Sports Betting 101

Sports betting is a form of wagering on the outcome of a sporting event. It is legal in some states and supported by a large industry, with a market worth billions of dollars. It can be done online or in person at sportsbooks and other facilities. The NCAA has created a resource to help students understand the risks of sports betting and how to make smart decisions.

A number of factors can affect whether a bet is profitable, including the sport you’re betting on, your knowledge of the game and your personal financial situation. It’s important to know your limits and stick to them. In addition, it’s a good idea to diversify your wagers by placing multiple bets, or parlays. This will reduce your risk of a bad bet and increase the likelihood of a winning one.

There are many different ways to place a bet, such as picking the winner of a game or team, or betting on an individual player’s performance. You can also bet on total points, or “over/under,” which is when the bookmaker predicts a specific amount of points and the bettor bets on whether the points will exceed or fall short of the predicted total.

Another popular method of sports betting is participating in a pool or fantasy league. A pool is a competition in which participants submit predictions on the outcome of a sporting event. The person with the most correct predictions wins the pool.