Big weekend ahead in Tahoe books |

Big weekend ahead in Tahoe books

What a great time of year this is for sports fans!

Football is under way in both the NFL and the college ranks.

Baseball is nearing the playoffs with a couple of good races in both leagues for wild-card spots.

Boxing gives us a marquee matchup on Saturday night, with Oscar De La Hoya meeting Fernando Vargas.

Sportsbooks in Lake Tahoe are in for a busy weekend! More about upcoming events later.

In this column last week, Ron Tipton of Lakeside Inn gave some good advice about wagering strategy for sports bettors. Letting your heart rule your head when betting on teams is probably the biggest pitfall there is for casual sports bettors.

Another major flaw in the strategy of inexperienced bettors is jumping on the bandwagon of teams that become popular public choices. Public opinion and perception influence the way betting lines are set. It may also cause major moves in the line during the week.

Bettors who are known in the business as professional or sophisticated, await such moves with eager anticipation. Inflated line moves on the public’s “now” teams are their bread and butter. Try not to be influenced by popular opinion when it comes to making wagering decisions.

Parlay cards are a very popular method of wagering on football. They are convenient and have one major advantage over regular parlays. The lines on parlay cards remain constant throughout the week.

Parlay bettors have a choice between the parlay card or betting a parlay “off the board.” My suggestion is to compare the lines on the board to those on the card and determine which are in your favor. Payoffs vary between parlay cards and regular parlays. Quite often, parlays off the board pay slightly higher than parlay cards.

However, this is not always the case. The situation is similar to shopping for something. Shop around to get the best deal when it comes to sport betting. Staff behind the counter at Caesars Tahoe Sportsbook are there to assist you with any questions you might have.

It was great to have football back this past weekend.

Miami-Florida looked terrific going to Florida and thumping the Gators. Who can stop them from repeating this year? Apart from one tough game at Tennessee, they should breeze through their schedule.

Interest in college football heightens when Notre Dame has a winning team. Just how good they are remains to be seen. Their matchup this week with Michigan will answer some of the questions. What a great game that should be!

Other college games of note this weekend include USC at Colorado, Georgia at South Carolina, the rivalry in Iowa between Iowa and Iowa State, Florida State travels to Maryland, and Nebraska takes on Penn State. Locally, UNR will face a big test against BYU. Good luck to the Wolf Pack!

Week 2 in the NFL produces some interesting pairings as well.

The rejuvenated Dolphin offense travels to the Colts, where a shootout looks in the cards. Other attractive matchups include the Packers at New Orleans, the Patriots at the Jets, the Broncos at the 49ers, the Raiders travel to Pittsburgh and on Monday night the Eagles play at Washington.

Don’t forget that on Sundays you can watch all the NFL games live at Caesars Tahoe. Food and drink specials are available.

On Saturday night, boxing takes center stage with the De La Hoya/Vargas bout for the super welterweight championship. These men do not appear to like each other very much, so there is definitely a little extra needle accompanying this fight. Who will have bragging rights come Saturday night? Again, you can watch this live at Caesars Tahoe. Contact the Activity Center for ticket details.

As far as finding a winner or two this weekend, let’s see what I can do. I warn you that my football touts at this time of year are not as strong as they might be a month or two down the road, but here goes nothing.

Notre Dame can win as the underdog over Michigan. If you can get +3.5, take a little of that. I was not all that impressed by Michigan when they recently played Washington. The Irish can roll!

Other plays I like are Toledo +7 at Minnesota, and Oregon State -16 over UNLV.

In the pros, I like the Saints +2 against the Pack, the Bears +3 against the Falcons, the Giants +13 against the Rams, and on Monday night lay -3 on the Eagles.

The De La Hoya fight looks worth a bet from a couple of angles.

As I see it, the fight should go the distance, and I really don’t see Vargas winning. A bet on the fight to go at least 10.5 rounds, backed up with Oscar to win by a decision looks attractive.

Enjoy this great sporting weekend, and remember to bet with your head, not over it!

— Paul Peterson hasn been a race and sports book supervisor at Caesars Tahoe for nine years.

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