NCAAB BETTING SITES
List of the Best College Basketball Sportsbooks Online in February 2023
College basketball enjoys huge popularity in the United States. Namely, it has a history that stretches further back than any amateur or professional basketball competition in the world.
The highest collegiate athletic body that governs basketball competitions is the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). At the same time, NCAAB is simply an acronym that distinguishes the Association’s basketball operations from those of football and other college sports.
Betting on NCAAB is almost as popular as watching the games. People’s interest in it has skyrocketed in the last several years due to a wave of legalizing sports betting which spread across the country. In turn, people started searching for the best NCAAB sports betting sites and apps, and this is where we can lend you a hand.
The page you’re about to browse contains a list of top NCAAB betting options in your state. Mind that all sportsbooks we listed here are authorized in a given state, and we’ll walk you through our selection process. Meanwhile, we will also introduce you to NCAAB sports betting online basics and tell you about different betting types, bonuses, rules, and other vital details.
How We Rated the Best NCAAB Sportsbooks
The US online betting market is getting more accessible by the day, and dozens of operators have used the opportunity to enter it. As a result, sifting through all these sites and finding the best ones has, in turn, become a daunting task. Nevertheless, we did our due diligence and rated NCAAB sportsbooks objectively by looking at the following aspects.
Licensing and Regulation
All NCAAB betting sites we review here at GambleUSA need to have a license by proper regulatory bodies from the respective states. People located in states with legal online betting no longer need to resort to visiting offshore betting sites, which is great news.
Offshore sites continue to exist, and you can still technically access them. However, we strongly advise against using them due to safety and legal concerns and instead suggest sticking to fully regulated online sportsbooks promoted on these pages.
Best NCAAB sports betting sites licensed and regulated in the United States are some of the most renowned betting brands in the world known for offering quality products. What’s more, unlike offshore sites, they are 100% safe. You will never have to worry about getting unfair treatment, running into confusing and inaccurate bonus terms, or waiting on delayed payments when opting for legal gambling sites.
NCAAB Betting Markets and Options
It’s not sufficient for a betting site to just feature NCAAB on its list of sports and competitions. Instead, they must offer a versatile selection of betting options for each game, including props and futures.
Welcome Offers and Other Promotions
We understand how much bettors love bonuses and promotions, so we had to take this into account when doing research and rating the sportsbooks. Apart from looking at the value and the total number of deals, we also checked if there are any promotions exclusive to NCAAB competitions.
In other words, we gave brownie points to betting sites that offer NCAAB specific bonuses like free bets, cashbacks, enhanced odds, boosted profits, and more.
If you’re looking to maximize your potential profits, you should always go for sportsbooks that offer the best odds. In order to save you the time and trouble that comes with odds shopping, we’ve already included the quality of odds into our equation while making the list of the best NCAAB sports betting sites.
NCAAB Betting Apps
Betting on the go is a possibility in every state with legal online betting. However, some sportsbooks have better-performing mobile betting platforms than others. That’s why we also considered the quality of their apps and mobile sites, giving you a chance to have the most convenient betting experience.
Deposits and Withdrawals
Though often overlooked, another critical performance indicator for online betting is banking. A worthwhile NCAAB sportsbook must provide a wide enough range of choices for deposits and withdrawals, along with optimal minimum and maximum limits. Processing times should be as short as possible, while fees must be minimal, if any. It should go without saying that all transactions should be protected by standard security protocols.
Quality of Support
No matter how user-friendly today’s NCAAB betting sites are, you’re likely to run into a few hurdles from time to time. Instead of wondering how to solve the problems yourself, responsive and professional customer support should be just a few clicks away to lend a helping hand through live chat, email, phone, or social media. We tested the quality of support on every NCAAB betting site before giving it a thumbs up.
Brief History of NCAA Basketball
College basketball is one of the oldest known forms of organized basketball. Basketball was invented in 1891 by James Naismith in Springfield. It was meant to be a training exercise to help keep athletes in shape, but people soon realized that it had the potential to become a sport of its own, so some colleges had already played it by 1893.
Colleges kept competing against each other and YMCA groups, all the while changing and adapting the sport’s rules. As a result, the first actual five-on-five game saw the light of day in 1896.
Interestingly enough, the first tournament that exclusively hosted college teams was during the 1904 Olympic Games in St. Louis, where basketball was a demonstration sport. The first more notable tournament was the National Intercollegiate Basketball Tournament, played in 1922 in Indianapolis.
All of this was a precursor to the NCAA tournament, which would shortly become the most prestigious of its kind. The tournament was hosted in New York in 1939 but soon involved multiple locations so more fans could see the games. As it became more popular, the NCAA basketball tournament started hosting more teams, from 8 to 32 to 68.
Since there are too many schools with basketball programs, the NCAA is separated into three divisions with multiple conferences. The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament (branded as March Madness) is the highest-ranking collegiate basketball competition and the pinnacle of the college basketball season. It is one of the most exciting sporting events for US basketball fans and bettors alike.
NCAA March Madness Format and Teams
The March Madness format changed multiple times throughout the tournament history, with the latest change happening in 2011 when the number of teams increased from 64 to 68. Champions of each of the 32 conferences receive automatic bids, while the Selection Committee determines the remaining 36.
The tournament is played during March and April every year. It has a single-elimination format and consists of several rounds, with the final few rounds dubbed Sweet Sixteen, Elite Eight, and Final Four.
The list of participating teams changes every year, but some appear more frequently than others, including large schools like Duke, Kentucky, and North Carolina. The most successful team in its history is UCLA, winning the title 11 times.
How NCAAB Sports Betting Online Works
The process of betting on collegiate basketball is pretty much identical to that of pro basketball or any other major sports leagues offered by the operator. Of course, all sports bettors start with the registration and making a deposit, after which they can explore the NCAAB betting options and start creating a betting slip.
How to Sign Up and Bet With the Best NCAAB Sports Betting Sites
The registration process on NCAAB betting sites is not rocket science, but you should still prepare yourself and know what to expect when signing up.
Here’s a quick step-by-step guide on what to do to start betting online:
- Pick one of the top-performing NCAAB betting sites from our list.
- Once you’re on the homepage of your chosen online sportsbook, click on the button leading to registration (usually Sign Up, Join, or Register).
- Provide required details, including your name, date of birth, address, social security number, and more.
- Go to the Deposit page, pick a deposit method, and complete your first payment.
- Optionally, you can claim the sportsbook’s welcome bonus.
- Choose basketball from the list of offered sports and select NCAAB competitions. Click on corresponding bets to start creating your betting slip.
- Input the stake and confirm the bet.
If you decide to bet on mobile, the process will be pretty much the same once you download the sportsbook’s app. You can find links leading to app stores directly on betting sites or by searching through Google Play and App Store.
Mind that you need to be within the border of a state with legal online betting and only access authorized websites in that state. The legal betting age in most states is 21.
Most Popular Types of NCAAB Bets
The ways in which you can bet on NCAA basketball games and tournaments are almost endless. Whether you wish to pick a winning side, guess the number of points in a game, or predict the winner of March Madness even before the tournament starts, you can do it on any of the best NCAAB sports betting sites.
Here’s more about some of the most common types of basketball bets.
A moneyline is a straightforward bet that requires picking a winning side. Favorites are assigned negative odds, while underdogs have positive odds.
Let’s say that Duke is playing Villanova in the Final Four matchup. The odds on Duke are -150, meaning that a $150 bet would get you a $100 profit. On the other hand, the odds on Villanova are +130, and betting on them means that you’ll get a $130 profit on a $100 bet.
Point spread is the most popular type of bet in high-scoring sports like basketball, especially in college ball. Because high- and low-ranked teams meet all the time, the winner is practically known in advance, which reflects the odds, so the margin of victory becomes the most exciting guessing game.
When betting the point spread, you’ll see a certain amount of handicap points credited to the underdog, with the same amount of points deducted from the favorite, like +/- 13.5, for example. The goal is to guess which team will cover the spread or have more points once the handicap points are added or deducted from their total.
Totals are another bet revolving around points, but the winner and the margin of victory are completely irrelevant. The goal is to guess the number of points after the final score or whether they’ll be over or under a number suggested by the sportsbook.
Proposition bets are a category of sports wagers that include individual statistical elements of the game rather than just the final outcome. For example, you can bet who wins the first half or which team gets first to 20 points. There are also player props that let you guess whether an individual player will score more or less than a given total.
The problem with player props is that they are explicitly forbidden on collegiate games in most states, so you might not find these types of bets on your local betting site.
Futures betting on NCAAB usually just means predicting the winner of the March Madness tournament. However, some bookies may allow you to bet on the exact elimination phase of a given team as well. You can take these bets before or at any moment during the tournament. For the championship game, you may also get to predict which player will win the MOP (Most Outstanding Player) award.
NCAAB Sports Betting Bonus Offers
While browsing through our top-rated NCAAB betting bookies, you’ll find plenty of welcome offers and ongoing bonus deals. Some bonuses might specifically relate to college basketball, while others are for betting in general. Still, all of them can be very valuable, extending your bankroll and giving you a chance to turn bonus funds into real money.
In any case, here are some of the most common bonus offers you can find at NCAAB online sportsbooks:
- Free bets — Usually part of the intro promo, free bets are credits given to you after a deposit. They are not withdrawable, and if you win with the free bet, the stake is deducted from your total win. Also, using free bets might be limited to certain markets and odds.
- Risk-free bets — A risk-free bet allows you to lose a qualifying bet and get the money back in the form of a free bet.
- Match bonus — The value of a match bonus depends on the value of your deposit. In the case of a 100% bonus, if you deposit $50, the sportsbook will give you another $50 that you can use to place any type of bet. However, the extra funds are not available for immediate withdrawal and have wagering requirements.
- Cashback — If you hit a rough patch, a cashback promotion will soften the blow giving you back anywhere between 5% and 20% of your net losses during the promotional period.
Odds boosts — Blockbuster NCAAB games will often come with enhanced odds on specific markets, allowing you to take advantage of lower juice and earn a bigger profit.
No matter how good they look at first glance, sports betting bonuses are usually just a marketing trick a sportsbook uses to lure you in. While they can be valuable, you should always check the terms and conditions to see what you’re getting into and realize the true value of a given offer.
NCAAB Live Betting
NCAAB games can be exciting from start to finish, as every second that passes in between is an opportunity for a new bet. Live betting works exceptionally well with basketball because you can place various wagers at any moment during the game. The ever-changing odds and lines reflect the current score and the situation on the court.
Any pre-match market you find on an NCAAB game will likely also be available for live betting, including the standard moneyline, spread, and totals. There are live prop bets as well, but they’ll only show up if the state you’re in allows prop betting on collegiate games.
Live betting is an indispensable part of NCAAB online sportsbooks, so no matter which operator you choose, you will enjoy live betting on all the top college basketball games.
NCAAB Betting Apps
The best thing about top NCAAB sportsbooks is that they won’t force you to be stuck in front of a computer screen to place a bet. Every major sportsbook has a convenient app that you can download for your iOS and Android devices.
The apps contain all the same features as desktop sites, and they’ll maybe even give you an opportunity to claim some exclusive mobile bonuses.
Rules for NCAAB Sports Betting Online
Collegiate sports have a special status in the US gambling regulation books. Namely, to protect student-athletes, most states agreed to limit betting on college games to an extent.
Some states don’t allow betting on games involving in-state college teams, while others ban player props or proposition bets in general. Other than these, college betting has no other limiting rules, and it works pretty much in the same way as pro basketball betting.
NCAAB Betting vs. NBA Betting
There are quite a few differences between NCAA basketball and the NBA. First, college competitions contain way more games than the NBA, while the rules between the two differ in terms of game duration and competition format.
This all has an impact on betting in one way or another. The gap in quality between competing college teams can be far more significant than any two NBA squads, as large universities can take on smaller unknown programs. Consequently, this leads to huge victories, changing the betting dynamics and making point spreads more interesting and harder to predict.
Because of the single-elimination format, upsets in March Madness are more common than in the NBA Playoffs. This reflects the odds of futures bets, where you’ll often see that March Madness doesn’t really have any surefire favorites.
Finally, limits and bans associated with college ball do not apply to the NBA. You can bet on NBA games involving your local team or place any game or player props.
General NCAAB Betting Tips
Before you rush to one of our best NCAAB sports betting sites and place your first bet, we suggest you take it slow and take note of some of the general college b-ball betting tips:
- Only bet on programs you know about — There are hundreds of schools that compete throughout NCAA’s divisions, and there’s simply no way to gather enough information about all of them. Stay away from betting on games involving unfamiliar programs, as you’ll be taking a shot in the dark.
- Study the form of teams — Check how a given team has performed in the last couple of games. Young teams are prone to having long streaks, both winning and losing, so it’s easier to pick up on the trends.
Don’t bet on your favorite college — Like when betting on any sport, you should never wager on your favorite college team unless you’re sure that you’re looking at the situation objectively.
Is NCAAB sports betting online legal?
Betting on college basketball is legal in all states that have legalized online sports betting.
How can I know an NCAAB sportsbook is legit?
An easy way to check if a betting site is legit is to read through its licensing information. A legal and regulated NCAAB sportsbook must be transparent about being licensed in a given state.
What is the best NCAAB betting site?
There is more than a single great sportsbook for betting on NCAAB. That’s why we’ve listed several of them on this page, leaving the final decision to you.
What are the most popular NCAAB bets?
Moneyline, point spread, and over/under are the holy trinity of basketball bets.
Can I bet on NCAAB live?
Yes, as soon as the game starts, you can access live betting markets on any authorized online sportsbook.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Are any NCAAB bets off-limits?
Betting on in-state teams and taking proposition bets is forbidden in some states.
Are there any NCAAB betting bonuses?
Yes, you can freely use sportsbook promotions on sports like college basketball, while you may also run into NCAAB-exclusive promos like odds boosts for March Madness duels.
Are there any NCAAB betting apps?
Of course! All top NCAAB sportsbooks have developed apps that you can download and install on both iOS and Android.
Do I need to register in person to bet on NCAAB online?
This depends on the state you’re currently in. Some still require in-person registration before allowing mobile play, but the majority of states give you an option to sign up online.
Do I have to be a resident of a given state to bet on NCAAB there?
The rule implies that you must physically be present in the state that you’re betting in. You do not have to be a resident of the said state.