Worst gambling 'bad beats' of the weekend

Nick Saban embraces running back Derrick Henry after Alabama's win over Auburn. AP Photo/Gerald Herbert

Rob Nelson of ESPN Stats & Information revisits the worst bad beats from the weekend's gambling action.

Note: Closing lines are courtesy of Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook and pick percentages are via Wunderdog sports.


Tulsa Golden Hurricane at Tulane Green Wave

Closing line: Tulsa -9.5

It was a grim Black Friday for bettors that took Tulane in this one. The Green Wave -- playing as 9.5-point underdogs -- led 34-24 midway through the fourth quarter after Jordy Joseph hooked up with Andrew Hicks for a 34-yard touchdown. With 7:40 left, Tulane was covering by 19.5 points and looked prime for the outright upset.

Tulsa, however, quickly responded with a four-play drive that took less than a minute, capped off by a Zach Langer 1-yard touchdown run. That score cut Tulane's lead down to three, and would be the last time Tulsa had the ball. On the very next play from scrimmage, Tulsa's Craig Suits returned a Joseph interception for a touchdown to give the Golden Hurricane a four-point lead. The Green Wave proceeded to move the ball into the red zone and were threatening to take back the lead ... until the unthinkable happened for those who bet Tulane. Yet another pick-six for Tulsa, this time by Kolton Shindelar, who returned 89 yards for a touchdown that sealed a double-digit win for the Golden Hurricane.

How unlikely was this bad beat? It marked just the second time all season that a FBS team had multiple pick-sixes in the fourth quarter.

Final score: Tulsa 45, Tulane 34 (Tulsa covers)

Boise State Broncos at San Jose State Spartans

Closing line: Over/under 57.5

While no bet on an under is ever won until the final whistle, those who took under 57.5 in this one had to be feeling good after three quarters. Boise State led 16-10 entering the fourth quarter, with the total 31.5 points short of the closing over/under.

On Boise State's first offensive play of the fourth, Jeremy McNichols broke free on a career-long 88-yard touchdown run, which marked the beginning of the end for bettors on the under. McNichols added another touchdown, while San Jose State's Kenny Potter threw for a couple of scores in the quarter. The final blow came when McNichols' backup, Kelsey Young, scored from 34 yards out with just over two minutes left. The teams combined for 37 points in the final quarter, including 24 by Boise State, its second most in a fourth quarter in the last 10 seasons.

Final score: Boise State 40, San Jose State 23 (game goes over)


Alabama Crimson Tide at Auburn Tigers

Closing line: Alabama -15.5

For the first 59:34 of the game, Auburn +15.5 was the right bet. The Tigers hung with their arch-rival all game, and trailed by six entering the fourth quarter. While Auburn's hopes of an upset had faded, bettors who took the Tigers were seconds away from cashing in.

But Derrick Henry had other plans.

Facing a fourth-and-1 at the Auburn 25-yard line, Alabama called a timeout up nine with 33 seconds left. Nick Saban had a few options but ultimately decided to give Henry his 46th rush attempt of the game. Henry broke free for a 25-yard touchdown that along with Adam Griffith's extra point, gave Alabama a 16-point win. Griffith -- the same kid that came up short on his field goal that resulted in "Kick Six" in 2013 -- made a career-high five field goals in the game, including three that were at least 40 yards long. While some will remember this edition of the Iron Bowl as the game that Henry wrapped up the Heisman or the redemption for Griffith, others will always be in disbelief that Auburn failed to cover. Final score: Alabama 29, Auburn 13 (Alabama covers)


Pittsburgh Steelers at Seattle Seahawks

Closing line: Seahawks -3

In a back-and-forth game, the Steelers seemed likely to cover, easily moving the ball all day with Ben Roethlisberger at the helm. When Chris Boswell's 30-yard field goal brought the Steelers within two of the lead, Pittsburgh was in a great position to cover with three minutes left.

On the Seahawks' following possession, the Steelers were a play away from forcing a three-and-out. On third-and-10 from his own 20, Russell Wilson connected with Doug Baldwin and all Pittsburgh needed to do was tackle him. There was no tackle. Baldwin took it 80 yards to the house and put Seattle up nine.

One would think the backdoor would've been wide open for Roethlisberger to march down the field like he had done all day, but he was going through concussion protocol, and those who bet the Steelers needed a touchdown drive from Landry Jones. Three plays later, Jones was picked off by Kam Chancellor (on a questionable catch) to seal the victory.

Final score: Seahawks 39, Steelers 30 (Seahawks cover)