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College Basketball Home Court Advantage

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What is home court advantage actually worth in college basketball?  Ask that question to five different people and you’re likely to get five different answers.  Almost all of them are likely to give you a number like 3 points or 6 points or anywhere in-between.  The truth of the matter is that there is no simple answer to your question.  Think about it this way:  Do you really think that Duke has the same homecourt advantage as North Dakota State?  How do you even begin answering that question?  The fact is that it is going to be different based on which teams are playing and in which conferences.  What I’ve found is that not all conferences are created equal.  Logically speaking, you would think those conferences with the least amount of travel involved between schools would be the conferences where home court advantage means the least.  I went back over 10,000+ college basketball games to see whether or not this was the case.  Here are the results:

College Basketball Home Team Records by Conference

Conference
Games
ATS Record
Margin
Win %
SU Record
Margin
Win %
SEC 428 214-206-8 0.07 51.00% 295-133 4.29 68.90%
ACC 412 189-206-17 0.08 47.80% 274-138 4.08 66.50%
Big 12 511 266-234-11 0.84 53.20% 334-177 5.22 65.40%
Mid-American 410 206-194-10 0.23 51.50% 267-143 4.04 65.10%
Horizon League 370 183-171-16 -0.06 51.70% 241-129 3.76 65.10%
Missouri Valley 424 210-207-7 -0.00 50.40% 275-149 4.02 64.90%
Big 10 419 208-206-5 0.09 50.20% 271-148 4.32 64.70%
Sun Belt 594 290-293-11 -0.43 49.70% 376-218 3.49 63.30%
Mountain West 378 184-190-4 0.19 49.20% 239-139 4.32 63.20%
WAC 372 174-189-9 -0.04 47.90% 233-139 4.28 62.60%
Conference USA 516 245-257-14 -0.31 48.80% 321-195 3.84 62.20%
Summit 388 96-135-1 -1.20 41.60% 239-149 3.51 61.60%
Ohio Valley 418 188-220-10 -0.73 46.10% 257-161 3.27 61.50%
Big Sky 314 143-153-6 -0.21 48.30% 192-122 3.89 61.10%
Big West 291 131-154-6 -0.86 46.00% 177-114 2.88 60.80%
Atlantic 10 513 242-264-7 -0.48 47.80% 309-204 3.33 60.20%
Colonial Athletic 516 237-263-16 -0.51 47.40% 310-206 3.29 60.10%
Pac-12 486 231-248-7 -0.71 48.20% 292-194 3.20 60.10%
Southern 590 291-289-10 -0.37 50.20% 354-236 3.35 60.00%
Ivy League 280 126-150-4 -1.10 45.70% 168-112 2.46 60.00%
Big East 570 260-303-7 -0.93 46.20% 337-233 2.68 59.10%
Metro Atlantic Athletic 474 197-265-12 -1.18 42.60% 276-198 2.58 58.20%
West Coast 355 157-189-9 -0.90 45.40% 203-152 2.90 57.20%

First, let’s talk about everything that’s going on in this table.  We have just about every conference listed, some of the newer Division I conferences have been excluded due to a lack of games.  All records are for home teams in conference play.  We’ve got the total number of games played, followed by each home team’s record against the spread, their margin of victory against the spread, and their ATS win percentage followed by their straight up record, actual margin of victory and straight up win percentage.

Now for the important part.  What do these numbers tell us?  For starters, I’ve sorted the data by home team win percentage.  This tells us in which conferences the home team wins most often.  For example, in the SEC, home teams win 68.9 percent of the time by an average of 4.29 points.  Meanwhile, teams in the MAAC only win 58.2 percent of the time, by a slim margin of just 2.58 points.  This gives us some great information to go off of when trying to determine how much to consider home court advantage in college basketball.  Start with a number you think a team should have for home court advantage, then check this table to see whether or not home teams in that conference actually perform at the level you thought that team would.  You should be able to find some great opportunities to either take or fade home teams in certain situations.

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About the Author: Jimmy Boyd is known for his consistency. He's a proven winner in college and pro football, college and pro basketball and pro baseball. He finished as the No. 1 ranked MLB handicapper in 2007 by earning $1,000/game bettors $50,050. He also finished as the No. 1 ranked basketball handicapper in the 2008-09 season, profiting $1,000/game bettors 38,530. His basketball plays have banked $1,000/game bettors nearly $80,000 the last five years. Check out Jimmy's premium picks for tonight!
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