With college basketball conference play beginning in earnest now that we start 2013, it is time to start thinking differently about betting hoops. Several Sports-Watch handicappers have gotten off to very good starts and they are in the process of making adjustments also.
Except for handful of likely NCAA Tournament teams, most basketball programs played a series of relatively easy games, blended with holiday tournaments or made-for-TV matchups, which were designed to pump up RPI ratings and let coaches understand where their teams are in terms of progress.
The conference schedule is a completely different component. This starts with the intensity level rising in league play, where the road is far more treacherous in front of truly hostile fans. With rare exceptions, teams shoot a lower percentage away from home and tend to be somewhat more cautious. If the home team starts to scorch the nets and the visitor cannot buy a bucket, this is how road favorites lose games outright.
Speaking of favorites, there should be far greater concentration on finding underdogs in the right situations during league play. Among several factors to consider are teams off hot/cold shooting nights compared to their typical averages.
Though most college basketball schedules are spread out, some conferences will play two games in three nights. This can detrimental to Big East teams playing a pair on the road (Saturday- Monday) or Pac-12 squads which mostly take the court on Thursday’s and Saturday’s. The Ivy League almost always play a Friday-Saturday schedule and the MAAC schedules a number of Friday-Sunday encounters.
Totals will drop precipitously as conference play commences with a greater commitment on the defensive end. Because of familiarity, coaches will be trying to take away from their opponent’s strengths, which generally speaking will cause scores to fall.
For more serious college basketball bettors who study the whole landscape, a number of opportunities are available in smaller conferences. In these leagues, oddsmakers are not going to spend as much time handicapping, since the wagering action is lighter. This is where a particular club could be a juggernaut or floundering and those setting the numbers might not be as quick to adjust a line compared to the same type of outfit from a larger conference.
If your time is limited, spend it focusing on a conference or two and learn the team’s inside-out. Besides the nuts and bolts basics, read team blogs or websites to find useful information which can place you on the right side of games.
If you like betting college basketball but are crimped for time, take a few minutes and check out the roster of Sport-Watch handicappers, who can help build your bankroll.