March Madness Betting Guide
Pay Attention Early
By the time NCAA conference basketball tournaments come around, everybody is ready to get in on the action. Spring is in the air, along with the smell of money. It’s tempting to try and grab a big bankroll before the March Madness tourney starts, but don’t be too tempted. I’ve seen some pretty big holes dug by the time the major tournament starts, and this is a bad place to be. Instead of concentrating on grinding out dollars, you’re trying to take chunks off your debt. Pick a couple teams from the conferences you are following, and place some small wagers as a test. Are your teams getting blow-out wins, telling you not to shy away from a 15-point spread? Are they playing games pretty close to the cuff, telling you to take a lot of points on the other side? These tournaments are a good gauge to determine how these teams will perform against similar competition when the NCAA College Basketball Tournament begins.
Follow Heat, Not Names
In the past decade, I saw a little team named Butler surprise a lot of people by making it to the championship game. The whole time they were winning, I’d hear things like, “Butler looks really good, but they can’t play with a big school like (so-and-so).” They’d say this despite the fact that Butler was eliminating major programs. We see it all the time in college basketball, because there is so much parody. There are many little schools out there that have no problem balling with the big boys. If you feel that a team looks good, if they’re beating schools, forget about their name and the name of who they are playing. Stay with the hot squad until they give you a reason not to. From what I remember, Butler covered almost every game during that tournament, as well as a little school called Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). Vegas will also reflect this sentiment, meaning usually the smaller schools are gonna get a little bump in the betting line due to the general public’s fixation on the bigger schools.
Coaches More Than Players
College players come and go. It is the coaches of these schools who provide the program’s consistency. You hear the term “winning program,” realizing that the program changes players every year. A coaches record means everything. Even if a star player is hurt or the team is full of underclassmen, a good coach knows how to work with what he’s got. Follow the coach’s record more than the players. Bet on that, and you will increase your percentages throughout the tournament.
In the end, money management will keep you safe. It sounds easier picking one or two games for a ton of money, but if those don’t hit, what are you left with. Spread it out small, base your wagers on the history of coaches and hot streaks of the players. By doing this, your wagering experience during the tournament can be both fun and successful.