Sports gambling isn’t exactly a new concept, but legalized sports wagers in the U.S. are just now beginning to make it to the front lines. Today’s lesson, for those who are just breaking into the action, is that reading all the details about the wager will ensure that the bet is actually worth making. For instance, by ignoring the risk-to-reward benefits, someone could pop down a cool $1,000 on a game, only to realize after the fact that the bet has a payout of just $5.
This apparently happened at Caesars Palace Tuesday. Jeff Davis, who helps keep the casino’s sportsbook running smoothly, pointed out that a gambler placed a bet of $1,000 for the Auburn Tigers to beat the Kent State Golden Flashes. The odds of Kent State actually beating the eighth-ranked college team are extremely slim, which is why oddsmakers had listed the Tigers as favorites at -35.5 points.
The contest will be held this Sunday, and Auburn is expected to win without much of a fight. The team doesn’t have the best track record of covering the spread when it’s favored by 30 or more points, but, even if it does, Caesars only has to give up $5. Sportsbooks will take those bets all day, every day.
The unidentified gambler should have taken $100 of the money and put it on the Golden Flashes, just in case. If the team, currently 0-1, were to pull off the upset at today’s odds of +9000, that bet would be worth a cool $9,000. Given the $5 winnings on the safe Auburn wager, there would have been no downside in splitting the money between both teams. He could have also gone after a parlay bet that would have had more return, just like a gambler recently did when he turned $100 into $30,000 with an eight-team MLB bet.
This gambler isn’t the first to make an oddly-placed bet. This past August, the Westgate Superbook took a wager of $100,500 that the Philadelphia 76ers will make it to the NBA playoffs next season. Apart from the fact that the money is going to be tied up for quite some time, making it unusable for other opportunities, the chances of the team making it are pretty good. The odds have been listed at -5000, so the six-figure bet will only net $2,000 for the gambler.