it begins here as Super Bowl losers who have opened the season 2-0 are just 3-7-1 ATS in Game Three since 1980, including 0-5 ATS following a spread win of 7 or more points. In addition, defending Super Bowl losing teams are 27-47-5 ATS as away favorites in non-division games. In addition, the Dirty Birds are 0-5 ATS following Sunday night game when facing a non-division foe, while the under-the-radar Lions are 5-0 SU and 3-2 ATS in their last 5 games versus NFC South opponents. Toss in Jim Caldwell’s sterling 9-4 SUATS mark during the opening month of September in non-division duke-outs and the table has been set.

SEATTLE over Tennessee by 10

The upstart Titans proved Vegas right last week when they gouged Jacksonville, 37-16, to even their record on the season. Meanwhile, the Seahawks appeared sluggish for a second straight week in a 12-9 snoozer over San Francisco as the Seattle offense has yet to find the end zone this season. So why are we on Pete Carroll and Russell Wilson like the Washington Post on Trump today, you ask? Simple. For openers, Carroll is 13-2-2 ATS in his last 17 games as a dog off a win, and Wilson is simply 13-3-1 ATS as an underdog in his NFL career, including 9-1-1 ATS following a win. And don’t forget the Seahawks’ sterling 5-1 ATS mark against AFC opponents, and its 8-1 ATS record in games following the 49ers. Meanwhile, the Titans are 0-6 ATS in their second home game of the season when hosting an avenging foe, and 1-5 ATS at home following the Jaguars. And last but not least, there is THE CLINCHER: Tennessee is 4-17 SU and 3-18 ATS in games following a SU win as either a dog or a favorite of less than 3 points, including 0-7 ATS at home.

Written by Marc Lawrence

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