College Basketball: Out-of-Conference Play

How to Choose which Games to Bet

The early part of the NCAA Basketball season features only nonconference play as each team plays about a dozen games against clubs that are not a part of their league. These games provide sports bettors with some very fine opportunities much in the same way that nonconference play gives college football bettors some excellent chances to make some cash. Here’s what to look for when it comes to nonconference matchups.

Top 10 Teams

Look at matchups that feature a team that’s in the top 10 and one that is not ranked in the top 25. In choosing which team on which to bet, you want to find a team that has something to prove. Even if they are listed at -29.5, they may be a good bet depending upon the team they are playing and what they want to prove.

As an example in 2009, Syracuse beat its first two opponents, Albany and Robert Morris, by more than 30 points, beating the spread.

Top 10 to 25 Teams

Look for matchups between those teams that are ranked between 10th and 25th. You may find a small point spread between two clubs where one is far superior to the other or you may discover a possible upset. What you are looking for is a team that has been overrated by the pundits and that is facing its first real test.

Under Handicapped Games

Nonconference contests that feature two teams that are basically off the national radar or close to being off the radar can be good bets. This is because much of the betting public is going to focus on the top 25 clubs. Bookmakers know that those big games will attract the most action. But those are not necessarily the best to bet on because the handicappers have closely scrutinized those games and the spread are probably pretty solid.

However, games that are available for betting but are low profile contests may be ripe for picking. You can find spreads that are inaccurate or actually in your favor. Analyze these games carefully. You will find two to four bargains a week.

Take Advantage of Mismatches

Where nonconference play is concerned NCAA Basketball mismatches offer the sports bettor great opportunities. Always do your research and take time to carefully determine how accurate the point spread is.