What Does Over / Under Mean in Betting?

Sports betting is an activity that revolves around a unique language. No matter where you decide to wager, each online sports betting site, or high-street bookie, will require you to understand certain terms exclusive to sporting events. What does over/under mean in betting?

When you hear the expression over/under or total bet, they mean a particular number or score. If you are betting on the NFL, this could be whether both teams will score higher or lower than a target number of points. This type of wager is a side bet, as it does not rely on predicting the winner of the match.

The over/under is also known as total betting. That is because you are wagering on the total of something. If you were betting on a soccer game, it could be the number of corners or yellow cards. For baseball, you can gamble on whether there will be more or less than three home runs in the game.

What is an Over/Under Bet?

The over/under bet is an exciting type of wager where you guess if the result will be higher or lower than a target number. Whether you are watching rugby, soccer, or almost any other sport, you can bet on whether the event will contain over or under a certain number of scores.

Total bets include a wide range of markets, not just the combined score of both teams. You choose over five interceptions in one NFL match, or under three tries by the home team in rugby. You can also investigate popular racing events, like NASCAR or Formula One, and bet on there being over 50 laps led by the same driver. If you want real-world examples, you can bet on your buddies drinking over five beers in the next 30 minutes.

The over/under bet is essentially a target, and you must guess whether the result will be higher or lower. This type of wager remains one of the most popular choices online because it is straightforward and often well-paying.

Over-Under Odds

Whenever you add a wager to the bet slip at our online betting site, we automatically calculate the returns once you enter your stake. However, if you don’t want to add the over-under wagers to your bet slip. Is there an easier way to work things out?

Working out the returns from a wager is straightforward, no matter what odds system you use. In this example, we will use the fractional system, arguably the hardest of the three available at Novibet. Using the Germany vs Scotland game as an example, the first match at EURO 2024 will be nervy. The host nation will know all eyes are on them, and Scotland will want to make the Germans work hard for a win.

Total betting on this fixture has a target of 2.5 goals. Selecting over 2.5 goals has odds of 8/11. Because the first number of the fraction is smaller than the seconds, expect to win less in profit than the value of your stake. For example, if you bet €100 on 8/11, you will receive €172 if your bet is a winner. That would mean you get your €100 stake back and make €72 in profit.

In this example, the under 2.5 goals market has odds of 11/10. Since the first number is larger than the second, this option will return more in profit than the value of your stake. Betting €100 on fewer than three goals in this fixture would return €210. According to our platform, this fixture is more likely to see over three goals than under.

What is a Push?

If you are new to sports betting, the most intimidating part of the over/under is how they display it online. You will see whole numbers, like 3 goals in the League of Ireland Premier Division and 50 points in American football, or decimal places. They use the decimal place a lot in basketball, like over 222.5 points or in baseball under 9.5 runs.

The reason for this difference is to reduce the chances of a tie. If you bet on there being over 50 points scored in an NFL game, and there are exactly 50 points, then your wager is a push. This is when the platform returns the value of your stake as a refund. The purpose of the decimal place is to rule out ties completely. The result will be definitive. Either they score ten runs or more, or they don’t.

They can also refund the over/under wager in certain circumstances. Let’s say you bet on the tennis or baseball. If the rain interferes with the match, the online betting platform might call it a wash, and refund your total bet. However, that might not always be the case. Ensure you read the house rules before making the wager to find out when your bet is refundable.

Some platforms will hold on to your wager if they reschedule the event. For example, if a boxer pulls out of a fight because of an injury in training, some services will hold your bet until the rescheduled event takes place. In these situations, once again, it’s up to the discretion of the bookkeeper. Just another reason you mustn’t wager more than you can afford to lose.

A screenshot of the Novibet sportsbook showing over/under betting

How to Bet Over/Under?

Signing up for an online betting site and placing an over/under bet is easy. However, each sport you decide to wager on might have subtle differences for this type of wager. To avoid mistakes when placing your bet, here is a breakdown of some popular sports and the available markets.

NFL Over-Under Betting Example

The NFL is one of the best sports for the over/under. Team sports like football allow punters a great deal of choice when selecting a wager. For example, you can bet on the team’s performance even before the start of the season. You could bet on a team winning over eight games or under 40 touchdowns scored across the season.

Besides betting on NFL teams, you can also wager on individuals to achieve certain feats across the season or in individual games. For example, wagering on Patrick Mahomes to complete over 30 touchdown passes in the 2024-25 season (Over +150/Under -150). You can also investigate Mahomes picking up over 1.5 touchdown passes in the season’s first game.

These bets also apply to each team, as you can bet on multiple aspects of a typical NFL game. For example, you can bet on a team to score over 22 points in the first half or over 45 points scored by both teams across the entire game. You can make these bets during the NFL season or any preseason game.


  • NFL 2024/25 Regular Season Wins: Baltimore Ravens Over 10.5 wins (1/1) Under 10.5 Wins (7/10). If you are confident the Ravens will have another super season, betting on them getting over 11 wins will return however much you stake. A €100 bet will give you €100 in profit. Going for the under will only return €69.93 in profit from the same stake.
  • NFL 2024/25 Regular Season Passing Yards: Bo Nix Over 2,825.5 Yards (20/21) Under 2,825.5 Yards (4/5). Bo Nix was the 12th overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft by the Denver Broncos. If you want to win €100 from betting on Nix to exceed the 2,825.5-yard target, you must stake €105. If you are going against the rookie, bet €125 to end up with €100 in profit.
  • NFL 2024: Kansas City Chiefs vs Baltimore Ravens Over 46.5 Points (5/6) Under 46.5 Points (20/21). Both these options for the opening NFL game of the season will return less than your stake. A €50 bet will return €41.67 for the over and €47.62 if you back the under.

Over-Under Soccer Example

For soccer bets, you have a wide range of options at Novibet. Starting with the most basic, you can bet on over or under a certain number of goals in an individual match. In the MLS fixture between the New England Revolution and New York Red Bulls, you can bet on over or under 2.5 goals in the game. Over 2.5 has odds of -137 and under 2.5 goals is worth +110. A €20 bet on over would return €34.60 and under would yield €42.

As the target score is a decimal, there is no chance of your bet ending as a draw. Either the teams will score three or more goals, or they won’t. You can also bet on the over/under goals for the first half, the full-time result, plus the total goals scored in the game. Betting on the Red Bulls winning the game and over 1.5 goals scored would give you odds of +162.


  • EURO 2024 Total Goals Scored: England Over 10.5 Goals (9/10) Under 10.5 Goals (17/20). If you believe England will have a strong EURO 2024 tournament, you can bet on them to score 11 or more goals. To win €50 in profit, you must bet €55.50 on over.
  • EURO 2024 Total Goals: Harry Kane Over 3.5 Goals (4/5) Under 3.5 Goals (20/21). Backing Harry Kane to score four or more goals at the Euros will give you €180 from a €100 stake. If you think England’s star man will misfire, going for the under will return €195.24 from the same stake.
  • International Friendly: Ireland vs Hungary Over 2.5 Goals (5/4) Under 2.5 Goals (8/13). Republic of Ireland soccer games aren’t usually high-scoring, which is reflected in the odds. Betting on over 2.5 goals will turn your €100 into €125. Choosing under the target will give you €161.73, showing that this match will end up with fewer than two.

Other soccer bets include the over/under for the total corners taken. You can also bet on areas like over ten shots on target, under four yellow cards, and over five offsides.

A screenshot of soccer over-under bets

Rugby Betting Over-Under

Betting on rugby matches is fun, especially if you consider the over-under. The most popular choice is to bet on the total points scored across 80 minutes. You can bet on there being over 49.5 points scored in a game. These wagers on the total points scored will vary on each game, but you can achieve better rewards by selecting more risky wagers. For example, choosing over 49.5 will give you +110 if your bet is correct. If you select over 51.5, your odds increase to +135 for a winning wager.

Every rugby match will have a variety of over/under options for you to consider, each with slightly better odds. You can bet on the home team to score over 27.5 points in the game and the away team to score under 19.5. You can also place a wager on the over/under on the first half alone.

Once you sign up at Novibet, you can claim your welcome bonus and experiment with different wagers. Choosing the over-under bet for a rugby game is usually a good idea. That’s because you can end up with a winning bet no matter who wins, even if the match ends in a draw.


  • Australia NRL: St George Illawarra Dragons vs Wests Tigers Over 45.5 Points (4/6) Under 45.5 Points (21/20). This rugby game is likely to see over 46 points scored. A ten-euro bet on 46 points or more will only give you €16.67 if you are successful. Betting on the opposite option will yield €20.50 at the final whistle.
  • Olympic Games 2024 Total Runs: Great Britain Over 10 Tries (22/25) Under 10 Tries (21/20). Placing wagers on the Olympics is never straightforward, as you never know how the teams will play. If you were to back Great Britain scoring fewer than ten tries, your €25 would turn into €51.25. A prediction for over ten tries returns €46.93.

Over/Under Golf Bets

Betting on golf totals can be exciting, especially since these wagers will change drastically. That is because the pros on tour play at different golf courses throughout the year. The courses and conditions open the possibilities for birdies and other events to bet on, especially in the over-under market.

When placing golf bets, you can wager on over or under a certain number of birdies across the tournament. At events like the Masters or US Open, you can bet on the entire field registering over 800 birdies. In 2024, the field contributed 866 birdies. You can also bet on individual golfers to put up certain scores. For example, betting on Scottie Scheffler to register ten or more birdies at the PGA Championship.


  • PGA Championship: Scottie Scheffler to Shoot Over 69.5 on Day 1 (1/1) Under 69.5 (11/19). Scottie Scheffler is the best golfer in the world at the moment. A prediction for him to have a slow start to the PGA Championship would return exactly what you stake. A €75 wager would give you €150. With odds of 11/19, the same bet on Scheffler shooting 69 or better would give you €43.35 in profit.
  • Masters 2025: Over 850 Birdies across the tournament (20/21) Under 850 Birdies (21/20). Using last year as a yardstick, the next Masters should see over 850 birdies by every golfer across four days. Backing this option with a €50 bet gives you €97.62 if they can pull it off. Going for less than last year’s tally would see greater returns of €102.50.

UFC/Boxing Over-Under Betting Examples

Combat sports are an excellent way to experience over-under bets. This type of wager usually focuses on the rounds you expect the fight to last. In boxing, the important championship fights are 12 rounds and UFC title fights comprise five rounds. The fundamental difference is a boxing round lasts three minutes and UFC lasts five. Your standard boxing fight or undercard is usually ten rounds or fewer and UFC is typically three.

If you are a fan of combat sports or have experience betting on the UFC, you will see the over-under fluctuate massively between fights. That is because this number depends on the fighters in the ring. If there are two heavyweights with a reputation for knockouts, then the sports betting site will lower the total. They will set the total higher in bouts where a knockout is unlikely. If you predict a fight will go the distance, then you should bet over the number of rounds stated. Go for the under if you expect a knockout or an early stop in the bout.


  • UFC Fight Night: Jared Cannonier vs Nassourdine Imavov Over 3.5 Rounds (20/21) Under 3.5 Round (21/20). Everyone loves a big UFC fight, but it is troublesome picking the winner of the bout. Backing there being over 3.5 rounds will turn your €20 stake into €39.05. The same bet on an early stoppage will give you over double your investment, €41.
  • Boxing: Oleksandr Usyk vs Tyson Fury Over 10 Rounds (1/2) Under 10 Rounds (2/1). The rematch between Usyk and Fury is scheduled for December. The last fight went the distance and for the fight to go to the judge’s scorecard again, the odds are 1/2. That means any bet you place will see half added as profit. Betting €20 on over ten rounds will give you €30 in total. Going for nine rounds or fewer will give you €60 if someone can stop the fight early.

GAA Over-Under Betting

Over-under betting for GAA events is a lot of fun. Like the other sports listed above, you can bet on the total goals scored in a game. The same markets apply whether you want to bet on Gaelic football or wager on hurling matches. You can also bet on the over/under for total points scored in regular time.

What is Total Betting?

In case you are unsure, total betting is the same as the over/under. The wager has two names but there is no difference between them. If you think there will be over 200 points scored in an NBA game or under 50 in rugby, you can use this wager. The over-under gives you the chance to bet on a sporting event without trying to predict the winner.