College Basketball Betting
Betting on basketball doesn’t all have to be about the NBA (National Basketball Association). There are plenty of other major basketball competitions to bet on at sports betting sites. In fact, one of the famous basketball competitions you can bet on is NCAA basketball. Also known as college basketball, the main competition, played in March (and known as March Madness) can be positively huge in terms of the number of bets made.
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What Competitions Can I Bet On?
NCAA Basketball covers several competitions, with both men’s and women’s competitions represented. Some of the competitions are far more professional than others. There is even an NCAA basketball championship held in the Philippines which may interest some bettors who can find it at their chosen sportsbook. Let’s look at each of these competitions in a little more detail.
- NCAA Division 1: Known as March Madness, this competition is a single-elimination tournament, which features 68 college basketball sides, with the 32 champions of each Division 1 conference being eligible to enter, alongside 36 wild cards, known as “at-large berths”.
- NCAA Division 2: A total of 64 teams enter the Division 2 men’s championship, with many smaller colleges and universities entered. Again, this is a single-elimination tournament.
- NCAA Division 3: This final division also features 64 teams in a single-elimination tournament. The 43 winners of Division 3 conferences are invited to compete, alongside 21 at-large berths.
- Women’s Competitions: Although not as easy to find when it comes to betting, the NCAA Women’s competitions are also divided into 3 divisions. The most famous being Division 1. Bets on these are far more likely to be offered by US sportsbooks than those on the lower women’s divisions due to popularity.
- NCAA Philippines Basketball Championship: Run from June to October, a total of 8 schools compete to win either the Junior or Senior championships. These matches consist of double-round robin eliminations. The tournament is older than the American NCAA championship, which is baffling. Again, this is another tournament which is harder to find at sportsbooks.
Types of NCAA Basketball Bets
Punters can choose to place the same kinds of bets in these competitions as in the NBA. Players need to become familiar with the types of basketball bets out there before wagering on NCAA basketball competitions. Fortunately, the types of bets available are not that difficult to learn. They can include:
- Money Line: A simple and straightforward bet. This involves betting on who will win the match, as well as which team will win the first quarter or the first half, or other periods.
- Handicaps: Handicap bets have been designed to even the odds between a favourite and an underdog. If you bet on a favourite, the team needs to win by a bigger margin (the spread) for your bet to come off. Betting on the underdog requires a smaller winning margin.
- Totals: Total bets can be taken on virtually any aspect of NCAA matches. Betting includes the number of baskets scored by a team, the number of points scored, the amount of overtime, and many more things.
- Outrights: Lastly, we have the outright bets. These involve betting on who will win championships and conferences, and so on. They are known as outrights because you are betting straight away on an overall winner long before a competition takes place. With outright bets, it is always smart to bet in advance, before the odds on a favourite drop dramatically.
Doing Your Homework
Of course, if you’re going to be betting on basketball, it helps to know a little bit about stats. The more you understand stats, the better you’re going to be able to “guestimate” the outcome of a match or competitions. There are certain things you can look for to help you in that department.
Other Things to Consider
Some of the things you may wish to consider when looking at stats are injuries, player rotations, scheduling, and trustworthy sources. Why legitimate sources? Because, there are a great deal of websites out there with outdated or simply incorrect stats, and these might throw you off when doing your homework.
- Injuries and Player Rotations: It is vitally important that you get a good feel for a team before you bet on. You will want to know who is playing, who is injured, and what kind of form the players are in. How tired are players? A team of undermotivated players is unlikely to perform well against a superior side. The same can be said of teams which don’t really have a lot to play for.
- Scheduling: Basketball features a lot of games over a very short period of time. This especially true of the NCAA’s March Madness competition. Travelling around and lots of game time can take their toll on a team, so check out when your chosen team is playing, who they are playing and how far they must travel to help increase your odds of success when betting.
- Dodgy Stats: As mentioned, you are going to want a reliable source for your NCAA stats. We would always recommend the NCAA websites, as these are official and are sure to have the proper information. Even team websites can get their facts wrong, so always go with an official NCAA source. Betting on college basketball with stats from an unknown source may see you placing bets blindly with inaccurate information.
Where Can I Bet on College Basketball?
Not all US sportsbooks cover all NCAA competitions. However, almost all of them will cover the March Madness (NCAA Men’s Division 1 Championship), so if this is for you, you’re in luck. If you do a little fishing, then you are likely to be able to find a top US sportsbook which offers you stakes on the lower divisions, and women’s NCAA competitions, too. Head to a non-US sportsbook, and you may even find the Philippines NCAA Championship up for grabs, also. The point here is to fish around and you will find what you’re looking for.