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A Look At Miami’s Notable NFL History Ahead Of The 2020 Super Bowl


The road to the Super Bowl has begun. The quest for the Lombardi Trophy is well underway.

And for Super Bowl LIV, the Big Game heads back to an area that holds so much NFL (and NFL betting) history: Miami.

Arguably no other region in the country has as strong a tie to the league than South Florida. And arguably no other region has featured matchups as memorable as Miami.

Not convinced? See for yourself.

History of Super Bowl locations

Since the first championship between the NFL and AFL in 1967, the league has constantly relocated the Super Bowl around the country.

Miami, though, seems more like home base.

Including this year’s game, scheduled for Feb. 2, the Miami area has hosted 11 Super Bowls, more than any other region in America. (To be fair, New Orleans has staged 10 contests, and its 11th is slated for 2024.)

Los Angeles, sight of the first Big Game, has hosted seven times. If standing alone, and when including games that have been awarded for future years, Miami ranks second among states in games hosted: California has put on 13 Super Bowls. (Florida’s count drops from 17 to six.)

Overview of Miami Super Bowl matchups

The history of Miami-hosted Super Bowls dates back 50-plus years, to before Roman numerals were attached to the Super Bowl, to before the game was even known as the “Super Bowl.”

Super Bowls in Miami    
2020 Super Bowl LIV @ Hard Rock Stadium TBD
2010 Super Bowl XLIV @ Sun Life Stadium New Orleans 31, Indianapolis 17
2007 Super Bowl XLI @ Dolphin Stadium Indianapolis 29, Chicago 17
1999 Super Bowl XXXIII @ Pro Player Stadium Denver 34, Atlanta 19
1995 Super Bowl XXIX @ Joe Robbie Stadium San Francisco 49, San Diego 26
1989 Super Bowl XXIII @ Joe Robbie Stadium San Francisco 20, Cincinnati 16
1979 Super Bowl XIII @ Orange Bowl Pittsburgh 35, Dallas 31
1976 Super Bowl X @ Orange Bowl Pittsburgh 21, Dallas 17
1971 Super Bowl V @ Orange Bowl Baltimore 16, Dallas 13
1969 Super Bowl III @ Orange Bowl New York (A) 16, Baltimore 7
1968 Super Bowl II @ Orange Bowl Green Bay 33, Oakland 14

And the games themselves did not disappoint. Game-winning field goals, late-game touchdowns, turnover-plagued matchups, high-scoring affairs and offensive struggles – Miami has seen it all.

Interestingly, when the NFL and AFL merged, many believed the AFL would suffer greatly. The perception was it was a far inferior league. Now, granted after a few NFL (now NFC) teams moved over to the AFL (AFC), the student has become the master – at least in Miami.

In South Florida, the AFC leads its counterpart with a 6-4 record.

Top five Super Bowls played in Miami

Any one of the 10 Super Bowls played in Miami could make this list. That includes Super Bowl XIII, featuring the infamous dropped touchdown by Dallas’ Jackie Smith. Or Super Bowl XXIX, when San Francisco cruised to a 49-26 win over San Diego in a game that still holds the record for most points (75) and touchdown passes by one player (Steve Young, 6) in a single Super Bowl.

And an honorable mention to Super Bowl XLI, between Indianapolis and Chicago, that featured the Big Game’s first return TD on the game’s opening kickoff. It also was the setting for the Super Bowl’s first black head coaches. (Fun fact: Indy’s coach at the time, Tony Dungy, appeared in one Super Bowl as a player and another as a coach. Both games took place in Miami.)

Without further ado, our top five:

Super Bowl II: Green Bay 33, Oakland 14

The first championship game held in Miami, this 1968 matchup was not even known at the time as the “Super Bowl.” Rather, this showdown carried the moniker “AFL-NFL World Championship Game.” Catchy.

In fact, “Super Bowl” was used in more of a jocular manner throughout the league. As the league searched for a go-to and more catchy name for the championship game, a spokesman for then-Commissioner Pete Rozelle said that few people actually liked “Super Bowl.”

“It’s a nickname, and it’s a bad play on words.”

So as higher-ups weighed names such as “Merger Bowl” and “Summit Bowl” and “The Game” (catchy), an actual championship game was played.

In living up to the public’s perception of the two leagues – that the NFL is far superior to the AFL – the Packers rolled by the Raiders for their second straight title. Green Bay’s defense recorded an interception and forced three fumbles (recovering two), and Don Chandler booted four field goals, which is still tied for the most in a single Super Bowl.

Super Bowl III: New York (A) 16, Baltimore 7

Considered the greatest upset in the history of professional football and in consideration for all of sports – perhaps, though, it is best known for the Joe Namath guarantee. (Underlying it all: This is the first game officially known as the “Super Bowl,” though roman numerals had still not arrived.)

Backstory: The Baltimore Colts entered the 1969 championship game as heavy favorites. So much so, the Colts went in giving 18 points. So much so, Joe Falls of the Detroit Free Press predicted that Baltimore would win 270-0. That the Colts would “rearrange” the facial hair of Namath. That the Orange Bowl would “need a computer to keep up with the Colts.”

Mere days before the Super Bowl, Namath was lounging at the Miami Touchdown Club when he uttered the famous called shot: “We’re going to win Sunday. I guarantee you.”

In completing 17 of 28 passes for 206 yards and garnering MVP honors, Namath “proved that his talent is as big as his mouth – which makes it a very big talent indeed.” The Jets defense posted five takeaways, including four interceptions, to help New York secure the first Super Bowl win for an AFL franchise.

Fun fact: Until Super Bowl LIII last year, New York was the only team to win a title despite scoring only one touchdown.

Super Bowl V: Baltimore 16, Dallas 13

Another first for the NFL: This game was the first to incorporate Roman numerals. It was also the first Super Bowl to be played on artificial turf.

Really, though, this was about Baltimore’s redemption – no matter how ugly it seemed.

Not-so-playfully known as the “Blunder Bowl” or the “Blooper Bowl,” this 1971 game holds Super Bowl records for most interceptions (6), most turnovers (11, including seven by Baltimore, the most by a winning team) and most penalty yards (164, including a record 133 by Dallas).

The Cowboys led 13-6 at the half, and appeared ready to take over after Baltimore’s Jim Duncan fumbled the opening kickoff of the second half, the first of seven turnovers after the intermission.

The Colts, though, evened things up with a touchdown midway through the fourth quarter, and a Baltimore interception late in the game was returned to the Dallas 28-yard line. This set up a go-ahead field goal by rookie Jim O’Brien with five seconds remaining. It was the first game-winning FG in Super Bowl history, and O’Brien is one of just two kickers to win the championship in the final seconds. (New England’s Adam Vinatieri is the other.)

Only once in Super Bowl history has a player on the losing team claimed the MVP, and it was in this game. Dallas linebacker Chuck Howley also became the first non-QB to win the honor after forcing a fumble and recording two interceptions.

Super Bowl XXIII: San Francisco 20, Cincinnati 16

Continuing the string of firsts: This matchup was the first Miami Super Bowl to not be played at the Orange Bowl. Rather, it took place at Joe Robbie Stadium. Side note: While the next six Super Bowls have and will take place at this venue, the stadium’s name was only repeated once:

  • Joe Robbie Stadium, Super Bowl XXIII
  • Joe Robbie Stadium, Super Bowl XXIX
  • Pro Player Stadium, Super Bowl XXXIII
  • Dolphin Stadium, Super Bowl XLI
  • Sun Life Stadium, Super Bowl XLIV
  • Hard Rock Stadium, Super Bowl LIV

Controversy arose leading up to this showdown, as Cincinnati fullback Stanley Wilson, the team’s third-leading rusher, was caught with cocaine in his hotel room. The Bengals banished him from the team immediately. As it was his third drug policy violation, Wilson was banned for life by the NFL.

San Francisco WR Jerry Rice totaled a still-record 215 yards, but it was a heroic late-game drive by MVP QB Joe Montana that stole the show. The signal-caller engineered a 92-yard drive, capped with a 10-yard TD strike, to lift the 49ers to the 1989 championship win.

Quite the sendoff for Bill Walsh, who would not coach another game in the NFL. Cincy, meanwhile, won a playoff game two years later but have been plagued with futility since. The Bengals franchise holds the league’s longest streak of seasons between playoff wins at 29.

Super Bowl XXXIII: Denver 34, Atlanta 19

Like Walsh, John Elway rode off into the sunset as a champ. A back-to-back champ.

In throwing for 336 yards and a touchdown, while also rushing for a score, the QB helped the Broncos secure a second straight Super Bowl.

The world saw the writing on the wall when Elway found Rod Smith for an 80-yard TD to give Denver a 17-3 lead after falling behind 3-0 early.

Denver ran away with the victory in 1999 as the 38-year-old Elway became the first QB to start five Super Bowls (since surpassed by New England’s Tom Brady) and the oldest player to win MVP (again, Brady has since surpassed).

Fun fact: Smith burned Atlanta safety Eugene Robinson for the long score. The morning before the game, Robinson was given the Bart Starr Award for high moral character; that night, he was arrested for solicitation of a prostitute.


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Sports Betting

Baseball History on a Scrap of Paper


Funny when you are a young kid, how really historic moments may drop into your lap and you don’t realize it. I was only 10 years old and living in Bakersfield, CA, when my Dad came to the breakfast table one morning, smiling and holding a pair of tickets in his hand. “Son,” he said, “I’ve got two tickets to a baseball game at Sam Lynn Ballpark for today, would you like to go?” Well, I did play Little League Baseball and just a year before had become a fan of the Brooklyn Dodgers, after watching them win their First World Series. So, I said, “Sure.” It wasn’t until I was an adult, many years later, and was sorting through an old box of my belongings from my youth, that I realized, “My God, I got Willie Mays’ autograph.”

Now, let me put a couple of things in perspective. Bakersfield only had about 50,000 residents at the time. A Major League Baseball player coming to town was about as rare as seeing an eclipse with the naked eye. A whole team of Major Leaguers coming to Bakersfield to play an exhibition game was like stumbling over a gold nugget only to find an entire mine just beneath your feet. And yet, the Hall of Fame outfielder of the then New York Giants did come to town with a barnstorming group of ballplayers billed as, “Willie Mays Major League Negro-American All-Stars Tour.”

The sad thing is I probably knew who Willie Mays was, and that might have been the hook that convinced me to go to the game. But, truthfully, I am too old to remember. I do recall that Dad bought me a souvenir program for the game, and in it was a page which about half way down had the word “Autographs” printed on it over a large area of empty white space. I cannot tell you much about the game – who won it, who made the great plays, or if Mays hit a dramatic homer. Like I said, I was 10 years old. I Checked with The Bakersfield Californian, the city’s only major daily. It does not have a record of the game. Only by finding a Willie Mays biography on the less than reliable Wikipedia did I discover that Mays did indeed go on a tour with black Major Leaguers that year.

I do know that I spent a considerable amount of time sticking that program and a blue ink pen in front of every ballplayer I could get close to that day. Before I get to the players, how about some history? Only nine years before Mays and company came to Bakersfield, there were no black players in Major League Baseball. The Color Line was not broken until the Brooklyn Dodgers signed Jackie Robinson to play for them in 1947. Rosa Parks’ refusal to give up her bus seat in Birmingham predated Mays’ visit by only a year. Governor George Wallace would not block the entrance to black students trying to enter the University of Alabama for the first time until seven years later in 1963. Equal rights for African-Americans would not be achieved until President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

There was plenty of racial turbulence around the country and more to come after that game played in Bakersfield. Much has been said of Mays as a ballplayer, but to take an all-black team on a series of exhibition games in cities around the country, during that time in history, showed how much of a forward-thinker he was, too. The saddest thing is that he had to do it at all. One other detail about the game in Bakersfield – the opposing team was comprised of all-white players, mostly minor leaguers. Segregation was still alive outside Major League Baseball – matching race against race – not on the streets but inside a ballpark.

Here is how Wikipedia referred to the tour. “1956 Willie Mays Major League Negro-American All-Stars Tour. In 1956, Mays got many of Major League Baseball’s biggest black stars to go on a tour around the country after the season had ended to play exhibition games. While much of the tour has gone undocumented, one venue where the tour made a stop was at Andrews Field, located in Fort Smith, Arkansas, on October 16. Among the players to play in that game were Willie Mays, Frank Robinson, Hank Aaron, Elston Howard, Monte Irvin, Gene Baker, Charlie Johnson, Sam Jones, Hank Thompson, and Joe Black.” And of course, one of the undocumented cities was Bakersfield. After all, I have the autographs to prove it.

More information and insight about the tour can be found online on the Baseball History Blog. The information is about the 1955 and 1956 exhibition tours, which apparently took place in November one year and October in the other. It gives good glimpses into what the tour was all about. Some of the more enlightening information reveals that one reason the players agreed to play the exhibition games was so they could earn between $2,000-$4,000 for the month, which amounted to about 50 percent of what a Major Leaguer would make playing an entire 154-game schedule.

Speaking of schedules, the blog prints out the 1956 location of the exhibition games. All four in California – Los Angeles, San Franciso, Oakland and Los Angeles again – were all canceled, it says. Bakersfield is not mentioned on the schedule, which means it must have been added as an after thought to recoup some of the revenue lost by not playing the other California games.

But to dwell on the disparities of the time is not my goal. Instead, I would like to single out some of the black players who made that trip to Bakersfield, and who were kind enough to sign their autographs, allowing me, years later, to discover what accomplishments they made to the game of Major League Baseball. Consider for a moment that many of these men were well beyond their prime playing days after spending years in the Negro Baseball League – in many cases lying about their ages just for the chance to play in the Major Leagues. Many had what would have been Hall of Fame years while playing in the Negro League but did not have enough good years left when they got their chance in the Majors. Still, many did succeed, and those who did not made it possible for those who would follow to do so.

The Autographs

Willie Mays – What can I say about him that has not already been written? Let’s enumerate some, anyway. They are worth repeating: 1951 National League Rookie of the Year, two-time National League MVP, 24 times a National League All-Star and twice the MVP of the game, 12-time Gold Glove winner and a man who amassed 660 homeruns in his career – fourth best of all-time, and Mays did it without performance enhancing drugs.

Jim Gilliam – He was the1953 National League Rookie of the Year, played 14 years as an infielder with the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers, was twice named to the National League All-Star team and was on four Dodgers World Series Championship teams. As a rookie with the Dodgers, he hit more triples, 17, than any Dodger since 1920, and in 1956, the same year he played the game in Bakersfield, Gilliam tied a Major League record that had stood since 1892, when he totaled an incredible 12 defensive assists in one game.

Joe Black – He was the 1952 National League Rooke of the Year and the first black pitcher to win a World Series game. His rookie year, Black won 15 games, saved 15 games, had an ERA of 2.15, and came within eight innings of being eligible to win the NL ERA title. He pitched six years in the Major Leagues. It might have been longer, but he was already 28 when he got his chance. He joined with Jackie Robinson to push for a pension plan for Negro League players and inclusion of those who played before 1947.

Gene Baker – If it were not for bad luck, Baker, a second baseman, would have gone down in history as the first African-American to play for the Chicago Cubs. He was the first to be put on the roster in 1953 but an injury prevented him from playing, and the honor went to Ernie Banks, who was called up later. Still, he and Banks (who played shortstop) became the first black double play combination in Major League Baseball. As a part-time player, he earned a World Series Championship ring with the 1960 Pittsburgh Pirates. A year later, the Pirates made him the first black minor league manager, where he also played and batted.387 for the Class D Batavia Pirates.

Wes Covington – He played 10 years in the Majors as an outfielder, none bigger in terms of dramatics than the year 1957. Called up by the Milwaukee Braves with a little less than half the season already gone, Covington, playing in the same outfield with Henry Aaron, hit.284 with 21 homers and 65 runs batted in. When the Braves went to the World Series that year, Covington made an impossible catch robbing the Yankees’ Bobby Shantz of an extra basehit, and then drove in the winning run for the Braves. Covington crashed into the fence to steal a homerun from Gil McDougal and save Game Five for the Braves, who went on to win the World Series.

Al Smith – Although he played 12 years in the Majors, most of Smith’s memorable moments came with the Cleveland Indians and the Chicago White Sox. Two years before the Mays All-Stars came to Bakersfield, Smith played against Willie in the 1954 World Series in which he led off the first game with a homerun. Smith also played in the 1959 World Series for the White Sox against the Los Angeles Dodgers. In all, he had eight World Series hits. He was also twice named to the American League All-Star Team.

George Crowe – He was a 30 year old first baseman, when he got his Major League chance with the Boston Braves. Crowe was a college graduate from the University of Indianapolis (known as Indiana Central College back then) and a gifted athlete in two sports. He was Indiana’s first “Mr. Basketball.” His biggest year was with the Cincinnati Reds in 1957, when he filled in for the injured Ted Kluszewski and hit 31 home runs at the age of 36. Crowe was named to the 1958 National League All-Star Team. At one-time, he held the Major League record for most pinch hit homeruns -14.

Humberto Robinson – He was a door opening pitcher. The first native-born player from Panama to make it to the Major Leagues, he was called up by the Milwaukee Braves in 1955. As such, he paved the way for many other Panamanians who followed, including standouts Carlos Lee, Dave Roberts, Manny Sanguillen, Hall of Famer Rod Carew and future Hall of Famer Mariano Rivera. He won 122 games in 10 minor league seasons. Robinson was a middle reliever for six years with four teams in the Majors. Robinson’s integrity makes him a footnote in baseball history. While pitching for the Phillies in 1959, he refused a $1,500 bribe to throw a game and made sure the man who made the bribe was arrested.

Harry “Suitcase” Simpson – As an outfielder, he came up to the Majors in 1951 with the Cleveland Indians and played eight seasons with five different teams. Sportswriters nicknamed him “Suitcase” after a Toonerville Trolley character called Suitcase Simpson. He played on the 1957 New York Yankees World Series team. Manager Casey Stengel called him “the best defensive right fielder in the American League.” The feat for which he is probably best remembered came on Aug. 26, 1952, when he broke up a no-hitter by Detroit Tigers’ pitcher Art Houtteman with a two-out, ninth inning single.

Bennie Daniels – If nothing else, it appears Daniels, a starting pitcher, had a flare for pitching in landmark ballgames. He was still a minor leaguer playing for the Hollywood Stars of the Pacific Coast League, when he played in the Bakersfield game. The next year, 1957, he would be called up by Pittsburgh and spend 10 seasons with the Pirates and Washington Senators. Consider these landmark games in which he pitched: 1957 – started the last game ever played at Brooklyn’s Ebbetts Field; 1960 – lost a one-hitter to the Dodgers and Sandy Koufax, but his hit broke up the no-hitter; 1962 – started the last game ever played at Griffith Field; 1962 – started the first game in history at D.C. Stadium (now called RFK Stadium) a five-hit, 4-1 win over Detroit.

Charlie White – His career as a Major League catcher was over by the time he played in the Bakersfield game. He played in only 62 games, backing up Milwaukee Braves’ catcher Del Crandall from 1954-55. In total, White spent 13 years in the minor leagues. Yet, he had some history while in the Majors. White hit his first Major League homerun in the same game teammate Henry Aaron hit his first on April 23, 1954. Unlike Aaron, who would hit another 754 in his career, White never hit another one. His other claim to fame? He was Aaron’s first Braves’ roommate.

So, while some may regard my scrap of paper as a meaningless souvenir, to me, the history it reveals makes it a priceless treasure.


Source by Stephan Talbot

Sports Betting

Baltimore Orioles and The History of Camden Yards


In April 1992, Camden Yards opened it’s doors as a brand new $100 million facility that was designed under the architectural guidance of HOK Sport and constructed by Danobe Construction. Located just two blocks from Babe Ruth’s birthplace in downtown Baltimore, the centerfield at this 85-acre facility is also the site at which Ruth’s father once operated Ruth’s Café. In the beginning, there was some debate over the name to be given to the new ballpark. Some felt that it should be named Oriole Park after it’s tenants, the Baltimore Orioles, but others were set on calling it Camden Yards. In a pleasing compromise, the park was ultimately named Oriole Park at Camden Yards.

Just like every other ballpark in Major League Baseball, a number of memorable events have been hosted at Camden Yards. Among them, the 1993 All-Star game was held here. In September 1995, Cal Ripken Jr. awed fans by competing in his 2,131st consecutive game and, ultimately, breaking the record set by Lou Gehrig. The following year, in 1996, Eddie Murray hit his 500th career homerun. In addition, the only no-hitter ever pitched at this ballpark was thrown by Hideo Nomo in 2001.

Spectators who visit Camden Yards will be greeted with a variety of amenities, including the Baltimore Orioles Hall of Fame memorabilia, the Camden Club and sports bar, a cafeteria and gift shop. Additionally, fans can enjoy a stroll on Eutaw Street, which houses cement imprinted bronze baseballs that are designed to commemorate homeruns that have been hit at the facility. The design is Camden Yards is in amenity in itself as it has revolutionized the way that new facilities are constructed. A combination of steel columns, beams and trusses have made it a classic, while it’s 48,000 spectator capacity have made it accessible. Although it’s concrete trusses, a brick facade, natural grass playing surface and an asymmetrical playing field have served as inspiration to modern facilities being built, Oriole Park at Camden Yards itself was influenced by other ballparks, including Fenway Park, Ebbets, Forbes and Wrigley Field.

Baltimore Orioles fans can also participate in regular tours at Camden Yards, which includes a closeup look at the suites, scoreboards and control rooms, press levels and the dugout. Public tours are given daily with private tours available upon reservation. For those who desire an even closer look, perhaps a meeting with one or more of the Baltimore Orioles players or coaches would fit the bill. Time permitting, baseball notables may sometimes be found signing autographs up until 45 minutes prior to the opening pitch.

Collectors who wish to request an autograph from any one of the players on the Baltimore Orioles roster should send their letter and a SASE (self-addressed stamped envelope) to:

Player’s Name

c/o Baltimore Orioles

Oriole Park At Camden Yards

333 W. Camden Street

Baltimore, MD 21201

Fans requesting an autograph should limit their request to two items per letter. Popular items to have signed include photos, index or trading cards, baseballs, etc. Patience is key when requesting autographs through the mail, but the best time to reach an athlete is often during the off-season.


Source by Aurel Radulescu

Sports Betting

Curious Facts About Golf and Its History


Golf is a fascinating game and you can fall in love with it at the age of 2 and continue playing it at 92. Besides, it is believed to be the only game played on the Moon and in outer space, so we can confidently say that it is a universal game. There are many interesting circumstances surrounding its origin, rules, famous players and achievements on the field and in this post you will find a compilation of just a few of the most curious facts.

Origin of golf

There are many debates around the origin of golf and the Chinese claim that a similar game was played in their country back in the 10th century. At present, however, there are two countries that can claim to be the motherland of modern golf – the Netherlands and Scotland. A game resembling golf, called apocryphally, was developed in the Netherlands in the Middle Ages and the first record of it dates back to 26 February 1297. It was played with a stick and ball and the aim was to get the ball into a target several hundred yards away with the least number of strokes. There are some historians who also claim that in the 17th century the Dutch played a game of colf/kolf in which they had to putt a small ball into a hole. Colf was considered a dangerous game back in that ages and there are several documents showing that it was banned, one of which is from 1360 when the council of Brussels stated that anyone playing colf will be fined 20 shillings or his overcoat will be confiscated. Nevertheless, the game didn’t disappear but thrived. The first recorded game of kolf/colf was played by the Dutch settlers of Fort Orange (present Albany, New-York) in December 1650. It is interesting that the game was played all year round, including on ice during the winter.

On the other hand, Scots claim that the modern game of golf, as it is played today on 18 holes, originated in Scotland. It is curious that the actual written evidence of it comes from a document issued by the Scottish Parliament and King James II of Scotland in 1457 that bans golf and football, since they distract the men from their military practice. There were subsequent similar Acts in 1471 and 1491, where golf was even described as “an unprofitable sport”. Rumour also says that Mary, Queen of Scots, played golf after her second husband was murdered.

All in all, golf proved to be a worthy game that survived through the ages despite the numerous bans and was loved both by the masses and the nobility.

Interesting stories of modern golf history

Golf is played around the globe and not only. On 9 February 1967, while on the Moon to conduct science experiments, Alan B. Shepard used a modified six-iron to hit a golf ball. At the same time his colleague Edgar Mitchell throw a javelin and thus they competed in what Mitchell later described as “the first lunar Olympics.” The golf ball and the javelin are still on the Moon, while the iron can be seen at the USGA Golf House in Far Hills, N.J.

Golf was again played outside the boundaries of the Earth on 22 November 2006 this time in open space, when Russian cosmonaut Michael Tyurin hit a golf ball while performing his fourth space walk. The ball weighted only 3 grams, while a standard golf ball is 48 grams, to avoid damage of the space station in case it hits it.

Some curious golf-related facts have Asian origin. In Japan the golfers have a “hole-in-one” insurance. This is to cover their expenses in case they hit a hole-in-one, because the tradition is to invite all your friends to a party with presents to share the luck. In China on the other hand, despite claiming to have something to do with the origin of golf, the development of new golf courses was banned. Well, it doesn’t mean it has stopped because investors simply avoid stating that they are constructing a golf course when submitting the plans for approval.

Page Break

What does golf stand for?

There is a popular myth that the word golf has nothing to do with Dutch or Scottish old words of colf/kolf or gowf but that it is an acronym, which means “Gentlemen Only, Ladies Forbidden”. Interesting what Marlene Hagge, the co-founder of the LPGA Tour would say about that. Or Annika Sorenstam, who is considered to be the greatest female golfer of all times.


Source by Mariela Peneva

Sports Betting

Odds History


The concept of the pointspread began over a half century ago and really raised the interest in sports betting. It leveled the playing field; the pointspread became the equalizer. In the 1970s, Bob Martin of the Union Plaza Race and Sportsbook in downtown Las Vegas was the most respected oddsmaker in the gaming industry. A lot of oddsmaking tools used today are credited to Martin.

Oddsmakers are the first to say they are not in the business to predict the outcome of a game, but to divide public opinion of the final outcome. Public opinion is created by the media; newspapers, magazines, television, radio and the Internet. Popularity of well-known teams, superstars and media hype, influence the line in a lot of cases besides statistics and power ratings. Power ratings are based on many statistics taken from offense, defense, special teams, points for, points against, at home and away.

The oddsmaker has to take into account every possible thing which affects the outcome of a game… information such as: quality of the teams, injuries, incentive to win, morale, weather (football), history of the match up, recent and previous records. In a perfect world for the oddsmaker, an equal number of people will bet on each side.

In the 1980s, Roxy Roxborough became the main influence in oddsmaking as the age of technology began. Computers became a force in oddsmaking and changed odds at sportsbooks simultaneously. Roxborough founded Las Vegas Sports Consultants (LVCS) in the 1980s which now has most of the sportsbooks in Las Vegas as clients. LVCS has used computer-generated power ratings and information, so everything is passed along faster.

Certain offshore sportsbooks are taking the lead today and their numbers are probably the most respected. Setting a line and letting the most sophisticated and sharp handicappers play into it, then opening it to the public, gives sportsbooks the most two-way action.

Las Vegas Sports Consultants is the world’s best oddsmaking company and the most respected authority on making the lines. There are 4-5 oddsmakers assigned to make lines for each major sport. Each of these oddsmakers adds different opinions, strengths and weaknesses to the process. They want to create a line that half of the people like to bet one way while the other half will bet the other way.

The opening line is the first line created by the oddsmakers then sent out to the sportsbooks. It starts with each oddsmaker creating a line on every game, based on their own approach. This includes up-to-date power ratings on each team. Power ratings are the oddsmakers view of each team; they are used to calculate a beginning pointspread. The power ratings are adjusted after each game. Non-game factors such as injuries, travel, rest, morale are some of the adjustments used to make an opening line. Recently played games and previous meetings between opponents are also considered. They sit down and come to a consensus line that the more experienced oddsmaker okays before being released to the sportsbooks.

Once the opening line is released, the individual sportsbooks decide if they want to make any adjustments before offering it to the public. Experts working for individual books sometimes will have strong opinions on a game. The purpose of these adjustments is to divide the betting action equally. When the betting begins, sportsbooks can adjust the line at any time. By doing this, they make the team getting less action, more attractive. Moving the line can influence how the public bets on a particular game.

Successful bettors are the ones who look at the pointspread as a starting point and determine which side of the line would give them the most value and chance of winning. You must decide with your head, not your heart, to be successful.


Source by Bob Wingerter

Sports Betting

The History of Online Sports Betting


Man, by virtue of his instinct to survive, is naturally a gambler. Given the risks of living day-to-day life, it was considered an act of skill to stay alive until the sun sets, especially during the Stone Age. As the human race began to develop systems that would facilitate the physiological need of survival, the gambling instinct that was inherent in man did not dissipate. Rather, it became stronger with the passage of time.

The gambling instinct, simply put, is displayed early into the history of human civilization. The Romans were notorious for their fierce and unforgiving gladiator matches, which were mainly violent at least and visceral at best. By 80AD, the emperor Titus then conducted the first official ceremonies at the Colosseum, and thus the festivities had begun. Slaves were pitted against each other in mostly battles to the death, and sometimes against wild beasts as well. Spectators relished the thought of betting on their favorite gladiator, hoping that he would live to see the end of the glorious battle.

But as time progressed, the violence of the human sport had proved to be too much for some, and gambling has been reduced to animal fights. Of course, this has been around even before the human blood sport of gladiators, but they had become highly popularized in certain parts of Europe -particularly Spain, Portugal, the United Kingdom, France, and even some parts of Asia such as the Philippines and Indonesia. Among these fights were bullfighting, cockfighting, and fox hunting.

As European influence spread more and more all throughout the continents of the world, the thrill of betting soon became a worldwide phenomenon. Gradually, the hunger for the sight of blood was soon surpassed by the promise of amassment of wealth. The stakes were high, but made more appealing by the rise of establishments such as casinos. Betting was never more enjoyable.

But alas, the collected momentum of sports betting was halted abruptly by the coming of the two World Wars since activities such as race meeting and lotteries became severely restricted. Its return only came in the mid-1950s and soon flourished again.

Not to be outdone, sporting events still remained strong in gambling circles, as events such as horse races, basketball matches, and baseball games just seemed to beg for more incoming bets. The rise of communications technology also facilitated the development of sports betting, with phone betting becoming an attractive option to those who live far and away from the games. Companies such as Intertops in Antigua started this as far back as 1993.

When the Internet finally came out for public access and personal use, the betting world evolved into a more closely-knit community. Globalization served its purpose in connecting the world in ways previously thought inconceivable -after all, who would have thought that you can bet on a game halfway across the world with such ease? In 1996, a company in Gibraltar called Microgaming took advantage of this trend and began developing software for use in other gaming companies all over the world. Others soon followed suit, and thus online sports betting as we knew it was born.


Source by Hamish Davidson

Gambling News

The Top Gambling Scandals In NFL History Are Too Cringeworthy To Believe


Don’t worry, Josh Shaw.

You are not the first professional athlete, or even the first NFL player, to get wrapped up in a gambling-related controversy. Ideally, you’d be the last. But let’s be real; that’s likely not the case.

Take solace, Shaw. Your NFL betting transgression pales in comparison to some of the game’s forefathers.

Though the NFL scrambles to protect the shield and integrity of its games amid expanding legalized sports betting nationwide, at least the league’s history of gambling scandals seems more like a whisper compared with the shouts of other pro leagues.

Looking at you, MLB; your past is littered with the 1919 Chicago Black Sox and Pete Rose. And you, too, NBA and referee Tim Donaghy.

Even the NCAA has been more embattled, what with the 1950 CCNY men’s basketball team, the 1978-79 Boston College men’s basketball squad and the 1996 Boston College football team.

That is not to say the NFL is squeaky clean. In fact, the league boasts some incredible betting history.

Recapping the sports betting activity of Josh Shaw

As we prepared to flip the calendar from November to December–and while the majority on the planet began decorating for Christmas–the news broke:

“The NFL will suspend Josh Shaw, a defensive back for the Arizona Cardinals, who has been on injured reserve since August, for the 2020 season.”

Why? The league received a tip that Shaw, “on multiple occasions” during the 2019 season, had bet on NFL games.

Shaw reportedly traveled to Las Vegas with friends from high school earlier this fall.

As reporter Ian Rapoport put it, “Shaw placed sports bets for the first time based on the misinterpreted understanding of the Supreme Court ruling.”

The wager was a three-team parlay that included Shaw’s Cardinals, which he bet against covering the second-half spread against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He lost the wager.

‘Official Casino Partner’ blew the sports betting whistle

The defensive back reportedly gambled at Caesars, which contacted the Nevada Gaming Control Board and then the NFL.

Funnily enough, Shaw was pretty direct with his occupation. In filling out an application for a betting account with Caesars — an official casino partner (not sports betting) of the NFL — Shaw indicated that he was a “professional football player.”

League rules prohibit players from wagering.

In a statement, the NFL noted that it “uncovered no evidence” that Shaw used inside information when placing bets, or that “any game was compromised in any way.” Additionally, the league said there wasn’t any evidence that any teammates, coaches or other players were aware of Shaw’s betting activity.

It appears Shaw will appeal the suspension, but should it stand, he can petition for league reinstatement as soon as Feb. 15, 2021.

Regardless, however, Shaw becomes the first reported violation of a major professional league’s gambling policy since the Supreme Court struck down PASPA in 2018.

As noted at the top, though, it is far from the first in NFL history.

1996: Anonymous tip drops dime on rookie QB

Jon Stark was a sought-after quarterback that, at one time, many believed would be a fixture in the NFL. He landed a full-ride at powerhouse Florida State but sat on the sidelines for two years. Then he transferred instead to a Division II program in Illinois.

He shined, however.

In one year at Trinity International, Stark set program records in various categories. Draft expert Mel Kiper Jr. pegged Stark as the third-best quarterback in the country.

He didn’t go that high; instead, he was the second-to-last quarterback taken, a seventh-round selection (and last of seven picks) for the newly minted Baltimore Ravens.

Stark, though, would not see the field. By December 1996, he was out of the league.

According to reports, the Ravens received an anonymous tip that Stark was violating league rules by betting on games. The Ravens then alerted the league, which launched an investigation. Stark was suspended with pay. But he never returned to the NFL.

1982: Art of falling apart

Gambling addiction is no joke. Art Schlichter would undoubtedly be the first to tell you. That is, assuming you got a chance to speak to the former quarterback in federal prison.

Schlichter was the real deal: an undefeated high school starter, a four-year quarterback at Ohio State and the fourth overall pick in the 1982 NFL Draft.

Along with that talent, though, came hefty baggage. Because while Schlichter was establishing himself as a high school star, so, too, was his gambling habit at the local track.

The then-Baltimore Colts took Schlichter fourth overall in 1982. By that season’s midpoint, the rookie had gambled away the entirety of his $350,000 signing bonus. Over that winter and into spring 1983, Schlichter lost an additional $489,000. Rather than paying his bookies, though, he went to the FBI. His testimony helped bring federal charges against them.

As a result, though, the NFL suspended Schlichter, who was reinstated by the 1984 season. He didn’t stick around; the Colts dropped him in ’85 amid fears that he was gambling again.

In the 30 years since then, Schlichter has been in and out of jail. Currently, he’s serving the final few months of a decade-long sentence for stealing millions of dollars to feed his gambling addiction.

1963: Paul and Alex ain’t no saints

Man alive, what a time to be active for professional football. Leather helmets. No facemasks. No ticky-tack flags. No flags, really. Heck, no penalties.

Also, money exchanging hands all the dang time.

Two names stick out more than others: Green Bay Packers halfback Paul Hornung and Detroit Lions defensive tackle Alex Karras.

As the story goes, Hornung and Karras were betting regulars, wagering up to $500 on NFL games and associating themselves with “known hoodlums,” aka gamblers. Both were suspended indefinitely, which was later lifted after one season.

Hornung, who held the NFL’s single-season points record until LaDainian Tomlinson broke it in 2006, wagered as much as a half-grand on games between 1959 and 1961 (his MVP season), according to former National Football League commissioner Pete Rozelle. Karras, an all-league defensive player, placed at least a half-dozen bets ranging between $50 and $100.

(By the way, another five Lions were slapped with fines: $2,000 apiece for taking the Packers to win the 1962 championship.)

Hornung returned for a few more NFL seasons and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1986. As for Karras? Perhaps you might know him as Mongo (among many other acting credits).


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