Betting Strategies for the Big Dance

Strike up the band because the Big Dance is almost here and even the most casual college hoops fan will pretend to know much more than they actually do. So with that, let’s discuss the most important factors when it comes to betting on these March Madness matchups and how a little knowledge can be the difference between padding your bankroll or losing it.

  • Pick a Winner in Each Region – There will be 64 teams in total, split amongst 16 teams in each of the four regions (Midwest, East, South, and West). Before the tournament begins, pick one team in each of the four regions that you feel has the best chance of going all the way and place a wager on each of them to do just that. All of the top sportsbooks will have odds on every team in the tournament to win it all but the reason to do this is that if one of your teams reaches the finals then you can hedge the bet in the final game and be guaranteed to make money. For example, if one of the teams you bet is Baylor, currently +800 to win the tournament, and Baylor emerges as one of the finalists then you would be paid $800 for the $100 you wagered before the tourney began if they win. However, Baylor may not win and the best choice you can make is to bet their opponent for enough to cover your $100 investment if not more to make money in the event Baylor loses.
  • Be Wary of Big Favorites – The betting public loves household names and big favorites in all sporting events but that’s never more in evidence than during March Madness. You may not know who the starting point guard for Kansas is but chances are you know the Jayhawks are one of the best teams in the nation and a program that is perennially in the mix when tournament time comes around. Other well-known college basketball programs like Duke, Kentucky, North Carolina, and Villanova to name a few always generate interest regardless of how good they actually are in a particular season.  Casual bettors who know less than they would like to believe flock to betting the big favorites, particularly in the opening round when the mismatches are prevalent with No. 1 seeds facing No. 16 seeds and No. 2’s vs. No. 15’s. The oddsmakers know this and thus the point spreads are inflated to accommodate all of this chalky play. Do your homework and lean towards betting big underdogs that you believe will at least stick around and cover the number.
  • Recent Play Matters – A team’s overall record is an excellent indicator of where they will be seeded but what matters more is how the teams have played over their last three or four games. As we all know, teams improve or regress as the season unfolds and a squad that has an impressive season record but has lost its last two or three games could be a perfect team to exploit in the tournament by betting on their opponent. Conversely, if a team struggled in the early going but has put together a late season winning streak could be a bright star on which to hitch your wagon.
  • –        Find the Best Sportsbook for You – Often overlooked is where to place your bets because to the uninitiated, all sportsbooks are the same. Nothing could be further from the truth because there are the elite books that provide a seamless betting experience due to ease of navigation and betting options with timely payouts when you win versus the many that will eagerly take your money but give you nothing but excuses when it comes time to request a payout. Fortunately, there is an online resource that separates the good from the bad and the ugly. Before you blindly send your money to any old sportsbook, make sure to click over to Sportsbook Review (SBR), where you will find the very best of the best.  So make sure to do your research and find the one that is right for you!