It’s one of the most recognizable words in the vocabulary of nearly any sports bettor, but what does moneyline really mean? Well, in plain English, it’s usually used when referring to the money that will be available for wagers once the bet has been placed. However, in the world of sports betting, there are multiple ways in which this term can be defined and used to reference different aspects of a wager and a potential winning or losing proposition.

## The Moneyline

Usually, when someone refers to the moneyline in a bet they are refering to the sum of money that will be available to wager on the event once the bets have been placed. In other words, if the bet is a sports bet on the World Cup, the moneyline will be the total amount of money that will be wagered on each respective team during the entirety of the tournament. This part of the wager is also sometimes referred to as the “pool” or “commitment” part of the bet. Simply put, the moneyline is the pot that will be available to wager on the event once all the bets have been placed.

## The Total O/U

If the bet is a soccer bet and the moneyline is used to refer to the total amount of points that will be won by either team on the day of the game, then this part of the wager is sometimes referred to as the total outcome/underdog (favorite vs. underdog) part of the bet. This is mainly due to the fact that if the favorite team wins the bet, then the total outcome/underdog part of the bet will be zero since the favorite will inevitably win by definition. On the other hand, if the underdog team wins the bet, then the total outcome/underdog part of the bet will be the amount of points that were up for grabs. Additionally, if an exacta (two-in-one bet) is placed on the Detroit Lions vs. Green Bay Packers, then the total outcome/underdog part of the bet will serve as the x-value in the equation. In this particular scenario, the bettor will win $10 if the Detroit Lions beat the Green Bay Packers by exactly 7 points and the Packers defeat the Lions by exactly 3 points. Additionally, in the unlikely event that both teams score the same amount of points, then the wager will officially be a push (tie result).

## The Winner

This part of the wager will serve as the “select” part of the bet if, for example, the bet is on the Super Bowl and the moneyline is used to reference the winner of a race or a fighting match. In the case of the Super Bowl, the winner of the bet will be the team that scores the most points at the end of the tournament. However, if a tie occurs then both participants will share the prize money. Similarly, in the case of a boxer vs. a wrestler, the winner of the bet will be the boxer who, at the end of the bout, proves to be the “smarter” fighter by landing the more impressive punches or kicks. In this case, if the bout ends in a draw, then neither boxer will win and the purse will be shared by both participants.

## The Points Bet

Sometimes, when someone places a point bet on a sporting event, they are actually betting on the final score of the game. In other words, they are placing a wager on whether the score will be greater than a certain amount of points or not. In the case of a NCAA football game, for example, the points bet might be on whether Penn State will cover the spread (betting system used in sports betting where the score is predetermined and a winning wager is dependent on whether the final score exceeds a certain number of points or not). In this particular scenario, the bettor will win whether or not the final score exceeds the point spread by matching the total score (sum of the two teams’ scores) if the game ends in a tie.

Depending on how the bet is written, the payout for this part of the bet can be either win or lose. However, since the point spread is usually set to cover the entire point amount (for example, in the case of a three-point spread, the bettor will win if the final score is between 2 and 3 points), it is usually not a good idea to enter a point bet on an event where the favorite will inevitably win. The reason behind this is that no matter how the game turns out, he or she will still win the entire point amount as opposed to just the winnings of the event.

## The Exacta Bet

An exacta bet is one where two (or more) individual wagers are combined into one wager. In the case of the Detroit Lions vs. Green Bay Packers example discussed above, the exacta bet would be on the Lions and Packers since the exacta bet is on the same team and the same game. However, in the case of the Super Bowl, the exacta bet would be on the New England Patriots vs. the Pittsburgh Steelers since the two teams are competing in the same game. In an exacta bet, the first two parts of the wager (the one-, two-, or three-in-one) are combined into one part whereas the third part (the total outcome/underdog, winner, or points bet) remains separate. This is mainly because these three parts of the wager are calculated separately and only later are they combined to determine the final payout of the bet.

In an exacta bet, the first part is a wager on the outcome of the second part. For example, in the case of the Lions vs. Packers bet discussed above, the first part will be a wager on whether or not the Packers will cover the predetermined point spread. If the spread is covered, then the second part of the bet will serve as a wager on whether or not the Lions will win the game. If the answer to both parts of the bet is “yes,” then the bettor will win the exact amount wagered on each respective part. However, if the answer to either part is “no,” then the entire wager will be a loss since they placed a wager on something that did not happen.

## The Reverse Exacta Bet

The reverse exacta bet is one where the two parts are reversed. In the case of the Lions vs. Packers bet above, if someone were to place a reverse exacta bet, then they would be betting on whether or not the Lions will cover the point spread against the Packers. Naturally, this would mean that the Steelers would be the favorite in this particular wager and the bettor would be risking $10 to win $20 (or vice versa). Additionally, in the case of the Super Bowl, the reverse exacta bet would be on the New England Patriots vs. the Pittsburgh Steelers since these two teams are competing in the same game. In a reverse exacta bet, the first part is a wager on the outcome of the third part whereas the second part is a wager on the outcome of the first part. For example, in the case of the Lions vs. Packers bet above, the first part is a wager on whether or not the Steelers will win the game. If the answer to this part of the bet is “yes,” then the third part will serve as a wager on whether or not the Lions will cover the point spread. If the answer to both parts is “yes,” then the bettor will win $10 since his or her wager will be correct in both parts. However, if the answer to either part is “no,” then the entire wager will be a loss since they placed a wager on something that did not happen.

## The Total Over/Under

This is a wager where the point spread is combined with an over or under on the final score of the game. In other words, if the point spread is set to cover the entire amount of points (for example, in the case of a three-point spread, the bettor will win if the final score is between 2 and 3 points), then this type of wager is sometimes referred to as the total over/under bet. Depending on how the bet is written, the payout for this part of the bet can be either win or lose. However, since the point spread is usually set to cover the entire point amount (for example, in the case of a three-point spread, the bettor will win if the final score is between 2 and 3 points), it is usually not a good idea to enter a total over/under bet on an event where the favorite will inevitably win. In this particular scenario, the bettor will win whether or not the final score exceeds the point spread by matching the total score (sum of the two teams’ scores) if the game ends in a tie.