I know how hard it is to figure out how to win consistently betting on sports. It took me over 10 years to learn how to effectively handicap games. One reason why it took me so long was because when I started there weren’t any good books, and the internet didn’t exist.
The good news is that it doesn’t have to take you as long as it did for me. In fact, I’m going to share nine simple tricks you can use to get started betting on sports on this page.
These nine tricks for sports betting aren’t always going to win, but they can help you break even while you’re learning how to handicap games.
1 – College Football Home Underdogs
This used to work well in the NFL, but the sportsbooks pretty much eliminated this trick. But you can still use it in college football. Every week of the NCAA football season you need to look at all of the home teams that are getting points.
Now, I’m not suggesting betting on all of them, but these are the first games where you want to look for value.
The first thing to do is eliminate all of them that are getting more than nine or nine and a half points. When a team is an underdog by 10 or more points there’s a chance they get blown out.
The main games I look at are the ones where the home team is getting three or three and a half points, and where the home team is getting seven or seven and a half points. Three and seven are important break points on football spreads because of field goals and touchdowns.
The next thing I look at is if one or more of the home underdogs has a good quarterback. When I find a home team getting three plus points with a good quarterback, I usually make a bet.
2 – College Sports Home Moneyline Underdogs at +200 or Lower
This works for college basketball and football teams. When a home team is an underdog on the moneyline at +200 or under, you have a chance to make money.
You’re not going to win half of these bets, but you don’t have to in order to make money. You just have to win enough of them to make a long term profit. When you bet $100 to win $200, you only have to win 35% or more of the time to make a profit.
Here’s how the numbers work. If you bet on 100 games at $100 to win $200, you get a total return of $300 every time you win. The total cost to bet 100 times is $10,000. If you win 35 of the games you get back a total of $10,500, for a profit of $500.
3 – Home Baseball Teams Martingale
One of the tricks I still use today is making moneyline bets on how teams in Major League Baseball. I bet on the home team in the first game, and if I don’t win I make a bigger bet on the home team in the second game of the series. And if the home team loses the first two games I make a bigger bet on the third game on the home team.
It does happen occasionally, but you can still make money using this trick. You just have to bet enough on the second and third games to cover your previous losses and have some left over for profit.
Anytime you use the Martingale system there’s some risk. So make sure your bankroll is big enough that you can afford to lose a big bet from time to time.
4 – Ride the NFL Streak
NFL teams go on winning and losing streaks all of the time. While each team is trying to win, the fact is that teams on a winning streak have a better chance to win their next game, and teams on a losing streak have a better chance to lose their next game.
Every season in the NFL you have many opportunities to bet on a team that’s streaking one way or another. This works best when two teas on opposite streaks meet in a game. When one team is on a winning streak and the other is on a losing streak, it’s a prime game for a bet.
5 – NBA Back to Back Opponents
Take a look at the NBA schedule and you’re going to see when teams have to play on back to back days. NBA teams tend to perform worse on the second day when they have to play back to back. This isn’t big news to NBA fans, so why am I including it here?
And if the fresh team is playing at home they have an even better chance to win.
You need to look at every game on the NBA schedule that fits these criteria. It’s one of the fastest ways to find good betting opportunities.
6 – Hockey Puck Line Strategy
This works for both hockey puck lines and baseball run lines, but I wanted to offer you at least one section about each of the major sports. On the puck line, one team gets one and a half goals. This is a big advantage in hockey, because many games are decided by one goal, including all of the games that go into overtime.
I look at every home team that’s getting goals on the puck line. You have to consider the cost of placing these bets, because you pay a higher price when you get goals, but many of these games still provide long term value.
You can come close to breaking even by betting every hockey game where the home team gets goals, but if you do just a little bit of work evaluating these games deeper, you can find the ones that offer the best profits and skip the rest.
7 – College Basketball Mismatches
I usually don’t recommend betting on the big favorite on the moneyline because you have to pay so much to make the bet. But college basketball is one place where I still use this trick.
Like most of the tricks on this list, I look for college basketball teams playing at home that are big favorites. Almost every time a heavy favorite gets upset in NCAA basketball, the favorite is playing on the road.
Just to be clear, this is a moneyline bet, not a point spread bet. I avoid point spread bets on college basketball teams that are heavily favored.
8 – Just Take the Points
If you simply don’t know anything about evaluating games and finding value, just take the points on a game and see what happens. When you get points you can win two ways. If your team is able to win the game you win, and if they keep the score under the points you get you win.
The only other thing you need to do is lean toward taking points on home teams. I know I’ve hammered the home team point in this article, but it’s really important.
Look at all of the games on the schedule, find a home team that’s getting points, and make a small wager. Don’t bet on all of these games; just start with one and see what you can learn.
9 – Line Shopping Paradise
One of the best things the internet has done for sports bettors is making it easy to shop and compare lines on games. This is true for every sport, and it can give you an edge.
Look at the lines at several different sportsbooks before you place any bet on a sporting event. Sometimes you can even find two lines that have a gap in the middle that makes it worth betting on both sides.
And even if you don’t find a middle opportunity, if you find a line that’s a half point better for you it can make a difference.
You can start using the nine sports betting tricks listed on this page today, even if you’ve never placed a bet in your life. When you use the tips on this page you’re going to have a better chance to win than most sports bettors.
And these strategies are going to help you make bets somewhere around break even while you learn what you need to know to evaluate games so you can start winning consistently. Start using these simple tricks for sports betting today.