From the "King of Las Vegas" WAYNE ROOT!


We've come to BRACKET BUSTER weekend in college basketball, which is always one of my favorite times to look for SHOCK THE SYSTEM underdogs.

Thus far, in the relatively short history of BRACKET BUSTERS (it's probably been around longer than you realize, but not so long that the sample sizes are fully trustworthy), the following underdog categories have been the strongest:


You know I love backing BIG dogs, particularly when taking a flyer on the moneyline because I think they've got a chance to win their games outright. Let me start with that category.

Whenever you have a double digit underdog in a BRACKET BUSTER game, the following are in place:

  • The underdog is an unimpressive team that's only involved because of conference obligations. Nobody thinks they're any good. They wouldn't be picked for any other special event if not for the conference tie in.
  • The underdog is already so far out of the March mix that the regular season amounts to playing out the string. To be THIS big an underdog in a BRACKET BUSTER game, you have to be playing at a level that rules out postseason consideration of any sort, and that means you're very unlikely to pull any surprises in your conference's postseason tournament (if you qualify).
  • Combine those two together, and you have what amounts to THE HIGHLIGHT OF THE SEASON! It's basically a college football bowl game for a team that doesn't deserve one. They treat it with excitement, and treat the road trip (big dogs are almost always road dogs) as something special. I know, it's hard to believe that teams playing this badly coming in will lift their game. History makes it clear that a lot more than half of them do.
  • On the favorite side of things, you've got a team that will have trouble getting its juices flowing. A lousy opponent is coming to visit. The hosts won't get any credit for beating them. They won't get any TV coverage because it's not an inspiring matchup. Since it won't affect their conference record, they treat it like an exhibition game.
  • Home court advantage mostly disappears. Why would the crowd get excited for a nobody opponent? There won't be much energy in the building. The combination of travel fatigue and intense home crowds that usually work against a road dog disappear at high prices in the BRACKET BUSTER games. The road dog treats the trip like a football bowl game, and a half empty (or worse) arena sits on its hands.

I'm not saying every single big dog will cover this weekend. And, because of publication deadlines, I'm writing this before the numbers are even up. Maybe there won't be many big dogs this year. If that's the case, look for the biggest dogs at single digit prices and assume similar issues are in play. The key point: history shows that you should be focusing very closely on the high priced games to find Las Vegas betting value.

Now, let's talk about the very short dogs, meaning those getting just a couple of points or less.

History has shown that oddsmakers and the betting public tend just won't accept that this type of game is truly a pick-em. It's a toss-up. Either team can get hot and play great. If they match each other's intensity, either team can hit the last shot to win it. In THAT scenario, you want the points. I know it doesn't feel like much when you like a dog and you're only getting one, two, or maybe 2.5 points. Trust me. I got to be the KING OF LAS VEGAS by exploiting all the edges available to me! Over time, that value adds up and you'll be glad you took the short dog in the true pick-em games.

Now, it's now really a SHOCK THE SYSTEM result when a short dog wins outright. That's a value play. If you're looking to find a true SHOCKER in the BRACKET BUSTER games, focus on the big dogs who can win outright, or look for potential blowouts either way at the lower priced games. Vegas gets just a big a shock from those double digit misses regardless of what direction they come in.

I can't tell you as I write this how involved my service play will be in these special attraction games. I need to see the openers, track the early line movement, check the travel schedules for all the teams, and, perhaps most importantly, check to see who's on deck NEXT for everyone so I can exploit potential look-ahead situations. It could turn out that the best plays on the board are from the mainstream conferences on the regular board. It could turn out that a PLAY OF THE YEAR pops up in the BRACKET BUSTERS.

The only way to make sure you get my very best plays is to sign up for service! Call 1-877-ROOT-WINS right now to get on board. Ask about my SLAM DUNK CLUB, my PERFECT PLAYS, and any late-breaking news of the day. Note that game day selections and club packages can also be purchased here at the website with your credit card.

I've been BUSTING up perceptions in Las Vegas ever since I arrived a couple of decades ago. I took down and surpassed the biggest names (at the time) in the handicapping industry. I took my company public when it had never been tried before. I showed the world that a Vegas icon can out-debate the most well known politicians in the land during my run for the vice-presidency on the Libertarian ticket in 2008. That's how I earned my star on the Vegas "Walk of Fame." That's how I'll get a street named after me before it's all said and done!

BRACKET BUSTER weekend is the perfect time to sign up with THE KING OF LAS VEGAS, WAYNE ALLYN ROOT!


With Two-Time AFC Coach of the Year RON MEYER!


As an "experienced" coach myself, I'm very sensitive to media criticisms about older coaches in college basketball. If you're the type to believe everything you hear on TV or read about in the newspaper, you need to cut that out and respect older coaches.

Things usually break down this way:

  • Newspaper columnists who are trying to make a name for themselves by blasting coaches focus on the older guys...then try to make the case that they're out of touch with the modern game. They say the young players won't listen to older coaches. They say that traditional strategies won't work with the modern player. They say that you can't focus on pounding the ball inside (old style) when three-pointers determine everything now. You don't hear these complaints so much on TV. Many of the TV guys are former coaches! But, in newspapers and on the internet, this is a common theme you hear from pundits.
  • TV guys like to rave about the new young coaches. They talk about how well they relate to their players. They talk about the innovations they're bringing to practice and game days. They talk about how essential it is in the modern game to have coaches who can recruit, talk to, and lead young men who have been pampered their whole lives because of basketball talent.

As I said, the TV guys won't slam a guy because of age...but they don't talk about his innovations or ability to relate to youth either. When you're a veteran like me, you know how to read the tea leaves.

Let me make the case for another way of thinking. Let me explain to you why experience MATTERS when coaching college basketball. Let me explain why you'll pick more pointspread winners if you respect veteran coaches and are skeptical about the newcomers.

  • First, the fundamentals of basketball haven't changed! Defense still wins championships. Protecting the ball and trying to make the most of every possession is still vital. The rims are still 10-feet off the ground. The ball is the same size and bounces the same way. What has always worked will continue to work, and it doesn't take a brain surgeon to realize it!
  • Secondly, veteran coaches know how to recruit players who will listen to them. It's true that some prima donna players are uncoachable. They think the world revolves around them. They're just going to hang around for a year and go to the NBA anyway. Top quality veteran coaches DON'T recruit these guys. They're program poison.

Besides, I was always impressed during my time at SMU how VERY coachable most young guys are. They want to improve. They want to win. They know that getting better is the way they'll have a career at the next level (Eric Dickerson from my "Pony Express" years had a Hall of Fame career, Craig James played in the NFL and ultimately became a TV analyst).

How hard is it for a veteran coach to relate to a young star when the young star wants to get better, and the veteran coach knows how to make it happen? They're on the same page!

*Thirdly, many of the innovations you see from younger coaches actually hurt their teams in big games! Think about the squads that try to full court press the whole 40 minutes. That wears out their legs over the course of a full season. And, when they run into quality guards in the postseason, they end up allowing a bunch of layups.

Or, how about the teams that were going to "revolutionize" the game by emphasizing three-point shooting? They found out it's tough to hit those shots on the road with the different backdrops...and it's harder to hit the shots in pressure situations in neutral court tournaments. Sure, they can score an upset or two. That's not championship basketball though. You don't cut down the nets that way. You just get to wear a girl's slipper for a couple of days.

Now, I'll admit that there will occasionally be a veteran coach who loses touch just a bit. It happens. He's stubborn. He's not as patient as he needs to be. And, there just aren't enough athletes out there who will put up with that. This is the exception rather than the rule. Veteran coaches got to be veterans because they knew what they were doing! They survived the attrition process, and should be awarded the respect that deserves in your handicapping process.

The young guys with gimmicks? They seem to do well at home, but struggle on the road and in tournaments. Keep that in mind as you handicap these latter stages of the season.

Folks, it's time you found out what today's young basketball players are finding out. IT PAYS TO HAVE A COACH IN YOUR CORNER!

Call 1-877-540-8787 right now to sign up for service. Last time I talked about how hot my 20-STARS have been. My bread-and-butter service, the THREE-POINT BASKETBALL CLUB is also a great value this deep into the season because of the reduced rates.

Don't forget that you can purchase game day selections and packages here at the website with your credit card.

Are you a young gun struggling on your own? Experience matters! Call in a coach! 

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