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Our 7 best bets for Week 9 of the college football season

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  • The college football season is now in full swing.
  • After an incredible two-week stretch that saw our picks go 14-0, our best bets stumbled a bit last week, going 3-4 against the spread.
  • This week we’re hoping to bounce back with another winning week, and backing Notre Dame, LSU, and more in order to make it happen.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Perfection can’t last forever.

After two undefeated weeks of 7-0 picks against the spread, our college football best bets fell back to Earth a bit last Saturday with a 3-4 record.

It was a great run, and its end was inevitable. I hope everyone made a bit of money along the way. But we can’t look back, we must move forward, and so we’re back at it again this week to seek out our next winning week on the horizon.

This Saturday, we’re going to try and keep the wins coming with bets on Notre Dame, Clemson, and TCU.

Take a look below for our seven best bets of the Week 9 college football slate (* indicates home team).

LAST WEEK: 3-4
OVERALL: 33-22-1



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Revolut raises $500 million at $5.5 billion

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  • European challenger bank Revolut has raised $500 million in Series D funding from Silicon Valley growth fund TCV. 
  • The long-anticipated fundraising takes the startup’s post-money valuation to $5.5 billion, up from $1.7 billion previously, making it one of Europe’s most valuable fintech companies. 
  • Founded in 2015, Revolut claims to have around 7 million customers and has raised $836 million to-date. 
  • The company’s rapid growth has been marred by questions over its workplace culture and compliance procedures.
  •  Click here for more BI Prime stories.

Revolut, one of Europe’s buzziest neo-banks, has raised $500 million in Series D funding from Silicon Valley growth fund TCV taking its valuation to $5.5 billion. 

The long-anticipated fundraising makes Revolut one of Europe’s most valuable startups in the red-hot fintech sector. Other major European finance firms include payment firm Klarna, money transfer firm Transferwise, and OakNorth bank.

Revolut, founded in 2015 by the developer Vlad Yatsenko and the former Lehman Brothers and Credit Suisse trader Nikolay Storonsky, says it has around 7 million customers.

Reports had previously indicated that Revolut would take on some form of debt alongside the equity fundraise, but the company said this wasn’t happening for now.

In 2018, filings show Revolut posted revenues of £58.2 million ($74 million) on a net loss of £32.8 million ($42 million). The company has yet to release figures for 2019, but says it has experienced considerable revenue and customer growth.

It is in the process of applying for a US banking license and has expanded into Europe, as well as into Australia.

The London-based company allows users to spend money worldwide in 150 currencies at a real-time exchange rate, with no fees, through a debit card. CEO Storonsky has previously outlined his goal of seeing the bank reach 100 million customers in the next five years and break into North American and Pacific markets. Revolut is available in 32 countries and previously signed a deal with Visa, with plans to take the number to 56. 

Revolut’s growth has come with increased scrutiny. Wired reported on the firm’s aggressive culture and tendency to ask job applicants for free work, while The Telegraph raised questions about the startup’s compliance procedures. Regarding the culture, Storonsky has acknowledged “mistakes” in the running of the firm. The firm has denied compliance lapses.



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VIDEO: James Harden Euro step not a travel — here’s why

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James Harden is often criticized for his signature step-back three that many NBA fans argue should be called a travel.

But most recently, it was a Euro step that had fans tripped up.

During his 38-point performance against the Utah Jazz Saturday night, the eight-time All-Star Euro-stepped his way past two defenders en route to an easy two points. Twitter immediately erupted into a flurry of posts calling for Harden to get whistled for a travel on the play, but the layup stood regardless — as it should have.

 

Though it appeared to many viewers — including the Jazz announcers on the game’s broadcast — that the league’s leading scorer had taken three steps after picking up the ball, the NBA rule book suggests that Harden’s move was completely legal.

Like his signature step-back, the permissibility of Harden’s Euro step hinges on a “gather” step. For a player dribbling the ball, the gather, according to the league’s rules, is “defined as the point where a player does any one of the following:

“1. Puts two hands on the ball, or otherwise permits the ball to come to rest, while he is in control of it;

  2. Puts a hand under the ball and brings it to a pause; or

  3. Otherwise gains enough control of the ball to hold it, change hands, pass, shoot, or cradle it against his body.”

Further, the NBA rule book specifies how the gather relates to the league’s traveling rules.

“A player who gathers the ball while dribbling may take two steps in coming to a stop, passing, or shooting the ball. The first step occurs when a foot, or both feet, touch the floor after the player gathers the ball.”

For all intents and purposes, after is the key word here.

When applied to the Harden Euro step in question, the NBA rules on gathering appear to indicate that the referees were correct in not issuing a traveling call. Though it’s admittedly a close call in real-time, Harden’s left foot is clearly down before he begins to pick up, or gather, his dribble.

Screen_Shot_2020 02 24_at_12_24_48_PM

His foot is completely down before gathering the ball.

ESPNNBA/Twitter


Technically speaking, Harden could have legally continued dribbling at this point, so the step shown above doesn’t count towards his two-step allocation after gathering the ball. Fans and the Jazz announcers mistakenly labeled the planted left foot as Harden’s first step even though it came before he gathered the ball.

Harden fully picks up his dribble just before planting his right foot as his first official step. He then returns to his left foot and elevates for the layup, thereby limiting himself to just two steps and staying within the bounds of the league rules.

The Rockets left Salt Lake City with the 120-110 win thanks in large part to a combined 72 points from Harden and Russell Westbrook. They travel to New York to take on the Knicks at Madison Square Garden Monday night.





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10 things you need to know before the opening bell

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Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

Here’s what you need to know before the markets open.

1. Global stocks tank as investors brace for a coronavirus pandemic. The flu-like illness has now claimed lives in Iran, Italy, and South Korea.

2. Warren Buffett is cheering the current selloff, saying investors ‘should want the stock market to go down.’ “That’s good for us actually, we’re a net buyer of stocks over time,” the billionaire investor and Berkshire Hathaway CEO said in a CNBC interview on Monday.

3. Here are the biggest takeaways from Warren Buffett’s annual letter. The Berkshire Hathaway CEO discussed accounting rules, stock buybacks, boards of directors, acquisitions, succession plans, and market performance.

4. US sees no material impact from virus on US-China trade deal for now. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told Reuters he does not expect the coronavirus outbreak to have a material impact on the first phase of the two nations’ trade deal, although he warned that could change as more data becomes available in coming weeks.

5. Goldman Sachs pleads not guilty in Malaysia over 1MDB bond sales. Three units of the banking titan pleaded not guilty to charges of misleading investors regarding $6.5 billion in bond sales that Goldman helped raise for state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), Bernama state news agency reported on Monday.

6. Primark owner warns coronavirus threatens clothing supplies. Associated British Foods said there was a risk of supply shortages on some lines later this financial year if delays in factory production in China are prolonged due to coronavirus.

7. PepsiCo buys Chinese snack brand Be & Cheery for $705 million. “Be & Cheery adds direct-to-consumer capability, positioning us to capitalize on continued growth in e-commerce, and a local brand that is able to stretch across a broad portfolio of products, through both online and offline channels,” a PepsiCo executive said.

8. Stocks are tanking. European equities dropped with Germany’s DAX down 3.4%, Britain’s FTSE 100 down 3%, Italy’s FTSE MIB down 4.5%, and the Euro Stoxx 50 down 3.4%. Asian indexes closed lower with China’s Shanghai Composite down 0.3%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng down 1.8%, and South Korea’s KOSPI down 3.7%.
US stocks are poised to open lower. Futures underlying the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 were down 2.4%, while Nasdaq futures slid 2.6%.

9. Some big earnings are coming out. HP, Intuit, and Palo Alto Networks are among the highlights.

10. There’s some key data on the docket. Look out for national activity and manufacturing figures.





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