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The 6 Best Ways to Bet on March Madness

best ways to bet on march madness holding basketball

  • There’s a lot more to the NCAA Tournament than just bracket contests. 
  • With 63 games over the span of three weeks (plus four play-in games!) there are myriad opportunities to wager.
  • Learn some tried and tested March Madness betting strategies and the systems the pros use. 

By now, just about everyone in North America has filled out a March Madness bracket at some point in their life. They’re as ubiquitous as Stephen A. Smith at a hypocrisy convention. Seasoned bettors know that the NCAA Tournament goes way beyond office pools, though.

Each of the 63 games in March Madness will be available for single-game betting at every major sportsbook, and the tournament has become one of the most wagered-on events on the calendar.

Below, we detail six betting strategies to help you find flawed lines, pick a worthy March Madness champion, and generally keep your bankroll in the black.

1. Pick a Champion that Has Balance

Whether filling out a bracket or betting on March Madness National Championship futures, smart bettors know that there’s little value in picking a one-dimensional team. To win it all, a team has to have an elite offense and a stifling defense. At least, that’s what history tells us.

Over the last 18 tournaments, only one champion has ranked outside the top 20 in offensive efficiency at KenPom (UConn, 2014) and none have ranked outside of the top 20 in defensive efficiency.

Every year, you will find relatively high seeds that are lacking at one end of the court and, thus, not good bets to win it all. A slew of 2019 teams fit the bill, including:

Team Overall Eff. Rank Off. Eff. Rank Def. Eff. Rank
Michigan 7th 33rd  2nd
Texas Tech 9th 67th 1st
Iowa St 13th 9th 39th
LSU 22nd 11th 75th
Villanova 24th 12th 81st
Kansas St 30th 107th 8th

Meet the authors

Matt McEwan
Editor-in-Chief
Dave F.
Sports Writer
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