Sports Betting Explained: The Beginner’s Guide

sports betting explained

Sports betting is big business in the U.S. There are billions of dollars wagered on sports each year whether on the Super Bowl, March Madness, and other sports.

You can easily bet on sports and make some cash, but there are a lot of questions to be answered. Is sports betting legal? How do you bet on sports? Where can you place your bets?

Read on to learn the answers to these questions and more in this guide to sports betting explained.

Sports Betting and the Law

The first question that most people have about sports betting is whether or not it’s legal. The answer isn’t as simple as it seems.

It depends is the answer.

Sports betting was only legal in Nevada until New Jersey sued the federal government to contest the Amateur Sports Protection Act all the way to the Supreme Court. This law kept states from making their own sports betting laws.

In 2018, the Supreme Court sided with New Jersey, which opened the floodgates of legal sports betting in states.

New Jersey was among the first states to act with Delaware, followed by Pennsylvania, Missouri and a host of other states. There are more states that are moving towards legalizing sports betting, so it’s best to keep an eye on your state legislature.

Sports Betting Explained: How to Start

If you live in a state where sports betting is legal, then you’re free to start betting on sports. Here are the steps you’ll need to take to get started.

Set Your Bankroll

The first thing to do is to be a responsible gambler. That’s done by setting a budget for yourself. This is called your bankroll. This will determine the types of bets you place and how much you bet.

Pick a Sport

Did you know that you can bet on just about any sport? You can, even golf or bowling. You can bet on Formula 1 racing, soccer, football, hockey, basketball and more.

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You should bet on a sport that you have some knowledge about. You don’t want to be the type of bettor that picks a team based on uniform colors alone.

Betting on Horse Racing

Horse racing is widely seen as the most exciting two minutes in sports. You can bet on Triple Crown races like the Kentucky Derby, or you can see what’s happening at Monmouth Park.

Betting on horse racing is much different than betting on football or basketball. For example, you can bet on a horse to come in first, second or third. You can bet on that horse across the board, meaning that you’ll win if it comes in first, second, or third.

You can also bet on the first two horses in the exacta. A trifecta is when you bet on the first three horses. A superfecta is a massive bet that can come in when you pick the first four horses.

You can supercharge your bets when you box your bet, meaning that you’re betting on the horses to win in any order.

Betting on Football

One of the top sports to bet on in the U.S. is football. People will bet billions on college and professional football, both legally and illegally. Here are some basic betting formats to start betting on football.

Bet the Moneyline

This is a very simple wager. You pick the team that is going to win. Either you win or lose.

Bet the Point Spread

When you look at football odds, you see that one team is the favorite to win. A team that is more likely to win will have a larger point spread to cover.

That’s to make the bet more interesting. The team that’s not favored to win is given a handicap to make up for the gap between the two teams.

For example, a 10-0 team goes up a team that’s 0-9. The point spread is 35 ½ points. If you bet on the team that’s 10-0, they will have to win by 36 points in order for your bet to be considered a win. The ½ point is there as a tiebreaker.

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Other Common Bets

Across most sports, you’ll see some other types of bets. These are some of the more exciting bets that you can get into as your knowledge of sports betting develops.

Futures & Prop Bets

Futures and Prop bets are the random bets, like who’s going to fall off the stage at the Super Bowl Halftime Show.

Future bets predict the future of the game, like the score after one quarter,.

Prop bets, or proposition bets, bet on anything that happens during the game, such as who scores the first points.

In-Game Play

Some places will let you place bets in the middle of a game. If you find that a team is up late in the game, you can bet on a comeback or you can bet on a team to hold its lead.

Finding a Place to Bet

Now that you know about some of the basics of sports betting, where can you place your bets. There are a wealth of options, online and in-person.

The first thing you should look at is the number of ways to bet. You should find that most sites and casinos will offer a downloadable app to make betting easy.

The next thing to look for is a gaming license. Each state has its own gaming commission that regulates betting in the state. Legitimate sites will invest heavily in these licenses.

You also want to look for other games to play. Slot games like Bonanza slotswise will add to your gaming fun.

Sports Betting Explained: Have Fun

Watching sports can be taken to a whole new level of enjoyment when you bet and win. Now that you had sports betting explained so you know the basics, you can start placing your bets.

Are you ready to start betting? Check out this site for the latest sports betting news and tips.

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