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NCAA Football Betting

How to Bet on College Football


Point Spread (Handicap)

In college football the point spread or handicap is the most utilized bet and that’s because there is a disparity between the level of talent in the sport. In order to make a lot of the games a 50/50 proposition the bookmakers have to set big point spreads.

Example: Alabama -19.5 ($1.91) vs. Virginia Tech +19.5 ($1.91)

Point spreads on average are much bigger in college football than the NFL. Alabama is the #1 team in CFB and that’s why they’re a -19.5 point favourite to beat the Hokies in week 1. Alabama has to win by 20+ points to cover the point spread (handicap).

A bet on Virginia Tech would win if they were to win the game or if they lose by 19 points or less. Jumping on the points that the underdog is getting seems like an easy decision, but in college football it isn’t rare for teams to cover handicaps of 40+ points.

Money Line (Straight)

Betting on the money line in college football isn’t as popular as it is in other sports. In this bet you have to select the team that you think is going to win straight-up with no handicap involved. The problem in college football is most ML odds have no value.

Example: Notre Dame $1.65 vs. USC $2.25

There are two popular strategies to utilize money line odds in NCAA football. Betting on underdogs in close match-ups presents good value. Some punters also place multi-bets (10+ Teams) on big money line favourites that they expect will win easily.

Over/Under (Totals)

Punters can bet on various over/under bets that I’ll explain. First off, the total game points is a wager where the bookmaker will set a total and the punter has to predict whether the combined points scored in the game will go over or under the posted total.

Example: Alabama vs. Virginia Tech – Over 47.5 $1.91 / Under 47.5 $1.91

Another over/under wager is on a single team’s point total during the game. If you expect one team to score a lot or you expect a defence to shutdown the opposing offence then betting on the team total wager is better than betting the total game points.

CFB Team Total Points Example: Alabama Over 34.5 $1.91 vs. Alabama Under 34.5 $1.91

Quarter & Half Betting

Punters can wager on each quarter (1st, 2nd, 3rd & 4th) and half (1st & 2nd) in NCAA football. The markets available include the point spread, money line, over/under and team totals. Betting on the 1st/2nd half is common, but most punters avoid quarter markets.

The benefit of betting on quarter or half markets in college football is that you can see how each team is playing before you bet on the game. I enjoy the 1st quarter markets because underdogs are more likely to win the 1st quarter rather than the full game.

Parlay (Multi-Bet)

Multi-bets are what they sound like – a bet with multiple selections where each pick has to win. Parlaying big favourites is one way punters use this wager. When parlaying point spread or over/under bets together you should stick to 2-3 selections only.

Example: Alabama -19.5 + Michigan -8.5 + ND/USC Over 50.5 Points

The bookmaker edge increases when parlaying more than 2-3 point spread or over/under selections together. Some bookies will allow “open parlays”, which is where you can leave open spots on the multi-bet and fill them in over the course of the season.

Teasers & Pleasers

The teaser is a popular college football bet while the pleaser is less known amongst punters. A teaser has 2+ selections (Spread or Over/Under) and the spread or total moves in your favour by 6 – 21 points depending upon the bookmaker you bet with.

Example: Alabama -13.5 + Michigan -2.5 + ND/USC Over 44.5 Points (6-Pt Teaser)

I’ve used the same games in the teaser as I used in the multi-bet above. As you can tell, on a 6-pt teaser the spread or total will move 6 points in our favour (Teasers = Lower Payout than Parlays). A pleaser is the exact opposite as a teaser and pays more.

Example: Alabama -25.5 + Michigan -14.5 + ND/USC Over 56.5 Points (6-Pt Pleaser)

With a pleaser bet the spread or total goes against our favour and we add points to the betting line. The payouts are big (3-Team 6-Pt Pleaser Pays $18.50) and in college football it’s possible to find soft lines where the pleaser is worth a punt.

Double Result

A double result is a bet where two different results have to win in order to cash the bet. In college football punters can wager on HT (Half Time) / FT (Full Time), which is where you need to select Team A / Team B / Draw to win at HT and FT.

An example would be Alabama HT / Alabama FT, which means Alabama has to be winning at the half and at the end of the game to win the wager. If you think a favourite will dominate a football game the double result provides better odds than the ML.

Prop Bets

The majority of college football games don’t have many prop bets available due to the number of college football games played each week. Each week there are a number of nationally televised games and these games will have the most prop bets available.

Prop bets allow punters to bet on other aspects of a football game other than the markets described above. One reason to look at the various prop markets in big games each week is because the lines aren’t as sharp as money line, handicap or O/U odds.

Prop Bet Examples:

-Will Team A or Team B Score First? / Will Team A or Team B Score Last?
-What Will the First Score of the Game Be? (TD vs. FG or Safety)
-Will Defence or Special Teams Score a TD? (Yes vs. No)
-What Will the Longest TD of the Game Be? (Over 40.5 vs. Under 40.5)
-Will There Be a Turnover? / What Will 1st Turnover Be? (Interception vs. Fumble)
-What Will Highest Scoring Quarter (1st, 2nd, 3rd or 4th) or Half (1st or 2nd) Be?
-Will the Final Score Be Odd or Even?

There are prop bets for just about anything in college football games. The bookies that offer live college football betting have a lot of great live prop bets as well. Bookmakers also offer single game player prop bets for big NCAA football match-ups.

-AJ McCarron Over 210.5 Passing Yards vs. AJ McCarron Under 210.5 Passing Yards
-Eddie Lacy Over 95.5 Rushing Yards vs. Eddie Lacy Under 95.5 Rushing Yards
-Amari Cooper Total Receptions/Yards -16.5 vs. Tyler Eifert Total Receptions/Yards +16.5
– Eddie Lacy Rushing Yards -10.5 vs. Cierre Wood Rushing Yards +10.5

Player prop bets offer tremendous value to punters that study the statistics. These types of prop bets will have a handicap or an over/under total. In the last example Lacy has to have -10.5 (11+) more rushing yards than Wood in the game to cash the bet.

Future Bets

Season long bets such as what team will win the BCS National Championship are known as “futures” bets. They often have high odds (Especially when selecting an underdog), but the only downfall is the fact your money is tied up for several months.

Futures Bets Examples:

-What Team Will Win the BCS National Championship?
-What Team Will Win Each NCAA Conference? (SEC, Big Ten, Big 12, ACC, Pac-12, etc)
-What Team Will Have Most Points on USA Today Poll (Team A vs. Team B)
-What Team Will Have More Regular Season Wins (Team A vs. Team B)
-Regular Season Win Totals (Alabama Over 11 Wins vs. Alabama Under 11 Wins)
-What Player Will Win the Heisman Trophy?

College Football Bowl Betting

Each season there are 35 bowl games at the end of the regular season and conference championships. Bowl games start before Christmas (Few Days Before) and this is the most exciting time to bet on college football, as almost every game is competitive.

The biggest bowl games include the BCS National Championship, Rose Bowl, Sugar Bowl, Orange Bowl and Cotton Bowl. There are more prop betting markets during the college football bowl schedule and some that you don’t see in regular games.

Next season (2014-15) college football will change for the better and introduce a playoff system for the first time in history. Four teams (Selected by a committee) will earn a spot in the playoff and will play a semi-final before the National Championship.

Best College Football Games to Bet On

  • Rose Bowl – The Grand Daddy of them all. This is a postseason game that typically features the best team in the Pac-Ten Conference against the best team in the Big Ten Conference. This game is played on New Years Day in Pasadena, California with a big parade before the game. This is a very fun game to bet on, and widely watched throughout the world.
  • BCS National Championship Game – This is the biggest game of the season, because it decides the national champion. Whether you like the BCS and the way they do their standings, this game is for the title. Typically a ton of prop bets are given for this game.
  • Opening Day – The first Saturday of the season is always fun. While it may be a tough day to bet, it always could be profitable. Many times the best teams in the country are at home, and playing opponents that stand no chance. Sure, it may be tough to bet against the odds, but those sharks in college football betting have discussed how profitable opening day is.
  • Rivalry Games – Michigan/Ohio State, Florida/Florida State, USC/Notre Dame are just some of the many big time college football rivalries. Whether they are conference games are not – they are sure to be entertaining battles.
  • Conference Championship Games – Championship Saturday occurs on the first Saturday of December. Not all major conferences play a conference title game, but those that day of huge viewership. These games many times decide what teams will play in a BCS bowl, and in some cases, which team plays in the BCS national title game.

Tips for Online College Football Betting

  • Know the home/away team – Just like college basketball, the home team has a huge advantage in college football. Playing in front of your home fans, sleeping in your own bed, and knowing all the different parts of your home team are just some of the many. Know which team is at home, and which team had to make the travel before making your final bet. This makes a big difference, and some teams are very good at home, and some teams are horrible on the road.
  • Check the trends – Trends such as home/away record, record on grass, record on turf, record during the day, record at night, etc. These may make you laugh that someone action is paid money to keep these stats, but they are real. Be sure to check them out. If you do not want to use them, and feel this game will go against the odds – that’s your choice – but you are following yourself if you do not at least take a look.
  • Be aware of the weather – College Football is an outside game. That means the weather is going to play a factor in the game. Rain, snow, sleet, wind are all factors to the game. Some teams do not play very well in poor conditions. Some teams are used to it, and play better. If you are looking at betting the over/under, be sure to check out the weather, because a very rainy day could mean not a whole lot offense.
  • Learn about each teams tendencies – Some teams have the tendency to beat teams by a bunch, and “cover the spread”. On the flip side, no matter who a team plays, there are teams that have a tough time winning games by a bunch. There are also teams that have a tough time playing against teams that run the ball a lot. Be sure to check all these tendencies out before making your bet.
  • Understand both teams coach – The head coach and his demeanor, attitude make a difference in a college football team. Know the head coach and his history. This could help you go a long way in Online College Football Betting.
  • Use good bankroll management – In other words, do not get too carried away about a bet you really like. Sure, if you really like it, you want to take advantage of it. But remember, sports betting is not a sure thing. Keep a limit on your bets, so you can stay and enjoy Online College Football Betting longer. A good suggestion is to make a small, medium, large bet, and keep it consistently for all your betting.

College Football has emerged as one of the leaders when it comes to betting on sports. The College Football world has stormed into the betting world, with odds for every game, every week. The big deal for College Football is that most of the games are played on one day, making every Saturday a Mecca for sports fans. There are over 100+ major college football programs, with odds for each of their games all season long. If that is not enough, after the regular season is over, the Online College Football Betting gets to see a series of bowl games, which are some of the favorites to bet. All of the games lead up to the BCS national championship game, which is second only to the Super Bowl as far as the enormous number of people betting on it.