First of all, last night’s game was tremendous from start to finish with or without a gambling spread. Not the best Defense, but the best theater in a National Title game since Vince Young at the Rose Bowl. But last night’s 4th quarter in particular is why you and I gamble on sports. It was the perfect illustration of the game, and the spread. 40 points in the 4th quarter of a national title game. FORTY!
Bama goes from dead in the water down 3 in the 4th to a Field Goal, immediate onside kick, and touchdown back to covering. Then all hell broke loose. Back and forth up and down the field. Kick returns, long pass plays where no one wanted to tackle. Gains that should have been 5 yards breaking for 50. All leading us to the greatest National Championship spread drama in the final 2 minutes. Alabama on the goal line up 5, burning Clemson time outs with every failed attempt to punch it in. Clemson backers rooting for Bama to score even though they would then be losing their bet, Bama backers rooting AGAINST a Bama touchdown so they could kick the field goal and go up 8 thus forcing Alabama to play Defense on the final drive. Up is down, down is up, and while this is all going on the clock is ticking. Then the Derrick Henry touchdown, the whistle and call coming in excruciatingly late for both sides, putting Alabama up the full 12 points. Then, the ending. It was the single most obvious backdoor cover I’ve ever seen. It was so inevitable. It was watching a punch come directly at your face in slow motion and not being able to move your head. People like myself have Alabama up 12 with 1 minute left and no Clemson timeouts knowing it was over and not in a good way. Just look at it in real time. This was when Clemson was at mid field with 30 seconds left, a sack finishes the game, 1 single sack.
And the reaction from both sides when Clemson finally scores to get within the number with 12 seconds left.
And that my friends is why we gamble. I lost, a lot, and I can still sit here and tell you it was somehow in a sick twisted way worth it. The drama was incredible, the thirst for a cover on both sides insatiable. One of those nights where you don’t sleep for 3 hours after because you’re still wired to the moon. What a game, what a spread. They don’t stop building tall buildings in Vegas for nothing.