Odds on College Basketball Lines, Spreads & Picks

Odds on College Basketball lines

Odds on College Basketball lines including NCAA Tournament. As we continue the steady march towards march madness and the premier NCAA top basketball tournament, the NCAA odds keep changing on a daily basis and since we are but a few weeks away from the dance, very few favorites have emerged and some of the early season favorites like Ohio state have fallen off the top 25 lists completely.

The traditional powerhouse conferences have a tough time going at it this year and we might just see a new cinderella emerge in this seasons’ tournament. So let us look at things as they stand with the AP poll top 25 as of today Feb 6th, 2020.

AP Poll Top 25 college basketball rankings

4San Diego State23-014474
8Florida State18-311885
12Seton Hall16-590010
13West Virginia17-482712
16Michigan State16-662414
22Penn State16-535624

Others receiving votes: Texas Tech 66, Marquette 31, Ohio State 19, Tulsa 19, Rhode Island 18, Northern Iowa 17, Wichita State 17, BYU 14, Rutgers 12, Stanford 7, Stephen F. Austin 3, Yale 1, Winthrop 1, Michigan 1, Virginia 1, Bowling Green 1.

For 2 weeks in a row number 1-4 has remained the same but Florida state tumbled from the 5th spot after their third loss of the season to an unranked Virginia Mountaineer team.

The big winner was Maryland who moved up 6 spots from 15 to 9 after their 5th straight win exclaimed by a 10 point win over a decent and 17th ranked Iowa Hawkeyes team.

There are four 3 loss teams and two four-loss teams in the top 10 including powerhouses Kansas, Louisville, and Duke. While Duke seems to be righting themselves after that horrible start to the season, odds are against the other guys being top seeds in the tournament that’s for sure.

Odds on College Basketball lines

The unpredictability of the 2020 season makes it for a volatile roller coaster ride when picking NCAA odds and the best money lines but fear not we are here to help. We provide complete and live odds for every tournament game including the NCAA top games with the aim of marching all the way to the final 4. The best part of this is that it is all available free of charge to you.

College Basketball point spreads

In order to win the NCAA basketball betting game you have to play the spread, this is the most exciting and easy to win wagers because one can use available data to predict the outcome.

For example one of the top upcoming games in the college basketball scene is number 8 ranked Florida State Seminoles welcoming the 7th ranked Duke Blue Devils on the 11th of February 2020. Below are the current in-season stats for both teams.

Odds on College Basketball lines

While both teams have identical records, Duke scores more points on average than FSU and the difference is a whopping 8 points per game more and that is not the only stat line, that’s better, they are better at scoring, (check the field goal %), Rebounding and blocked shots. The only part of their game that FSU is better is stealing and that leads to more scoring opportunities which they will need in this game.

A quick perusal should tell you which team should win this game, and to find a bookie that offers the most point spreads should be the best alternative if one is looking to bet on the spreads in this game. As a general rule of the thumb, the NCAA game is very different from the NBA game in that rarely does any game go past the century mark so betting the under if it’s below 175 is always advisable.

Types of College Basketball betting lines

What are the most common types of college basketball betting lines?

  1. Futures college basketball betting
  2. Straight up college basketball betting or MoneyLine
  3. The NCAA Basketball Point Spreads
  4. Parlays
  5. Teasers
  6. Props betting
  7. In-Game live bets

What are the most common Let’s take a quick look at the most common college basketball betting lines for any given game because these will determine if a wager is worth the risk or not and if a bettor should risk their funds on a particular bet or not?

  • Futures college basketball betting – Future betting is always the first choice but it is also the riskiest since it is usually done at the beginning of the season with very little data to go on, for example, Ohio State was ranked number 1 in the early days of the season but have now fallen off the radar a bet on them to even make the tournament sure seems risky now don’t you think?
  • Straight up college basketball betting or MoneyLine – Straight up betting is simply wagering on the winner as in our Duke example above, our straight-up, Moneyline bet would be on Duke winning that game.
  • The NCAA Basketball Point Spreads – We have touched a bit on point spreads earlier and there are two common strategies of point spread bets in college basketball. There is betting the spread and betting against the spread. bookmakers will give a spread which in this example would be how many points will duke win by or FSU loses by and vice versa so if the spread is Duke winning by 5.5 points then one can wager on the spread coming true with that outcome or against that spread with it not coming true. A bet against the spread means the expected outcome might be a duke win with more than 5.5 points or FSU losing by a bigger margin.
  • Parlays – Parlays are popular since they combine many different scenarios for a win to happen, they offer the opportunity of a small investment with huge payoffs for the bettor which is why they are well-liked.
  • Teasers – Teasers allow one to buy points off a spread which increases the odds of winning the NCAA basketball points spreads wager, the only caveat with a teaser is one has to bet on two teams. This helps the bookmaker mitigate the risk.
  • Props betting – College basketball props betting allows one to bet on random events, things that cannot be planned for or rarely occur like in our example above, Duke coach K being ejected from the game. it rarely happens but if one is brave enough, when the bet hits, it can be lucrative because odds are usually pretty high.
  • In-Game live bets – These are wagers on the outcomes that happen before a game is officially over, for example, the winner at half time or the points total at half time and such.

How to read the odds on college basketball lines

How to read the odds on college basketball lines
Opening LineProvidence +6
Opening O/U140
Opening MoneylineProv +226/Creighton -254

Your standard college basketball lines will look like this pregame with the opening line, money line and opening over/under odds which gives a bettor an opportunity to make their bets based on those odds. The above is a game between Providence and Crighton.

Odds on NCAA basketball lines for March Madness

Even in the middle of the season, this would be considered futures bet especially since most of the traditional powerhouses as stated earlier are shocked and struggled out of the gate so any current odds on the NCAA basketball tournament should be taken as such.

Below are the current projected odds of winning the tournament.


Duke Blue Devils7/1
Kansas Jayhawks7/1
Gonzaga Bulldogs10/1
Baylor Bears12/1
Dayton Flyers12/1
Louisville Cardinals14/1
Auburn Tigers16/1
Michigan State Spartans16/1
West Virginia Mountaineers16/1
Seton Hall Pirates18/1
San Diego State Aztecs20/1
Maryland Terrapins25/1
Oregon Ducks25/1
Kentucky Wildcats30/1
Arizona Wildcats40/1
Florida State Seminoles40/1
Iowa Hawkeyes40/1
LSU Tigers40/1
Ohio State Buckeyes40/1
Villanova Wildcats40/1
Butler Bulldogs50/1
Illinois Fighting Illini60/1
Michigan Wolverines60/1
Texas Tech Red Raiders60/1
BYU Cougars80/1
Creighton Bluejays80/1
Colorado Buffaloes80/1
Florida Gators80/1
Houston Cougars80/1
Marquette Golden Eagles80/1
Penn State Nittany Lions80/1
Purdue Boilermakers80/1
Alabama Crimson Tide100/1
Arkansas Razorbacks100/1
Cincinnati Bearcats100/1
Memphis Tigers100/1
Minnesota Golden Gophers100/1
Mississippi State Bulldogs100/1
North Carolina Tar Heels100/1
North Carolina State Wolfpack100/1
Notre Dame Fighting Irish100/1
Oklahoma Sooners100/1
Rutgers Scarlet Knights100/1
St. Mary’s Gaels100/1
Stanford Cardinal100/1
USC Trojans100/1
Virginia Cavaliers100/1
Wichita State Shockers100/1
Wisconsin Badgers100/1
Xavier Musketeers100/1

Since the first college hoops game was played in the late 19th century, the sport has come a very long way. Today, college basketball is enjoyed by many passionate fans from all over the nation.

Each March, the NCAA Basketball Tournament serves as arguably the biggest sports event of the entire year. While there have been some scandals and controversies over the years, college basketball should remain at or near the top of the sports landscape for many seasons to come.

Early history

In 1891, some physical educators in Springfield, Massachusetts were looking to develop a game that could be played indoors during the cold winter months. Dr. James Naismith, a teacher at the local YMCA, was asked to come up with a unique game that would be suitable for the indoors.

He came up with 13 basic rules for a game that featured a soccer ball and two peach baskets. The initial concept had enough promise to gain a following over the next couple of years.

In 1893, the first college basketball game was played in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania. The contest featured Geneva College and the New Brighton YMCA. Geneva won the game by a final score of 3-0.

In 1901, several colleges began to sponsor games on a regular basis. A few years later, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) was formed. Over the next two decades, college basketball would slowly evolve.

In the late thirties, an idea was conceived that would eventually lead college hoops to its greatest heights.

The arrival of the NCAA Tournament

In 1939, the first NCAA Basketball Tournament was held. While it is hard to imagine now, the early days of “March Madness” didn’t generate much fanfare.

For the first decade of the tourney, only eight teams were able to qualify for the event. From the mid-fifties to mid-seventies, the field expanded to just over 20 teams. In this period, the tournament began to gain a little momentum.

The growth of television enabled fans to see some of the top games in the tournament each year. By the end of the seventies, the NCAA field had been expanded to 40 teams. Since then, college basketball has never looked back.

Over the last three decades, the “March Madness” concept has been in full swing. Since the early eighties, the entire tournament has been televised.

From the opening four days of the tournament to the Final Four, fans from all across the country are transfixed by the constant action of the event.

With more than 60 teams in the field since the mid-eighties, there are opportunities for schools from small conferences as well as the national powerhouses.

Legends of the game

There have been a number of outstanding coaches and players that have laid the foundation for the growth of college basketball since the NCAA Tournament was formed more than seven decades ago.

In the fifties, center Bill Russell won a pair of NCAA titles with the San Francisco Dons. He would go on to capture 11 more championships in the NBA with the Boston Celtics.

In the sixties, the UCLA Bruins would begin one of the most amazing runs in the history of sports under head coach John Wooden. From 1964-75, UCLA won an incredible total of ten NCAA championships.

Two of the greatest players in the history of college basketball led the Bruins to half of those titles. In the late sixties, center Lew Alcindor paced UCLA to three consecutive championships.

In 1972-73, another elite big man carried the school to greatness. Bill Walton was the key performer in back-to-back titles for the Bruins.

In 1979, a historic NCAA championship matchup featured Magic Johnson’s Michigan State Spartans against Larry Bird’s Indiana State Sycamores. In the contest, Johnson and the Spartans came out on top.

The two college superstars would go on to become NBA rivals over the next decade for the Los Angeles Lakers (Johnson) and Celtics (Bird). In the last three decades, future NBA stars such as Michael Jordan and Carmello Anthony have led clubs to NCAA championships.

Along with UCLA, the Kentucky Wildcats and North Carolina Tar Heels have been a couple of the other dominant programs in the history of college hoops. Legendary head coaches Adolph Rupp (Kentucky) and Dean Smith (North Carolina) are among the most successful coaches of all-time.

Controversial issues

In the early fifties, college basketball was rocked by some major point-shaving scandals. While there have been some occasional point-shaving scandals since then, there have been some more pressing issues in the sport to deal with.

With so much money involved in today’s college basketball, the game has had to weather its share of recruiting scandals over the years. While the scandals do generate plenty of headlines, the popularity of college basketball is showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon.