College Basketball Odds

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College basketball is deeply entrenched as one of the most popular sports in the United States, and it’s no surprise that online sportsbooks across the country take in plenty of action on a wide range of NCAA basketball games.

When most people think about college basketball, they think about March Madness and the NCAA Tournament, the pinnacle of the sport. But from November until April, college basketball is a staple on both the sports calendar and betting apps in a huge number of states, including Maryland.

Games are played across dozens of conferences nearly every single day, making NCAA basketball a consistent sportsbook option that bettors can rely on for a substantial portion of the year. Whether you’re a fan of the Maryland Terrapins or Navy Midshipmen, or you just live in the state and love the sport, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about college basketball betting in Maryland.

This week’s college basketball odds: Moneylines, spreads, totals

If you’re looking to place a bet on NCAA basketball, all online sportsbooks in Maryland have college basketball lines, including moneylines, spreads, and totals, among many other options. See below for a snapshot of the latest NCAA basketball lines; check our full odds feed to see the complete odds board. For futures for the National Championship, conference winners, or the Naismith Trophy, check our futures feed.

How college basketball betting works

Among the betting markets for college basketball are the standard moneylines, spreads, and totals, along with props, futures, and live betting lines. Each is unique and with such a huge range of options, there’s seemingly something for everyone.

  • Moneyline: A bet on which team will win an NCAA basketball game, regardless of the score.
  • Point spread: Figure set by oddsmakers to even out the game from a betting perspective and asks bettors to pick a team to ‘cover’ the spread. Favorites must win by more than the spread while underdogs can lose by a lesser number than the spread to ‘cover’ the number.
  • Totals: A simple wager on whether the combined score of the game will be over or under a total number of points set by oddsmakers. The total is set at the same number on both sides, similar to a point spread.
  • Props: Involves betting on in-game events that are not the traditional moneyline, spread, and total. Props are usually not directly tied to the final score of the game (though some are), and there are several options for NCAAB contests.
  • Live betting: Sportsbooks continuously update odds (ML, spread, and total) while a game is ongoing, and bettors can wager on these modified lines. Bets can be placed throughout the game deep into the second half.
  • Futures: Wagers on future events such as a conference winner or a national champion. Tend to be exciting and high-paying, though difficult, wagers to win.

Some states do not allow wagering in-state programs. For example, New Jersey doesn’t allow wagering on games in which Rutgers is involved. Thankfully, no such rule is in place for Marylanders, so bettors can freely wager on the Terrapins or Navy (among others in the state) if they so choose.

How to read college basketball betting lines

Knowing what all of the terms mean is one thing, but being able to easily read betting lines is another. The best sportsbooks apps in Maryland will calculate exact risk and reward for you, but being familiar with how the odds work provides a deeper understanding and can be crucial in finding value when betting on college basketball.

 SpreadMoneylineTotals
Wisconsin-8 (-110)-310Over 136.5 (-105)
Maryland+8 (-110)+230Under 136.5 (-115)

The key to grasping all betting odds starts with the moneyline (the middle of the three columns above) while the point spread and total are the two other traditional options. We’ll start by explaining these and then branch out to some other areas, with help from our above example featuring the Maryland Terrapins against the Big Ten Conference-rival Wisconsin Badgers.

College basketball moneylines

Moneylines are simple bets on which team will win a game. The easiest way to calculate potential wins and losses is by basing the moneyline off the number 100.

The moneyline represents what the bettor must risk to win $100. Taking the favorite (negative sign next to odds) means risking more than you can win in profit. This means that a wager on Wisconsin (-310) requires a $310 bet to win $100 in profit.

With underdogs (positive sign next to odds), the number on the moneyline can be won with a $100 wager, and bettors can earn more in profits than the amount they wagered, to begin with. For example, a $100 bet on the Maryland Terps (+230) could pull in $230 in winnings.

Many matchups feature two programs that differ greatly in quality, and in these instances, moneylines can become quite large on both sides. Heavy favorites have a very likely chance to win but force the bettor to risk more. Heavy underdogs come with a large payout, but according to oddsmakers, they have an unlikely chance of winning.

College basketball point spreads

Not all teams in college basketball are created equal, and that is why point spread betting exists. Oddsmakers set a figure to even out the game from a betting standpoint with the hope that the spread draws an equal amount of attention on both sides. Favorites must win by more than the spread indicates, while underdogs can lose by fewer points than the spread to still ‘cover’ the number.

Just like moneylines, the favorite has a negative symbol next to its spread. Wisconsin is -8 (-110) would have to win by nine or more points to win the wager. With a -110 line, bettors must risk $110 for every $100.

The underdog has a positive symbol next to its spread, which is Maryland +8 (-110). This means if the Terps don’t win, a loss by seven or fewer points is still a successful wager. The odds are -110 once again, so the payout is equal on both sides.

The point spread will be equal for both teams. The only part of the odds that could potentially differ is the line associated with the spread (also called ‘juice’). While many spreads will feature the standard -110 lines, two sides might not have matching lines, even if the spread is the same.

Totals

Totals are about simply selecting ‘over’ or ‘under’ in regards to the total number of points scored between the two teams. Like spreads, the total will be the same for both the over and under, though the line associated with the total may differ slightly.

Our Maryland-Wisconsin total is set at 136.5 points. A wager on the over 136.5 (-105) means needing 137 or more points and risking $105 for every $100 in profit. A bet on the under 136.5 (-115) wins if there are 136 or fewer points, and the bettor must wager $115 to win $100.

College basketball futures odds

College Basketball futures odds

If you’re interested in a rooting interest that can last longer than the two hours it takes to play a standard regular-season game, futures bets could be for you. Our above example is from the BetMGM Sportsbook app and represents college basketball odds for the national championship, by far the most popular NCAA basketball futures bet.

Many of the options are related to team success, though there are available opportunities for individual player futures as well. Popular examples of the typical options include:

  • National champion
  • Final Four teams
  • #1 seeds in NCAA Tournament
  • Conference champion
  • Wooden Award winner (MVP)

Depending on when they are placed, futures bets may not settle for weeks or months. The most popular time of year to place these wagers is before the start of the season, though some of the options remain open throughout the season and into March Madness.

Most Maryland betting sites will have at least a few NCAA basketball futures markets, but DraftKings online sportsbook, BetMGM, and FanDuel sportsbook online are a few of the operators known for their variety.

College basketball prop betting

Props are wagers on in-game events that don’t have to do with the standard full-game moneyline, spread, or total. Most props are not at all directly tied to the result of the game, and even for the ones that are, there’s usually another stipulation attached that makes the market unique.

There aren’t nearly as many options for NCAA basketball betting as we see for each NBA game, but that changes during the postseason. Throughout March Madness, every NCAA matchup has a larger complement of player, game, and team props to choose from.

Live betting on college basketball

Sportsbooks are now able to update odds in real-time as games are going on, and that has led to an explosion of in-game betting. Bettors can wager at virtually any point throughout a game, from the opening tip-off until deep into the second half.

The options will mostly be limited to just moneylines, spreads, and totals, but it can still be a profitable and exciting venture to wager on games after they’ve already begun. Many bettors use live betting as a strategy to complement pregame wagers they have placed on the same game.

How to bet on March Madness online in Maryland

Everybody knows the high point of the college basketball year is March Madness. A pseudonym for the NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Tournament, it is a 68-team event that crowns NCAA basketball’s national champion at the end of every season, and it’s perhaps the most popular wagering event on the American sports calendar.

The NCAA Tournament features a total of 67 games over three weeks, and every single one is a massive event at online sportsbooks in Maryland. Contrary to the regular season, betting sites match the huge public interest in March Madness games by adding dozens of betting markets, mirroring the seemingly endless options for many NBA contests.

Before the start of the tournament, sportsbooks also post odds for NCAA Tournament markets including but not limited to:

  • A national champion (open throughout the season)
  • To Reach The Final Four (open throughout the season)
  • To Reach The Sweet 16
  • To Reach The Elite Eight
  • Conference of national champion

While the NCAA Tournament is a huge betting event that continues to grow due to the changing laws in the United States, March Madness is still synonymous with something else: the bracket.

March Madness bracket betting

The first thing people think of when you bring up March Madness or the NCAA Tournament is the bracket, which is the format used to play the tournament. Following the tournament’s expansion to 64 teams in 1985, bracket contests started becoming popular and haven’t stopped since.

These contests involve predicting every matchup for the entirety of the tournament before it begins. Players earn points for every correct selection on an incremental scale by round, and at the end of the tournament, the bracket with the most points is the winner. The bracket is a futures bet of sorts, and the champion is paid out after a champion is crowned.

Now that sports betting has evolved, Maryland bettors don’t need to look any further than their sportsbook app to find a March Madness bracket contest when the tournament comes around. There are free-to-play options and those with an entry fee for anyone who wants a shot at a larger prize.

Essential NCAAB betting tips for beginners

Betting on college basketball can appear to be pretty daunting at first given all of the teams and options available at MD online sportsbooks. But with that said, there are a few college basketball betting tips and strategies that new bettors can keep in mind to give themselves the best chance at success from the beginning.

  • Remember this isn’t the NBA: If you’re an NBA bettor, account for the differences in rules. The games are shorter and played in two 20-minute halves rather than four 12-minute quarters. The shot clock is also longer, resulting in fewer points than an NBA game. The betting total accounts for this, but it needs to be kept in mind anyway. Each player is also allowed only five fouls instead of six.
  • Do some line shopping: Regardless of the type of bet you’re placing, it’s important to compare lines before placing bets. This will help you find the best betting line possible whether it’s a spread, total, or just the price that comes along with one of those. Take advantage of our odds feed to see what prices are available.
  • Focus on specific conferences: There are approximately 350 NCAA D-1 teams in 32 conferences. In reality, you will probably never bet on games featuring half of them, but that still leaves plenty of schools. Start with a few conferences and focus on those teams before expanding to an overwhelming amount.

How to get started betting on college basketball online

The way to get started betting on college basketball in the state of Maryland is to pick a sportsbook and create an account.

To get signed up, you’ll need to locate the registration page, which can be easily done in a few ways. The first plan of action is to click on one of our many sportsbook links for the site you wish to join, as this will take you directly to the registration page.

Bettors can also download the sportsbook app or visit the homepage via the web browser to get started. If taking either one of these routes, take one of our promo codes with you to ensure your welcome bonus is activated. Once you’re there, take these steps:

  • Fill out all required fields (name, address, upload photo ID, etc.) in the designated fields. If you have a promo code handy, it can be entered on this page.
  • Agree to all terms of service and hit submit. This will complete the registration process, and your new account will be created.
  • It’s time to add funds to your new account. Locate and clock the Deposit button to invest funds to wager with. Enter the amount you wish to deposit and complete the transaction. This will only take a few moments.
  • The deposit will be immediately reflected in your account balance. If receiving a sportsbook deposit match bonus, that will also be reflected in the balance.
  • You are free to begin placing college basketball bets.

Following the signup process and with each financial transaction, the sportsbook will send a confirmation email for your records. All transaction history will also be available on the application under your Account tab. Wagers must be placed inside the borders of Maryland or another state with legal online sports betting and sportsbook apps.