Last updated on: April 5th, 2022

Betting On College Basketball

Betting on college basketball is one of the best ways to get in on the action. College basketball, specifically the March Madness tournament, is one of the most wagered on events in the United States. Sports bettors place heavy action every year on major schools to win it all in the end and the one and done structure of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament allows for major wins on longshot wagers.

Legal online sportsbooks host some of the best lines for college basketball betting and are the go-to betting operators for March Madness.. After an offseason that saw Coach Mike Krzyzewski announcing his retirement, the entire college basketball betting scene will adjust heavily in the near future. With further news about the potential for Texas and Oklahoma to join the SEC, the entire college basketball betting landscape is about to be flipped upside down.


Is It Legal To Bet On College Basketball?

It is legal to bet on college basketball, however, there are some caveats. Many local sportsbooks have regulations preventing action on local teams. For example, Indiana sportsbooks can’t accept bets on Indiana University. Other states like Iowa prevent sportsbooks from offering college player prop bets. The good news is that online CBB sportsbooks offer all lines and have no restrictions. Betting on every game, line, prop bet, and spread is available. With March Madness every year, missing out on the potential betting lines is terrible.


Bovada Sportsbook

Betting On College Basketball At Bovada

Those that bet on college basketball know that March Madness is easily the biggest sports betting event of the year. Nothing gets better than having 68 teams to bet on all the way down until there is one team left. That said Bovada has bettors covered with some of the best March Madness odds that a bettor could ask for. One thing that is great about betting on March Madness with Bovada is that their odds are competitive with some of the top land-based sportsbooks as well that way bettors can bet right from the comfort of their own home or wherever they are watching March Madness.

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Current College Basketball Futures Odds

Betting on the winner of the college basketball National Championship is one of the most popular bets to make all year round. The odds continuously shift all throughout the season which means you could get tremendous value on any team if taken at a certain point. When looking at the 2023 March Madness odds, the Gonzaga Bulldogs are always a perrenial favorite. However, Duke opened as the college basketball betting favorite for 2023.

National Championship Winner

Betting On College Basketball: Online Vs. Land-Based

NCAA Basketball

There are many differences and similarities to consider when betting on college basketball. Available in person or online, brick and mortar sportsbooks offer a social experience. Most sportsbooks are inside casinos, giving the option of betting on casino games.

Online college basketball sportsbooks have the element of convenience. Bet on your favorite team from anywhere at any time. CBB sportsbooks allow you to watch the game at home and have action on it with the option of shopping lines. This is the process of finding the best CBB odds across many online sportsbooks.

The main deciding factor for most is the sports betting state laws and regulations. Some states only have land-based sportsbooks, while some offer both opportunities. But, online sports betting is available no matter the state’s gambling laws.

NCAA Basketball Schedule And Notable Dates

The March Madness tournament will begin on March 15, 2022, after the March 13 selection. March Madness will continue as the top teams battle it out until there is only one champion left. The one-and-done structure of the tournament allows for daily college basketball betting lines. This means that every day throughout the tournament major winning opportunity will be available. Knowing the tournament dates will ensure not missing the Tournament betting odds.

Tournament Dates

  • Selection Sunday: March 13
  • First Four: March 15-16
  • First round: March 17-18
  • Second round: March 19-20
  • Sweet 16: March 24-25
  • Elite Eight: March 26-27
  • Final Four: April 2
  • NCAA Championship Game: April 4

Can You Bet On Women’s College Basketball?

Yes. Online sportsbooks host betting lines for NCAA Women’s Basketball the same as they do for Men’s Basketball. The Women’s authentic division in the NCAA has a similar structure to the Men’s in terms of tournament structure, giving to heavy turnout at legal sports betting lines. Sports bettors who take action on women’s college basketball games can end up winning big as these games also have a one and done structure for the tournament, leading to major upset potential.

Depositing Into A Sportsbook To Bet On College Basketball

While depositing money with a brick-and-mortar sportsbook is as easy as checking out at a grocery store, online sportsbooks are a bit more variable. Every online sportsbook has its own rules governing things like minimum and maximum deposits and what payment methods it will accept, but there are some commonalities. Most major sportsbooks accept deposits via credit or debit card. They also support cryptocurrency deposits, most commonly via Bitcoin. While cryptocurrency has been used as a scary media buzzword over the last few years, it actually represents a safe, secure, and untraceable method of depositing money into your account.

Every major online sportsbook also offers unique promotions to encourage people to deposit, most commonly in the form of a percentage match on a customer’s first deposit. In other words, when a bettor deposits money, the book will deposit additional money in their account, based on this pre-arranged percentage.

How Do I Withdraw My College Basketball Winnings?

Again, withdrawal from a land-based sportsbook is relatively foolproof. Winners are directed to take their bet slip to a cashier’s window. Upon verification of their winning bet, the cashier will walk them through their various payout options and just like putting money in, withdrawing from online sportsbooks is also quite simple. As with deposits, every online sportsbook offers its own options for bettors to withdraw their winnings, each of which has its own stipulations about the minimum and maximum withdrawal amounts.

Because of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA), bettors cannot withdraw money directly from overseas sportsbook accounts into their bank accounts. Because of this, the easiest method of withdrawal is usually the aforementioned cryptocurrency. Featuring the lowest minimum withdrawals and deposits and near-instant processing times, cryptocurrency represents the ideal method of facilitating transactions with online sportsbooks. If for whatever reason cryptocurrency isn’t practical or ideal, books offer alternative methods like wire transfers and courier checks, but these methods usually have additional fees associated, as well as higher minimum withdrawals.

Ways To Wager On College Basketball


Betting on the moneyline is the simplest way to bet on college basketball. When one bets on the moneyline, they are simply wagering on the outright winner of the game. The favorite will be represented with a negative number, indicating the amount of money that would need to be wagered to win a $100 profit. On the other hand, the underdog will be represented with a positive number, showing the profit one stands to make on a winning $100 bet.


Betting on the points total, also known as the over/under, is another popular and simple way to bet on college basketball. All this type of wager entails is choosing whether the total combined points scored by both teams will go over or under the se t points total.

Points Spread

Betting on the spread is another incredibly popular way to bet on college basketball. This type of wager requires bettors to wager on the winner of the game after applying a handicap intended to make the game as even as possible. If Duke and North Carolina were playing and oddsmakers believed Duke should win by five points, the point spread would look like this:

  • Duke -5 (-110)
  • North Carolina +5 (-110)

To win the bet if you wagered on Duke, they would have to win by six points or more. On the other hand, to win the bet if you wagered on North Carolina, they would have to either win the game or lose by four points or less.


Parlays are a more advanced type of wager, but they are relatively simple to understand. A parlay combines multiple bets (referred to as “legs”) into one. For a parlay to cash, the bettor must win each individual leg of the bet. This obviously increases the difficulty exponentially, but also increases the payout exponentially. You can combine different types of bets into one, or even bet on multiple sports in the same bet. The opportunities are nearly endless, but keep in mind that parlays are infamously difficult to win. Also, some sportsbooks will have restrictions on which bets may or may not be parlayed. Be sure to check out your preferred sportsbook’s FAQ section to see their parlay policies.

Why You Should Take Longshot March Madness Odds

While sports bettors will be tempted to lean in on odds for high ranked teams, it should be noted that betting on the favorite has historically been a bad bet. Since 1985, the number one ranked team has only won the March Madness tournament a total of four times. The one and done structure of the tournament forces the winner to go undefeated, making it extremely unpredictable. This means sports bettors are better off taking odds on a lower-ranked NCAA Tournament team. While it is still a major gamble, the possible returns will be far greater and history is against the number one ranked school going into the tournament anyway. Teams like Illinois, Villanova, and Iowa with +1000 odds are a far better wager than taking the favored Gonzaga at +500. If you are betting on March Madness, underdog betting is the way to go.

The 5-12 Matchup

The 5-12 matchup is famous in betting circles for not being nearly as favored for the five seed as people expect it to be. Since 2012, the matchup has gone exactly 50-50, with five seeds beating 12 seeds only half the time. On the spread, that naturally means that 5 seeds are not likely to cover, having only covered in 11 of those 32 games. However, in a larger sample size, the advantage of the higher seed becomes clear. Since 1985, #5 seeds have won 64% of their games against #12 seeds.

#1 Seeds Are Good – Who Knew?

The #1 seeds often make deep runs into the tournament, and the only time a #1 seed has ever lost in the first round – when the Virginia Cavaliers fell to UMBC in 2018. However, not only do they rarely lose in the first round, but they also rarely lose in the second round, with 86% of #1 seeds making it to the third round on average. The statistical advantage that #1 seeds hold is remarkable, with a #1 seed winning the tournament 62.9% of the time. This means that each individual one seed has about a 15.7% chance to win the tournament.

While #1 seeds are the preeminent winners in the first round of the Tournament, it’s not like there are many upsets in terms of #2 seeds either. In fact, since 1985, only eight #2 seeds have lost their first-round matchup against a #15 seed. Since the NCAA Tournament expanded in 1965, around 40% of teams that made it to the Tournament have not won a single game, showing how dominant the top few teams can be.

Mobile Betting On College Basketball

Thanks to mobile sports betting, putting action on your favorite college basketball team is just a few clicks away. Mobile sportsbooks offer all the same betting lines that would be found at retail sports betting operations, without the need for bettors to physically be there. You can watch the March Madness tournament from the comfort of your home and bet on the team you want to win through your mobile device. Many states with regulated mobile betting have sports betting apps that can be downloaded, hosting all the same betting odds found at the retail book the app is powered through.

Sports bettors in states without a regulated mobile betting experience can still get in on the action any time anywhere on the go sports betting that mobile betting has to offer. International betting sites offer some of the best college basketball odds available. These sites can be fully accessed from the web browser of your smartphone or tablet. These sites offer a wide variety of winning potential and have the same if not bettor odds that are found at the domestic books. Mobile betting on college basketball is made easy thanks to mobile sportsbooks.

Live Betting On College Basketball

One of the best ways to get in on college basketball betting action is with live in-game betting. With live betting, sports bettors are able to bet on the favorite college team. Every possession of the game now becomes its own win-lose scenario with the ability to cash in big on wins. Throughout the game, several wagers will pop up for sports bettors to take action on. These odds move fast so you will need to quickly wager in order to capitalize. Live betting is the best way to hedge your bets as the many betting lines available so often will be able to offset some of the losses. Betting on college basketball is done best with live in-game betting.

Betting On College Basketball FAQ

Where Can I Bet On NCAA Basketball?

Betting on NCAA basketball can technically be done from anywhere in the country if you’re using internationally regulated online sportsbooks. However, retail sportsbooks with college basketball odds can be found in Oregon, Nevada, Montana, Colorado, New Mexico, Iowa, Arkansas, Illinois, Mississippi, Indiana, Michigan, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York, Delaware, New Jersey, Rhode Island or New Hampshire.

When Are College Basketball Betting Odds Released?

College basketball betting odds are usually posted on the day of the game being played. This is because injury reports come late which makes it more difficult for sportsbooks to set odds until they know who is playing. Research for betting on college basketball games should still be done beforehand.

Which College Basketball Teams Are The Best To Bet On?

This will largely depend on what odds you’re hoping to beat. As the season progresses, ATS stats, straight up wins, and O/U trends will reveal themselves. From there you can research which teams are atop the leaderboards for these betting lines. It’s best to bet on teams with proven track records rather than just your favorite team.

Can I Bet On College Basketball Online?

Yes! Online betting on college basketball is available in all 50 states when you use the proper website. Almost half the country has state-regulated online sportsbooks whereas the other half has overseas-based online sportsbooks. Both avenues will have NCAA basketball odds and both are safe to use.