image: University of Chicago Magazine - logo

link to: featureslink to: class news, books, deathslink to: chicago journal, college reportlink to: investigationslink to: editor's notes, letters, chicagophile, course work
link to: back issueslink to: contact forms, address updateslink to: staff info, ad rates, subscriptions


  DEPARTMENTS
  > > Editor's Notes

  > > Letters
  > > Coursework
  > > Chicagophile

 


Departments:
Whadda the odds on this?

image: Letters headerFor 20 years, I lived with the certainty that I was the only U of C person whose professional interest was sports betting. The article on Judith Chevalier and her interest in sports betting ("Investigations," October/99) was a reminder that you can never assume you are alone.

Here are a few observations for Professor Chevalier. Point spreads do not move during the week simply because football teams are on a "hot streak." Numerous factors move point spreads, among them injuries, so-called inside information, and followers of big-money plays.

I can assure you there is no self-evident or universally agreed-upon definition of a "hot streak." If there were and if the definition were sound, there would be no Las Vegas sports books. The players would have most of the winners and put sports books out of business.

Thirdly, the article does not distinguish between college and pro football. They are different, and line moves for each have their own rationale.

You are right about over-reactions, because this is a market of a few big-line movers and many followers--but movers or followers have to do a little bit better than picking the winning side 53 percent of the time to make the effort financially successful.

I wait for the day when I can write you again and tell you that the U of C football team "made the board" in Las Vegas.

Paul P. Czuchra, AM'67, PhD'73
Las Vegas, Nevada

link to: top of the page link to: Letters


  DECEMBER 1999

  > > Volume 92, Number 2


  FEATURES
  > >
Coming of age
  > >
Positively medieval
  > >
Elements of style
  > >
Gift trapped

  CLASS NOTES
  > > Class News

  > > Books
  > > Deaths

  CAMPUS NEWS
  > > Chicago Journal

  > > College Report


  RESEARCH
  > > Investigations


  ARCHIVES
  CONTACT
  ABOUT THE MAGAZINE
  SEARCH/SITE MAP

  ALUMNI GATEWAY
  ALUMNI DIRECTORY
  THE UNIVERSITY

uchicago ©2000 The University of Chicago Magazine 1313 E. 60th St., Chicago, IL 60637
phone: 773/702-2163 fax: 773/702-2166 uchicago-magazine@uchicago.edu