For many US sports bettors then betting the total provides more entertainment and more involvement in the game, and many wagering fans believe that predicting the under/over is a whole lot easier than who will actually win the game or make the points spread. Totals bets are also known as the under/over and it is a simple as placing a wager on whether you think that the points scored by both teams will go over a certain amount. The initial thing to remember here is it’s the score of both teams and not one or the other. You are basically betting on whether at the end of the game, the combined scores of both teams will be over or under a certain number. Before the game starts the bookmaker will offer a total and to place the wager you simply decide on under that number or over it.
An example would be the New York Giants are playing the Miami Dolphins and the bookmaker has set the total (under/over) at 43.5. Your job is to decide whether the combined score of both teams will be more or less than 43.5. Bookmakers will often add the .5 meaning that there can be no tie or push. In this example 43 or less points and the under would win and anything more than 44 points and the over would win the wager. As you can imagine wagering on the total provides plenty of excitement and many players wager the total on the over when they watch a game and are looking to see points scored.
How the Bookie Moves the Totals Line
Just line the points spread the bookmaker will also move a totals amount too, however this does not mean that the bookie believes that all of a sudden there will be more or less points scored in a game, as it is all about weighing up the amounts wagered on either side of the line. Using the example above with a totals line of 43.5, if the sportsbook sees a lot more money going on the over, then they may raise the total by 0.5 a point, or even a point to attract money to the other side of the line, and the exact opposite happens when money is going on the under in that the line would come in a little. Again, this is simply due to large amounts of money going on one side of the line and not down to a change of heart by the bookie.
Betting on Football and Basketball Totals
You will find that the odds on Football and Basketball total bets to be around -110 meaning that you will need to wager $11 to win $10 however you will find some online sportsbooks that offer slightly better odds of -105 for special promotions etc. The total amounts in NFL will usually be between 32 and 52 however expect much higher totals in NCAA Football especially in games involving teams with good offences. Basketball totals are of course higher due to the sheer amount of points scored in any given game and you can expect to see totals way over 200 in some games.
Baseball, Hockey and Soccer Totals
As you can imagine, in these sports much fewer points are scored and therefore the totals will be much lower, in fact the usual total in a soccer game is just 2,5. The good thing about totals in these games is that it is quite possible, with such small totals to have your bets won half way through the game, and that is a great feeling! Also, in sports such as MLB, NHL and Soccer then it will be rare for the total to change at anytime, and even larger bets would not make the bookie move the line. Totals wagering provides plenty of entertainment and many sports wagering fans will choose this option over everything else available.