Betting on Football

I was convinced back whenever I was much young that no one was unlucky enough to lose 13 out of 15 football games but I proved that theory wrong. The year was 1985.

I felt that I didn’t even have to know who was playing and that I could pick almost half of the games correctly. Statistically speaking, just looking at the point spreads. Because I watched a lot of football back then and we all talked football I was sure I knew as much as anyone on the subject. The mid 1980’s were prosperous times.

Thanksgiving weekend rolled around and I bet on games from Thursday through Sunday. College and Pro’s. At the end of Sunday I had lost 12 of 14 games. I was devastated. My losses were $5000 plus the juice . I was down $5500.

I was humiliated. I didn’t like the feeling of losing.

The Chicago Bears were unbeatable that year. They hadn’t even come close to losing a game. They were playing the Dolphins. I took the Bears and only had to give up 3 points. I bet $5500. I just wanted to get back even. The Dolphins won 38 to 24.

I was down $11,550 for the weekend. I never bet on another football game after that.

It caused me to think about probabilities a lot.

Statistics don’t always drive what happens in life.

I think that lesson taught me a lot. And as it turned out that while it was an expensive lesson, perhaps it saved me a lot of money during the course of the rest of my life.

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