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Week’s worst bad beats: Cover runs away from Texas Tech

Instead of running out the clock, Texas Christian quarterback Max Duggan ran to the end zone.

Here are the worst bad beats of the sports betting week:

5. Arizona State +350 ML, South Florida +600 ML

At least they still covered the spread.

Underdog money-line bettors taking a shot with Arizona State (+11½, +350 ML) and South Florida (+17½, +600 ML) saw seemingly sure victories ripped away in the final few minutes Saturday.

Arizona State led Southern California 27-14 with less than three minutes to play, then the game flipped in about 10 seconds. USC’s Kedon Slovis threw into the end zone, the ball was deflected up, and it fell right into the arms of Bru McCoy for a 26-yard TD with 2:52 to go.

No problem. Just recover the onside kick and get out with the victory. Instead, the ball bounced off the Arizona State player’s hands, and the Trojans recovered. Facing fourth-and-9, Slovis hit Drake London for a 21-yard TD with 1:20 left, delivering a brutal 28-27 loss to the Sun Devils.

South Florida (1-6) has had an awful season, but the Bulls came to play against Memphis, taking a 27-13 halftime lead. After a field goal with 4:36 left pushed the lead to 33-20, South Florida appeared just about home free.

But bad teams find a way to lose. Memphis scored with 3:19 to go, then South Florida ran three times for 1 yard while trying to run the clock. The Tigers got the ball back at their 24 with 2:23 to go. Eight plays later, Memphis had a 34-33 victory.

4. UNLV +11½

The Rebels battled all the way Saturday against Fresno State at Allegiant Stadium. UNLV trailed by three at halftime, and the game was tied at 27 entering the fourth quarter.

But the Rebels’ offense came to a standstill in the fourth quarter, and Fresno scored a touchdown and two field goals, the last coming with 1:51 left, to secure a 40-27 victory. The last kick put UNLV outside the number for the only time all game.

3. Over 49½ Stanford-Oregon

Stanford’s Jet Toner missed all four of his field-goal tries, and Oregon’ s Camden Lewis missed his only attempt. The Ducks also fumbled in the red zone.

That’s all it took to keep this game under by a half-point in a 35-14 Oregon win.

2. Under 48 Packers-49ers

Bad beats always sting, but their impact is felt more widely in prime-time NFL games that draw the biggest audience.

Green Bay jumped on San Francisco and was cruising to victory, up 34-3 more than midway through the fourth quarter. The game was over, but it wasn’t over. Total bettors still had plenty to hold their interest.

The 49ers had done virtually nothing on offense, but Richie James caught a 41-yard TD pass to put the under in jeopardy with a 34-10 Packers lead. Green Bay went three-and-out, and over bettors had their shot with the 49ers 75 yards away with 2:32 to play.

San Francisco needed virtually every bit of that time, but Jerick McKinnon capped a 10-play drive with a 1-yard plunge with four seconds left. Green Bay won 34-17, but under bettors didn’t.

1. Texas Tech +9½

How far did TCU quarterback Max Duggan get down the field before Texas Tech bettors realized they were about to lose?

The Horned Frogs were trying to run out a 27-18 victory with less than two minutes left. Facing third-and-11 at the TCU 19, Duggan faked a handoff and ran up the middle. First down, game over.

Except Duggan, not exactly Lamar Jackson on his feet, didn’t get tackled. He just kept going and going, right between two defensive backs, 81 yards for a touchdown. Duggan wasn’t even touched until he reached the 5-yard line, and he dived in for the score.

Final: TCU 34, Texas Tech 18. And some astonished Red Raiders backers with worthless tickets.

Contact Jim Barnes at jbarnes@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0277. Follow @JimBarnesLV on Twitter.

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