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Worst bad beats of the week: Blame it on the refs

Sometimes, you can actually blame your betting losses on the refs.

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

5. Texas A&M -14½

The Aggies were cruising to a win, leading Arkansas 42-17 going into the fourth quarter. The Razorbacks trimmed the lead to 42-24, but they did nothing on their next two drives. Texas A&M backers just had to hope Arkansas wouldn’t drive 69 yards in the final 1:57.

Mission not accomplished. Quarterback Feleipe Franks completed all four of his passes, and Rakeem Boyd scored on a 14-yard run with 36 seconds left to get Arkansas to the window in a 42-31 defeat.

4. San Diego State -4½ 1H

Aztecs backers in the first half went from sure thing to dead in a matter of seconds Saturday. Down 10-0 and with the clock running after a tackle in bounds, Utah State hurried to get one final play from the San Diego State 37-yard line.

Quarterback Jason Shelley got the snap off and flung a pass to a diving Deven Thompkins in the corner of the end zone as time expired, trimming the Aztecs’ lead to 10-7 at halftime.

The score didn’t mean anything in an eventual 38-7 Aztecs win, but for some bettors it meant everything.

3. Chargers -3

The Chargers keep finding new ways to torture their backers. Los Angeles led 24-3 midway through the third quarter against an offensively challenged Broncos team. Surely the Chargers couldn’t blow this 17-point lead like the ones earlier this season against Tampa Bay and New Orleans.

The Broncos pulled within three midway through the fourth quarter, but the Chargers answered with a field goal with 2:30 to go to take a 30-24 lead. Still safely outside the number — as long as they could stop Drew Lock from driving 81 yards.

On fourth-and-4 from the Los Angeles 18 with seven seconds left, the Chargers were called for pass interference in the end zone, an unnecessary penalty to commit given that the receiver couldn’t have come down in bounds anyway.

Given one untimed down at the 1, Lock found K.J. Hamler for the score. The first referee said no catch, but one glance at the replay confirmed it was good. Broncos 31, Chargers 30.

2. Cowboys +10

The injury-riddled Cowboys certainly can’t overcome any adversity — and they sure can’t overcome the other team being handed a touchdown.

The Cowboys trailed 15-9 late in the fourth quarter and were driving in Eagles territory when third-string quarterback Ben DiNucci fumbled the ball while being sacked. It certainly appeared that an Eagle possessed the ball on the ground and was touched down before a Cowboy ripped it out. The ball popped free and bounced off another Cowboys lineman’s foot right to Eagles safety Rodney McLeod, who ran 53 yards for a TD.

As the announcers were watching replays and becoming convinced that the return should be nullified, the camera cut to the Eagles lining up for a 2-point conversion. What? The replay happened that fast?

Dallas still had a chance at a backdoor cover, but was stopped at the 5-yard line as time ran out in a 23-9 defeat.

The NFL later said the correct call was made. And what it says goes.

1. Under 59½ East Carolina-Tulsa

Under backers had a serious beef with the officiating in Thursday’s game.

Tulsa mounted a final drive down 30-27. The Golden Hurricane threw incomplete on fourth-and-10, but as East Carolina celebrated, a late pass interference flag was thrown by an official 35 yards — yes, 35 — from the play.

On the next play, Tulsa running back T.K. Wilkerson appeared to clearly fumble, and the ball was recovered by East Carolina. But replay overturned the call and gave the ball back to Tulsa.

Now East Carolina had to try to win the game for the third time. On fourth-and-6, Josh Johnson caught a 13-yard pass in which the ball seemed to clearly hit the ground before he controlled it. Replay confirmed it as a catch.

Two plays later, Tulsa scored to gain a 34-30 victory.

The American Athletic Conference later said the call overturning the fumble was wrong. A lot of good that does East Carolina — and under bettors — now.

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

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