As someone who is going to school in hopes of being the next Tony Romo of broadcast television, watching and analyzing all kinds of professional sports has been a staple in my life thus far.
With more and more applications and online opportunities to bet on like DraftKings, FanDuel and the ESPN Fantasy prize mode, I jumped at the opportunity to try my hand at sports betting. Seeing that this decision happened in the latter half of 2020, I can’t help but think that my eagerness to watch sports for the first time following a country-wide shutdown had something to do with it.
With my limited amount of sports betting experience, I have learned a couple of lessons that I feel are valuable to spread to anyone wanting to get into the game. Before I reveal any of these tips, let me forewarn that I am not an expert; I am merely a college student who bets online and recently conducted a survey regarding the matter.
For starters, set aside a small amount of money and use fragments of winnings in future pools. Unless you love emotional rollercoasters and the stress of college classes isn’t enough, do not go into sports betting pulling hundreds out of your bank account.
If you run through your small amount of designated betting money, do not bet again until you have made at least 20-50 times the amount you plan on betting again. This keeps betting at bay, and it teaches discipline since you must go out and earn more money before spending more in order to ensure that you are not putting yourself in a financial hole.
Another suggestion that I have is to do your research on the betting application that you are utilizing.
Betting sites typically keep a portion of the money inputted. For example, if 10 people are constructing a temporary team of the week on DraftKings, and they each put $10 in, there is $100 put in. DraftKings will only give money back to the top four competitors, in the form of $20 each.
With four people winning $20 each, this means that $80 of the betting money came back to the winners and $20 went to DraftKings. Many betting platforms use this practice.
A way to maximize your potential gains is to look for sites that give the highest percentage of bets back to its winners.
Researching what sports you are betting on is just as essential as researching the betting format itself. If you are betting on a certain team to win, back your decision up with evidence. Look up injury reports, records of both teams, matchups within the game and any other information you can find.
Stats are public information and can be found on a variety of reputable sites (ESPN, CBS, etc.), so if you throw your money at something that you barely did any research on, consider the money gone.
Betting is definitely not the most risk-free way to make money, especially in college where money is of essence.
However, if you do have some extra money and you want a chance at winning big, utilizing the tips I stated above will hopefully give you a better sense of direction on how to maximize gains and minimize losses.