FanShot

Super Bowl odds a mix of science, art

"It’s the money that dictates the movement, with just a little bit of opinion here and there," Kornegay says of his football bookmaking. "A lot of the movement is dictated by the sharps, the professionals, the wise guys — the sophisticated bettors who go with the bigger amounts. They know the value of point spread, while the average Joe just picks who he thinks is the better team." The Super Bowl, however, is different. Because of the massive amount of betting on the Super Bowl each year — more than any sporting event outside the NCAA tournament — it’s the only game when the line is made based on public perception instead of the sharps. There are more bets taken at Vegas sports books at halftime of the Super Bowl than are taken on entire weekends of the NFL regular season. Insiders believe betting on this year’s game could beat the Vegas Super Bowl record of $94 million wagered on Super Bowl XL between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Seattle Seahawks. All that means the Super Bowl line often is inflated for the perceived better team.

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