College Football Betting Tip: How to Bet the Second Half in Blowout Games
Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Devwah Whaley
- Blowouts are common in college football, and bettors can profit by playing second-half lines.
- Using Bet Labs, we detail the optimal strategy for betting on teams trailing big after the first half.
Alabama dominated Arkansas in its Week 9 SEC matchup. The Crimson Tide scored 24 points off of turnovers in the first half and went into the locker room leading 41-0.
Oddsmakers listed the Tide as 11.5-point second-half favorites. After an impressive first half, 64% of bettors jumped on Bama to cover the big spread despite having a comfortable lead. To the dismay of Alabama backers, Arkansas played the No. 2 team in the country to a 7-7 draw in the final two quarters of the game.
Nick Saban’s team covered the full-game spread of 32 points but left second-half bettors wanting more.
One of the simplest contrarian philosophies in sports betting is “buying low and selling high,” and there’s no better time to profit from that strategy than during a game. Bettors can capitalize on this approach by betting on college football second-half lines in blowouts.
We define a blowout to be any game in which a team trails by at least 40 points at halftime, like Arkansas. When a team is down by at least 40 points at the half, you should bet them to cover the second-half line.
Since 2005, teams trailing by at least 40 points at halftime have gone 122-68-6 (64.2%) against the spread according to Bet Labs. A $100 bettor would have returned a profit of $4,353 following this strategy.
When a college football team goes up big, it’s human nature to let up a little bit. In many cases, the team with the big lead at halftime is playing an inferior opponent, which can lead to coaches pulling their starters to ensure that key players don’t suffer injuries.
On the flip side, the team getting blown out is still playing for pride. Even if the end result is basically determined, players will want to take something positive away from the game.
The next time you are watching a college football game and it appears to be a blowout at in the first half, jump on the team trailing to cover the second-half line. History tells us teams down by at least 40 points have been good bets at halftime.