The sports book is one of the busiest and most exciting areas in the casino. It is also one of the few areas where gamblers can go home a winner. However, there are several steps that must be mastered in order to be successful on a consistent basis.
Bet sizing, bankroll management, types of wagers (spread versus money line), basic knowledge of the sport you are wagering, and researching each game have been discussed in my previous articles. Today, the focus will be on betting college (NCAA)basketball games.
There are several factors to consider before risking your hard-earned money on a basketball game. These include whether to bet the spread or money line, where the game is played, determining which teams are playing well and which are not, and whether there are any key players unable to play because of injury.
There are two types of bets to consider, the spread and the money line.
The money line bet is preferable when betting the underdog. A money line bet might read “UCLA +$160 / Oregon -$180.” This means that for every $100 bet on UCLA, you win $160! However, if you bet the favored Oregon team, a $180 wager is required to win $100.
Betting on the Home Team
Always bet on the underdog that is playing a home game. Always. The home court advantage is very important in college basketball. However, if the money line is +$300 or more, don’t wager, because a line that large usually means a mismatch that is too difficult for the home team to overcome.
Who’s Playing Well?
Be certain the team in which you are placing your faith is playing well at home. Check their home scores for the season and if they haven’t won at least 60% of their games, it’s not worth your investment.
You will also want to check the road record of their opponent. If the opponent has won more than 35% of their games away from home, you don’t want to place a bet on this match.
If you have found an underdog that is playing a home game, and their record and their opponent’s record both fall within the above parameters, and they are not more than a +$300 dog, the final piece of the puzzle is injuries.
If your team has recently lost a key player to injury, or your opponent has a key player returning, it’s a good reason to put your money back in your pocket.
By following this simple formula, coupled with proper bet sizing and bankroll management discussed in earlier articles, you should be a winning player when wagering on college basketball.