In order to make intelligent wagers on basketball, you need to understand your options. Spread betting, money line betting, over under betting and prop betting each present you with unique opportunities to pile up the winnings.
With spread betting you pick sides, but it is not as simple as picking the winning team. Your team must win and “cover” a certain about of points as well. In other words, if your team is favored to win by 5 points that 5 points constitutes the spread and for you to collect on your wager your team must win and win by at least 5 or more points. In order to win a bet on the underdog, that team must lose by no more than 5 points or win. For example, if USC was a 3 point favorite the would need to win by 3 or more points in order to “cover the spread.” If they only win by 2 points the other team would win.
Money line betting is picking the team that wins the game outright. There is no point spread so it doesn’t matter what the margin of victory is. As long as the team that you wager on wins you win. With money line betting though the teamed that is favored to win will pay out less than the team that is favored to lose. In other words if you bet on the underdog and it wins you win more money than betting on the favorite.
Total point betting, commonly referred to as over under betting, is betting on the total points in a game by both teams combined. The casino will set a game total point value and you bet that the game total points will be above the total points scored or below. A typical total points scored set by a casino for a college basketball game would be 148.5. If you bet the over, the total points scored by both teams combined would have to be 149 for your ticket to pay. And naturally if you bet the under you would have to have a combined total points of 148 or less.
The final method of betting is known as prop betting. Prop betting is any type of betting that is not dependent upon the final outcome of the game. Examples of prop bets would be wagering on the performance of an individual in a game such as the total points he or she might score. Or wagering on what the score of the game would be at halftime. You can also bet on events that will take place in the distant future such as who will win the championship.