College Basketball Over/Under Betting

Written by: Joseph Falchetti, Editor-in-Chief, Pro Sports Bettor and Casino Expert
Last updated:
5 minute read
College basketball over under betting

A college basketball over/under is a bet where you have to correctly predict the combined score of both teams.

You pick if the total score will be higher or lower than the number set by oddsmakers.

Over/under bets, also called totals bets, are popular in NCAA basketball betting, especially during March Madness.

This is a great way to earn a profit on games that you do not feel you have an edge when picking a side to win or cover.

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How Do Over/Under Bets Work?

Over/Under Bets In College Basketball

Totals bets are one of the easier types of bets to understand, even for beginners.

When placing a totals bet, instead of betting on a moneyline or spread, bettors choose to wager on whether or not a game will go over or under the total that oddsmakers have assigned for that specific game.

In college basketball, over/under betting is broken down into three main aspects: first half, second half, and the full game.

That is, you can bet on the first half of a college basketball game to go over or under the set total, the second half to go O/U, or the full game to go O/U.

Example Of Over/Under Bet In NCAAB Basketball

Over under betting odds

How do over/under odds work in basketball?

Here’s an example of a total bet on an NCAA game:

  • On February 21st, Iowa hosted Penn State in a Big 10 conference matchup
  • Oddsmakers had the total set at 157.5, which means that if the combined score (Iowa’s score plus Penn St.’s score) is 158 or higher, the over hits, and if it is 157 or lower, the under hits.
  • The final score was 74-68 Iowa, which sums to a total of 142
  • This means that everyone who bet the under won since the final score went under 158. The first half total was set at 74.5, and the first half score was 41-36.
  • Therefore, the first half over would have won

What Happens If The Total Is A Whole Number?

Usually, the over/under line is set with a .5 or hook, but occasionally it will be a whole number.

For example, a college game could be O/U 140. If the final score is exactly 140, (75-65, for example), then it is a PUSH.

A push means that essentially the bet is voided, and you get your stake returned.

What If The Game Goes To Overtime?

If the game goes to OT, that does not change your bet. When betting a total, the final score is all that matters.

It’s fair to say OT has saved many over bets in the past, but don’t let that affect your wagering.

So few games go to OT, and in some, the total is already over by the end of regulation. 

Where To Bet On College Basketball Over/Unders

Betting on college basketball totals can be found at any betting site online. However, it’s vital to choose a trusted online sportsbook with fast payouts and excellent NCAAB betting bonuses.

We have reviews of the top sportsbooks online and those with the best wagering limits for betting college basketball over/unders.

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See Our Full Reviews Of College Basketball Betting Sites

How to Bet NCAAB Totals At Sportsbooks

Here’s a quick 5-step guide to placing an over/under bet

  1. Create Your Sportsbook Account

    Make an account on a trusted sportsbook such as BetNow. Don’t forget to claim your welcome bonus!

  2. Find The Game You Want To Bet On

    Navigate to the NCAAB tab and click on it. Once you’re there, find the game where you want to place a wager.

  3. Place Your Over/Under Bet

    Now look for the over/under. It should be directly next to the moneyline. Click whether you want over or under, and then wager the amount of your choosing.

NCAA Basketball Over/Under Betting Strategies

When venturing into betting over/unders, there are many variables and strategies you can consider. 

You can read all about different strategies to bet on NCAAB games at our college basketball betting strategies page.

Betting Strat #1Pay Attention To Offensive and Defensive Trends

Totals Betting Strategies for NCAA Basketball

The main thing you want to look for as an over/under bettor are offensive and defensive trends.

This includes seeing whether or not teams have tendencies to score more at home or consistently have low-scoring games in conference matchups, and more.

One example of a trend from this year is the over when Gonzaga plays ranked opponents is 4-0.

This means that even against the best competition, their offense is potent enough to keep smashing the over

Betting Strat #2Bet On First And Second Half Totals

One particular strategy that can be very profitable is identifying teams that get out to particularly hot or cold starts.

This can be critical for betting first-half totals and can become extremely lucrative if you can find a team that consistently has low-scoring first halves and then high-scoring second halves. 

Betting Strat #3Have The Most Up-To-Date Information

Finally, it is important to have as much information as possible about the game you’re interested in betting.

The betting line for both the over and under is typically at -110, but it can be shifted by betting sites to smaller or greater odds depending on certain factors.

It’s your job as a bettor to recognize what those factors are and weigh them into your decision

There are websites that you can check to consult past data and identify over/under trends in teams based on their season résumé. 

Ensure you know the injury report and teams’ recent performances, as those are the two most crucial factors that affect totals.

Check Our Full Expert Guide To NCAA Basketball Betting

About the Author

Joseph Falchetti

Joseph Falchetti

Editor-in-Chief, Pro Sports Bettor and Casino Expert

Joe is the author of the majority of sports betting pages on SBS and he serves as a gambling consultant to our content team. He's been mentioned on as a gaming analyst, and his articles have been linked by larger publications, such as the New York Times.

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