Betting on first halves in college basketball has become more and more common in recent years. The growth of online sportsbooks has led to an increasing number of sites giving customers the opportunity to bet college basketball first halves.
These types of bets can offer some real value. If you have a good idea of how a referee will call a game or a player’s likelihood of getting in foul trouble, a first half wager may be the way to go. Of course, there are more than just two reasons to bet on college basketball first halves.
First Half College Basketball Betting
There are three options when it comes to betting on the first half of college basketball games. You have the opportunity to bet on a side, the total, or a moneyline. These lines don’t usually open until a few hours before tip-off, so you’ll likely want to have a number in mind before wagering on these options.
First Half College Basketball Pointspread
As with betting on college basketball as a whole, betting on the pointspread is the most popular option in the first half. When you bet on a first half pointspread, you are betting on a team to go into halftime ahead of the number. For instance, if the UCLA Bruins are -3.5 in the first half against the USC Trojans, the Bruins will have to go into halftime up by 4 points or more for a bet on the Bruins to win. If the Bruins are ahead by 3 or less points, or the Trojans are winning, then the Trojans would cover the first half point spread.
First Half College Basketball Total or Over/Under
First half bets on a total are another option available to bettors. You can bet on whether a game will go over or under a set number of points in the first half, just like you would for a full game.
First half totals are generally just half the number of total points that oddsmakers expect to be scored in the game. There can be differences of a point or two due to trends or styles of play though, and also slight differences because second half spreads include overtime.
First Half College Basketball Money Line
Moneyline betting is another way that you can win money on betting college basketball first halves. With this type of bet, you don’t have to worry about a pointspread, as you are simply betting on which team will be ahead at halftime. If the teams are tied, the bet is a push.
When to Bet College Basketball First Halves
There are plenty of reasons to bet on the first half of college basketball games. For instance, a team could have a reputation of sleepwalking through the first half and turning it on in the second half. We saw that with Nevada during the 2018-19 season, as they were so much better than most of their opponents they had trouble getting up in first halves.
Fatigue can be another reason for betting on college basketball first halves. Tired players are always going to have a major impact on a game, so judging the effect that this has is huge. There are a number of causes that could lead to a team being fatigued. It could be during conference tournaments when teams are playing on consecutive nights, or preseason tournaments when the same is true. An overtime game could have been played the night before, which would certainly have an effect on players’ fatigue.
Related to fatigue is the quality of starters in comparison to bench players. If you trust the starters on a team a lot more than you trust its bench players, you might want to bet the first half rather than the game.
Referees have a major part to play too. Officials have varying temperaments and what could be seen as a foul by one official might not be called by another. That could lead to certain players getting in early foul trouble. If you know one of the referees calling a game is more prone to whistle big men for some jostling in the interior, you may want to go against the team that relies on its superstar center to win games.
Check out the latest NBA betting odds at the online sportsbook.