The Dangers of Losing in Agonizing Fashion

College Football Betting: The Dangers of Losing in Agonizing Fashion

By Loot, NCAA Football Handicapper,

When betting on college football, it won’t take you very long before you find yourself losing a wager in excruciating fashion. Sometimes, you might feel it’s better to just look at the final score and not sweat all the details because they can and will get absolutely brutal. How you do in college football betting comes down, in part, to how you handle the most painful of setbacks. Losses like that can turn the coolest character into a raving maniac.

It’s strange because losing a bet that you really should have won if not for some lightning bolt from the sky is a good sign in a way. You had it. You picked it right. But some weird little quirk prevented you from cashing in a winning wager. The ref called pass interference and kept a key drive alive. A kicker misses an extra-point at the end of a game. The ref makes some phantom holding call late that costs you a winning wager.

On one hand, the fact that you are picking the games well should be of some comfort. When we get snake-bitten with some monkey business on the field of play, we should be able to chalk it up as the cost of doing business. That stuff has been going on since the advent of sporting competition. No one is conspiring against us. We had the sporting event nailed. We picked it correctly. We just got screwed out of a winning wager.

For a lot of bettors, they are unable to find any comfort whatsoever in the notion that they are on the right track and their picks are solid. The only thing that resonates with them is how they were jobbed out of a winning wager. Their mind starts to unravel a little bit. The crooked result left a bad taste in their mouth and they seek to immediately replace that taste with a better one. Then, they start getting a little sideways, as the quality of their handicapping and decision-making starts to come apart at the seams.

It’s almost as if they would have preferred just losing the bet in a rout. That’s easier to stomach somehow. You start seeing right from the beginning of the game that the side you picked just doesn’t have it tonight. It gives you time to come to grips better with the fact that your wager came up short. By the time the game is over, you’ve more or less fully resigned yourself to the fact that you lost. Those are a little easier to get over than the heartbreak losses where some late quirk cost you a winner.

But the agonizing losses are actually a good sign. If you’re losing bets that are as good as dead in the first half of the event, you were way off, obviously. That should be more a cause of concern than having the winner and just not being able to cash in for whatever bizarre reason. The guys who have managed to last in the business of college football betting would look at it that way. Sure, they lost or didn’t cover, but they would at least find comfort in the fact that they are making good picks. In addition, they know if they continue making good picks, the results will eventually be there. You’re not going to be snake-bitten on every bet and over the long-haul–good picks will let you rise to the top.


It’s just hard to look at it that way for the more casual bettor. They find little solace in the fact that they saw it right and made a sound wager. The result is what speaks loudest and the fact that it took some crazy thing for them to lose. They become greatly unsettled by it. Soon, they begin acting impulsively. They figure why even bother spending time formulating sound picks if at the end of the day, they’re just going to be screwed anyway. Next thing you know, they’re embarking on a dangerous road. All it took was an unpleasant result or two to set them off-course. That’s a recipe for disaster.

Before you make your first bet, fortify your fortress. These things will happen and they will irritate you. The key is in being able to brush it off, realize this has been happening way before you showed up to bet, and calmly move on.