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Over/Under Betting

Steven D. Thompson


If you want to maximise the excitement of sports wagering, try Over/Under betting. With Over/Under bets, you predict the total number of points scored. That means you don't have to worry about which team wins the match. In other words, you can celebrate whenever the teams score. Read on to learn more about this super-exciting sports betting market, and discover how you can improve the success of your Over/Under bets.

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What is an Over/Under Totals Bet? What is an Over/Under Totals Bet?
Table of Contents

    What is an Over/Under Totals Bet?

    An Over/Under bet is when you predict whether the total number of points or goals scored will be higher or lower than the number the sports sports betting site set.

    Let's explain this. Let's say you place a bet that the number of points scored in an NBA game will be higher than 202.5 points. That means that the combined score of both teams should be 203 or higher to have a winning bet. If the game ended 100-104, the total number of points scored was 204. So, you won your bet. 

    In contrast, if the game ends 100-102, the combined points total of the two teams is 202. That's one point short of having a winning Over bet. So, in this case, the winning outcome is Under.

    Over/Under Examples

    The best way to explain how Over/Under bets work is to look at a couple of examples. The first one will be a winning NFL bet, while the second one a losing NBA wager. Let's look at the two bets to see how this sports betting market works.

    A Winning Over/Under Example

    The Dallas Cowboys play the Miami Dolphins, and the points threshold the bookmaker gives you is 44.5. You think that the combined score of both teams won't be higher than that predetermined points total. So, you bet Under.

    The Dallas Cowboys win the game 27-17, meaning the total number of points scored is 44. Now, 44 is very close to 44.5, but it is still under that points threshold. In other words, the winning bet is Under, and you pocket some winnings.

    A Losing Over/Under Example

    Let's say that the Los Angeles Lakers play the Golden State Warriors. The points total the sportsbook gives you for this game is 212.5. You are pretty sure that the duel between these two teams will be a high-scoring one, so you place an Over bet.

    Unfortunately, the final score is LA Lakers 98-101 Golden State Warriors. As you can see, the total number of points is 199. That means that Under is the winning bet and that you needed at least 14 more points to be scored.

    Sports with Over/Under Markets

    The great thing about Over/Under betting markets is that you can bet on them in most sports. You can bet on total points, goals, runs, wickets, games, sets, rounds, maps, etc. And it's not just points or goals that are available in Over/Under bets. You can also wager Over/Under on corners in football, assists per player in basketball, passing yards in the NFL, and much more. The options for Over/Under bets are literally endless.

    You can already imagine that a list of sports with totals betting is pretty extensive. It includes sports like:

    All of these sports give you some type of Over/Under betting market, and most of them facilitate various types of Over/Under wagers. So, you can always bet on something when going with totals markets.

    Basketball Over/Under Bets

    Over/Under bets are among the most popular bets in basketball and right behind point spread markets. As we already mentioned, when you bet Over/Under on basketball, you bet on the total number of points scored in a game.

    For example, let's say the Chicago Bulls play the New York Knicks. The points total sportsbooks give you for this NBA game is 226.5. The game ends 128 - 98. That means that the total number of points scored is 226. So, the winning bet is Under.

    The great thing about basketball and the NBA is that you can place bets on various Over/Under markets. Of course, you can go with the standard points type of bet. However, you can also get odds and bet on Over/Under markets for the points total of each team. For instance, you can place a bet that the Bulls will score more than 126.5 points. You can do the same for the Knicks.

    And that's only the tip of the iceberg. Individual player props allow you to bet on how many assists, points, rebounds, blocks, and steals players will get. Basically, the sports betting site gives you a number of, say, assists for a player, and you predict whether that player will get more or fewer assists than that.

    In other words, you can include dozens of Over/Under selections in your bet slip from only one NBA game. That bet would result in great odds and bring decent winnings if your predictions are accurate.

    American Football Over/Under Bets

    American football is another sport where punters place tons of Over/Under bets. As with basketball, point spread markets are the top choice for NFL bettors. However, total points bets are a close second.

    When you bet on Over/Under NFL bets, you predict whether the total score will be higher or lower than what the sports betting site predicted. 

    Let's say you place a Super Bowl bet saying that the total score of the NFL game between the New Orleans Saints and the Indianapolis Colts will be higher than 39.5. The game ends with a final score of 21-17. So, the total score of the two teams combined is 38. That means the winning bet is Under.

    As with basketball, when betting on the NFL, you can place various types of Over/Under wagers in addition to bets on points. You can bet on the number of passing yards, rushing yards, touchdowns, sacks, interceptions, etc.

    Football Over/Under Bets

    Football offers a fantastic range of Over/Under bets for punters. Your football totals bet can consist of goals but can also include the number of corners, shots on goal, shots off goal, yellow/red cards, fouls, and so on. You can also bet Over/Under on the entire match, on each individual half, or you can place totals bets live as matches happen. The options are endless.

    That said, most Over/Under bets in football are on the number of goals scored by both or one of the teams. Let's illustrate this by looking at arguably the most popular market of these all - Over/Under 2.5 Goals.

    Let's say that Real Madrid plays FC Barcelona and that you want to make watching El Clasico more interesting by placing an Over 2.5 bet. So, you place an Over wager. The match ends 2-1. Because the total number of goals scored is three, which is higher than 2.5, you have a winning bet. Also, the fact that the bookmaker included a half-point in 2.5 means that there are only two outcomes here - Over 2.5 and Under 2.5 Goals. So, it is easier to get a winning bet.

    Over/Under betting markets are on par with traditional match winner propositions in football and have become even more popular recently. That's because betting on goal totals allows you to enjoy matches and celebrate whenever teams score. It doesn't matter which team wins and whether the side you backed to win got two red cards. With Under, and particularly with Over wagers, you stay in the game until the final minutes of the match and get more from your bets.

    MLB Over/Under Bets

    Moneyline markets and Over/Under bets are the two most popular types of wagers for MLB bettors. And while everyone knows that placing moneyline bets means backing the winner of games, not all punters know how MLB Over/Under bets work. Let's explain that.

    Let's say that the San Diego Padres play the San Francisco Giants, and you want to place an Over/Under bet. The sportsbook you joined gives you a 9.5 run line. That means that if you place an Under bet, the two teams will need to score 9 or fewer runs. In contrast, if you bet Over, you want the two teams to score 10 or more runs.

    For the Over bet, the sportsbook gives you odds of +100 (2.00, even money), and it assigns odds of -120 (1.83, 5/6) to the Under option. That means you will win £100 from a £100 bet. On the other hand, to win £100 on the Under bet, you need to stake £120.

    Let's return to the MLB game now. The Padres - Giants duel turned out to be a high-scoring game, and it ended 6-8. In other words, Over 9.5 runs was the winning bet. If you backed that line, you would have doubled your money and got some decent winnings.

    Strategies and Tips for Over/Under Sports Betting Strategies and Tips for Over/Under Sports Betting

    Strategies and Tips for Over/Under Sports Betting

    A quality strategy can help you a lot when trying to accurately predict how many points or goals will be scored in a game. Here we look at tried and tested Over/Under betting techniques that can increase the success of your Over/Under bets significantly. These are the top 4 tips you can use to get more from your Over/Under betting adventure.

    Tip 1: Analyse the total number of points scored in previous matches

    Teams that score lots of goals, points, and runs do that frequently. So, if you want to win most of your Over bets, go with teams that are very prolific when attacking. If those teams have been in great form recently, that's even better.

    If a team is on a winning run and scores points and goals for fun, it will likely continue that high-scoring streak. That means you can benefit from betting on free-scoring teams by placing Over bets on them when they are on top of their game.

    In contrast, if a football team cannot score to save its life or an NBA side can't go over the 100-points mark for days, they are nailed-on picks for Under bets.

    Teams that don't score lots of points are low on confidence, so you cannot expect them to start scoring for fun all of a sudden. That's why we recommend you analyse how a team has performed in recent weeks before deciding whether you will back it with an Under or Over bet. 

    Tip 2: Find sportsbooks that give you plenty of Over/Under options

    A quality sportsbook will give you more than just one Over/Under betting line. The top bookmakers provide punters with a wide range of totals betting markets. That means you can find the one you need and can also bet on odds that will work for you.

    As a rule of thumb, the more totals bet options a sports betting site gives you, the better that bookmaker is, and it gives you more options to win. And it's easy to see why. You have much better chances of winning your total points bet if you can choose from a wide range of totals.

    For instance, if you can bet on only one NFL Over/Under line, that would be okay, but it won't beal. However, if the bookmaker gives you six or eight alternative lines, it will be much easier for you to find the one that you need, even if that total comes with slightly lower odds.

    Let's say you are betting on the Super Bowl game between the LA Rams and the Cincinnati Bengals. The sports betting site gives you several Over/Under options. The options given are:

    • Over/Under 40.5
    • Over/Under 43.5
    • Over/Under 46.5
    • Over/Under 49.5
    • Over/Under 52.5

    As you can see, it is easy to place a winning bet with so many point totals at your disposal. Sure, the odds might be lower if you place an Over 40.5 bet or an Under 52.5 wager. However, the chances you would win your bet increase significantly when you place such low-risk bets.

    In a nutshell, if you want to make the most of your Over/Under betting adventure, find sportsbooks with lots of different totals bet options.

    Tip 3: Bet Over on teams that don't defend

    Lots of things can influence the number of points or goals scored in a game, from injuries to the weather. However, the two crucial factors are attack and defence. We already wrote about how important it is to find high-scoring teams that are great at attacking when betting Over.

    You can find the same value in teams that are bad at defending. These sides concede tons of points and goals week in week out. That means they might not score very often, but you can be sure they will concede plenty of goals and points.

    Ideally, you should look for high-scoring teams that are poor defensively. They will both score and concede, and that is exactly what you want when placing Over bets. Also, you should bet on matches where strong teams offensively play against poor defensive units. In that case, you will know that at least one of the teams will score frequently. And, often, that's enough to get a winning bet.

    Tip 4: Free bets and bonus money can help too

    A great way to profit from Over/Under betting is to find bookmakers that give you bonus money and free bet offers today. That way, you will be able to win regardless of the outcome of the matches you bet on. How is this possible, we hear you ask? Let us explain.

    Most Over/Under bets are 2-way, meaning there are only two possible outcomes - Over and Under. This fact opens a really interesting opportunity for punters who have or are planning to claim free bets and bonuses. They can back one of the two outcomes with their own money and then lay the other with the free bet the sportsbook gave them.

    This method works best when you bet on Over and Under bets that come with similar odds. That means that whatever the outcome, you would win more or less the same amount of money.

    What is a Push in Over/Under betting?

    Bookmakers can express totals bets in two ways. They can give you half-point totals or whole numbers. When the total is expressed in half-points, there are only two outcomes, and it's easy to see why. If the set total is 2.5 goals, the combined score of both teams can be only Over or Under that figure. 

    An NFL game can end in 46 or 47 points, but it cannot end in 46.5 points. So, 46.5 points Over/Under is a 2-way market, and there are only two possible outcomes.

    However, if the total is expressed with a whole number, things become more complicated. When this happens, there are three possible outcomes and not two. 

    For instance, if you are betting on the match between France and Italy and the market is Over/Under 3 goals, the following can happen:

    • Final score: 1-1 - Under
    • Final score: 2-1 - Push - stake is refunded
    • Final score: 2-2 - Over

    As you can see, betting on a market with a whole number total results in a push. When that happens, the sports betting site returns your bet stake. In essence, the bet is cancelled, and you get your money back.


    If you enjoy watching sports but want to make them even more exciting, you will love Over/Under betting markets. When betting on the number of points scored, you don't have to stress over which team will win the game. If you place Over bets, all you want to see is goals or points being scored. And that's what sports betting is all about - maximum fun and excitement.

    However, to get the most value from your Over/Under bets, you need to join a reputable sports betting site. And finding great sportsbooks can be tricky. Fortunately, we can help. At Betpack, we feature licensed and regulated top UK online bookmakers that boast a fantastic range of Over/Under betting markets. Join one today and start feeling the perks of this uniquely exciting market!

    Frequently Asked Questions

    How do you win Over and Under in betting?

    To win Over/Under bets, you need to accurately predict whether the total number of points/goals/runs scored will be higher or lower than the number the sportsbook set.

    What does over 1.5 mean in betting?

    Over 1.5 means that there will be two or more goals scored during the match. If the number of goals is lower than that (one or zero), you lose your bet.

    What happens if the Over/Under is exact?

    The Over/Under bet is rarely exact as bookmakers include half-points or half-goals. However, if the sports betting site uses whole numbers, and exactly the same number of points scored occurs, your bet stake is returned.

    Is it better to bet Over or Under?

    It depends. If you want to enjoy matches, it is much better to bet Over, as you will cheer for the teams to score. However, if you are sure that a game will result in a low number of points or goals, it is better to bet Under.

    Do Over/Under bets include overtime?

    If you are betting on basketball and American football, the Over/Under bet also includes overtime. But that's not the case with all sports. For instance, when you bet on football (soccer), extra time and penalties are not included in Over/Under bets.

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