Georgia, much like many states across the United States, has been actively pushing for legalized sports betting. Ever since the landmark decision by the Supreme Court to strike down PASPA in 2018, the state has been exploring the possibilities. Unfortunately, as of 2023, Georgia’s attempts to open the door to sports betting have fallen short.
The state’s legislative sessions have seen failed attempts not only to legalize sports betting but also to introduce horse racing and casinos. Lawmakers remain divided on various aspects of the topic. However, the resilience of Atlanta’s sports teams and business leaders continues to fuel the effort, with 2024 now marked as the new target date for potential legalization.
While Georgia isn’t yet among the legal sports betting states in America, hope remains high among its residents. With the recent success of the Georgia Bulldogs and the prominence of professional sports teams in the NBA, NFL, and MLB, it’s undeniable that Georgians have a deep-rooted passion for sports.
As Georgia eagerly awaits the arrival of legalized sports gambling, we’re here to equip you with expert insights and knowledge that can help you make the most out of one of the state’s favourite pastimes: NCAA Football betting.
The Thrill of NCAA Football in Georgia
NCAA Football holds a unique place in the hearts of Georgia’s residents. With six Division I programs, including the illustrious University of Georgia, as well as dozens of Division II and Division III programs, there’s an abundance of homegrown talent to wager on in the Peach State. Despite the shifting landscape of college football due to realignment, the transfer portal, and the introduction of NIL, the passion and enthusiasm for the sport remain at an all-time high.
College football games are typically played once a week, and teams usually play a 12-game regular season. Successful teams may qualify for a bowl game, which adds an extra layer of excitement to the season. The time between games provides ample opportunities for odds movement, making college football betting a dynamic and engaging experience.
Understanding College Football Odds
To start your NCAA Football betting journey, you need to grasp the three primary ways to bet on college football: point spread, moneyline, and over/under (totals).
- Point Spread – This bet revolves around predicting how many points one team will win or lose by. Oddsmakers set the spread, evening the competition between the two teams. For instance, if the Georgia Bulldogs are expected to beat Alabama by 2.5 points, they are the favorites, indicated by a negative value (-2.5). This means they must win by three or more points to cover the spread. On the other hand, Alabama, as the underdog, is indicated by a positive value (+2.5), meaning they can either win the game outright or lose by 2 or fewer points to cover the spread.
- Moneyline – College football moneyline bets are straightforward; you’re picking a team to win the game. Each team’s moneyline value is assigned based on their implied probability of winning. Favorites have lower returns but less risk, while underdogs offer higher potential returns but are riskier wagers.
- Over/Under (Totals) – This bet involves predicting the total combined points scored in the game. If the oddsmakers set the over/under at 53, you can bet on whether the total points scored will be higher or lower than that number.
Other NCAA Football Betting Options
Apart from the basics, college football betting offers a range of other exciting options, including:
- Prop Bets – These wagers allow you to focus on individual player performances or specific in-game events. You can bet on things like whether a player will score a touchdown or rush for a specific yardage or how many team points will be scored in a specific quarter. All prop bets are typically listed in Over/Under format.
- Parlays – College football parlays enable you to combine multiple bets for larger potential payouts. However, all bets in the parlay must win for it to pay out. So, you could bet on the Oklahoma vs. Texas game to go Over 70 points, Oregon to win or lose by seven points or less against Utah, and Michigan to win the game against Michigan State, and if win all three legs of the parlay, your bet cashes out.
- Futures – Lastly, we have futures bets, which focus on long-running outcomes like the College Football Playoff winner, conference champions, or Heisman Trophy winner. Futures bets are often posted before the season and are adjusted throughout the schedule based on results, injuries, trades, and betting action.
College Football Betting Tips & Strategies:
To become a more profitable and advanced sports bettor, consider these tips:
- Line Shopping – With a wide array of college football games each week and numerous sportsbooks competing for your money, the best way to ensure you’re getting the best value for your bets is by shopping around. This way you can make sure you find the best odds to maximize your potential profits.
- Rivalries – College football rivalries are part of what makes NCAA Football so exciting and beloved, but they can also create unique betting opportunities. Keep an eye on emotional matchups and historical trends to make the most informed wagers.
- Injuries and Weather – Injuries, especially to key positions like quarterbacks, can affect the odds of any game, and due to the nature of the sport, they’re fairly common. Similarly, with teams forced to play in various weather conditions, from the frigid northern states of Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin, to the dry desert heat of Arizona, Nevada and Texas, consider the impact that the weather might have on a game.
By mastering these fundamentals, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a successful NCAA Football bettor. As Georgia’s journey towards legal sports betting continues, you can embrace this dynamic world and enjoy the thrills and excitement of college football betting, even before the state joins the ranks of legal sports betting states in America.