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2022 Playbook Football 10 Questions Interviews

1. When did you begin handicapping sports professionally, and how did you get started?
It seems as if I've been handicapping sports in some form since grade school but 25 years ago I decided that this would be my career path and soon through discipline and strict bankroll management I was able to stand on my two feet and haven't looked back. Betting quarters with my grandmother on Yankee's game early on lit the flame from a young age.
2. Who has most influenced your handicapping career?
Hard to pin it down to one influence because as a kid in update New York sports gaming was everywhere. There's no doubt that I was influenced by the early handicappers that, to my ears, knew everything that was going to happen on a Sunday. I grew up to know different but their enthusiasm and detail for what they did gave me a push in the world of sports betting.

3. What is your primary method approach to handicapping sports?
Analytics and psychology are a major part of the early process of handicapping games. I'm always looking to go beyond the numbers, allowing me to get an in-depth feel for how a team will perform on a given day. I've been doing this long enough to know that trusting your experience is a major tool because numbers will only tell you where you've been and not always where you're going.
4. What is the biggest score you've made in your sports wagering career?
I've had quite a few five-figure wins before I got married and thought I was ballin' but I needed more discipline and seasoning. I had to understand that sports wagering was a long game which meant less was more, you understand that after you acquire family responsibilities.

5. What is the worst bad beat you've suffered in your sports wagering career?
I felt early on that all the losses were bad beats because when you're young and learning you took losses much harder. I've had five-figure losses, but the one that still haunts me is the Falcons' loss in the 2017 Super Bowl because the adjustments the Patriots made were so obvious and Dan Quinn was lost as to how to combat a simple defensive line adjustment.

6. Who are your favorite NFL and College Football teams, and why?
IMy favorite NFL team is the Dallas Cowboys. Growing up in upstate New York, my family had the entire AFC East teams covered and I wanted to go my path. The Cowboys and Steelers were a heavy influence in the late 70's so I chose Dallas and never looked back. Of course, I now want the Las Vegas Raiders to do well.

Notre Dame had a major stranglehold on me from a very young age. They seemed so much more than a football team with how the university carried itself along and how they seemed to be put on a pedestal. The more I learned the more I loved them and eventually followed every sport which I do until this day.

As a 30-year resident of Las Vegas, UNLV will always have a large portion of my heart but you never forget your first love.

7. Which NFL and College Football teams do you feel will be the biggest surprise in 2022?
After not making the playoffs last season, I expect the Los Angeles Chargers to find themselves in the postseason in 2022 after what will be a break-out year for Justin Herbert.

It's difficult for a team that won a 2018 National Title to be labeled as a surprise but with Clemson finishing at #14 in the TOP last season I think many will be re-introduced to a Dabo Sweeny team that will compete for a National Title.

8. Which NFL and College Football teams do you feel will be the biggest disappointment in 2022?
Unless you're the New England Patriots, teams are supposed to regress the year after winning a Super Bowl and I think you'll see that next season with the Los Angeles Rams. The loss of Von Miller teams will allow teams to have more options to deal with Aaron Donald inside.

The Cincinnati Bearcats made it to the College Football playoff last season but this season but with the loss of Desmond Ridder, I think you'll see the offense take a major step back. The schedule is kind but they won't compete for a title in 2023.

9. Do you feel the College Football Playoff should expand, and if so to how many teams?
From a wagering standpoint, I don't think anyone would root against expansion but these are kids and I want to think beyond what is good for my industry. Eventually, I think you'll see an 8-team playoff but that's where it should end.
10.What is your best handicapping advice heading into the 2022 football season?
With record sports wagering handles being reported across the country, I can't help but think that this is happening because bettors are being seasoned the way I was 30 years ago when I arrived in Las Vegas. Just know that bankroll management is the biggest part of your overall success which also means knowing when to say no to a wager. A little late-season advice, winning a Super Bowl bet doesn't pay any more than a week six game in Jacksonville, so there's no reason to go all-in on one game.

Dana Lane  

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