NCAA Division 1 football brings an unrivaled atmosphere of excitement to sports fans. No matter if you’re a fan of the Big Ten, SEC, ACC or just college football in general, the build up to the major bowl games is an action-packed season filled with unexpected twists and turns. Stars rise while titans fall, and it all culminates with the College Football Playoff (CFP) to determine the national champion.
NCAA FOOTBALL Betting in Michigan
Is betting on NCAA Football legal in Michigan?
Thanks to the passage of 2019’s Lawful Internet Gaming Act, online gambling in Michigan was fully legalized. Legal sportsbooks licensed by the Michigan Gaming Control Board are able to offer NCAA FOOTBALL betting to anyone over the age of 21 who is physically within the state’s borders.
NCCA Football + odds
As we’re sure you’re well aware, the odds and point spread on any given NCAA football game can change at any time. They are not set in stone. It is possible while visiting any of legal online sportsbooks that you will find the odds posted in one of three ways:
- American: This is the most common presentation of the odds here in the United States. If Michigan were favored over Ohio State, the odds may be posted as Michigan -150 and Ohio State +120. This would mean you would need to bet $150 to win $100 on Michigan, or if you wagered on Ohio State, a $100 bet would win $120.
- Decimal (European): This is more common in Europe and Canada, but the odds essentially work in the same fashion. Michigan State may be posted with the odds of 1.50 in a game against Stanford. In this case, a $100 bet on Michigan State would win $150. Basically, multiply your wager by the decimal number to determine your payout ($100 x 1.50 = $150).
- Fractional: Typically, you won’t see individual games listed with fractional odds. They are usually employed in horse racing, though you may hear pundits talking about a team being a 5-to-1 or 3-to-1 favorite to win the title. But if Michigan was listed as 10-1 to win the CFP, with a $100 bet, you would win $1,000 if Michigan won the national championship.
There is more to successful NCAA FOOTBALL betting than just picking the winner. Always shop around when looking at the odds prior to making a wager. Because they fluctuate and because no two sportsbooks will post the exact same odds on every game, value can be found with a little work. Half of the sports betting battle is getting your money down on the right number.
Most common betting markets
The fun of NCAA FOOTBALL betting is that there are several ways to play. You don’t even have to pick a team to get in on the action. Legal betting in Michigan allows you to wager on college football games in several ways. These are the main betting markets available:
- Point spread: The point spread was developed as a way to level the playing field for bettors. If Michigan State was playing Illinois, Michigan State may be listed as a -7 favorite with odds accompanying that bet. In this case, MI State would need to win by 8 points or more for you to win your bet. If you bet on IL, then you would win if Illinois won outright or merely lost by 6 or fewer points. If MI State won by exactly 7 points, it would be a push and you get your money back.
- Moneyline: The simplest bet to make. Pick the winning team. If you’re right, you win at the odds posted.
- Totals (Over/Under): Don’t like either team? Think the game is going to be an offensive explosion or a defensive struggle? Then perhaps you should bet on the over/under. With this bet, you are wagering on the total number of points scored in the game. So, either you bet on the “over” of the listed number – say 52 total points – or on the “under.” If both teams combine to score more than 52 points in the game, the “over” wins. Less than 52, and the “under” is the winner. Your only rooting interest is how many points each team scores.
- Props: A prop (short for “proposition”) bet is typically more of an “exotic” wager on some in-game event. It may be a bet on the distance of the longest field goal, or if a two-point conversion is scored, or if the star QB throws for more than 300 yards in the game. Depending on the sportsbook, several of these types of wagers may be offered for a game. Make sure to look for them as these can be some of the most fun bets to make.
- Futures: Most sportsbooks will offer odds on certain future outcomes. In college football, you can often bet on which team will win their respective conference as well as on which team will win the national championship. Some outlets will also let you bet on which player will win the Heisman Trophy as well as on other similar events.
- Parlay: Feel confident in a number of bets you placed? Then perhaps you should tie those wagers together in a parlay bet. Simply put, you can combine three or more wagers of any type – moneyline, point spread, totals, etc – into a parlay play. The more bets (called “legs” in a parlay) you combine, the higher your odds will become and the more you can potentially win. However, every leg of your parlay play needs to win for you to win your bet. Get just one wrong, and your parlay bet will be a loser.
Don’t forget that moneyline, point spread and totals bets can be made for both the first and second half of each game. And some sportsbooks will allow you to create your own point spread or totals number with alternative odds if you are interested. Look around at all the NCAA FOOTBALL betting options available to you prior to making any wager.
NCAA Football live Betting
Missed the opening kick-off? Don’t worry. You can still get in on all of the NCAA FOOTBALL betting action thanks to live betting. Most sportsbooks offer you the ability to bet on each game even after it has started. Simply look for the “live” section at your favorite online sportsbook. The in-game odds will fluctuate as the game advances, but you will still be able to get money down if you so choose.
NCAA Football Betting Strategy & Tips
What’s the best NCAA FOOTBALL betting strategy? Depends on who you ask. There are many approaches to take when handicapping this sport, and while many claim to be experts in the field, no one has all the answers. We certainly won’t say we know it all, but we hope by incorporating these tips into your NCAA FOOTBALL betting strategy, you will be more successful than expected.
Money management: This holds true for all types of sports betting. Don’t bet more than you can afford to lose. But more than just that clichéd tidbit, money management is about breaking your overall bankroll into units so that you can last the entire NCAA football season. By effectively managing your wager size, you can limit losses while hopefully maximizing your wins. It doesn’t mean you should just bet one unit (be it $5, $25 or $50) every game, but this stratagem should help you exploit value plays when they arise.
Load management: Modern professional athletes have begun practicing load management during the season, and you should, too. You don’t need to bet on every game or even on every week of the season. Bet when you see value. And if it’s not there, don’t make a play. At the same time, be smart enough not to chase your losses. If you should lose on an early game, don’t just wildly bet on a late-night game to “make your money back.” Bet when the time is right and with a level head.
Watch the line movements: As you should be aware, both the odds and the point spreads change during the week prior to kick-off. If a game you were going to bet on features an unexpected line movement, you better find out why it occurred. Maybe there was a significant injury or the weather forecast changed or late bettors are loading up on one side. Whatever the cause may be, examine these changes prior to putting your money down on the game.
Teams looking forwards/backwards: When the schedule is announced, every coach and team circles certain “must win” games. In doing so, they sometimes overlook the game just before these prime matchups. That can be good for you, and value can be had when teams overlook weaker opponents in expectation of playing better teams the following week. The reverse can be true, too. Sometimes a team coming off a major upset can be caught basking in its own glory as opposed to preparing for its next game. Look for these sorts of situations to potentially exploit.
Weaknesses/Strengths: Unlike the NFL, NCAA football teams usually do just one or two things really well. Some teams are running teams. Others have strong defensive lines that carry the day. Whatever that strength may be, there is usually an equal but opposite weak spot that opposing teams can take advantage of. Where these strengths and weaknesses collide, you can find value. Is a strong passing team up against a team designed to stop the run? That’s something you should know, and certainly worth examining in-depth before placing your bet.
Use your head. You’re betting to win, so you should do as much as you can before placing your money down in order to succeed. You can’t win ‘em all – no one does – but you can play smart, look for value, and pace yourself to ensure that you not only have fun, but you add to your bankroll at the end of the day. Good luck!
The NCAA Football in Michigan
Michigan boasts five Division 1 NCAA football programs. Two teams play in the Big Ten while the other three compete in the Mid-American Conference (MAC).
Michigan Wolverines: Housed at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, the Wolverines have the most victories in college football history. They have won 11 national championships, the last of which came in 1997, and three Wolverines have won the Heisman Trophy: Tom Harmon, Desmond Howard, and Charles Woodson. Two of the football team’s biggest rivals are the in-state Michigan State Spartans which it battles against for the Paul Bunyan Trophy, and the Minnesota Golden Gophers which it routinely plays for the fabled Little Brown Jug.
Michigan State Spartans: Spartan Stadium is located in East Lansing which the Spartans have called home since 1923. The football team has won/shared the national championship six times and has won the Rose Bowl four times, most recently in 2014. In 2015, MSU was the No. 3 seed in the College Football Playoff, but lost to Alabama in the Cotton Bowl. Other than playing the Michigan Wolverines for the Paul Bunyan Trophy, the Spartans have traditionally battled Notre Dame for the rights to the Megaphone Trophy.
Central Michigan Chippewas: Originally a NCAA Division II school, the Chippewas won its last national championship at that level in 1974. Now part of the Mid-American Conference, the team has twice won the MAC Championship, once in 2006 over Ohio and again in 2007 by beating Miami University.
Eastern Michigan Eagles: Calling Ypsilanti home, the Eagles were at one point in danger of losing their Division 1 standing. However, the school’s football program was resurrected in the late 1980s and has made two recent bowl appearances in 2016 and 2018.
Western Michigan Broncos: The Kalamazoo-based Broncos can trace its football history back more than 100 years, playing its first games in 1906. The team has had a string of recent successes, including a win in the 2015 Bahamas Bowl over Middle Tennessee. In 2017, it became the first MAC team to play in the Cotton Bowl after finishing the season undefeated at 13-0. Their biggest rival is the in-state Central Michigan Chippewas which they compete against for the WMU-CMU Rivalry Trophy.
The 2022-23 NCAA Football Season
With last year’s shocking upset in the National Championship Game, which saw the #3 seed University of Georgia topple mighty #1 seed, not to mention SEC rival, University of Alabama, college football fans were issued a simple reminder: anything is possible. This, of course, will hold true across the 2022-23 season as well, which looks to be one of the more competitive CFB campaigns in recent memory.
For the seventh time under head coach Nick Saban, Alabama will enter the season ranked #1, which is understandable, given the Tide are bringing back last year’s Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Bryce Young. Then again, there’s little indication defending champion University of Georgia will regress in 2022-23, and ever-present Big 10 contenders Ohio State, Michigan, and perhaps even Michigan State, are expected to compete for CFB Playoff slots as well. Lastly, don’t count out USC, as the Trojans are desperate for a return to their early 2000s, Pete Carrol-led glory, evidenced by USC pledging to join the Big 10 in 2024, and the Trojans $110 million acquisition of wunderkind head coach Lincoln Riley.
Each on the heels of a fantastic 2021-22 effort, both the University of Michigan Wolverines and Michigan State Spartans will enter 2022-23 with understandably high hopes.
For the University of Michigan, personnel losses have induced murmurs that the Wolverines’ defense is due for a step back. The offense, however, is subject of greater optimism, with standout Nevada product Cade McNamara likely to win the starting quarterback job. What’s more, star wideout Ronnie Bell, whom Jim Harbaugh has referred to as the Wolverines’ offensive MVP, is expected to return fully healed from his ACL injury, which, if combined with Michigan’s strong running game, could result in an unstoppable offensive attack.
At Michigan State, expectations couldn’t be higher for the Spartans, given the $95 million extension third-year head coach Mel Tucker signed in the offseason. MSU lost just two games last year, and will endeavor to improve on that excellent outcome. The trouble is, in the Big 10, the road to the Conference Title game, let alone the CFB Playoff, will always run through Columbus, where the Ohio State Buckeyes have held the conference in a stranglehold for years, in spite of so many competitive programs, including MSU, University of Michigan, Penn State, Nebraska, and Wisconsin, nipping at their heels.
The 21-22 NCAA Football Season
Beginning on August 28th, 2021, the 2021-22 NCAAF season was amongst the most thrilling, competitive CFB seasons in recent memory. Not only were most stadiums packed to capacity for the first since the pandemic began, 2021-22 marked the first season since 2016 in which no major team finished undefeated, with Cincinnati representing the longest holdout, though the Bearcats were ultimately defeated by Alabama in the Cotton Bowl Classic.
Speaking of which, Cincinnati was amongst the four programs that made the College Football Playoff in 2021-22, entering as the 4th seed behind Georgia (3), Michigan (2), and Alabama (1). The SEC was well-presented in the National Championship game, with Georgia and Alabama defeating their respective opponents, Michigan and Cincinnati, by a combined 44 points in the CFB Playoff’s first round. On January 10th, at Lucas Oil Stadium, the Bulldogs would defeat the Tide 33-18, securing the University of Georgia’s first National Championship in 41 years.
In Michigan, Jim Harbaugh’s Wolverines were extraordinary. Despite entering the season unranked, Michigan compiled a 12-2 record across the season, their only two losses coming at the hand of Michigan State in the regular season, and Georgia in the Orange Bowl. What’s more, the Wolverines defeated the heralded Ohio State 42-27 in 2001, marking Michigan’s first victory over the Buckeyes since 2011, all with a roster that carried the program’s lowest expectations since 2017.
In East Lansing, 20221-22 was a fantastic season for the Spartans as well. With second year head coach Mel Tucker at the helm, and in spite of fielding the nation’s worst pass defense, the Spartans put together a phenomenal 11-2 record, good for a #10 nationwide ranking and Peach Bowl berth. In addition to defeating Pittsburgh 31-21 in said Bowl, Michigan State enjoyed the offseason triumph of locking up Mel Tucker for the next decade, with a 10-year, $95 million contract extension, funded entirely by boosters. If not for playing in the same Big 10 conference as powerhouses Ohio State and Michigan, the MSU Spartans would surely have competed for a Big 10 Conference Title.
The 20-21 NCAA Football Season
The cliché “a season unlike any other” really left its mark on the 2020-21 NCAA football season. Thanks to the pandemic, no one was even certain a single game would be played. Then, due to state and travel restrictions, most of the conferences curtailed their schedules, creating a unique football season which will (hopefully) never be repeated.
Covid took its toll on both Michigan and Michigan State’s 2020 season. The Wolverines played just six total games, all against Big Ten opponents. They won only two, including a wild 3 OT game over Rutgers 48-42, and finished with a 2-4 record. Michigan State didn’t fare any better as the Spartans wrapped up their season with a 2-5 record. However, they beat the Big Ten’s eventual West Division champions Northwestern 29-20, handing the Wildcats their only conference loss of the season.
The game of the year came in early November when #4 Notre Dame upset #1 Clemson in a 47-40 shootout. However, neither team could manage to win its College Football Playoff game, losing to Alabama and Ohio State respectively. Alabama ultimately won its 18th national championship while being led by Heisman Trophy winning WR DeVonta Smith and Heisman nominee QB Mac Jones.
Is it legal to bet on Michigan college Football teams?
Yes. While some states have made betting on in-state college teams illegal, Michigan allows bets on all its college sports teams.
Do I have to be a resident to bet on NCAA Football games in Michigan?
No. To legally engage in sports betting in-person or online in Michigan, you simply need to be 21 or older and within the state’s borders when you place your bet.
Can I bet on every NCAA Football game?
Most likely, yes. Not every sportsbook will offer odds on every game, but most do. Sometimes, certain games are taken off the boards for a variety of reasons, however.
Can I make teaser and round robin bets on NCAA Football games?
Yes, as long as the sportsbook you work with offers such plays. Check with each sportsbook prior to signing up if you wish to place these types of bets.
Are there NCAA Football betting limits at the online sportsbooks?
Yes. Each sportsbook’s limits vary, so check their posted limits prior to signing up if this is a concern.