Born and raised in Joplin, Missouri, Mike Caro has been a professional poker player since the 1960s. According to the Global Poker Index, Caro has live earnings approaching $200k with his best single-event win being nearly $40k.
Nicknamed “the Mad Genius,” Mike Caro’s influence on the game of poker extends far beyond his incredible skills in play. In his long career he has written numerous books on poker, helped design multiple computer programs that play poker, and consulted for a large number of casinos and resorts. Additionally, he has worked in executive positions for a handful of casino resorts.
One of Caro’s trademarks is his belief that poker and blackjack are superior to most casino games because of player’s ability to strategize and make meaningful decisions. This belief has informed his success in the world of poker.
Caro’s expertise in the game led to him being called on for a number of research and statistics projects including Doyle Brunson’s “Super System.” Caro’s contribution was in the form of 50 statistics tables that went on to receive critical acclaim and widespread use. His tables have been cited in almost 50 notable gambling theory and research books.
In addition to contributions to direct research on poker, Mike Caro has done extensive programming and consultation work on computer programs designed to play and analyze poker. Two of the most notable computer-based poker systems that he did extensive work on are Poker Probe and “Mike Caro’s Poker Engine.” Mike Caro’s Poker Engine is a toolset that helps developers design new poker programs.
Mike Caro has also been an influencer in regards to the direction that poker has taken as a sport. His advocacy for online, real-money poker helped build confidence in it as a business, and he was also responsible for negotiating the United States east coast’s first world-class tier poker tournament which was hosted at Foxwoods in Connecticut.
He has influenced the creation of charity tournaments, the profits of individual casinos, and the laws around gambling in multiple states. In addition, Caro is a vocal proponent of the use of a “four-color deck” which uses individual colors for each suit instead of the traditional black and red.
Caro is recognized as one of the staunchest supporters of gaming honesty, refusing to tutor students who will not pledge to a code of ethical gambling. He also runs a service devoted to catching and reporting on casino scammers and cheating players which has an independent office on the property of the Bicycle Club Casino of Los Angeles, CA.
Caro has been recognized over his career by a number of other poker greats including his one-time research partner Doyle Brunson, who himself is a world champion poker player. Famous magician and card master John Scarne spoke highly of him, claiming that Caro was one of the world’s best players.
Books under his authorship include: The Body Language of Poker, Caro on Gambling, Odds Quick and Simple, and Poker for Women: a Course in Destroying Male Opponents at Poker and Beyond.