Shut down your work for the day and call your bookie, it?s time for Kmarko?s annual Super Bowl Prop Bets Mega Blog!
Not sure what # year this is because everything except for last year’s blog has been deleted from our archives obviously. All I know is the year I started it I went 10 for 10 and from then on it was destiny that I had to do a Prop Bets blog every Super Bowl. As someone who doesn’t gamble because I had to quit because I was abnormally bad at it and literally could not afford to lose any more money, I’ve displayed an astounding knack for correctly guessing the dumb shit that happens during the Super Bowl football game.
The second year wasn?t as great. I think it was around 50-60% success rate, because I got a little too tricky ? messed around with like, Russell Wilson?s Pass Yardage vs. the National Oil Barrel Prices or something. I don?t know, I just remember at one point I went from talking about the Seahawks? offense to writing a paragraph about the new King of Saudi Arabia and his worldview of the global economy, and that?s when things kind of went off the rails.
Last year, a solid 8 for 11.
Respectable. Trending upwards heading into this year. And I gotta say I’m feeling pretty good about the board. Feeling confident. Only a couple that I felt were toss-ups, and I did my best to research them the best I could to really nail them down. Of course that’s literally the definition of all these bets, “toss ups,” so without a crystal ball you kind of know it could go either way. Then again when it comes to prop bets my brain is somewhat of a crystal ball.
Also it should be go without saying, but I tried to focus on bets with good or close-to-good odds for either side, to make it more fun. I mean there are obviously a ton of -400 or -600 props I could throw on here to beef up my totals and get some checks in the win column, but that’s not how I roll. I’m not that type of guy. We’re here to break down the tough ones. The props people are scared to touch. The props people don’t have 15 hours to research on the internet because their job isn’t literally to sit in an office scrolling through the internet for dumb shit. That’s me, I do that.
So let?s get into it. Got 9 official Kmarko Prop Bets lined up. Almost all bets/lines were taken off of Bovada. And as a general rule of thumb I don?t read a single blog or article from anyone else about prop bets so these are all un-influenced, straight from my brain.
Luke Bryan National Anthem Time: 2:09
As usual, spent my most amount of research time on this one. My favorite one to dig into. Because it’s one of the few prop bets that isn’t totally random luck, you can actually do some research to get a good feel for it. And to do that research I turned to the only source I trust: YouTube.
We’ve got 3 Anthems in the Bryan library, and the first two I checked out had me leaning STRONGLY to the under.
We had the 2012 All Star Game nice and quick clocking in under 2 minutes:
And we had an ’08 Titans- Browns game at a BRISKLY efficient 1:45:
But…BUT. Then I found this one. The opening of US Bank stadium.
Look at how fucking slow this is!!
Oh my god that was slow. 2:26 and he wasn’t even done yet. He hadn’t cut off the final note at the end of the video. Just an outrageously slow anthem. Add that to the fact that, well, this ain’t a freaking regular season Titans and Browns game, and Luke Bryan has become a significantly bigger deal over the past 9 years, so you gotta account for star power and The Moment.
And then, the coup de grace:
Bryan, during his Super Bowl press conference, wouldn’t offer a direct hint about what to expect, although he did indicate that he was going to get the feel of the room (it’s a large room, just play along) when he decided how his rendition would shake out.
“There’s no telling how long it may go,” Bryan said.
The singer indicated he would likely belt out a lengthy anthem unless he was nervous when he rolls into NRG Stadium. [CBS]
Straight from the horse’s mouth folks.
Luke doesn’t strike me as the type of guy to be nervous. Those country boys, they love America. He’ll want to enjoy the moment and live it up as much as possible.
Full disclosure – I do have bad news about the anthem bet. As of press time I have not yet heard from the Maestro. Yes, for the first year, the Mad Maestro has not checked in with me re: the national anthem. I don’t want to alarm his friends and family but like, if you have a second, please drop a line on him and make sure he’s ok, because this is unlike him to leave me high and dry like this.
And for all you new little Stoolies not well versed in Barstool history ? here?s the quick story of the Maestro. My first Prop Bet blog ever I guessed the over/under for Rennee Fleming doing the anthem, and went with the Over. In the comment section someone named ?The Mad Maestro? left an incredibly long analysis of opera singers, so I obviously followed up via email. And ended up with this.
At 3:08 PM, Kmarko wrote:
Hey man. very intrigued by your comment on the anthem. Can you please fill me in on your opera qualifications and expertise a little more. Need to see what I?m dealing with here. Lot of money and pride on the line.
At 6:05 PM, The Mad Maestro wrote:
I felt compelled to comment for the first time ever on your site because I have major passion for classical music. First a little about myself. I?ve been a classical instrumentalist for 15 years. A degree from the New England Conservatory and the Peabody Conservatory of JHU. Gigged with dozens of ensembles all over the east coast and even worked in administration with the Boston Symphony and Baltimore Symphony.
I have plenty of Operas under my belt. Both as a performer and as a spectator. Classical music is more than how I make my living, it is my life. There.
While I?m not a professional Opera soloist, there are some facts and clues that I saw that ?lead me to believe? that the likelihood of Renee Flemming going over 2:25 is very low. I think Bovado messed up on this one. 2:25 is the time they set. If the over/under was 2:15, I wouldn?t touch it. I need this bet as part of my parlay and I?m taking it just to boost my payout.
Reasons for under 2:25 national anthem.
1. Recorded Orchestral Accompaniment. If she hits a high note and holds it, there is no conductor there to cue the orchestra back in (Therefore she can?t hold notes as long as she wants. Only Italians do that.) She?ll hold her notes for a metrically prescribed amount of time to keep consistency. I also heard there will be 12 Helicopters doing the fly over this year. I know the Air Force has impeccable timing but it?s prolly easier if they have an exact ETA.
2. Military Chorus. Super Bowl 39 Pats vs Eagles. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ETrr-XHBjE
They fly through it. So fast that they even did a reprise and had plenty of time left over for some bitchin trumpet fanfares. When Flemming mentions ?reverent,? ?exultant? and ?patriotic,? as a musician, to me, none of those imply slow. I think Patriotic implies fast. Marching tempo in fact. Which is the tempo of the Star Spangled Banner.
3. In Comparison to others. All I really learned from this was how I could potentially lose this bet. 2:25 is a great time for this Prop. I remember it stipulates starting from the ?first note? to the ?conclusion of brave.? A long orchestral introduction could screw me over. Beyonce?s was like that. They started the music playing then introduced her, then she took the mic and ate up like 20 seconds before the first word came out. Even then, I still clocked it at about 2:23.
The major unknowable is what Renee?s arrangement of star spangled banner would consist of. Since it is surely classical, with likely tribute to patriotism, I?m expecting something like the Super Bowl 39 version or even like Whitney Houston?s Super Bowl 25.
In conclusion, your logic of her wanting to make a ?big slash? and holding high notes through eternity, because she?s ?Opera,? is an error. I?m sure the word Diva is more appropriate for her than anyone else, but more than that, she?s a pro, and there are plenty of things out of her control. Live orchestra? I?d be less confident. No Military Chorus? Less confident. I don?t have a clue about the other props I bet on. But what I would call ?a lock,? is that there will be no lolly gagging in the tempo of our national anthem this year.
Take it for what it?s worth. I hope this helps.
Viva la stool
P.S. I understand everyone?s resistance to opera. But I?m recommending 2 operas for you Kmarko. Pagliaci (the sad clown opera). It?s only 90 minutes. The best short opera out there. And Salome by Strauss. Depending on the performance, there could be a bunch of titties dancing around on stage.
Sunday, February 5, 12:00 PM –
Maestro reached out yesterday afternoon. We are now going UNDER!
Sorry for showing up late to the blog. I had a busy week of rehearsals and a late night with a Shostakovich symphony yesterday. I woke up hung over this morning and noticed my inbox smashed with concern from friends about my pick for the national anthem. Done by your influence no doubt. Thanks for that. It’s rather intimidating to see such a response. I’m just a person. If Barstool Nation needs my analysis on this situation, then perform I must…
As luck would have it, I took a new gig assisting with a university marching band, and we work closely with the athletics and sports media departments. The business of producing a football game is a very well planned script that is pulled off similar to a Broadway show, except it’s “one night only.” This stuff is planned down to the second. Somewhere, behind closed doors, there is a script with a slot for “National Anthem, Luke Bryan.” My guess, is that Bryan’s window is 2:30. Insanely expensive commercials to follow immediately after our anthem. The Thunderbirds (who will do the flyover this year) add the exclamation point to the anthem, and have the best timing IN THE WORLD.
There are only a few observations I am able to share about the upcoming performance. #1. Luke Bryan is a dude. He is the fourth dude in 20 years to perform. It’s less characteristic of male voices to sustain high notes. Musically, it makes more sense for upper voices to sustain the high notes, and low voices to sustain low notes. See Western Music. People have been making the mistake of assuming that just because the singer is “so and so,” they will therefore sing our anthem into infinity. If you ask me, that’s a rather arrogant mistake. See Renee Flemming. There is more than one factor at play here. #2. Form. There are many versions of our national anthem. Most of the super bowl renditions are the version in 4/4 time. Looking at Bryan’s examples on youtube, he prefers the version in 3/4 time. That potentially (but not necessarily) means the anthem is 25% shorter. In fact, he actually slips a 4/4 bar into his version on occasion. #3. Tradition. I’ve never been a big patron of country music, but in my opinion, some of the strength of this genre lies in the pauses. The anthem has several spots where a dramatic pause would be very expressive. But in addition, the tempo, be it fast or slow, traditionally remains unyielding. Bryan is Country, not Soul or Gospel. Aretha Franklin (Queen of Soul) gifted America a rendition of our anthem on Thanksgiving, that embodied the timeless greatness of her genre. I was even able to go to the bathroom and come back before she finished. #4. History. The Youtube examples are good. The one example I toss out as ‘irrelevant’ is the version he did as part of a live concert. His show, his time, his program, his rules. Imagine for a second, that YOU are the one standing in between Super bowl LI and planet Earth. During Bryan’s live show, he has no pressure or concerns other than delivering that sweet apple pie of a voice to the people. As you noted Kmarko, all his sporting event performances were less than 2 minutes. #6. Time of 2:09. I heard that the over/under was originally 2:15. But damn. 2:09 is a tough time. Well played vegas. It seems like more of a psychological suggestion to me. As with Renee Flemming, her over/under was way outta line with the reality of what was possible. 2:09 is a very realistic time. I wasn’t able to confirm, but it looks as though it will just be the Luke Bryan pipes, and no piano or ensemble with him. If that’s the case, there will be no intro music to add unnecessary seconds to our anthem.
Sounds like I’m suggesting the under doesn’t it…? There’s only one condition in which I DO NOT place prop bets on the Super Bowl, and that’s when my Patriots are performing. All the life or death motivation and thrill I need comes from watching them play. Adding $$ to the equation is too much of a conflict of interest. But that’s just me. But for everyone else, I think the facts support taking the under. I hate the time of 2:09, but I gotta go with my gut. 2:06 is my prediction. Sorry to disagree on the back end of your blog Kmarko. It feels safe to take the over, and risky to take the under, but I would be no good to you or the stoolies if I didn’t tell you exactly how I feel.
Good luck. Go P