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More options to keep the Super Bowl interesting

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The Super bowl is the most gambled on event in American sports. What’s number two? Ask Rick Nueheisel.

But since it is not tournament time, I, your self-proclaimed UW gaming guru, have decided to break down some of the more unique options the modern gambler has when it comes to the big game.

Last Super Bowl, my psychic powers — cough luck cough — landed me success in a random office-type pool. This year, I have decided to base my decisions on poor, shoddy and, often, false facts and reasoning.

This is a special week because the options are limitless for a gambler. ESPN may offer a more in-depth preview of the teams, covering all the big stories out of each camp, but it fails to offer insight on all of the vital details that make a Super Bowl great. And I am not talking about commercials.

Somebody needs to cover the coin toss, the first pass interference penalty and the battle to see whether New England receiver Deion Branch will have more receptions against Philadelphia than Yao Ming will have converted free throws against the Lakers the same day.

The first question on Sunday is an obvious one. What kind of turnover will happen first? Will it be a fumble or interception?

Interception is the favorite going in, but why? New England and Philadelphia feature two of the league’s most deadly quarterbacks, and two of the leagues most mediocre defensive backfields. The Patriots even have Troy Brown playing both ways. That only happens in high school and arena football. Both teams will want to establish the run, so the pick is fumble here.

The gambling Web site sportsbook.com seems to have its head in a dark, uncomfortable place this week. The Web site is taking action on whether or not there will be a tied score at any time Sunday. This, folks, is my lock of the week. If there is one thing I can guarantee, it is that before either team scores, the score will be 0-0.

Greg Lewis. Does that name ring a bell? It should. Everybody knows a guy named Greg, and Lewis is a pretty common last name.

The Greg Lewis in question is a wide receiver for Philadelphia. Yes, the same one that caught 17 whole passes this year — that is more than one per game. The odds are 18 to 1 that Lewis scores Sunday’s first touchdown.

This is almost my lock of the week, if not for my using the whole tied game thing as a lock. Lewis has not caught one touchdown in his two NFL seasons. The guy is clearly due to score. I say take him now, before he wastes all that beginner’s luck.

There are also bets being taken on what team will commit the first penalty. There is no better way to analyze a team than to analyze its home city as it has massive influence on the team’s performance and behavior on the field.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Philadelphia had 1,605 violent crimes per every 100,000 citizens. For New England, the Keller and Williams Realty Company’s Foxborough Neighborhood Report said that Foxboro, Mass. — where the Patriots stadium is located — saw only 124 crimes of any type committed last year.

The numbers do not lie, people. Odds are, Philly will commit the Super Bowl’s first penalty.

The poker online bookies are giving Eagle tailback Brian Westbrook’s combined total of rushing and receiving yards the edge over points scored in the Army/Navy college basketball game Sunday.

Since this is a college campus, which is by definition anti-war, and the Army and Navy participate in wars, which we resent, while adding in that both teams are a combined 9-30 on the season, it is my firm belief Westbrook will gain more yards than the two schools’ combined point total.

There you have it, the rundown on Sunday’s real action. When it comes to betting on sports, why stick to the dull spread or over/under when you can really appreciate the game’s details?