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The Do's and Don'ts of College Football Betting

College Football Betting: Betting Do's and Don’ts

By Loot, NCAA Football Handicapper,

When betting college football, we know there are some things we should be doing more of, while other tendencies should be disposed of. The challenge is that sometimes we lose sight of it all. And if we aren’t careful, we can start adopting some bad traits that can end up hurting our bottom line. Let’s review the things we should be doing more of, while looking at some of the less-desirable traits we need to stave off from becoming a part of our betting profile.

As college football bettors we have the power of isolation. Every week, we are faced with a mind-numbing slate of games on the betting board. This is where it’s helpful to look at the list of games as a list of potential battles that you can fight. You isolate only the battles where you feel you have a good chance to win.

It’s surprising sometimes how many bettors lose sight of this dynamic. They try to slug it out with the bookie, betting on a whole bunch of games. You don’t have to do that. You win the war by winning individual battles. Which battles you fight is entirely up to you, so be selective. Fight the war on your terms, along the lines you desire. Relinquishing this edge basically makes you like any other gambler in the casino. Being able to pick which specific battles you want to fight is a valuable tool, and one that is really only available in sports betting.

Another tool at the disposal of college football bettors is the ability to wait for the right price. Again, no forms of gambling offer this perk. When participating in other forms of gambling, you basically have to accept whatever odds the casino is giving you. In college football betting, you have the luxury of waiting or pouncing early, depending on the situation.


We do not merely look at spreads and totals and accept the price. We look behind the still. We shop around, looking for the best value on our gambling dollar. Knowing that this type of consciousness is often what separates the winners from the losers in college football betting, we know it’s important to extract maximum value.

Therefore, as we get more experienced in college football betting, we start to develop a sixth sense of line movement. We are always trying to beat the closing line. If you took Colorado at +8 and it closed at +6, you know you’re doing a good job and how much that will resonate over the long-term.

When we do the right things, we have a decided edge. Most people are not always doing the right things and the bookie can bank on that helping their bottom line. We, however, do nothing to please the bookie. We do the little things. If we have a pair of 6-point favorites, we deliberate over which will pay more--a 2-team teaser or a money-line parlay? If a team we want to bet falls on a key number like 3 or 7, we might buy half-a-point to get on the right side of the key number. We do the little things.

We develop our own opinions and reads. If we hear a team receiving tremendous amounts of hype, we do not allow our minds to be contaminated with thoughts of how great that team is. And conversely, if we hear a team getting rained upon with criticism, we don’t permit our minds to get carried away in burying that team in the scrap heap. Sure, we use pieces of information we get in the media, but we don’t solely rely on others to form our analysis.

In fact, the discerning bettor looks at teams receiving tremendous amounts of hype or criticism with raised eyebrows. Typically, teams performing very well are never as good as the media makes them out to be. Conversely, the teams that are in the public’s doghouse are seldom as bad as what they’re being made out to be. One common element of every bettor is that they blaze their own trail, freed from the elements of hype and public opinion.

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