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Sportsbooks Smiled Big Following North Carolina Win

April 6, 2017

The NCAA Tournament began looking as if bettors would have their day. However, the dogs and the OVER took control and the Futures Board was the big winner for the books.

With the combined handle for the NCAA Tournament higher than that of the Super Bowl, three weeks in late March and early April has become the center of focus for sportsbooks and bettors alike when the NFL or college football is idle.

The bottom line for sportsbooks in the NCAA tournament has become an important factor in how they will do for the year both in Las Vegas and offshore sportsbooks.

With a total of 67 games, live in-game betting, smartphone apps, props and the overall increase in popularity of sports betting the handle grows each year for the NCAA Tournament.

The outcome of the Monday national championship game between Gonzaga and North Carolina was good for sportsbooks.

The money was distributed nearly even between the two teams, but if Gonzaga would have won the profit on the futures boards would have been far less than with a North Carolina win. As there was much more liability on the Futures boards had Gonzaga won.

The dogs did well during the tournament. While the straight up favorites ended the tournament 49-18, the dogs were a successful 36-28-3 resulting in 66.7% in covers. The OVER took control early and continued with a run of 40-26-1 or cashing 61% of the time.

Most sportsbooks needed and received a big NCAA tournament profit after the NFL postseason hurt them. Sharp money did not do well during the NCAA Tournament even though the opening Thursday went their way.

Sportsbooks overall enjoyed three strong weekends during the tournament with favorites winning many more games than losing, but not covering the number.

While no figures have yet to be released as to what the overall handle was for the tournament between Las Vegas and online sportsbooks, it had been estimated to exceed the $10 billion mark.

With the handle growing each year, sportsbooks are looking to the tournament as one of their most important revenue generators each year.

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