March Madness Betting Guide 🎖️

The NCAA men’s basketball tournament is by far the the biggest college sports event in the United States. In 2023, 68 teams will compete for the title of national champion, and Your betting choices are no longer limited to office pools. Betting on March Madness online is also available in more states than ever, as sports betting legalization has spread across the United States.

march madness betting guide

🌎 Betting on March Madness in Different Legal Betting States

You can now legally bet on the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament online in 20 different states. This means that you can bet real money online instead of just filling your March Madness bracket on the NCAA website and participating in your office pool.

  • ⭐ New York
  • ⭐ New Jersey
  • ⭐ Pennsylvania
  • ⭐ Michigan
  • ⭐ Arizona
  • ⭐ Colorado
  • ⭐ Indiana
  • ⭐ Illinois
  • ⭐ Tennessee
  • ⭐ Iowa
  • ⭐ Virginia
  • ⭐ Louisiana
  • ⭐ West Virginia
  • ⭐ Connecticut
  • ⭐ Wyoming
  • ⭐ Kansas
  • ⭐ Ohio
  • ⭐ Maryland
  • ⭐ Massachusetts

💵 March Madness Bet Types

Best sports betting apps provide players with several opportunities for betting on the NCAA tournament. Although futures on the winner of the March Madness bracket are naturally the most popular, you can also wager on the outcomes of individual games. In addition to moneyline bets, sports betting apps offer individual bets on all the games in the tournament. By combining different online sports bet types from various sites, you can find the best odds.

Point Spreads

Point Spread is the most bet type in a basketball game. In this bet type, the betting site has handicapped the other side. Let’s say the Baylor Bears are favored 3.5 points against the Alabama Crimson Tide. The line would read Bears -3.5 and Tide +3.5. You then need to pick which side you think will “cover” the spread.

Money Line

Moneyline is a simple bet. You choose the winner of the game, extra time included. Odds on moneyline bets may be very low, especially at the start of the tournament when favorites play against underdogs.

Over / Under bets (totals bets)

College basketball totals bets are wagers where you try to correctly predict whether the line set for total points in the game will go under or over. For example, if Villanova is playing Gonzaga, DraftKings might set the line at 143 points. Your job is to pick whether over 143 points are scored or not.

Teams Props

Team proposition bets include teams scoring total in the game, half, or quarter. Furthermore, you can wager on things like how many threes the team will make, or the total number of fouls.

Live Betting

Live betting is wagering during the game. Some states don’t allow live bets on college sports, so check your local regulations before thinking that you can fire off the bets from courtside.

Note that most states prohibit player prop bets and plyer futures for NCAA Tournament games and college sports like college football in general. Futures bet is still available for teams though.

💵 College Basketball Futures Betting Options

The free to play bracket contest for cash prizes or daily fantasy sports are fun ways to participate, but there are also several fun real money wager types for the casual sports bettor. You can take part in the basketball action with wager options like the number of free throws, most outstanding player etc.

To Win the Tournament

The most obvious choice is of course to bet on the NCAAB National Champion. This is of course the hardest pick to make, and even though you can pretty much know the seeding beforehand, there are still always unicorns that cause huge upsets in each tournament.

To Make Final Four

To make Final Four is a somewhat safer betting option. Top 4 seeds make the final four around 50% of the time. However, this is also reflected in the odds. If you want to check the odds you would be getting against the probability of the team making the final four, you can use the BonusFinder odds calculator.

To Make the Elite Eight

This is the bet type our experts like the most. Many unicorns and underdogs make the Elite Eight with quite good odds even. Therefore, you can find some real bargains by betting on your favorite team to place among the top 8 teams in the tournament.

Odds to Make NCAA Tournament

One of the most interesting betting prospect before the tournament starts is to bet on the teams to make the tournament. Because only 33 teams are selected outright, there is a huge betting market for betting which teams will actually make the March Madness Bracket.

Historical March Madness Odds

Checking out teams historical performance is one of the best ways to build your bracket or real money bets. For example, you can check out sources that provide you with March Madness over/under history to get most out of the NCAA Championship betting odds.

📅 March Madness Timeline 2023

The tournament will take place between March 14th and April 3rd, and the Final Four will be contested in Houston. The tournament consists of several stages. Each level means that a certain number of teams will be eliminated from the tournament. Therefore, each level has less games than the level before. You can find more information on exact dates, times and live streaming from

Selection Sunday

March 12th

It all starts on Sunday March 14th, when the selection committee announces each team that will be featured in the 2023 March Madness Tournament and places them into the bracket. 32 conference tournament winners will be featured automatically, with the committee selecting the last 36.

First Four

March 14th – 15th

First four is not yet a full round of March Madness games. Instead it’s a play-in round where the lowest seed teams will play each other to determine who gains entry into the final bracket of 64 teams. The games will be played on March 14th and 15th in Dayton, Ohio.

First Round & Second Round

March 16th – March 19th

The playoff rounds start with high seeds playing against an unranked team. Expert picks suggest that a lot of money can be made on spread bets, when a stronger team takes on a weaker team. The bulk of the tournament’s games takes place on the first two rounds.

Sweet 16

March 23rd – March 24th

The Sweet 16 is the regional semifinal round of the tournament. Only 8 games are played and each winning team will enter the Elite 8. From a bettors perspective, these games start to be much more competitive and bets should be adjusted accordingly.

Elite 8

March 25th & 26th

Only 8 teams remain to compete for the coveted national title. To get through this stage, each team needs to be on their A-game. Many March Madness online betting sites offer promotions on the Elite 8 games, so you should check the offerings from multiple sites when the tournament proceeds to this phase.

Final Four

April 1st

The last four teams in the tournament bang it out on April 3rd. Betting Tip: almost every betting site features futures bets on what team will reach the Final Four, so you should definitely check out the March Madness odds from multiple sites if you want to bet on your favorite team to reach this stage.

The NCAA Championship Game

April 3rd

It all comes down to this title game. Each March Madness online betting site will surely feature promotions for the final game, but if you want to bet on the results of the national championship alone, you should do some line shopping to find the best odds.

March Madness Betting FAQ

Can you bet on March Madness?

Yes. Top college basketball betting apps in legal states offer betting opportunities on all 68 teams in the tournament. Betting on the NCAA tournament is legal online and on mobile device in 20 US states.

What teams qualify for March Madness?

Thirty-two (32) teams gain entry to the field through winning their conference tournaments. The remaining teams rely on the selection committee to award them a bid in the NCAA tournament. The selection process primarily takes place on Selection Sunday and the days leading up to it.

Where can I get the best NCAA tournament odds?

Every legal sportsbook listed on this site provides NCAA tournament odds, but the best March Madness odds can usually be found from BetMGM or Caesars Sportsbook.


Riku is the Editor in Chief at BonusFinder and is a global expert in casino, sports betting and poker.