Vegas Play of the Day: Houston at Tulane

Thu, Sep 19, 2019 (2 a.m.)

The sixth season of the annual Play of the Day betting competition between the Sun's sports staff is now under way, effective July 1.

Bankrolls start at $10,000 for each of the four participants, with the objective to increase it as much as possible over the next year. The minimum daily wager is $300, with a $200 penalty assessed for failing to place a bet on an assigned day.

Past winners are Case Keefer in 2018-19 and 2017-2018, Ray Brewer in 2016-2017 and 2015-2016, and Taylor Bern in 2014-2015.

Houston plus-5.5 at Tulane: $330 to win $300

As my below record hints, I’ve gone with a max-betting strategy this whole year. Although it hasn’t served me well, I’m not ditching it just yet.

The only reason this wager is so small, the minimum, is because I don’t like the game. I’m only using it in the Play of the Day as a way to fulfill my promise to pick every game this season.

And I’m only taking the Cougars because the line has spiraled so far out of control. The Green Wave opened as a 1.5-point favorite, a line that was too low and offered value on the home team.

I may have taken Tulane all the way up to 3.5, but any higher than that and Houston starts to be too explosive to pass up. The Cougars might have the best offense in the American Athletic Conference. Their highly questionable defense is the reason this spread has shot up.

Houston has given up 9 yards per play in a pair of Football Bowl Subdivision games but it’s important to remember the teams it played — Oklahoma and Washington State, two of the best offenses in the nation. Tulane will be comparatively unthreatening.

I expect a close Tulane win in the return of Thursday Night Football, so I’ll take the points. For record-keeping purposes, put this one down as a guess.

Current Standings: Grimala (6-3, $10,845), Emerson (4-8, $7,360), Keefer (6-7, $6,935), Brewer (3-8, $6,275)

Case Keefer can be reached at 702-948-2790 or [email protected]. Follow Case on Twitter at

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