Sports Betting 101

Sports betting has become a lot more popular since the Supreme Court decided to allow states to legalize it. That means that now you can gamble without having to get on a plane or drive across the country and end up in a casino (or sitting at home on your couch eating buffalo chicken dip with your friends). The thing is, gambling makes people broke, especially when it’s done on a regular basis. Add to that the fact that it’s so easy to do through mobile apps, peer pressure from your sports-loving friends group and odds stacked against you by a bookie, and you have a recipe for disaster, similar to the one that leads to someone eating Aunt Donna’s green congealed salad.

When you bet against the spread, the sportsbook sets odds on occurrences in sporting events such as who will win, lose, or how many points are scored. Those odds are set based on the probability that something will happen. So, the higher the probability, the lower the risk and the less money you will have to put up to bet on a certain outcome.

A good rule of thumb is to only risk 1% to 5% of your total bankroll on each bet. To do this, you need to have a dedicated bank account that is only for placing bets and then multiply your base bet by that number to see how much money you are willing to risk on each play. Pro sports bettors also keep near-obsessive records of each bet, both their wins and losses.