NCAA basketball is one of America’s great traditions, with top collegiate athletes squaring off in national showcases. Naturally, NCAA basketball betting is just as popular. The NCAA is an action-packed league with a huge collection of teams and major opportunities for bettors to hit it big. At MyBetting Canada, we offer breakdowns of sportsbooks to help bettors find what’s best for them. In this guide, we’ll explore some of the top NCAA basketball betting sites, breaking down everything from their betting apps to their best sports betting offers, paying particular mind to the NCCA. If you want to do some betting on NCAA basketball, we’re going to show you where to do it. Ready? Let’s get started!
NCAA Basketball Betting
Understanding NCAA Basketball
Because NCAA Basketball doesn’t work the same as professional leagues, many people find it hard to grasp the format. If you are going to be making some NCAA basketball betting picks, it is important you first understand how everything works.
The NCAA is the college athletic ruling body. For the sake of this article, we’ll be focusing on Division 1, where most of the NCAA basketball betting lines and fan interest lie. NCAA Division One, or D1, is composed of 358 teams concentrated in 32 different conferences. Most of the conferences don’t receive much fan interest, with there being five main conferences, the ACC, Big 10, Big 12, Pac 12, and SEC, known as the Power Five. There are also other conferences, such as the AAC and Big East, which are nationally relevant.
How the season typically works is that each team will typically play between 25 and 30 games in the regular season. The games consist of two 20 minute halves. Teams will play a non-conference schedule at first, then play the teams in their conference.
After the regular season comes the conference tournament. Teams are seeded based on their performance in the regular season and play in a single-elimination tournament, with one team emerging victorious.
Finally, once all the tournaments are finished, March Madness begins. This is the 68 team tournament that features all the best teams in the country and winners of the conferences going head to head. The winners of each of the 32 conferences make the tournament, with the rest of the 36 teams selected based on performance throughout the year. The teams square off in a single-elimination tournament, with the winner being crowned the National Champion.
While March Madness is the big tournament, there is also the National Invitational Tournament, which has all the best teams that didn’t make March Madness face off in a similar format.
NCAA Basketball might be confusing to some because of the sheer scale of it. It has so many teams and conferences it can be tough to follow. But once you get a grasp on it, you can start searching for some NCAA basketball best bets.
Our Top NCAA Basketball Betting Sites
Welcome Bonus: 100% Matched Deposit Up to $200
Betway is an operator that is trusted around the world. Betway was founded by a U.K company and has grown to be one of the biggest and best operators on the planet. It has a super clean interface, great betting promotions, and for NCAA bettors, a huge supply of lines. While they don’t have player props, they cover a massive amount of games and have great game prop options.
Welcome Bonus: 100% Matched Deposit Up to $200
888Sport is another operator that has achieved global success. They’re one of the classic options that a Canadian bettor will engage with. They have some of the best sports betting bonuses and promotions available, including several top-notch free bet offers. Their website layout is fantastic, with a great design. They have extensive NCAA basketball betting coverage with a wide variety of markets.
Welcome Bonus: 100% Matched Deposit Up to $400 and 50 Free Spins
Bodog is one of the long-established operators that bettors can engage with. Found by a Canadian named Calvin Ayres, Bodog has been around since the 1990s. They have a huge sportsbook with extensive NCAA coverage, allow cryptocurrency betting, and are one of the best betting sites with welcome bonus available, with a massive offer to users. They have managed to stick around for so long by innovating, and users love them.
Welcome Bonus: 100% Matched Deposit Up to $150
Tonybet is an intriguing option for NCAA basketball betting. They have one of the biggest sportsbooks you’ll find online, and that carries over to the NCAA. They are one of a select very few that offers player props for NCAA games, which is a huge feature that sports bettors will love. They don’t do it for every game, but this is something that sets them apart. They also have some solid promos, which include a VIP program.
Best NCAA Basketball betting app
Not every operator has an app, but it is important to provide a strong mobile platform for bettors to enjoy, whether it is an app or a mobile-optimized website. Let’s take a look at three sportsbooks that offer a great mobile experience, one of the most important NCAA basketball betting trends.
- Sports Interaction: Sports Interaction is one of the top Canadian operators, and they offer a great experience to Canadian mobile users. Their mobile platforms work great on smartphone browsers and look excellent on the phone. Sports Interaction is known for its design, and its mobile platform doesn’t disappoint.
- Betway: If you are looking for the top betting app available, it might be Betway. You can download the Betway app from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store, and it pretty much brings the same desktop experience to a sleek mobile design. It is fun and easy to use.
- Shangri La: Shangri La is one of the rising sportsbooks in Canada, and they’ve made a mobile website that allows users to enjoy it on the go. If you like the desktop Shangri La, you’ll love the mobile version. It is fast, intuitive, and effective.
How to Bet on NCAA Basketball
If you are feeling ready to start making some NCAA basketball betting picks, it is important that you are as informed as possible. At MyBetting Canada, our job is to be on the bettors' side, and we’re here to help. Below, we’ll provide a breakdown of how to bet on the NCAA, with some looks at the different markets and bet types you can do NCAA basketball betting with and the various rules to keep in mind.
Markets and Bet Types
- Moneyline: Moneyline is the simplest form of NCAA basketball betting and can be found in any sportsbook. If you bet a team on the Moneyline, that means you’ve picked them to win the game.
- Point Spread: Point Spread is the projected score differential in favor of one team. You can bet for the spread, meaning the favored team will match that score differential or exceed it, or against the spread, meaning they won’t win by the projected margin. This can also be found everywhere.
- Total: The Total is the line that oddsmakers have created that represents the total number of combined points between both teams combined. Bettors can bet the over or the under, meaning the teams will combine for over that point total or under. This is also a market found everywhere.
- Outright: Outrights are bets that are on long-term outcomes that aren’t determined until the end of the season. These are things like who will win the NCAA tournament or who will be the Naismith Player of the Year. This is offered on most but not all sportsbooks.
- Game Props: Game Props are a market that covers things happening within the game that may not be directly tied to the final score. These are things like who will be winning at the half, which team will hit the most three-pointers, and so on. This is found in most sportsbooks.
- Player Props: Player Props are similar to Game Props, but they cover player performance rather than team performance. An example of a Player Prop would be will Chet Holmgren score over or under 17 points, will Jaden Ivey hit 2+ three-pointers, and so on. These are a more rare option on sportsbooks for NCAA bets.
- Parlays: Parlays are a type of bet that allows bettors to combine multiple bets into one. Bettors can add as many selections as they want into one bet, with each selection making the odds increase. But in order for a parlay to hit, all bets within it have to. So if you make a five-legged NCAA parlay and four hit, the bet has failed.
- Live Bets: Live Betting is a type of bet that allows users to bet on games that are already happening. Odds change depending on what is happening within the game, so if one team takes a big league, their odds to win improve. There are many live betting sites available to Canadians.
NCAA Basketball Betting Rules
Knowing the betting rules for the sport you are betting on is critical to building a successful strategy. For NCAA Basketball, there are different rules that you should be aware of before you put down a single dollar. Let’s look at the ones most critical to bettors.
- For a game to count as action, it must go at least 35 minutes
- If it is under that time, bets are voided, and money is returned regardless of the score
- Overtime counts towards Point Spread, Moneyline, and Total Bets
- 2nd Half Bets Include Overtime if it occurs, but Fourth Quarter Bets don’t
- All games must be played on the scheduled date for bets to count
- The player must step on the floor and play for Player Prop bets to count
- A Quarter must be completed in full for any Quarter bets on it to count as action. Once the quarter has concluded, the bet is settled, even if the game is discontinued following the quarter.
Top 10 NCAA Basketball Betting Sites
- Sports Interaction: An impeccably designed website that is easy to navigate with extensive NCAA basketball betting lines and a great mobile experience.
- Shangri La: One of the bigger sportsbooks available, with a huge welcome bonus and great live betting.
- Betway: One of the most popular sportsbooks due to its great look, numerous promotions, and NCAA coverage.
- Bodog: One of the longest-standing operators due to its innovative features like crypto betting and bet builder.
- 888Sport: A sportsbook perfect for those that love promotions and fun features, as well as a great website design.
- Funbet: While it is currently undergoing a redesign, when operational, Funbet has one of the biggest sports coverage options of any operator.
- GGbet: Known as the biggest E-Sports betting site, GGBet also has great NCAA markets with some unique features.
- Tonybet: Tonybet is a rising operator that stands out for their great NCAA markets, including player props.
- Fezbet: Fezbet is a newer operator that has massive promotional offerings, a clean layout, and an extensive sportsbook.
What We Look for in NCAA Basketball Betting Sites
We’ve told you about what we believe the top options for betting on NCAA basketball are, but what sets these sportsbooks apart? There are a lot of different things to consider when picking an operator. When we choose the sportsbooks to present to you, we have several important considerations. The first and most obvious one is whether the operator is one of the legal betting sites in Canada. Once that is cleared as a yes, there are more complicated considerations. Here is what we look at to separate the best NCAA betting sites from the pack.
- NCAA Basketball Coverage: This is an important thing to consider. Do they cover a large variety of NCAA basketball games? If you’re a fan of division two or mid-major D1 teams, will they have coverage of the games you want to bet?
- NCAA Basketball Markets: Markets are the different things within the game that users bet on. There are many different kinds of markets, from Moneyline to Player Props. A great NCAA basketball betting site will have a large variety of markets.
- Offers and Promotions: Offers and Promotions are the different bonuses and promos that you can find in the sportsbook. We’ll dive more into these later, but it is important a sportsbook has good promotional offerings.
- Features: Features are the different ways to utilize a sportsbook that they provide their users. These are really critical at distinguishing sportsbooks from each other, and we’ll talk more about the best NCAA features.
- Mobile Experience: The Mobile Experience is the different options an operator provides for their mobile users, like an app or mobile-optimized website. A good mobile experience is the key to a good website.
- Banking: If you are going to bet with a sportsbook, you have to bank with them. A good operator will provide a variety of payment options, an easy deposit process, and a quick and efficient withdrawal process,
- User Interface: User Interface is how the website looks and feels. A good user interface means the website is well-designed and easy to navigate, with an intuitive feel. This is important to the user experience.
Best NCAA Basketball Offers and Promotions
Bonuses and promotions are the unique offers sportsbooks provide their users. Typically, they are a reward for a bettor doing a certain action, like depositing or betting a certain amount on a specific market. Every sportsbook will offer some bonuses, while some sportsbooks offer a ton of them.
For NCAA Basketball bettors, there will be certain bonuses you can access throughout the season, but there will be certain bonuses specific to NCAA that will become present before March Madness. Sportsbooks will often provide big bonuses to encourage users to place bets on major upcoming events, and it doesn’t get any bigger than March Madness.
One of the important things to consider with bonuses and promotions is the terms and conditions. Bonuses are often found at the Promo section on websites, and that is where you can click on the offers to see the terms and conditions. These are extremely important to take note of. They can completely change the value of the offer, often making it so the bettor doesn’t see the value they expected. Terms and conditions often describe in detail how to use the bonus, so they’ll teach you the steps necessary to get the promo.
Let’s look at some of the different bonuses and promos you can find on NCAA basketball betting sites.
- Welcome Bonus: A Welcome Bonus is the bonus users get for joining and depositing with a website. It typically comes in the form of a Matched Deposit.
- Free Bets: Free Bets are when bettors get risk-free bets where they receive the profit if it hits. There are different kinds of Free Bet promotions, but an example of a promo like this would be if you bet $20 on NCAA basketball games with Fezbet, you get a $5 NCAA free bet.
- Boosted Odds: Boosted Odds are when an operator takes a market and makes it more favorable to a bettor. An example of a Boosted Odd would be if Funbet took Duke to win and Paolo Banchero to score 20+ and boosted it from -120 to +200.
- Parlay Boosts: Parlay Boosts are when a sportsbook rewards bettors a certain percentage if they hit parlays. Typically, a parlay boost will be on an ascending scale based on how many bets are within the parlay. For example, 88Sport has a bonus where they give boosted winnings of 5% for three-legged parlays, 10% for four-legged, 15% for five-legged, and so on.
- Prop Challenges: This is a rarer bonus but a highly valuable one. If certain basketball props cash, your bet can either hit, or your losings can be returned. For example, Betway has a bonus where you get your money back on a losing NCAA bet as a free bet if the last score of the game is a three-pointer.
Top NCAA Basketball Betting sites features
A sportsbook should have a lot of different ways to bet that make it fun. If you sign up and deposit your money with an operator, you should not get bored with it fast. If you are looking to find the NCAA basketball best bets, it should be on a website with a ton of fun features. Features are the unique ways to bet and use the operator that sportsbooks provide. Let’s look at some of the most important features operators should provide.
- NCAA Basketball Live Betting: Live Betting is something a lot of bettors enjoy. Most operators will have a live betting feature that allows users to place bets on NCAA games as they are underway, with odds shifting based on the flow of the game. This feature is important for getting the most out of a game, as you can bet as you watch.
- NCAA Basketball Crypto Betting: Crypto is all the rage these days, and certain operators will allow you to place bets with and withdraw cryptocurrency. This is one of the newer NCAA basketball betting trends, but if you’re a crypto fanatic, this is for you.
- NCAA Basketball Player Props: Player Props are a market that, for sports like the NFL, are easy to find. But with NCAA Basketball, because of how expansive it is, this is a rare market. But on operators like Tonybet, you can place bets on individual player performance, which adds a fun wrinkle.
- NCAA Basketball Stats and Insights: This feature is not present in most sportsbooks, but it is important. Some operators will have a stats or insights feature that allows users to see statistics and performance trends of different teams, which can give NCAA fans some insight into the best bets to make.
- NCAA Pick’em Tournaments: This is a fun feature that is often free to use. Bettors who have bet a certain amount in the past week can participate by picking the results for different NCAA games, with the opportunity to win cash prizes if the bet hits. This is available on operators like 888Sport.
What are the Best Promotions for NCAA Basketball Bettors?
On most sportsbooks, the biggest promotion you’ll find is the welcome package, which has the highest amount bettors can receive. But boosted odds will provide the greatest consistent, terms and conditions-free value to bettors, in my opinion.
What Time is Best for NCAA Basketball Betting?
There is no time quite like March Madness for NCAA betting. For starters, this is when all the best games and action is. But it is also when sportsbooks bring out their biggest and best promotions specific to the NCAA.
Who Should I Bet on to Win the NCAA Tournament?
This is always a difficult question, as the tournament is consistently filled with wild upsets and unpredictable finishes. Right now, the betting favorites are Gonzaga, Auburn, Kentucky, Duke, and Purdue, but you can always count on chaos in March.
Can I Gamble on Conference Tournaments?
While March Madness is the main event, the conference tournaments are a great appetizer, and you can bet on the outcome of them on most websites. You can even bet on the mid-major tournaments, so you can find a large collection of conference tournament bets online.
What are the Best NCAA Basketball Betting Sites?
This question will differ for everyone, depending on what you are looking for. If you like website design, Sports Interaction might be the best. For bonuses and promos, Betway and 888Sport are tough to beat. TonyBet has great player props, Funbet has an awesome welcome bonus, and Fezbet is all-around solid. But at the end of the day, it is up to you! Get out there, try them out, and see what fits you best.