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What is a Sports Service?
By Tony George
Midwest Sports Consultants

I have been asked by friends of mine over the years, radio station managers, programmers, IT Internet guys, people I meet on the street, and guys I meet in sportsbooks, "what exactly is a sports service?" With football fast approaching, and the little magazines showing up in your mailbox with the Nevada rotation sheets in them with ads for the Lock of the Year on October 6th already, although no one knows any lines, from some loud mouth tout no one has ever heard of, I thought I might shed some light on this subject.

A sports service or tout service can be many things to many different people. Myself as a propfessional handicapper, it means to provide sports selections and information to a consumer that offers a high probability of winning against the Las Vegas line, with integrity. Plain and simple, right? In this day and age it takes much more than that. With the internet you now have vast information avenues, custom made databases, seasmless live odds and line moves to track, and the list goes on and on. Lets take a look at what a TRUE sports service our "tout" like myself should be doing, and then we will take a look at the dark side of the industry.

When I started out winning a small NFLcontest at the Hoseshoe in Vegas back in 1991, and was approached by some guys who offered me money to buy my picks in the NFL the following year, I had NO idea that it would turn into what it is today. Tony George being a "brand name", a high profile sports service owner, a radio personality, and sports article writer, just to name a few. I was just an average Joe who USED to use these telemarketing boiler room loud mouthed, foul mouthed rip-off artists myself, back in their heyday. As an owner of a sports service, I never bought into calling poeple up and hounding them with lies and half truths for money, or using 900#'s and advertising the lock of the century every weekend on TV or in USA Today, making claims of 80% winners every week, and so on. For the most part over the past 8-10 years the Internet has changed most all of that. In other words, my phone rings or my internet sales increase only based on merit, which simply put is winning games consistently and posting my records and being honest about it, win , lose, or draw.

A TRUE sports service should have consistent winners and a track record of succsess. You must also have a website, and a good one that provides more than hype and false claims. It should have CONTENT from it's participants, meaning articles, free game reviews, and most importantly a secure e-commerce system. You must have customer support and an 800# to call if people would like to reach you personally or have issues with your site. You must supply stats and match-ups for your site visitors. In this day and age where the public has an appitite for information, you must provide true documentation of your results on your site from the previous day, and going back at least 7 days.

You must provide state of the art technology on your website, contact information in terms of e-mail, provide links to QUALITY sportsbooks and other gaming related sites. You must maintain a database and not sell it out to the highest bidder, and use that database to market to your clients with weekly newsletters full of quality information. You must assemble more than a few cappers, as combination sites are the rave, and assemble a strong talent pool of honest professionals with proven track records. It is not cheap, and it is not easy, but this is how I run my sports service. Any legitimate sports service or sports website should have these qualities. If they do not, then take your chances.

QUESTION: Does the guy calling you on the phone and yelling about information so strong on an insider type deal, and that that the owner personally has 10 dimes on it and he is giving this one out for only a select few, OFFER WHAT I STATED ABOVE? Of course trhe answer is no. The industry has cleaned itself up but not completely ridded itself of scamsters and quick buck artists that have silver tounged devils working for them. They are vastly fewer in numbers than 10 years ago, but they are still out there. I listened to some radio shows last year and trust me, these guys are baiting you to call with various "LOCKS" every weekend.

There is no such thing as a lock folks, that why it is called gambling. If there was a lock every weekend, and I have been betting professionaly for over 12 years, I would own half of Vegas and an island off of Florida somewhere earning 20% and smelling like Jamacian rum and Coppertone. I am good, but not that good, nor is anyione else. You cannot cheat and lie your way to the top, it takes hard work and some luck in this business, along with experience. Buyer beware come football season. Find a TRUE Sports Service this year, and your wallet will thank you and you will win more without the hype and false claims and harassing phone calls and wasted time and money.


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