Welcome to the college basketball section of instant sports betting website. The NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) is often referred to as simply “college basketball”. The initial game ever played is listed as having been contested in 1893 in Pennsylvania, between the New Brighton YMCA and Geneva College.

Students love to play the game with full enthusiasm and passion. In most of the colleges in USA, basketball is the most played games. Fans usually wait entire school year until the March Madness tournament, which crowns the national champion.

The first game between two colleges was played two years after that when Hamlin College lost by a score of 9-3 to the Minnesota School of Agriculture (this school would later go on to become the University of Minnesota). The first 5-on-5 game was played a year later in Iowa. Fordham and Pittsburgh competed in the first televised contest at Madison Square Garden, in 1940.

In the early 1900’s, there just weren’t enough teams for the formation of actual leagues. The NCAA was founded in 1906, and the first NCAA Championship game was played in 1939. Over 5,000 people were there in Evanston, Illinois to witness Oregon defeat Ohio State by a final score of 46 to 33.

The NIT (National Invitation Tournament) was another major event at this time, and considered to be of equal competitive quality to the NCAA tournament. However, the NCAA Tournament rapidly became a dominant entity, and by the 1950’s, the NIT had gone from a major player to being a venue for teams not skilled enough to play their way into the more prestigious NCAA Tournament. The NIT has been held at Madison Square Garden on a yearly basis ever since.

Differences between College and Pro Basketball
If you watch both college and pro basketball, then you understand the basics. You have players, a couple of hoops, a few referees, and a ball. For the most part, they appear fairly similar, but there are many differences to understand in order to appreciate the game. An NBA game offers four 12-minute quarters, whereas the NCAA features two 20-minute halves. The distance for a 3-point shot is pushed further back for the pro game. Here are two of the bigger differences between pro and college basketball. Fully understanding these subtleties will lead you towards a better understanding of the game.

1. Team possessions are dealt with in a much different manner in college basketball. In professional basketball, if there is a tied-up ball, or the referees simply cannot determine possession; a jump ball occurs to determine who gets the ball. College ball only has one jump ball, and that occurs at the start of the game. Any disputes over possession that occur during the game are decided by a “possession arrow”, which alternates between the teams.

2. Defensive rules in pro basketball are fairly well-outlined and strict. A “zone defense” is a defensive strategy where each player will guard a certain area of the floor. In college ball, this is the preferred method of defense. However, in pro basketball, it is not only frowned upon, but penalized in most instances. Most pro teams implement a man-to-man type of defense.