Although the lion’s share of college basketball betting happens during March Madness, there are lines for every major conference game throughout the season. The regular season typically offers more value to bettors than March Madness as it is easier to have an advantage on the market, and most people are paying attention to the NFL, NBA, and NHL. That makes betting on college basketball a potentially profitable endeavor, and there are multiple ways you can bet on college basketball.
As with most other sports, the most common way to bet on college basketball is through betting on the spread. When you are betting on the spread in college basketball, you are betting on a team to win by or stay within a certain number of points. If a game has a spread of 5.5 points and you bet the favorite, you need that team to win by six points or more in order to win your wager. If you decided to take the +5.5 with the underdog, a loss by five points or less or an outright win would lead to a winning result.
Overtime factors into spread betting, so there are times where you could get a miracle cover if you laid the points with a favorite. The game may be tied at the end of regulation and go into an overtime or two, but as long as the favorite covers the spread, the bet is a winner.
If you want to take some of the drama out of your wager, moneyline betting is an option too in college basketball. With moneyline betting, you are simply betting on a certain team to win the game. The point spread doesn’t matter as the ‘W’ is the only important thing with this type of wager, and you don’t have to worry about meaningless threes or free throws leading to a losing wager.
In college basketball, games with larger spreads typically don’t have moneyline betting available. For instance, you won’t see a moneyline option for when Kentucky plays Houston Baptist or Chicago State, as the Wildcats are considered a veritable lock to win that game.
Totals betting or over/under betting is when you bet on the number of points that will be scored in a game. There are over 350 teams in Division I college basketball, so there are a wide variety of styles that are played and you will see massive differences in totals from game to game. Most games tend to have totals between 120 points and 140 points, but defensive teams like Virginia can have totals in the low 100s, while teams that like to run can have totals in the 160s.
Second Half Betting
Any game that has an initial line will have second half betting these days. You can make a considerable amount of money in second half betting if you are quick, as lines are posted shortly after the halftime break starts and can move rapidly. Injuries and halftime adjustments can have major effects on the betting line, and they aren’t always factored into the opening number.
Conference Tournament Betting
Before March Madness begins, there is conference tournament betting available. You can bet on the winner of each conference tournament, and you are able to bet on every individual game along the way. Smaller conferences that don’t have betting available during the regular season will have betting on the conference tournament, and there are real opportunities for savvy bettors here.
Fatigue is the most important factor to keep in mind when betting on college basketball conference tournaments. Some tournaments give the lower seeds significant advantages in terms of rest, and the worst teams in some conferences are tasked with winning five games in five days to advance to the NCAA Tournament. That typically leads to a team being completely gassed two or three games in as teams typically play twice a week in the regular season.
NCAA Tournament Betting
There are any number of ways to bet on March Madness. You can bet on the NCAA Tournament winner, bet on how far a team will go in the NCAA Tournament, and bet on which teams will be in or out on Selection Sunday. Once the NCAA Tournament starts, there are even more ways to bet on college basketball, and you don’t want to miss out.