DFO University – Gambling 4

Welcome students!


Ok,  that’s a little better.  Now,  today’s topic is an Intro to Gambling. Pay attention as your future epic Vegas stories and fortunes may depend on this.

Gambling can be subdivided into two major categories: Games of Chance and Games of Skill. The secrets to success are different for each one.  However,  they both depend on one thing: the chance of something happening a.k.a. the odds.

We will address each type of Gambling separately.


In games of chance,  the odds of something happening are known. You pick an outcome and if it happens you win and if it doesn’t,  you lose.  Seems simple enough.

However,  the trick is in how the house (the entity making the bet with you) pays you.  In all games of chance,  the house will pay you at a rate LESS than the actual probability of the outcome happening.

Let’s use an example: in American roulette,  there are 36 numbers,  a 0, and a 00, so a total of 38 possible outcomes.  The odds of picking a correct number are 38 to 1.

The casinos,  though,  pay a correct outcome at 35 to 1. This means that, over time,  they pay out less than they take in and thus make a profit. This is called the house advantage or vigorish or “vig” for short.  It’s typically expressed as a percentage and the higher the number the bigger the advantage to the house.

Different games of chance have different percentages and individual betting options within those games also have different percentages.

Given this basic understanding of how the games work,  the question now becomes: How can one win at these games?

This brings up the second fundamental piece to understand about games of chance: outcome distribution.

When you toss a coin,  the probability of it landing heads or tails is 50-50 as there are only two sides.  However,  it doesn’t go in any kind of order.  It doesn’t go tails then heads then tails and so on in a regular pattern. You will have runs where you will get a bunch of heads in a row and vice versa.

Any outcome in games of chance is subject to random streaks. This is where the winning strategy lies. The key is to catch a streak,  profit from it,  and then walk away.  Easier said than done.

In future courses, you will learn strategies and techniques for the most common games of chance: Roulette,  Craps, and Keno/The Lottery.


The key differentiator between games of chance and games of skill is that in games of skill the probability of an outcome happening is generally not known exactly.  One side sets the odds it will pay at and the other side determines whether those odds are correct (in effect,  if the bettor believes his/her calculation/evaluation of the odds is better) and bets accordingly.

Wining strategy is built on the confidence the bettor has in his/her evaluation of the odds versus the posted payout.

Let’s take an example out of the world of sports betting.  The Steelers are favored to beat the Jaguars by 7 points. In general, sportsbooks set the lines so that as close to 50% of the betting money as possible goes to either option.  That way,  the losses are cancelled out by the wins and the vigorish/profit is steady.

So,  the house is essentially saying there is a 50% chance the Steelers win by 7. Now,  given that you have followed the team your entire life and that you know how shitty they play in home playoff games,  you may think that the probability of them winning by 7 is actually 30%.

In that case,  you would feel you have an advantage as you would be paid HIGHER than the expected probability.  You would then bet on that expected advantage.

Keep in mind that this advantage is all in your head.  No one knows the true odds of the Steelers winning by 7. You cannot make mathematical calculations like in games of chance.  That’s why they are called games of skill.  The skill comes in evaluating/calculating odds of outcomes either as close to the unknown true odds as possible or at least closer to the unknown true odds than what is offered.

This is applied in different ways in sports betting, blackjack,  and poker depending on the rules of the game. In fact,  in blackjack,  if you are smart enough and good enough in math and maybe have partners,  you can count cards in an effort to increase the accuracy of your evaluation. This is,  of course,  frowned upon by casinos.

Future courses will go into detail on the rules of each individual game and how the evaluation of odds differs for each.




International Member of the Geelong Cats and recovering Steelers fan. Likes Butts. And Balls. And Boobs. Pretty much anything that starts with the letter B. Preferably together.

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DFO University – Gambling 101 – Sports Gambling – [DOOR FLIES OPEN]

[…] we discussed previously, the key to effective and profitable sports gambling is knowing all about the odds.  Today’s […]

Don T

Can I submit a paper instead of taking tests? I’ll email it to you when it’s finished.

/opens on computer “I’m Due Dammit!” thesis, revises “Caveman Logic 3” for “Gambling 4” in cover


Did you go to U*NC or what?


Obviously not, since he’s not having a graduate assistant in the athletic department do it for him.


Game Time Decision

comment image

There’s no way any of us are that young, good looking and all dressed at the same time.


There are a lot of pants in this photo, aren’t there?

Game Time Decision

/IT guy
//working from home
///and yes i showered today


Look at Mr. Moneybags over here with his fancy “shower.”


comment image

I love that, besides the fact that this is technically false (the best kind of false), this dumbshit has the top comment.

Oh fuck that’s the first time I realized the postal service logo is an Eagle

I’m dumb


You will have runs where you will get a bunch of heads…

What are “Things Andy Reid says in the bathroom after shutting down an All-You-Can-Eat crawfish boil?” I’ll take A Petit Dejeuner for $400, Alex.


–Apetit aficionado

Senor Weaselo

/Opens one eye, reads post
Five more minutes…
/Goes back to sleep



You will have runs where you will get a bunch of heads…



Just like in college, I’m not gonna make any class starting before 10am.


I put a comment about sportd gambling being skill but it no post? It is skill though right Hippo?


I can’t/won’t answer foar Hippo, but it is a skill.
And I suck at it.

I’ve still got a little over $200 in my account tho. But when that’s gone, I’m done.
((until next time))


Not really a gambling comment but that foreign lady that the President owns is pretty good looking.


I want to see Stormy Daniels’ tax returns. I’m curious as to how her accountant reported the $130k to the IRS. Maybe as gambling winnings!


Charitable works?


See, now this is why Trump is the shittiest “evil” President. Nixon would’ve sicced the IRS on her ass the second he was sworn in to make sure she never talked. Same with all of his other accusers.

Trump just doesn’t give a shit or know better.


/raises hand
That’s great and all, but what are teh chances we can have class outside on the quad?


Is the Quad a new casino in Vegas?


Or a Raleigh-Durham establishment for the, uh, “arts”?