A total of 347 schools compete in 32 Division I basketball conferences. However, only 68 teams qualify for "March Madness" or the "Big Dance".
Thirty-one teams earn automatic bids as conference champions. The remaining thirty-seven tournament slots are determined by a special Selection Committee appointed by the NCAA. The committee also determines where all sixty-eight teams are seeded and placed in the bracket.
With lots of teams and matchups to bet on, college basketball bettors surely have a lot to choose from. Here are a few college basketball betting tips to consider before making your pick.
Don't expect the referees' calls to go the home team's way. But College Basketball's home courts can be a crazy mix of loud, drunk and fanatic students and alumni.
The energy that the fans give is a sure shot of adrenalin for the home team, while it can be a pressure cooker waiting to explode for the visiting team.
Thus, a team may be particularly good at home but totally mediocre on the road. It is said that the difference between a home and road game is as much as 10 points.
Basketball stats can be a bit confounding even to seasoned punters. So start looking at rebounds. More rebounds mean more possessions, thus more chances at scoring points. Rebounds can also be equated to hussle - which team works harder.
Compare the rebounds of the competing teams to see which has a significant edge. Chances are the team with the rebounding edge has an edge on other statistics too.
A college basketball season starts in November. The first two months are called the non-conference portion of the season. January, February and the beginning of March are for conference play. March and April is the post-season.
Every part of the college basketball season is different. In non-conference play, good teams mostly go up against weaker opponents or teams that they are unfamiliar with. The outcome of the games is more erratic.
In conference play, teams go up against other teams that they play twice each year. Teams get familiar with one another and the outcome of the game gets a bit more predictable.
Meanwhile, it's the postseason where all teams go all in. From this point on, the premium is simply on the better team.
Certain teams have rivalries - Duke vs. University of North Carolina, Georgetown Hoyas vs. Syracuse Orange, West Virginia Mountaineers vs. Pittsburgh Panthers to name a few.
Understandably, teams play with more passion and sense of urgency against their bitter rivals. While some teams simply have the number on other teams. Look at recent matchup results and stats.
With so many games ongoing at the same time, it's quite common to see differing lines from bookie to bookie. Once you've decided on which team to bet on, shop around to get the best value. And the internet is your best friend in doing this!
Remember, in college basketball betting (and sport betting in general) every point counts!
There may be deep and talented college basketball teams, but they are the exception, not the rule.
College basketball players come and go and line ups change from year to year. Thus, teams with a solid system and style of play are more successful than those that rely on star players.
With a solid system, certain teams have a preferred tempo or speed of play. When these teams impose their tempo and style of play on other teams, they are more successful.
A key angle in handicapping college basketball games is to see which team can impose their will and dictate the pace of play. A fast-break oriented team may not matchup well against a deliberate, half-court team, or vice versa.
Generally, the style of play is dictated by the better team. Understanding what teams like to do and figuring out who will be able to do what they want will lead you to huge payoffs.
With so much games going on, it's tempting to plunge in and bet carelessly. But the best tip in college basketball is to bet selectively. Bookies are required to come out with lines for each game, but you are not obliged to bet on every one of them.
So bet selectively, bet only on games which you feel you have a clear edge of winning.