There aren’t too many sporting events more exciting on a global scale than the NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament, otherwise known as March Madness.
The event, which features 68 of the country’s best college basketball teams fighting it out for top honors. For many of these players, this is the highest level of basketball they will ever play, which is one of the reasons it is so exciting to watch.
It is an event that draws the attention of the general public, which makes it even more interesting from a gambling perspective. With so many casual gamblers taking an interest in this sport for a mere three weeks of the year, it is important that the basics of betting strategy are adhered to in an attempt to limit losses and put yourself in the best position to come out of the event a champion!
What are the best March Madness betting strategies?
OK, so maybe you are the reigning office champion in the March Madness pool, or you have an uncanny ability to pick upsets in the first round, but when it comes time to put actual money on each game, we are here to tell you it takes a lot more strategy to be a winner. Our team of experts wants to help put you in the best position as the tournament starts, so here are some of the top tips they want you to follow as you start pouring over your bracket:
- Mind your bankroll
- Do some research
- Take the points
- Look at betting options
- Pick the top seeds
Mind your bankroll
There are a LOT of games to bet on during March madness, and the single biggest mistake a novice bettor makes is placing too many bets. If you are one of these people, you are also likely a losing player, as the odds are not in your favor.
Remember that when you are picking games for a bracket challenge, you are only picking the winner of the game, which in betting terms would be a money line bet.
Every time a favorite loses, you are going to take a larger hit, so betting too many games could end up costly even if you win more than you lose! As with any form of gambling, make sure you go into March Madness with a bankroll that is not out of your budget and work in units, not dollar amounts.
Do a bit of research
If you go into the tournament without having done any research on the teams, then you may as well be throwing your money away. Remember that it is a committee that comes up with the teams and the seedings, and the results coming into the event have only a minor impact on the structure.
For example, a team that is a lower seed may be coming into the tournament on a major winning streak, which may make them a good bet to upset a team in the first round. Also, some higher seeds will be given that rankling for the body of work of the whole season, even if they lost early in their conference tournament. Having all the information going into the tournament is key to finding the value in each game.
Take the points!!
These days, the gap between the great teams and the not-so-great teams is closing, which means that the spreads you find on early round games could provide some significant value.
These days, the 4-13 and 5-12 games aren’t even considered upsets anymore, so you should be taking the points for sure in these games.
Overall, we have seen an increase of talent across the board, which means that while powerhouses like Duke and Kansas continue to recruit the best players every year, there are many other schools attracting talent. Whatever the case, you are always best suited to take the points if you think a game is going to be close.
Look at more betting options
While it is easiest to find the lines for who will win the overall game, there is significant value in looking at the full set of bets available for each game. You will find that there are over 50 options available for any game if you find the right site!
One that we really like is the first half line, especially in games that feature a huge underdog.
Most of the lower ranked teams are trying to prove something, but don’t have the depth to be able to sustain a necessary level over the course of a full game. However, this typically ends up in these underdogs causing a stir in the first half of their games, often keeping the scores much closer than expected. This is where you can get some real value, rather than trying to determine if a favorite will cover a spread as the other team tires down the stretch.
Another great betting option is the total, especially if you do your research on how certain teams play. Some teams play specific styles of both offense and defense that either reward patience (low scoring) or activity (high scoring). If you find one of these teams and track some of their games coming into the tournament, you may find some value in the over/under bets on their games.
Don’t be afraid to pick the top seeds
If you look at the recent NCAA tournaments, while there have been some early upsets, ultimately the finals have featured the best teams in the country. It is far too rare that a Cinderella team makes it to the final four, so if you want to make some future bets on the event, then taking some of the favorites isn’t that bad an option.
You won’t get great odds, but as long as you win, it doesn’t matter, does it!
You don’t even have to bet on a team to win the entire tournament; you can bet on them winning their region which limits your exposure as well. Making future bets at the start of the tournament is a fun way to follow some teams without having to bet on them in each round, which frees up capital to bet on some of the more intriguing matchups.
What are the best March Madness betting sites?
Sportsbooks are all looking to bring in new gamblers during events like March Madness, which makes it a great time to find a new site to play with if you are already a seasoned gambler. We look at all the betting sites we come across for the best value for March Madness gamblers. This can include sites that offer the best promotions for new players, or contests around the tournament itself. Also, it makes sense for you to choose a site that offers the most bets on each of the games so you can take advantage of the strategies we have presented above.
From our extensive list of site reviews, we have selected the following sites as ones we would recommend to our readers who want to bet on the big tournament. These sites offer the best combination of bet types, promotions, and mobile betting options and each has received the highest ratings from our experts.
For three weeks in March, it seems as though the entire sports world turns their attention to the ranks of college basketball. For these moments, college athletes with no chance of continuing their careers become household names, and schools you have never heard of suddenly become the targets of thousands of Google searches. With the March Madness tournament comes a great opportunity to use some simple strategies and apply them to the world of sports gambling. We hope that this page has been helpful to you and we wish you the best of luck picking your tournament winners!