It’s the most wonderful time of the year – and we aren’t talking about holiday festivities. We’re talking about bowl season! With 42 games in 24 days, it’s a college football fan’s dream. And if you want to add a little more excitement to bowl season, consider trying your hand at a little recreational sports betting.
Five Tips You Need to Know
Occasionally dabbling in betting can be fun. Instead of buying tickets to go see your team play, consider throwing down a couple hundred dollars and bet on this season’s games so that you can get more excitement out of them. Here are some tips to keep you grounded:
1. Don’t Bet on Your Teams
Your first inclination may be to place a bet on your favorite team’s game. After all, you’re definitely going to win, right? Well, not so fast. As a rule of thumb, savvy bettors never place wagers on teams they have a stake in.
“You should never bet on your team – or even teams that you passionately hate,” says Don Chino of BangtheBook. “The reason is that your emotions will get the best of you. You’ll either think that your team is much better than they really are, or you may even feel like they’re worse than they really are. Either way, you’re betting with your heart – not your head.”
2. Look for Teams With Momentum
Bowl season is all about momentum. For example, let’s say there are two teams with 6-6 records playing in a game. While they may look fairly similar on paper in all regards, one team is 4-0 in the last month and the other team is 1-3. The first team obviously has a lot of momentum and confidence, whereas the latter team is struggling. All else being equal, take the team with the momentum.
3. Factor in Coaching Changes
This time of year, what people in the college football world call the “coaching carousel” is in high gear. You’ve got coaches being fired, new one’s being hired, and more people being hired to fill the vacancies they’re leaving behind. It’s like musical chairs – with millions of dollars at stake.
What does this have to do with betting? Well, it plays a huge factor in a team’s psyche when their coach leaves. You have to consider the possibility that they’ll be frustrated and lose motivation. Just something to think about when you’re reviewing lines.
4. Consider Location and Time off
While the head-to-head matchup matters most, don’t forget about intangibles like location and time off. If a team’s bowl game is in January and their last regular season game came in late November, that means they have nearly six weeks off. Some argue that more time means more rest, while others believe it allows rust to build up.
Then, there’s the location factor. Is the team used to playing in warm weather, while the bowl game is in cold weather (or vice versa)? Is the team playing in a totally different time zone? Will they be playing on artificial turf when they’re used to grass? These factors can make a big difference in the final outcome.
5. Review Line Movement
Because there’s so much time in between when bowl matchups are announced and when they’re actually played, you’ll want to review line movement. A single line can move as much as seven or eight points in one direction if there are major changes to the game. Be patient and wait for the right line.
Make This Bowl Season Merry and Bright
Make the most out of this bowl season by enjoying a little college football betting. You may not win big, but at least you’ll have a little more fun watching the games.