Second act to be bigger hit than Super loss

The bad news is my debut last week was about as successful as Conan O’Brien on The Tonight Show.

The good news is the publishers haven’t summoned Jay Leno to replace me … at least not yet. (Should that day come, guys, know that I’ll demand a $45 million buyout, just like Conan!).

On to basketball, and I’m banking on a 3-0 sweep this week. Hey, if the New Orleans Saints can win the Super Bowl, anything’s possible, right?

I took an 0-2 hit last week with the Colts and the over in the Super Bowl. That quickly slashed $1,430 from my $7,000 bankroll, leaving me with $5,570.

$220 (to win $200) on Kansas State over Colorado (Saturday, Feb. 13): Heading into this week, teams from the Big 12 were a combined 141-17 at home. One of those 17 losses belongs to Colorado, which fell 87-81 to (hello!) Kansas State back on Jan. 16. Last year, when the Buffaloes went to Manhattan, Kan., they lost by 12 points to the unranked Wildcats. This year, Kansas State—which crushed UNLV 95-80 at the Orleans Arena in December—is a top 10 team. Oh, and Colorado has as many wins in seven road games as you and I do.

$110 (to win $100) on Portland over St. Mary’s (Saturday, Feb. 13): St. Mary’s entered this week with a 21-3 record, including a perfect 7-0 on the road. Why go against the Gaels versus Portland (14-8)? Because 48 hours prior to this game, St. Mary’s has a revenge contest at West Coast Conference power Gonzaga (which won 89-82 at St. Mary’s a month ago). Whether they win or lose that rematch, I expect the Gaels to suffer a letdown at Portland … just as they did on Jan. 16, when—48 hours after losing to Gonzaga—they barely held off Portland 77-72 (failing to cover as an eight-point home favorite).

$25 on Nate Robinson to win NBA Slam Dunk Contest (Sunday, Feb. 14): Twenty-four years ago this week, 5-foot-7-inch Spud Webb won one for the little guys when he outdueled NBA legend (and then-Atlanta teammate) Dominique Wilkins to win the slam dunk title. Last year, 5-foot-9 Nate Robinson channeled his inner “Spud” and rose above Orlando monster Dwight Howard to win the crown. The diminutive Knicks guard is back to defend his crown this weekend in Dallas. Where did Spud win his title? In Dallas. Just sayin’.

Matt Jacob is a former local sports writer who has been in the sports handicapping business for more than four years. For his weekly column, Vegas Seven has granted Matt a “$7,000” bankroll. If he blows it all, we’ll fire him and replace him with a monkey.

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