One sports betting program you will want to view

“There’s a guy in my building who is working on a handicapping program,” said a friend of mine.

I’ve seen about a dozen of these things in my 30-plus years in the business. They have come in a variety of forms, but they all had one thing in common – failing to impress me.

“He knows who you are, and he’d love to hear what you think of it,” my friend said. “He’ll take you to lunch, anywhere you want to go.”

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Hey, even skeptics get hungry.

I met John Matthew over a corned beef sandwich and a cup of matzo ball soup. Matt, as I came to call him, had brought his laptop to lunch and began walking me through the program he had been working on for over five years.

The program worked well. The numbers actually made a lot of sense. Besides the mechanics of the program, I liked the thought process of what he was trying to accomplish.

Raw numbers can be difficult to interpret. Matt had a couple basic ideas on how to break down the data to make it more meaningful. One method was Strength Of Schedule Adjustment, or SOSA. (I hate the acronym, but couldn’t figure out how to make STARGELL or CLEMENTE fit the methodology.)

His other formula was the Margin Rating System, or MARS. (At least it wasn’t Uranus). Both algorithms accomplished what they set out to do, quantify the data to evaluate teams on an equal basis. Once completed, his program would become the SHARPS Sports Application.

I liked the app enough to commit to forming a loose partnership. He would continue to work on it and I would offer advice when I was available.

In the meantime, I was looking for permanent employment.

My old business partners had asked me to come back to the Cal Neva as they were completing the transition to William Hill after being bought by the British company. I was a former owner of Cal Neva before I mistakenly left them in 2003.

At times, working there after being away so long felt like I was dating my ex-wife. However, I was hoping to stay with William Hill once the sale was completed. Instead, Hill made me an offer I found to be less than acceptable, so I moved on.

Bill Thornton, who was a partner in the Cal Neva until they sold to William Hill, asked me if I had any ideas where he could put his money now that the sale was complete. Bill wanted to stay in sports betting in one form or another but wasn’t sure of the best method of making an investment.

He wanted me to be his man on the ground and explore a couple possibilities. Bill is fairly wealthy, but he is anything but reckless with his money. Eventually, I had him take a look at John Matthew’s sports betting application. He loved it.

Bill, Matt and I made a handshake deal in February and formalized Against The Number, LLC in March. Bill financed our venture with a significant capital investment. He is also a lawyer by trade, and took care of the legal issues involved with creating a startup business.

Meanwhile, Matt and I went to work on the SHARPS application. Actually, Matt did the programming while I helped brainstorm some of the formulas. Many nights were spent white-boarding ideas and running algorithms through the computer.

The three of us make an excellent partnership. Maybe more accurately, a three-way standoff. Without any one of us, the company would have fallen apart. Without Matt, there is no program to turn into an app. Without Bill, there is no money for salaries and development. My 30-plus years as a bookmaker gave the project credibility. My connections have also given it a path to marketability.

We are about to open SHARPS­ to the public. We think the app is terrific. SHARPS is the best and the most accessible collection of statistics you’ll find in one place. There are charts and graphs making it easy to read.

There are searchable inquiries that can lead a handicapper to find advantages for himself. The bankroll management system enables a betting pro to track his wagers, search them for his own strengths and improve his results. Its algorithms have consistently brought positive results against the spread, total and money line. It is an application that can help any handicapper, from the novice to the pro.

Veterans like myself know this is a constantly evolving business. Like all good software, SHARPS will continue to improve and be updated.

We have created a YouTube channel, SHARPS University, to explain the app in two to three minute segments. We also have where we will continue to share information about SHARPS and other relevant betting information with our roster of contributors.

Look for coming shortly.

Chris Andrews has over 30 years of experience as a bookmaker in Nevada. Check out his new website at www.againstthenumber.comYou can follow him on Twitter@AndrewsSports. Contact Chris at

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