New Jersey Sportsbook Operators Support ‘Yes’ Vote On College Betting

New Jersey’s largest online sportsbook operators, FanDuel and DraftKings, support the November referendum to allow in-state college betting.

Voters will decide in November whether New Jersey sportsbooks can accept legal wagers on in-state college teams or collegiate events played in the Garden State.

The state Legislature approved a resolution last month in support of amending NJ’s sports betting law. So the measure now heads to the general election ballot.

Under the 2018 sports betting law, gamblers cannot bet on NJ schools, such as Rutgers, Seton Hall, or Princeton. The law also prevents wagers on collegiate tournaments or events held in New Jersey.

The two largest New Jersey online sportsbook operators, FanDuel and DraftKings, fully support the changes. Both operators told NJ Gambling Sites that the state’s current prohibitions undermine the goal of sports gambling legalization and regulation.

New Jersey sportsbooks can’t offer Rutgers, Seton Hall games … for now

Lawmakers are hoping to change the law before the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament comes to Newark’s Prudential Center in 2025.

Last year’s tournament appearances by the Rutgers Scarlet Knights and Seton Hall Pirates helped move the needle in favor of change.

New Jersey sportsbooks have also missed out on the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference basketball tournament. Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall has hosted it for the last two years.

“Events and tournaments such as March Madness are highly anticipated by sports bettors all over the country,” NJ Assembly members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey said in a joint statement after the vote. “With a majority vote, we will be able to give the people in New Jersey the opportunity to place wagers on our collegiate teams and continue to enjoy the sporting events in our state.”

FanDuel says changes will benefit NJ, bettors

New Jersey is currently the largest sports betting market in the U.S. Since 2018, more than $15.97 billion has been legally bet with New Jersey sportsbooks. Nevada’s sportsbooks have taken just under $15.5 billion in wagers over the same time.

However, it’s no secret that online sports betting accounts for more than 90% of all wagers in NJ. FanDuel Sportsbook and DraftKings Sportsbook are the largest of NJ’s online operators.

“We are supportive of including college sports in legalized betting states,” FanDuel said in a statement to NJGS.

“Without including it, you leave college sports betting to the illegal, unregulated market, depriving states of revenue both directly from college sports betting and from users who don’t convert to the legal market for other sports because it doesn’t include college.”

DraftKings wants college betting barriers broken down

Similarly, DraftKings — the first NJ online sportsbook — endorses the November amendment.

“New Jersey has been at the forefront of legalized sports betting in the United States and we commend the efforts of lawmakers there for exploring ways to safely enhance the sports betting experience,” said Griffin Finan, vice president of government affairs and associate general counsel for DraftKings.

“We are hopeful that voters in the Garden State vote yes to approve the amendment on all college sport or athletic events.”

The American Gaming Association, the lobbying arm for U.S. gambling, has long advocated for regulated sports betting as a means to eliminate offshore and illegal bookmakers.

“DraftKings believes that creating artificial barriers for customers such as restricting markets on in-state college teams and college events hosted within state lines, deter bettors from moving to the legal market and ultimately minimizes revenue opportunities for the state,” Finan said.

NJ sports betting ballot referendum language

So what exactly is the question that will appear on the November ballot?

Well, you can read the full details here.

Basically, the main question will be: “Do you approve amending the Constitution to permit wagering through casinos and current or former horse racetracks on all college sport or athletic events?”

The interpretive statement reads, in part: “This amendment would allow the Legislature to pass laws permitting wagering on any college sport or athletic event. It would permit wagering even if a New Jersey college team participates in the competition.”

Talk about a meaningful 2021 Election Day. The question will be appearing on the same ballot as the gubernatorial race.

AP Photo/Frank Franklin II

The Biggest Implications For The DraftKings And Dish TV Deal Could Be Yet To Come

The news of a DraftKings Dish TV deal may not have many immediate implications but with a little more innovation, could grow into something.

As it stands right now, the DraftKings Dish TV deal isn’t much more than a way to activate an Internet script. With a little more innovation, however, this partnership could play a major role in making New Jersey sports betting a hallmark of consuming live sports.

The two companies announced their partnership Wednesday, marking a first in a couple of ways. If they’re able to fully flesh it out, there could be many copycats in the coming years.

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Details on the DraftKings Dish TV deal

As Dish continues to lose pay-TV subscribers by the thousands partially due to ever-rising costs for consumers, offering new or updated amenities within the service becomes crucial. When Dish inevitably raises its price to access its satellite television feed again, it will have a DraftKings application to include in its sales pitch of “no, really, we didn’t just decide to charge you more for the same service that you used to get at the old price.”

Within the Dish TV Hopper platform, subscribers will soon find the app. It isn’t a fully functional DraftKings app akin to that which New Jerseyans have on their mobile devices, however.

In fact, cell phones and tablets are crucial components of the process. Here’s how it will work.

Let’s say you’re watching a Brooklyn Nets game and you want to see where the live betting lines are at. All you have to do is say, “launch DraftKings” to your remote or select DraftKings from the App Menu.

On your screen will appear live odds from an array of NCAA men’s basketball, NBA, and NHL events. If you see a market you like, you can initiate the bet. That’s all you can do, though.

The DraftKings app on your Dish TV will then send a text message to the number connected to your Dish TV account. From there, you’ll complete the process of placing your wager using the DraftKings app on that device.

You can also set recordings and watch live sports that correspond with bets you have already placed or that pertain to a DraftKings daily fantasy sports entry. The limitations of this platform may make it kind of superfluous right now, but with a little work, it could become essential.

Limited and redundant

Really, the only benefit of this application is that you can browse some of DraftKings’ markets without having to take your eyes off the game. Dish TV apps can operate in a picture-in-picture format.

There’s really nothing stopping you from just pulling up the DraftKings Sportsbook app on your phone as you’re watching the game. On that device, you can go through the entire process of selecting the bet you want, no initial text message necessary.

Additionally, accessing DraftKings that way gives you a fuller experience. Right now, if you’re watching an MLB, European soccer, or PGA event, the app on your Dish TV isn’t of much use for betting purposes.

Another downside of going through your satellite service to place your bet is that by the time you access the odds for in-game markets on your phone, the lines may have moved. So, you may not be as keen to finish the wager as you were when you initiated the process.

Still, this has a lot of potential. These two companies will mostly realize it as technology improves.

What the future could hold

There are two important reasons it’s a good thing you can’t complete the process of placing a bet completely using your Dish TV satellite console currently. Technology can help with both.

The first is responsible gambling concerns. Minors – and people with compulsive gambling issues – can work TV remotes. Requiring the second step, with all the Know Your Customer tools in the smartphone app, greatly reduces the chance of a vulnerable person gambling. Obviously, it’s also against the law for anyone under 21 or on a self-exclusion list to gamble.

The other reason is that the Dish TV consoles probably aren’t capable of providing the same level of verification that smartphones and tablets are. That is something that could eventually change.

If that ever becomes the case, then you might someday be able to place a bet on your TV without having to take your eyes off the game. If Dish and DraftKings can figure that out, everyone else in the industry will rush to replicate it.

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DraftKings Sportsbook Rolls Out Millionaire Bracket Challenge For March Madness Betting

DraftKings Sportsbook isn’t waiting until Selection Sunday to entice March Madness bettors, especially with a $1 million top prize.

A good March Madness bracket may become priceless.

Or worth at least $1 million.

However, DraftKings Sportsbook isn’t waiting until Selection Sunday to entice March Madness bettors.

It has unveiled a novel Millionaire Bracket Challenge, with entry fees of $100 per bracket. The top prize is $1 million and $2 million will be paid out.

New Jersey is one of five states where the promotion is being offered. The others are:

  • Colorado
  • New Hampshire
  • West Virginia
  • Tennessee

Players are allowed up to 20 entries. The competition can be found in the pools or promo section on its website.

Breaking down the Millionaire Bracket prize pool

The prizes range between $1 million and $150. Here is a breakdown of the bigger payouts:

  • First: $1 million
  • Second: $250,000
  • Third: $125,000
  • Fourth: $75,000
  • Fifth: $50,000
  • The 6-10 slots range from $30,000 down to $12,500

The bottom line is there will be ties, and these payouts will be averaged out. However, anyone who finishes in the top 1,500 will be close to even.

“This is truly exciting because a lot of games are difficult to pick, especially this year,” Johnny Avello, the director of race and sportsbook operations for DraftKings, told NJ Gambling Sites. “The days of the 30-point spread in college basketball are over.

“This is the first time we are doing this competition.  I think it is going to be fantastic.”

However, there is one small disclaimer for New Jersey gamblers. If a Garden State team makes the Big Dance, entries will automatically be assigned to the opposing team. And this is in accordance with NJ sports betting regulations.

But who is going to have Seton Hall or Rutgers winning it all?

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Brackets: the soul of March Madness

Brackets represented  March Madness betting, primarily in the office-pool realm.

That was until the PASPA repeal made every game available for wagering (unless a New Jersey team or location is involved).

Brackets now capture the casual bettor, propelling the multi-million-dollar March Madness gambling engine.

And based on elite teams toppling like dominoes in the last week, upsets are going to be needed to fuel a winning bracket.

But how many?

March Madness brings uncertain future

“You have to be asking yourself if (No 1. Ranked) Gonzaga is really that good,” said Avello.

“And look at the other teams having trouble,” he added. “It’s wide open. The Millionaire’s Bracket is going to be exciting and so is the rest of college basketball for the next few weeks.”

Betting enthusiasm will be fueled by parity at the top.

Teams that led the rankings all year just suffered a week of wreckage.

First, it was Ohio State, ranked as high as No. 3 in the AP Poll.

In succession came losses to Michigan, Michigan State, and Iowa. The latter was a 73-57 blowout.

Then there is the Villanova Wildcats.

They were ranked as high as No. 3 in the AP top 25, but getting pounded 73-61 by Butler doesn’t help.  Yes, that Butler, which entered the game at 8-13. And the game wasn’t close.

The shocks do not stop there.

Michigan, which had taken a run of recent money at DraftKings and William Hill, was plastered Monday night by No. 4 Illinois, 76-53.

The No. 2 team in the nation, playing at home, gets blown out.

Call it parity.

Futures betting opportunities are everywhere.

And, in a big game we forecasted here last week, No. 3 Baylor went all out to topple West Virginia, 94-89 in overtime.

West Virginia held the lead in the final minute.

The Mountaineers remain a futures champion longshot (+3000) but have now lost by only five points to Gonzaga and Baylor.

They remain a tremendous value because they haven’t gotten over the top. So you know some brackets will bear their names as champions.

Time to go conference tournament shopping

Because of last week’s shakeup, this is an excellent betting week for the Big 10 Conference Championship. The dogs are live in the updated mid-week betting odds.

Here are the odds to win it at DraftKings:

  • Michigan+185
  • Iowa +375
  • Illinois +400
  • Ohio State +450
  • Purdue +700

Thinking about betting on the hot teams? You’re looking at Iowa and Illinois.

But if you’re buying on the dip, Michigan and Ohio State currently represent bargains.

All these teams will battle again next week, just as they did in the past two.

And bettors have a good reason to sink their teeth into whatever teams they like here.

Maryland, at +5000, has been beating the best of the rest.

Big East Conference has similar overtones

Villanova and Creighton are deservedly favored. However, they are looking a little shaky and now represent good buys.

Here is the Big East Championship odds breakdown as of Wednesday afternoon:

  • Villanova +175
  • Creighton +200
  • UConn +475
  • Xavier +600

So there are good values all around.

Butler, fresh off the Villanova win, is +6000. And Creighton recently lost to Xavier.

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Michigan Rises, then falls at William Hill

You’ve heard of the Sports Illustrated jinx, right? Feature an athlete on the cover and watch for a flop.

That happened to Michigan after it became a top-tier team at the William Hill sportsbook.

Before being blown out by Illinois, Michigan had jumped to +350 for the national championship.

They joined Gonzaga (+250) and Baylor (+350) for the shortest championship odds.

The optimism had come with good reason.

“Michigan is absolutely on that same tier as Gonzaga and Baylor,” said Nick Bogdanovich, Director of Trading for William Hill US.

“They’ve been playing outstanding. We’ve got huge liability on Michigan, the bettors were pounding them early. So we lose really bad with Michigan and we lose pretty damn good with Baylor, too.”

Michigan was listed at +7500 before the start of the season and jumped to as high as +125 in early December.

The Wolverines dropped to +8500, then +2500 in early January, and now are a near chalk.

We talk about the great futures betting odds available by wagering early in the season.

This is a classic example.

Meanwhile, the biggest 2020-21 college basketball championship futures wager on Gonzaga was a New Jersey bettor laying $15,000 on them at +800 for a total potential payout of $135,000.

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‘Cats Watch: Villanova’s Championship Odds With March Madness Looming

The March Madness betting conversation is heating up, with Villanova’s odds of competing for a national title being one of the hot topics.

The pre-March Madness betting values are approaching the final buzzer of Selection Sunday on March 14.

In a relative flash, gamblers will witness the end of the regular season, conference tournaments and the official seedings for the NCAA Tournament. This is the time to find value and assess the field  for the tournament.

New Jersey online sports bettors, undeterred about being unable to wager Garden State teams here, follow both the Villanova Wildcats and the national circuit.

From a NJ sports betting perspective, they helped make Villanova the second-highest team bet at DraftKings Sportsbook in mid-February. Plus, the school’s proximity less than 25 miles from New Jersey makes it a betting natural.

Let’s examine Villanova and the national college-basketball circuit.

Villanova’s March Madness odds versus top contenders

Villanova is in a buy-on-the-dip mode. Its price reflects recent losses to St. John’s (70-59) and Creighton (86-70).

All the college basketball talk is Gonzaga this, Gonzaga that, with good reason.  Gonzaga (22-0) seeks to become the first undefeated national champion since Indiana in 1976 and has towered above the field.

Entering the final week of February, these were the championship odds at DraftKings:

  • Gonzaga +250
  • Baylor +275
  • Michigan + 450
  • Villanova +1100
  • Ohio State +1100

FanDuel Sportsbook and William Hill odds were similar, with slight changes. Villanova was locked in at +1100. FanDuel opened with Gonzaga at +270 and Baylor +300.

Michigan stood at +700 at William Hill and +450 at DraftKings. That’s a major opportunity for Michigan backers.

March Madness sleepers and their best prices

Illinois is + 2000 at William Hill.

West Virginia +3000 at DraftKings and William Hill.

Ohio State is +1800 at FanDuel.

Ohio State is ranked Number 4 in the last AP top 25. This is a big price for the Buckeyes’ high standing.

For the national championship, there is value all over the board because the eventual champion must win six times.  But the outlines of the favored teams are taking shape and returns will soon drop.

This might be the last week for attractive prices on teams like Gonzaga and No. 2 Baylor to win the championship. They are already prohibitive for everything else and Villanova is approaching that territory.

As far as current national championship odds go, here is a look at where teams stand at NJ online sportsbooks:

Final Four odds at FanDuel

Look at the odds to gain the Final Four at FanDuel.

Baylor and Gonzaga are both -300.

Villanova is +200, which indicates faith in the Wildcats but not great value. Bettors will need any of these teams to win four tournament games to cash in.

DraftKings and projected No. 1 seeds

As far as which four teams will earn No. 1 seeds, the answer is a little more than two weeks away.

However, there is still time for NJ bettors to get some action.

Gonzaga and Baylor are  the heavy favorites, -10000, at DraftKings. Michigan at -500, is next. Forget about it.

But some value remains for the last projected No. 1 seed.

Villanova was +400 as of Tuesday afternoon, but securing it isn’t a lock. Here are the other teams currently ahead of them:

  • Alabama +100
  • Florida State +200
  • Ohio State +200
  • Illinois +300

West Virginia comes in at +400 as well.

The Wildcats return a 4-1 price and would have to beat out four teams. Fair odds, difficult task.

What about Villanova and Big East tourney?

Hold onto your money, unless you like Villanova at +110 or Creighton at +200 according to DraftKings.

Little upside, significant downside.

What to watch during the countdown:

St. John’s and Creighton both visit Villanova in the last week of February and first week of March.

Both teams hammered Villanova on their own courts in February.

The rematches will be interesting. If Villanova is as good as odds indicate, the Wildcats should win the rematches handily.  If they don’t, that is cause for concern.

St. John’s is a real wild card.

DraftKings has the Red Storm at +4000 to win the Big East. St. John’s already defeated Villanova, but lost to 3-10 DePaul at home last week.

What is Villanova’s recent form?

Nova  entered the final week of February at 14-3.

They started strongly, but had a string of games interrupted by COVID-19.  Then came the losses to St. John’s and Creighton.

There is concern about Villanova’s defense and its ability to regain momentum.  They come off a nice win over Connecticut, 68-60, entering the final week of February.

It won’t be surprising to see some bettors hedge, making a small bet now and seeing how Villanova exits these two contests before investing more.

March Madness watch

So, what is the next step?

Gonzaga wraps up the regular season this week and will likely finish undefeated. And then comes its conference tournament.

Gonzaga’s perfect record includes double-digit victories over Virginia, Iowa and Kansas. It has won its West Coast Conference contests by an average of nearly 25 points a game, so this team is a likely lock for a No. 1  seed.

Second-ranked Baylor has a perfect record including 15 double-digit victories.

Keep an eye on Thursday’s game between Baylor and West Virginia. This will provide an excellent barometer of where each team is and it may change wagering odds going forward.

West Virginia has been lurking in the shadows, squeaking past teams ranked in its vicinity of the Top 10 ratings.

The Mountaineers also gave Gonzaga its only close shave of the season, an 87-82 loss in early December.

Any victory or a very close loss to Baylor would substantially slice West Virginia’s championship odds.

Baylor-West Virginia is another great matchup to determine Big 12 championship odds.

Baylor is -167 at DraftKings, a thanks-but-no-thanks price for many bettors.

West Virginia is +600. But if the Mountaineers win Thursday’s game, that price will fall dramatically and Baylor‘s will go up.

A West Virginia backer would be betting now, a Baylor bettor would hope the Bears stub their toe in Thursday’s game and then load up on the more favorable odds that would follow.

That’s part of the joy in juggling the pre-tournament countdown. Sometimes you have to wait, and sometimes you have to act.

AP Photo/Chris Szagola




Turn $1 Into $100 With A Made 3-Pointer At DraftKings Sportsbook

A new DraftKings Sportsbook basketball promo for first-time depositors offers $100 in free bets for a wager of just $1. You pick the bet.

Most men’s college basketball and NBA games involve one team hitting at least one 3-point shot attempt. Thus, a new DraftKings basketball promo for first-time depositors has the same feel of maximizing an offensive possession.

New Jerseyans who haven’t yet made a deposit at DraftKings Sportsbook can turn a wager of just a dollar into $100 in free bets with this deal. However, it’s important to understand the terms of the promotion beforehand.

You must use this link to claim this DraftKings Bet $1 Get $100 with a made 3-pointer

The details of the latest DraftKings basketball promo

The deal is now active, through the rest of February 2021. It’s only for bettors who haven’t deposited funds with DraftKings yet, though.

To activate the deal, make a first deposit of at least $5. Then, wager at least a dollar on either the moneyline or spread of any men’s college basketball or NBA game before the game tips off. There is no maximum, but wagering more won’t increase your bonus here.

If any player on the team you stake hits at least one 3-point shot during the game, you get the bonus. The bonus funds are independent of your moneyline or spread wager.

Say, for example, you took the Brooklyn Nets odds to cover +2.5 points at -109 against the Los Angeles Lakers. Further, suppose you wagered just a dollar on that market.

If Kyrie Irving (or any other Nets player) hits a three, you’d get the $100 in free bets regardless of whether Brooklyn covers the spread. If the Nets were to end up covering, you would also get $1.92 in winnings.

If Brooklyn failed to cover, you would still get the free bets. There’s some more information you need from that point, though.

The free bets will come in four $25 increments instead of one $100 credit. Additionally, the promotional funds expire after seven days. The site credit is not redeemable for cash.

While you can’t wager on NJ college teams, there are still many other options over the final week and a half of this month of local relevance.

Dates to consider for using this promo

The Lakers and Nets square off in Los Angeles on Thursday night. Other highlighted dates for the rest of February include:

  • Friday, Feb. 19 – Chicago Bulls at Philadelphia 76ers
  • Saturday, Feb. 20 – No. 13 West Virginia at No. 12 Texas
  • Sunday, Feb. 21 – Nets at Los Angeles Clippers
  • Monday, Feb. 22 – Stanford at No. 17 USC
  • Tuesday, Feb. 23 – 76ers at Toronto Raptors
  • Wednesday, Feb. 24 – Nebraska at No. 5 Illinois
  • Thursday, Feb. 25 – Dallas Mavericks at 76ers
  • Friday, Feb. 26 – SIU at No. 22 Loyola
  • Saturday, Feb. 27 – Dallas at Brooklyn
  • Sunday, Feb. 28 – No. 11 Iowa at No. 4 Ohio State

With these dates and more filling the calendar for the rest of this month, there are plenty of opportunities to turn a dollar into $100.

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Road To Indiana: All NCAA Tournament Games Will Take Place In Hoosier State

Now that we know where all 67 games of the 2021 NCAA Tournament will be taking place, here’s a look at March Madness odds.

Count it. The NJ sports betting industry just hit a three-pointer. March Madness, two golden words in the American psyche, is back.

Gamblers, sportsbooks and the nation’s college basketball fans are celebrating the rumors that became fact as the new year began.

The NCAA will bring back the NCAA Tournament for 2021 and conduct the entire tournament in Indiana.

The official announcement came Monday afternoon.

2021 NCAA Tournament plans

According to, the majority of the tournament’s 67 games will occur in Indianapolis.

NCAA Senior Vice President of Basketball Dan Gavitt said, “The 2021 version of March Madness will be one to remember, if for no other reason than the uniqueness of the event.”

“With the direction of the Men’s Basketball Committee, we are making the most of the circumstances the global pandemic has presented. We’re fortunate to have neighbors and partners in Indianapolis and surrounding communities who not only love the game of basketball as much as anyone else in the country but have a storied history when it comes to staging major sporting events,” said Gavitt.

As far as where the games will be played, the NCAA will be using several locations:

  • Two courts inside Lucas Oil Stadium
  • Bankers Life Fieldhouse
  • Hinkle Fieldhouse
  • Indiana Farmers Coliseum
  • Mackey Arena in West Lafayette
  • Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall in Bloomington

Selection Sunday is still scheduled for March 14.

And plans remain to have the Final Four on April 3 and 5.

The dates of preliminary-round games are still to be determined.

Looking at March Madness odds

There is still a long way to go before conference champions are crowned and Selection Sunday takes place. However, it’s never too early to look at the NCAA Tournament futures.

NCAA Tournament, a cultural cornerstone, revived

Monday’s March Madness announcement is welcome news for bettors. Remember, the 2020 NCAA Tournament was canceled. And it coincided with COVID-19 pushing college and pro sports to the sidelines.

Although the NBA’s shutdown last March 11 was the pandemic’s acknowledged reference point, the NCAA had already been canceling conference championships.

That’s why the return of March Madness in any form is a financial and emotional lift.

Many logistics will be called into play here, and the tournament will have a bubble-type structure similar to those used to successfully complete the NBA and NHL 2020 seasons.

As far as the NCAA plans go, the Indiana Convention Center will be used as a practice facility, with multiple courts set up inside the venue.

Marriott properties, an official NCAA corporate partner, will house most of the tournament teams. The hotels are connected to the convention center via skywalks and within a controlled environment. All teams will be housed on dedicated hotel floors, with physically distanced meeting and dining rooms, as well as secure transportation to and from competition venues.

So this may be the move that puts college basketball back on the front burner. The league began its season slowly, with an emphasis on regional games, limited travel and postponements for a couple of weeks when necessary.

March Madness will have a different feel

For operators like DraftKings Sportsbook, the 2020-21 NCAA men’s basketball season continues to be unique.

“College basketball feels different to me right now, but it will get better as we get through this (the pandemic),” Johnny Avello, the director of race and sportsbook operations for DraftKings, told in late December. “I get it, they are looking after the safety of the students, etc., and they are proceeding with caution.

“After the first of the year, especially, if we get everything under control, and if we feel comfortable heading into March, things should be all right.”

On a related matter, Avello said that although Garden State bettors can’t wager on New Jersey teams, it’s a minuscule liability for the books. Besides Seton Hall, there are few teams that would generate wagering interest for New Jersey gamblers.

“There used to be a law that Nevada bettors could not wager on teams in their state, which primarily meant UNLV and Nevada Reno,” said Avello.  “They changed that law a little over 20 years ago, and you were allowed to bet on those teams.”

“We did not get an abundance of money in the state for them. Customers are not looking at betting ‘their’ home team. It’s one thing if you lived in Boston and you bet the New England Patriots because they covered 70% of the time and made you money, but otherwise I don’t think anybody, regardless of the sport, is going to play the home team consistently,” said Avello.

A closer look at NCAA championship odds

Whomever they back, bettors wager into the lessons of past performance. Most teams will lose at least a handful of games and, throughout the season, top rankings will shift.

Some team in the 11-25 slot usually suffers an upset loss each week. This is a fertile area to bet into.

And the dynamic was even more pronounced last year, as teams in the Top 5 were shifted, too.

With no champion crowned last year, here are some numbers reflecting the betting sentiment. Good prices are still available on the national championship front:

DraftKings has Gonzaga at + 350, less of a deal than a month ago, but still good.

Villanova has rocketed up to No. 2 at +700. Baylor stands third at +800, followed by Wisconsin at +900 and both Houston and Texas at +1100.

There is good value in the Big East with Villanova at +225 and Creighton +375.

But, like all futures bets, the value will diminish for good teams over time.

March Madness futures at FanDuel and William Hill

There is variety at other books, including FanDuel Sportsbook.

Gonzaga (+350) is still the big pick, but Villanova improves to +900 here. And if you like Creighton, the team is +2500 at FanDuel.

At William Hill, the same major characters exist, with some slight wrinkles. Villanova, for instance, is +1000 to win the championship.

Gonzaga, Villanova and Baylor sat atop the college rankings as the year began. Eventually, the ranked teams will provide some sense of the circuit for bettors.

Villanova, which postponed its next three games Monday because of COVID-19 issues, remains an enigma. There will be no data to push the futures price either way.  By the time Villanova resumes, it will have gone through a multiweek break.

This is just part of the puzzle. Short term, some teams have issues. Longer term, meaning March, music has begun for the Big Dance.

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