During a previous radio life, 97.1 The Ticket sent the Valenti and Foster Show to Las Vegas for the opening weekend of March Madness.
I was part of that crew and loved every moment of it.
It is a bucket list item I recommend any sports fan to attend. Let me issue a warning, though. It is a fun weekend, but it is a weekend for suckers. The casinos are filled. The sports books load up with cash, mostly your cash, and show games on a 24-hour loop.
I spoke to several sports books dudes and they said fans do not use logic when betting on games. They bet with their heart, and that is a dangerous thing to do. The sports book knows it is going to get your money by hook or crook.
“If a guy is wearing an Iowa State shirt I know how he is going to bet,” one bookie told me. “I could be mean and just make up prop bets on their team. I could make up a prop bet on the fly for the Iowa State guy. Will their team score 100 points at any point of the tournament? I could put some goofy odds on it. I know the Iowa State guy believes in his team and will make the bet. But that’s mean. I would never do that.”
The first weekend of March Madness is like Disneyland for adults. Games are shown nonstop in sports books, bars, and restaurants and in outdoor patios. The booze is flowing, the food is good, and the hookers are out in force.
If that hooker is wearing a maize and blue thong, you know who she is betting on. Go Blue.
Like Disneyland, the casinos are going to get your cash. It can cost you upwards of $1,500 to reserve a couch to watch games in a sports book. Many places reduce the price based on how much you spend on food and drink. With corned beef sandwiches selling for $25 you could spend that $1,500 on sandwiches alone.
Dumb sports fans ration that the couch is worth it because they are going to make that money back and more by betting on their favorite team. Yes, you could find fools betting on Michigan Tech beating Duke outright if Tech had a Division One team.
If he’s wearing a Tech shirt, the casino would gladly propose that bet for you.
You’ve heard the saying, “What goes on in Vegas stays in Vegas.” That’s true, but if you want to score with a lovely lady, make sure she is not a Vegas native. They get pissed when tourists hit on them. However, if that young lady is from Idaho or Texas, go for it.
Your chances for success are pretty good unless you put all your money on Michigan or Michigan State making a deep tournament run or that Michigan Tech can actually beat Duke. That lady still expects you to pay for everything, so you’d better have cash on hand, or she will drop you as quickly as all the losing betting tickets you see laying on the ground after a game ends.
If you are flying Spirit Airlines, make sure you leave Wednesday morning at the latest, so you can make the Thursday morning tips. That flight will be late, guaranteed. The good news is there is a bar by the Spirit gates that is always packed this time of year with thirsty and pissed off March Madness fans headed for Vegas.
I don’t know why they are so mad. They decided to fly Spirit. They knew that flight was going to be late because of some made up equipment failure. The truth is, Spirit did not schedule a plane and hopes one magically appears, which it usually does because the flight bound for Denver accidentally lands in Detroit.
After a couple pops, folks get drunk. Unsolicited, they pull out their brackets to reveal that Iowa State is going to make the Final Four. That’s if he is wearing an Iowa State T-shirt. The guy wearing the Michigan State shirt will bend your ear about how Tom Izzo is about to work his magic and guide the Spartans to the Final Four.
The poor Michigan Tech guy won’t brag about his team making the Final Four. Tech is only going to the Sweet 16.
After a four-hour flight delay, you’ve met newfound friends that you want to avoid once you make it to Vegas. Chances are, some of them won’t have a hotel room and will beg to crash at your place.
Of course, they tell you they will pay you back after Iowa State wins its game. Don’t go for it. I do not want you being the sucker.