Best March Madness Betting Sites
The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament is one of the most bet-on sporting spectacles in the world. From the tip-off of the First Four to the final strains of “One Shining Moment,” March Madness betting has something for everyone.
In Texas, once sportsbooks are legal, you’ll be able to bet on March Madness in multiple ways beyond bracket pools, including bets on single games, futures odds, teams or conferences to reach the Final Four, and more.
Top March Madness betting sites
Legal and regulated sports betting sites in Texas will have March Madness odds markets. Some sportsbooks, however, have more than others. Let’s cover some of the best March Madness betting sites and markets expected in Texas.
FanDuel Sportsbook for March Madness odds
Quality is the name of the game when it comes to FanDuel online sportsbook. It has competitive lines and a nice selection of NCAA Tournament betting markets. Other positive features include:
- Bet moneylines/spreads/totals on every game of the NCAA Tournament
- Regular odds boost promotions during March Madness
- Bet team props, parlays, and more
DraftKings Sportsbook for March Madness odds
DraftKings Sportsbook has one of the largest customer bases of any sportsbook in the country. Plus, DK posts the most high-quality NCAA Tournament lines and promotions. Its strengths are:
- Competitive lines for all March Madness games
- Free-to-play March Madness bracket contests with prizes like a $1 million first-place prize, $50,000 second-place prize, and $35,000 for the third
- Just about every bet type you can think of for the NCAA Tournament
BetMGM Sportsbook for March Madness odds
The BetMGM app and online sportsbook is popular for good reason. It offers a lot of NCAA Tournament markets ranging from your typical moneylines and totals, but also unique parlays and props. Here are a few more strong points.
- NCAA Tournament bets can be edited after you finalize them, something that sets BetMGM apart from most other sportsbooks
- Parlays—both single-game and multi-leg—are available for every March Madness game
- Free bracket contest where you can win up to $10 million for a “grand prize” if you pick a perfect bracket; the $100,000 first-place prize is a solid draw as well
How to bet on March Madness futures
Futures bets are on long-term events or outcomes. That means teams to make it to the Final Four, for example, or which team will win the entire March Madness bracket.
With futures, the odds most favor the bettor right when the sports lines are released. Those willing to take a higher risk for a higher potential reward will jump on these bets as soon as possible.
Some bettors, however, prefer a more calculated approach. They wait for more information, which also reduces their potential profits as the March Madness lines get tighter.
Across all legal online sportsbooks, you’ll find a nice selection of March Madness-focused futures bets. Here are some that you might come across in Texas online sportsbooks:
- Which team will win the National Championship?
- Which conference will the champion come from?
- Which team or teams will win their regional?
- Which team or teams will make the run to the Final Four?
Some of these futures odds are available nearly as soon as the last March Madness concludes. Others are available before the start of the regular college basketball season.
How to bet on pre-tournament seeds and props
You have more than just winners to bet on in the NCAA Tournament. You’ll also find many prop bets: essentially side bets you make with a sportsbook.
March Madness prop bets aren’t typically focused on which teams win and lose. Instead, they vary quite broadly and can range from being serious and stat-based to more lighthearted and fun. The variation will depend on the sportsbook you’re using.
Here are some prop bets you’ll likely come across during March Madness:
- How many teams from each conference will be invited to March Madness?
- Over/under bets on the seeds that teams are assigned
- Which teams will be awarded No. 1 seeds?
- Over/under bets on the number of wins for a team all tourney long
How to bet on the First Four
Not every team in the NCAA Tournament gets there simply by being invited. There are four games in which teams square off to decide which will advance as the No. 16 seeds in each region.
This First Four play-in tournament consists of the four teams with the lowest-seeded at-large bids and the four lowest-seeded automatic bids. This is essentially a miniature first round to the NCAA Tournament. As with the full 64-team tourney, you can bet on the First Four.
Once the participating teams are announced, sportsbooks in Texas will release March Madness betting lines for each game. You’ll also be able to try your hand at things like parlays and point spread bets during this prologue to March Madness.
How to bet on March Madness games
Three major bet types will dominate sportsbooks for March Madness. Below, we look at each of these popular March Madness bets.
- Moneylines: These bets are as simple as they come. Two teams play; you pick which team will win. NCAA Tournament moneylines are released once the entire field is announced. From that point forward, moneylines are released as upcoming matchups are determined.
- Point spreads: During March Madness, point spread bets get the most attention from experienced bettors. The basic concept of the spread bet is that the favorite in an upcoming game is given a margin by which they must win to clear the bet. The underdog doesn’t need to win outright; they can’t let the favorite reach that winning margin.
- Totals: A totals bet is also known as an over/under. These bets focus only on how many points the two teams playing will combine to score. If the two teams combine to score more than the predicted points total, then you would bet the over. If you think the two teams won’t be able to live up to those scoring expectations, then you’d bet the under.
March Madness bracket contests
If you’re one of those March Madness fans who just can’t get through the spring without filling out a bracket, there are a lot of free-to-play contests at Texas sportsbooks. Here are three sportsbooks that offer up a free bracket for customers, each with real prizes available to win.
- BetMGM Sportsbook: The top-scoring bracket in this free contest wins $100,000. If someone one day manages to fill out a perfect bracket, they’ll claim $10 million for that historic feat.
- FanDuel Sportsbook: Each selection that you correctly pick will earn you points. These are added up to determine the winners of this free bracket contest. The total prize pool comes in at $5,000.
- DraftKings Sportsbook: This free-to-play contest is a survivor pool. You are tasked with picking a winner for each day of the tournament. If you can survive to the championship, you can be a part of the group of players who split a $30,000 prize pool.
See the full scope of March Madness bracket betting contests here.
How to bet on March Madness online in Texas
Registering for an account with an online sportsbook takes just a few minutes of your time. Click our link to go to the sportsbook of your choice. Once you get to the sportsbook, click the “sign up” or “register” button and provide all the details they ask for.
Once your account is created, you can claim your bonuses and bonus bets, then make a deposit and get to betting. Make sure to read the terms and conditions for any promotions you will accept. You’ll want to understand what you will need to do to claim your winnings.
March Madness betting rules
Every sportsbook has rules governing betting procedures, including NCAA basketball betting and the tournament.
Most sportsbook rules are similar, but you can always read through them by visiting a sportsbook’s website. You can also find them in the terms and conditions you must agree to sign up for an account.
Here are some examples of rules you might find at your sportsbook when it comes to March Madness:
- All bets are settled using only official data and statistics from the NCAA.
- If the tournament is canceled for any reason, bets will be voided, and refunds issued to all bettors.
- Games must start on the scheduled day to have action.
- All bets include overtime unless otherwise stated.