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Anchor Drop, August 10, 2023: 16 Days to Kickoff

ESPN is starting a sportsbook, because of course it is.

NCAA Football: Northern Illinois at Vanderbilt Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning.

Optional Musical Accompaniment

We are now 16 days away from Vanderbilt football’s season opener against Hawaii. 16 for the Commodores is tight end Cole Spence. The 6’7”, 243-pound redshirt freshman from Roswell, Georgia, was supposed to be the heir apparent to Ben Bresnahan, but instead he’s out for the season. So, that’s good.

Meanwhile, of course this was what happened.

Why wouldn’t it? ESPN is already a gambling channel at this point, why not have a sportsbook along with it? My thoughts on sports gambling are that of course it should be legal, but also the amount that sports leagues and now a sports TV network have gotten in bed with the gambling industry is probably extremely bad for sports, and I’m not really talking about the possibility of players being tempted to fix games (though that’s a problem.) Instead, young people’s introduction to sports is being met with a very clear message that you’re supposed to bet money on them. Something I used to do, but don’t any more, instead just posting a weekly Bad Gambling Advice column that I’m not actually betting money on, and neither should you.

And meantime, this is the play, because this is always the play:

Let me be clear: casual fans suck, have always sucked, and the true fans are the ones in the comments section at Anchor of Gold. But then Dawg Sports directed me to a post of theirs about the NASCAR-ification of college football simply because that’s the ur-cautionary tale of what can go wrong when you chase the idiots who listen to Colin Cowherd at the expense of the guy taking his kid to Corvallis for every home game and religiously watching the Beavers on TV for road games. NASCAR is way less relevant now than it was 20 years ago, and maybe it would be good for some of the people in charge of college football to look into the why.

Sports on TV

All times Central.

  • 11:30 AM: MLB: Astros at Orioles or Braves at Pirates (MLB Network)
  • 1:00 PM: PGA Tour: FedEx St. Jude Championship, First Round (Golf Channel)
  • 2:30 PM: MLB: Blue Jays at Guardians or Twins at Tigers (MLB Network)
  • 6:10 PM: MLB: Royals at Red Sox (ESPN+)
  • 8:00 PM: FIFA Women’s World Cup: Spain v. Netherlands (FOX)
  • 9:00 PM: MLB: Rockies at Dodgers (MLB Network)
  • 2:30 AM: FIFA Women’s World Cup: Japan v. Sweden (FOX)


MLB: Marlins 5, Reds 4 ... Brewers 7, Rockies 6 ... A’s 2, Rangers 0 ... Tigers 9, Twins 5 ... Cardinals 6, Rays 4 ... Phillies 7, Nationals 0 ... Astros 8, Orioles 2 ... Braves 6, Pirates 5 ... Mets 4, Cubs 3 ... Red Sox 4, Royals 3 ... Blue Jays 1, Guardians 0 ... White Sox 9, Yankees 2 ... Angels 4, Giants 1 ... Dodgers 2, Diamondbacks 0 ... Mariners 6, Padres 1.