I would love to hear your stories about these guys that call with "inside information". Here's mine.
About 10 years ago I called an 800 number for their free pick. Of course the free pick was made on a Tuesday and if I wanted updated info I had to pay for it. I declined. No surprise the free pick lost.
Over the next 12 months I got calls from many services who obviously bought my number from the original tout I called.
Fast forward to SIX years later when a new service calls. Clearly they are scraping the bottom of the barrel and bought a very old number. Regardless I take the call and listen to the sales pitch. As an experiment I negotiated the cost of the guaranteed "Monster NCAA pick of the Year!!!" down to $25. He asked how much I bet and I lied and told him I bet $25/game, fully knowing they try to get you to bet more. The guarantee behind the pick is they will give you free picks until you win. This is where it becomes really laughable.
The "Monster" pick didn't cover and I lost $50 plus the cost of the pick. So I call him the next day and he gives me two more picks. This time he tells me I need to bet $50/game. So I don't bet them at all, but tell him I am and I track his picks. He goes 0-2.
I'll spare you the long details, but will tell you that over the next week they ASSURE me that each pick has better information and surely this one will hit. They go 0-11. 0 for friggin' 11! My 2 year old could do better. With each pick they push and push me to bet more until they had me up to $300/game (Keep in mind I wasn't betting at all but told them I was and continued to track their record). Also note I told them I was starting at $25/game. With each loss he wanted me to bet more and more.
Ultimately, I skipped a week and called them back and acted as if I was furious at their crappy pics. When I call, someone else answers and tells me my main contact no longer works there. I tell them they owe me more free picks. This guy asks me why I skipped a week and I told them because they suck and went 0-11. He tells me I missed out on a 9-0 week where I would have made $thousands and they no longer owe me because I skipped a week.
Hey, we all hit losing streaks. I get it. And they bought my phone number, I didn't call them, so how good can they really be, right? But 0-11 and then pushing a $25 bettor up to $300/game just to cover all previous losses is their strategy? Had I actually listened to them I would have lost over $2700 in a WEEK! For a small-time bettor that is craziness.
Are all touts a joke? Are they monkeys throwing darts? Does anyone have any POSITIVE or other NIGHTMARE stories to share?
While I'm new to posting on here, I'm certainly not new to taking advantage of the great info from the site and you bloggers. So I'm giving back what I can.
Hopefully this is obvious or common sense to most of you, but I'm certain we all fall victim to this from time to time. It's what I refer to as "sh*tfinger". This affliction can affect each of us at one time or other and it's the exact opposite of the Midas touch. Where every pick you make turns to sh*t and you're suddenly in the driver's seat of an awful losing streak. You went from 11-5 on the season to 1-6 last week and 0-5 this week. You get in your head and start doing the opposite of what you THINK you should bet. If you like the over, you take the under. You like the dog, so you bet the favorite. Still you find a way to lose.
This piece of advice is loosely based on Mike Caro's poker advice but applies to all methods of gambling. When you're riding a serious losing streak it becomes very easy to get numb to the losses and continue to ride that train. An example would be a $100 bettor that typically throws down 3 wagers a weekend. Worst case is they are down $300 on a bad weekend, right? Well, wouldn't you know they went large and found themselves down $600 instead of their max of $300. This is the danger zone. They are already $300 (or 100%) beyond their comfort level. It is very easy to say "Screw it, I'm already beyond my max, what's another $200, or $100, or whatever?" Well kids, this is real money, it isn't Monopoly and streaks tend to continue. Just like you might get up from the blackjack table after losing 5 hands in a row, it's important you show some restraint and WALK AWAY at times from the book. Take a week off. Find an activity away from the TV next week. Start tracking your picks without actually wagering until you get back on track. Etc. That numbness can suddenly lead to monster losses that will have you in a deeper hole financially and emotionally if not kept in check.
In any case, hopefully you're already aware of this and have control of the good and bad weekends, but maybe at least one person will benefit from this reminder.
Good luck this week and by all means avoid those plagued with sh*tfinger!