succesful football bettor interview

Interview: How I made 300% return on my sports betting in one season

It might seem impossible for a novice bettor, after having a few varied winning streaks to even envision how someone could hit +100% return betting on sports over a season. But experienced bettors (who apply sound strategy and ride the long term seasonal performance) know that there are things that you can (and need) do to change the way you bet on sports to turn greater profits.

The biggest change the majority of sports bettors have to make is this:  Accept that in sports investing, taking losses at the books is all part of game: if you understand and accept that, you’re already more than halfway to success.

Any professional sports bettor will tell you, there is a psychological understanding to separate emotion from the strategy. You will have winning weeks, and losing weeks, but emotions won’t dictate sound decisions. There is applicability to re-think or adjust their active betting strategy during losing streaks – but this is simply adjusting to hedge against losses and adapt to evolving trends and patterns that most data can tell indicate.

Look at it another way – if you invest in the equity markets such as the stock markets, your investment will go up and down throughout the day, week and months. Through these time horizons you’re at a loss, while other times your in the black. Its about reading the timing of the stock based on informative data to dictate decisions to buy and sell, or ride the trend over time. If you apply a sound investment philosophy and strategy, then in the medium to long run, statistics indicate you should expect to walk away with gains if you maintained a sound and effective investment strategy.

Now in my years I’ve met a number of sports gamblers, bettors and investors (there are 10 types of sports bettors, which one are you?) that have performed exceptionally well over the course of a season (and others….gamblers…cough, cough…not to much). But what I discovered was that with a few changes to the way these bettors were handling sports investing betting on the NFL or NBA or Euro football, they were capable of doubling, and in one case triple, their betting bankroll ROI in less than a year.

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What I found was that all it took were some key foundational steps that unlike myself, these bettors took very seriously, stuck to, and has changed the way I approached sports investing (especially when I select my weekly NFL picks)– and if you follow these core steps that I’ll share with you from the interview I did with a sports investor who turned over 300% ROI over the season, perhaps you can too. (interviewee names are hidden for confidentiality).

Also be sure to read the advice from the worlds top 4 sports gamblers for context.

Question: Where and ow do you get your insights to make your pick and tip selections, or do you follow specific analysts?

Anonymous Investor: I stopped following teams. And friends. And TV. And the beginning of the season.

Believe it or not, sports betting is anything but a level playing field, but this is largely for the wrong reason: virtually everything in the way of successfully seeing the right strategy is emotional, psychological, and– basically pleasurable. Now I’m not saying that any of these things are bad. What I am saying is that they create a lot of noise and can distract you.

After many hard lumps when I started betting on sports 30 years ago, after a decade I begun to apply a similar approach I saw successful business investors take in the stock market. I begun to look at historical data and find patterns and trends. I changed my view to let data, and the insights within the data, give me the indicators I needed to make more effective decisions on my football picks.

Every NFL game (and other sporting events) have data points that are similar, while also some unique data points specific to the matchup or event. The key is finding those unique data points that perform somewhat consistently over time and are identified in short term and long term trends.

Question: Do you have a favorite team when playing the sports markets?

Anonymous Investor: Nope. Ditch them.

You see, that friend of yours or colleague who goes to or watches every game has an opinion on everything about the players, match up or the sport. Unless he’s a professional bettor, expert handicapper or Billy Walters, then stop listening.

The guys on ESPN? They’re just paid to have an opinion, not win you any money.

The early part of the season? In almost any major sport– and this is especially true in the NFL– those first few weeks are little more than a testing ground which will barely indicate the trajectory of the season.

In short, your early bets should reflect the fact that you should try not to have high expectations from the previous year’s performance. When betting, a new season is largely starting over, but history (think historical data) has a funny way of repeating itself.

Question: How effective are point or unit systems to manage your bankroll?

Anonymous Investor: I budget out a bankroll and started flat betting with a point system– on everything. One of the ways I knew I had to change was that I always found myself dipping into money I had for other things. It’s a bad habit when it’s small, but it can get you in trouble if it gets bigger.

As a matter of fact, most sports betting errors can be attributed to underestimating your expenditures versus a realistic bankroll. I was already bleeding over what I was planning to spend– so changing my bankroll strategy made the game more tangible, made my losses more real, and hurt a lot less over time.

So the first rule, or more like pillar of sports betting, was to establish a bankroll and flat betting amounts– and stuck with it. And if I spent out my bankroll for the week– I was done.

One way to make sure I mitigated risks was to ensure I knew what’s the most I can spend in a given week, both on bets, handicapper picks or betting system tools for analysis, and in a given game. The first part can be determined using a flat amount (say, $10 per point) and the second part can have a varied point system (3 points equals $30 for a game you’re very confident on). I also employed, more as an experiment, a bankroll management approach of compound betting, where my wager amounts were predicated off a percentage of the bankroll. Thus as my wins build the bankroll, so does the amount I place at the sports books.

There are other changes and adjustments I made, but this by far is foundational for me.

Question: How little, or in-depth, analysis do you perform on your sports picks?

Anonymous Investor: I analyzed each game I put money on. And once I find a few data points I like, I employ the services of sports investment services (like, to do the labour for me. Time is money for me…so sometimes I cannot spend the time to do as much analysis as I like…and leave it the professionals. But without the distraction of personal bias and friends telling me who to bet on, it was then possible to get right to the brass tacks of creating a working system.

I’ll tell you now, no betting system works 100% (you only really need to be successful a little over half the time to beat the house) but once you’ve cancelled out the noise, you’re in a much better place. A betting system should simply provide you the efficiencies of time and deliver insights to sport trends and patterns. While it can ‘recommend’ a tip or pick, at the end of the day you need to make the decision if the data is telling the right story and confidence in your betting decisions.

Stick with what you know– if you know the NFL, don’t start looking to bet on basketball without a lot of research– because you need to apply your knowledge of your chosen game (or games) to the next level: figuring out what factors as a whole combine to give a pretty good idea of who is going to win the game– or at the least a better guess as to who had a better chance of winning.

One thing I stopped doing: if I didn’t know anything about a game, I didn’t bet on it. It’s just throwing money away. But I’ll admit I have experimented to spread my risk by taking a small portion of bankroll and placed it with a sports analyst and tipster service to try my luck at sports that I just don’t know (in this case it was football (soccer). The results…23% return over the season.

Question: How do you treat your losses? What I mean, is do you have a hedging strategy to mitigate losses or deter you from your betting strategy?

Anonymous Investor: I started treating my wins and losses in the same way early on.

Once you start working on a sports betting system (or using an existing one) that you can validate through trial and error, you can start to see patterns over the course of a season. And those patterns will often become increasingly reflected in your wins and losses. But be aware that most sports betting systems don’t work long term, unless it evolves to respond to the data points.

This is where, over the course of trend weeks and games, you can begin to modify your personal pattern to see if there are any other changes you can make to improve your standings.

But this doesn’t just affect your system: it affects your bankroll management. I cannot stress the importance of this enough.

This is also where (if you see patterns of uncertainty in some areas but better predictions in others) to begin adjusting the point levels on your betting. While you shouldn’t be changing a betting system too much, by having spending controls in place and a strong grasp of your own betting system, you can mitigate risk overall and come out just a bit more of a winner than you came in.

Remember – no professional aims for 80% (it would be great!), but understand winning over 54% of bet will put them in the black. And if they can achieve returns on their investment that exceed…or in some cases far exceed…that of the equity markets or other investments…then they’re happy….very happy.

I will say too – the 300% return I attained over the season as the first I’ve done in over 30 years. I’ve hit a few +100% returns, but if I average my returns over the course of time I’ve invested in sports markets, I’m around +28% over the course of the years

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