College Basketball Odds
College basketball is a big sport for bettors, and that could be especially true in Massachusetts, with Boston College, Boston University, Harvard and UMass among the high-profile Division I teams with big fan bases.
Massachusetts has yet to pass legislation on sports betting, however. And if it goes the same route as New Jersey, you could see a situation when it’s legalized where you can’t bet on college teams from MA. As more information becomes available, you can check back here for updates.
We cover the basics of college basketball betting below, which will include live college basketball odds (when legalized) plus a breakdown of the most popular college basketball bets.
Latest NCAA basketball odds
Should online sportsbooks launch in Massachusetts, you will be able to place several types of bets on these games. You’ll have the option to bet on moneylines, point spreads and over/unders on projected point totals.
You may also be able to try futures bets on team accomplishments along with various props for individual games. Click on any odds below to go directly to the various sportsbooks.
Top MA sportsbooks for college basketball odds
Which is the best sportsbook to use when betting on college basketball? Let’s look at some potential options in Massachusetts.
Caesars Sportsbook is one of the most popular sportsbooks in the US. It has all the features you would expect from a significant player in the sports betting industry.
One strong point for Caesars is that it has a rewards program that allows you to claim benefits at its casino properties as well as online. You can cash rewards points in for hotel stays and free bets once you build up enough.
Caesars also has a reputation for being friendy to big bettors, often offering higher payout limits. If you want to place a bet on Boston University winning the national championship at +200000, Caesars would welcome your action.
Considering that this sportsbook has its headquarters in Boston, DraftKings would almost certainly be an option if online sports betting were to get rolling in Massachusetts.
The DraftKings Sportsbook app tends to have very flexible options to cash out early, and almost always during a live game. Its interface is user-friendly, with clearly defined odds in bright green colors, making it easy to read lines quickly.
DraftKings also makes it very easy to bet on college games live (if the state allows it). If you can’t bet on in-state teams, out-of-state teams should still be an option.
Like BetMGM, FanDuel Online Sportsbook often offers a risk-free bet to new members. Compared to others, one thing that stands out about this sportsbook is the flexibility you get for teaser bets.
FanDuel allows players to buy up to 14 points for teasers in college basketball, whereas the industry standard is typically around four points. You won’t get paid nearly as much per game buying that many points, but you have more options for bigger teasers.
If you want some insurance on Boston College by adding 10 points to the spread, FanDuel would give you that option as long as you had at least one other bet as part of the teaser.
MGM is one of the largest sportsbooks out there, and when you sign up there, you usually get a competitive risk-free bet.
The BetMGM sportsbook app has all the traditional bets you would expect, plus the option to bet on an exact winning margin, a total range of points, whether the score will be odd or even, or if the game will go to overtime.
This is another sportsbook gaining popularity, with Ben Affleck, who was raised in Massachusetts, as part of the sales pitch.
The WynnBET app is user-friendly and typically has competitive risk-free bets with the other sportsbooks.
College basketball lines explained
Basic college basketball betting is quite straightforward. Here is a guide to the basic bets and NCAA basketball lines you can find at Massachusetts online sportsbooks.
Moneylines are when you bet on a team to win a game outright. The odds at the time of your bet dictate how much you stand to win for wagering correctly.
So, if you see posted Harvard basketball odds at a -120 moneyline against Cornell, that means a bet of $120 on Harvard would put you in line for a potential profit of $100 (plus your original bet back). On the other hand, if you see Boston College with +175 odds against UNC, that means a wager of $100 would have a potential profit of $175.
NCAAB point spreads
Unlike the moneyline, the point spread is a bet that incorporates the margin of victory. So, if tonight’s Boston College odds have them as a 10-point underdog against UNC, you would win a bet on the Eagles if they avoided losing by more than 10 points. If they were to lose by 10 points exactly, the bet would be a push.
With an over/under, you bet on whether the combined score in a game will go over or under a line that the sportsbook has set.
Let’s say that a game between UMass Lowell and NJIT had an over/under line of 131.5, and you thought the total between those two would be above that. You would bet the over, and if the two teams combined for 132 points or more, you would win the bet.
NCAAB futures and props
Futures are bets on what you think a team might accomplish by the end of the season. Props are bets on more specific events in individual games. One example would be the national championship odds above. Some examples of futures from DraftKings might include the following:
- Atlantic 10 Conference winner: UMass +5000
- Atlantic Coast Conference winner: Boston College +20000
- To make the Final Four: Boston College +15000
As for team props, an example would be when Boston University and UMass played each other earlier this season. Boston won by 10 points, so if you predicted a margin of victory of six to 10 points with Boston on top, you could have seen a nice payday. Here are some other prop examples:
- Team total odd/even
- Team leading at halftime
- Game to go to overtime
You’ll often find that there are fewer prop bets and futures for college basketball. In some cases, this is due to state laws. In Iowa, for example, you cannot place a bet on an individual’s play in college sports. The NCAA has also voiced concerns about prop bets on student-athletes.
Live betting on college basketball games
Live or in game betting is when you place a bet on a game that’s in progress. Using the above, let’s say you are watching Boston University and UMass play.
Boston is up by 12 points at halftime in that game. If you thought UMass would come out better in the second half, you could bet on the Minutemen to cover a new spread at halftime.
So, if UMass was a 10-point underdog before the game started, perhaps you could get a line at around +18 if you waited until halftime to make a bet.
Betting on March Madness
March Madness is one of the most-watched sporting events in the United States, with up to 19 million people watching any given game. The sizeable, spectacular single-elimination format is, obviously, very enticing for sports bettors.
Betting odds on March Madness generally include the standard game bets (moneylines, spreads, over/unders), plus futures bets for how far a team advances in the tournament, such as to the Sweet 16, Final Four or the championship game.
Most betting sites will also offer free March Madness bracket contests. In these contests, you predict which team will win each game before the tournament starts. If you pick the most games right (or earn the most points in some cases), you’ll get a share of the prize pool.
Since many of these contests are free, sportsbooks can open them up to everyone nationwide. You can also find paid March Madness contests with entry fees that up the potential prize pool and narrow down the number of entrants.
Why bet on college basketball?
NCAA basketball is a distinct sport to bet on because of the massive number of options. There are hundreds of college basketball teams that you can bet on, something that no major sport can match in the US.
For those who like to get in on the action because of March Madness, it can be a great sport for casual betting because (in theory) team seedings help casual bettors see which side is favored in each game at a glance.
How to bet on college basketball online in MA
At the time of writing, both online and in-person sports betting are not yet legal in Massachusetts. However, legislation is potentially in the works for early 2022.
Should online sports betting in MA become legal, you’ll only need to choose a sportsbook and download its betting app. You’ll then provide your personal information (name, age, etc.) Don’t be surprised if you also need to supply your Social Security number. The book needs this information to confirm your legal age and other details.
To deposit money into your sportsbook account, just head to the cashier and select any number of banking or credit options. Then find the NCAAB tab, make your picks and place your bets.