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How to Bet on College Football

An Oklahoma Sooners fan celebrates during the game against the West Virginia Mountaineers

In the world of college football betting – which is like the real world but with a run-and-shoot offense – there is something for everybody. From high-scoring blowouts between two unevenly matched teams to defensive showdowns between championship contenders in the SEC, every Saturday in college football brings dozens of interesting storylines and betting angles.

As Elton John once said, “Saturday night’s all right for betting.” OK, he said “Saturday night’s all right for fighting” but let’s not fight, let’s bet. Below we'll explain how to bet on college football legally. 

Finding a Sportsbook to Bet on College Football

College football is popular across virtually all online sportsbooks with betting options aplenty. This page lists the top sportsbooks for college football betting.  We’ve researched each one and can attest to their safety and ease of use. 

How to Sign Up at a Sportsbook

When you're ready to bet on college football legally - you now have a list of sportsbooks at your disposal - your next step is to create an account. This takes a few minutes and you’ll need to have your deposit information ready. The sportsbooks we vouch for take everything from Bitcoin to PayPal to debit to credit cards as deposit options. Once you’ve created your account and set up your deposit method of choice, check out the bonus options. Some sportsbooks will offer a Welcome Bonus that will match a percentage of your first deposit up to a certain amount. For instance, a bonus could be something like a 100% match of your first deposit up to $200.

Basic Odds and Betting Options

In college football betting, point spreads are used to bridge the gap between two teams, whether it be home-field advantage or just a discrepancy between the programs. Unlike in the NFL where games that should be lopsided routinely result in upsets, college football features some games that are never in doubt.

Point Spread

When the Illinois Fighting Illini – say that 10 times backwards – visit the Ohio State Buckeyes, the Buckeyes are almost certain to win. What makes these games worth betting on is the point spread. In this instance, Ohio State would be a huge favorite, something like -40.5, meaning Illinois would be something like +40.5.

Bettors who want to wager on Ohio State would be betting on the Buckeyes to win by 41 points or more. If you wanted to bet on the Fighting Illini, you’d want them to keep the game within 40 points, otherwise they won’t cover the spread. Spreads make every game on the board into evenly matched betting options regardless of how lopsided they appear on paper. Also, spreads are great on bagels.


Of course, not every game is as disproportionate as the example above. A game between Auburn and Alabama figures to be a close one that could go either way. While these games also have spreads, bettors can choose to bet them on the moneyline instead.

Let’s pretend that Alabama might be a -220 favorite over Auburn at +180. This means that you would have to bet $220 to win $100 on the Crimson Tide, while a bet on the Tigers would be $100 to win $180.


Point totals (aka OVER/UNDER betting) are also frequently bet on in college football. Sportsbooks set a number of total points expected to be scored in a game, and bettors can bet on whether the actual combined number of points scored in the game will go OVER or UNDER that total.

NCAA College Football Betting Pages Legend