Here at BangTheBook.com, we’re committed to giving you the most comprehensive sports betting website on the internet. We have no shortage of Expert Handicappers with winning track records offering picks and packages for purchase, as well as daily free picks. Our writers supply game previews on a daily basis with free plays and analysis that you cannot get anywhere else. We write about betting tips, trends, and the futures market. Our forums are filled with knowledgeable posters and handicappers with varying levels of experience and success. Plans are in the works to add even more helpful tools to our readers and clients and make BangTheBook.com a one-stop shop for the sports betting enthusiast.
We’re happy with what we have accomplished so far and want to continue improving and getting better. One way we can do that is to establish our credibility and establish the character of the people that work for us. With that, we’ve decided to institute a new weekly article series to Meet The Handicappers. Our handicappers work tirelessly to perfect a craft that a small percentage of people can turn a profit with over a long-term basis. Why do they do it? How do they do it? How can you become a better handicapper? What is the hardest part about this lifestyle?
We know that the “touting” industry has its hardships. Some bad apples spoil the whole bunch by losing clients a lot of money or by giving the industry a bad reputation through their actions and candor. We’re proud of the group that we have here at BangTheBook.com and we felt that it was important to give our readers and clients a chance to get know them better. Our Expert Handicappers welcomed the chance to share their knowledge, successes, failures, and even stories on how they turned a hobby into a profession.
Over the last two weeks, we’ve focused on Kyle Hunter and Chase Diamond. This week, we focus on Tony George, a big name in the sports betting community. You’ve seen Tony on various websites, including some of the industry’s biggest heavy hitters in the pick-selling world. Perhaps you’ve also heard Tony George on one of his radio shows, including his national spots on Yahoo! Sports Radio. What you see, hear, and read is the real Tony George, a straight shooter with a tremendous understanding for the betting market and how the oddsmakers operate.
Adam Burke: First off, Tony, thanks for taking the time to do this and let the readers and clients learn a little bit more about you. How many years of experience do you have handicapping?
Tony George: 22 Years - Since 1992
AB: What is your earliest gambling memory?
TG: I ran numbers and sheets and collections for a guy who ran a pool hall in my hometown of about 3500 people. I was about 15 years old when I discovered the envelopes on Tuesday were full of cash. The thickest one was always the local drug store owner, so I figured out to start holding some of his bets after a month or two and next thing you know, I was fading a square and loving it! My first win was a crisp $100 bill at age 15. I was hooked!
AB: How did you get started in the industry and why did it appeal to you?
TG: I won a NFL Contest in 1991 at the Horseshoe in Vegas on a goof. I was always good at picking winners since I ran numbers for a local bookie and also did some book in college. When I won the contest, one of the Binion Boys asked me if I would like to sell my plays the following year to some of his friends. The rest is history.
AB: What is your favorite thing about being a professional handicapper?
TG: It is not all rainbows and sunshine, very far from it, and it is a thankless profession. You live and die by someone else's performance, which you have no control over. That said, sports are my passion and I get to be involved in sports daily, both handicapping and on radio, so I get to make a living through something I am passionate about. I am a controlled action junkie, so it fits.
AB: How would you describe your handicapping style?
TG: Situational analysis combined with using power numbers against the Las Vegas Line to establish overlays.
AB: What element of handicapping do you struggle the most with?
TG: The promotion, the hype, and being lumped in with the “scamsters” of the business. I do not struggle handicapping games. If I did, I would not be doing it. Whether on a hot streak or a cold streak, I have a system and it never changes. You do not do this for 22 years in the public limelight and on national radio if you struggle in any area. If so, find a new profession.
AB: Outside of losing, what is the worst thing about being a professional handicapper?
TG: You are only as good as your last play. If you are 9-1 and the last play was your only loss, you have hundreds of internet guys and forum junkies and “wanna-bes” calling you the lowest common denominator of human filth because you lost on the Royals that night, but the other 9 wins before that loss are never mentioned.
AB: What is your favorite sport to bet and why?
TG: I like the NFL because there is a certain value in the number, especially with “fall” (key) numbers, that is more evident than in most other sports. Also, there is a consistency with stats that I enjoy and just have it figured out.
AB: What is your favorite sport to watch and why?
TG: Football. It’s America's favorite sport and my favorite league is the NFL because I am good at capping it. A close second is March Madness.
AB: What are your favorite teams in the major leagues (MLB, NBA, NFL, NCAA, NHL (if applicable))? How do you approach them from a betting perspective?
TG: I approach any team the same whether they are my favorite as a fan or not. My favorite team is the one I have money on. I am a Nebraska Cornhusker Alum, so I am a Husker for life. It is easy with Nebraska under Pelini - just fade them in big games and cash out! I live in Kansas City, so I am a long suffering Royals and Chiefs fan, but I don’t approach them any differently. I bet with my head and never my heart.
AB: What is the best win you have ever had? What about the worst "bad beat" story?
TG: I won $25,000 at Mandalay Bay betting against Nebraska against Texas A&M back in early 2000s. I took 4 and by halftime I was up +28 points over the spread and never looked back. Worst beat was a $20,000 last second loss on Army against a Donovan McNabb led Syracuse team on the last play of the game at the last second to lose by a half point. It was at Harrah’s in Tahoe. ALSO: Anytime I lose a rare Game of the Year it hurts badly, as I actually care about my clients’ bankroll.
AB: What tips or advice would you have for novice/inexperienced bettors either looking to get better at betting or looking to break into the industry?
TG: Know one thing and understand one thing - You are betting into numbers or handicapping into numbers - Not Games. It is ALL about the line - PERIOD. Also know this - LESS IS MORE!
AB: What should the readers BangTheBook.com and/or the clients of BTBCappers.com know about you?
TG: I am a normal person, with a wife, 2 kids, 2 dogs and an everyday Joe who just has a crazy job as a living. My hobbies include golf and hunting.
Look for more installments of “Meet The Handicappers” in upcoming weeks.