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Point Spread Price
by Dennis Ranahan

There are very few things in life that one can wholly take credit for.

One of them that I’d like too, but have to bow to my brother’s son, Paul, is the point spread price information available exclusively on the Qoxhi site.

Before his teen years, Paul and his cousin, Pat, my other brother’s son, used to come to my San Francisco office to stuff envelopes and help out where they could. Pat was always interested in the colors in the ads for Qoxhi Picks.

Paul was always following the numbers.

In high school, Paul’s interest in the statistical elements of the matchups was edging towards what today we refer to as analytics. His objective was to assign each team a handicap, not unlike a golf handicap.

By his equations, an average team carried a point spread price number of seventy. A team that had a point spread price of 71 or higher was better than average. Last year, 15 teams had point spread price averages of 71 or more. The highest handicap price for a team last year belonged to the Los Angeles Rams. They were the only team to end the season with a point spread price average above 100, they finished last year with a league high 102 point spread price.

Based on a formula established by Paul and refined by both of us over the years, the information we began publishing in 2003, were numbers Paul formulated during his college years at Cal Berkeley. A point spread price is assigned to every team before a season begins utilizing factors gained from season win totals, odds to win their division, conference, and Super Bowl.

That provides a raw opening number for each team, and that number is first massaged by the work we have done in spotting motivational trends from season-to-season and then against the opening day point spreads. Three points is assigned for home field advantage, which equates to twelve point spread price numbers.

A home team favored by three points would have the same point spread price as their opponent. If a team is favored by 2½ or less, or an underdog, they will have a point spread price lower than their opponent. If a home team is favored by 3½ points or more, they will have a point spread price in correspondence to their opponent which would be higher.

For example, last season the opening point spread price number for the Los Angeles Rams was 95 when they played the Oakland Raiders on the road in a Monday Night Football opener. The Rams ran away in the second half during that contest winning the game and easily covering the point spread, 33-13.

Even as a double digit favorite the following week at home against the Arizona Cardinals, the Rams had their point spread price drop to 93 while favored by twelve points. After clobbering the Cardinals, 34-0, the Rams point spread price only rose to 98 for their Week Three matchup against their city rival, the Los Angeles Chargers. That resulted in a third straight Rams double-digit win and the cost of betting on them rose above the 100 mark for the first time in their fourth week home meeting against the Minnesota Vikings.

The Rams point spread price was 104, a number they were only able to push as a seven point home favorite and a 38-31 victory.

In all, the Rams kicked off with a point spread price of 100 or higher ten times during the regular season, and had a point spread record of 3-6-1 in those games. In the six games the Rams were priced below 100, they were 4-1-1.

Value in the point spread is an essential edge in building an overall winning campaign, and the point spread price chart on the Qoxhi Picks site is unique to all the world.

I’d like to take credit for it, only because it is that good and Paul and I have refined it over a 30 year working relationship.

But the creation credit for this one goes to Paul, and I’m just glad we get to share it.