Golf Betting Odds

The legalization of sports betting in several states across the US is also leading to a spike in interest in the games themselves. Golf has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the boom, and there are no signs that interest will be abating anytime soon. There’s just something magical about watching the world’s best go toe-to-toe on a breathtaking course in a fantastic locale. That happens regularly on the PGA Tour, which hums right along on nearly a year-round basis.

The majors are the biggest highlights of the season, and betting interest naturally increases for them. However, there’s a lot to love about the rest of the tour stops and a whole slew of ways to bet on each and every one of them. Our complete guide to betting on golf in Illinois will cover everything you need to know, including the rise of live betting. Let’s take a closer look at this awesome sport and all of the different ways you can get in the game.

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Live Odds for Masters, US Open, PGA Championship

The futures betting market offers up even more opportunities for bettors to explore. These are bets on events that won’t happen until a later date, and many of the markets attract action on a year-round basis. Here are some of the top items on the menu.

  • Bet on Masters Winner
  • US Open winner
  • The Open Championship winner
  • PGA Championship winner
  • Player of the Year
  • Ryder Cup winner

Golf’s four majors are the most popular futures to bet on. These are the biggest events of the calendar year for the sport. We’ll have some additional details on each of them in a bit. For futures purposes, the odds board below can give you a sneak peek of what to expect.

There will be odds listed for all golfers who are scheduled to compete. As betting action comes in, the lines may shift. That’s part of the appeal with futures. You can stay constantly engaged while hunting for good odds on the golfers you like. Use the dropdown menu to find odds on upcoming tournaments.

How to bet on golf in Illinois

Each time there’s a PGA Tour stop to look forward to, you’ll have a number of ways to wager on what’s going to happen. Betting on golf is distinctive in certain areas, but there’s also some lessons that can apply from wagering on other sports.

On the distinctive side, golf revolves around individual performances as opposed to the contributions of an entire team of players. Wagers are based on what they do when they hit the links, and each of the venues they visit has its own characteristics that may impact things.

However, there are some bet types that work just like the team-based sports. These bet types make for a great entry point for those new to the game. For example, a golf head-to-head matchup is set up just like a moneyline bet for sports such as the NBA or NHL.

Let’s take a look at the top bet types for golf and what you need to know about them.

  • Tournament winners: This is the bet you place on the outright winner of the tournament. There will be odds listed for all golfers scheduled to compete. Each tour stop will have clear-cut favorites and dark horse contenders for you to consider.
  • Finishing position: This works similar to the outright winner wager, but it asks you to pick the golfers who will place highly at the event. This offering will vary depending on the book, but many offer markets for top five, top 10 and top 20.
  • Each way: This wager covers both of the aforementioned bases. You place a bet on the golfer you like and cash a winning ticket if that golfer wins the event or finishes in a high place.
  • Golfer vs. field: For the tournament favorites, sportsbooks like DraftKings and the BetMGM sportsbook app will offer up wagers on who you think will win the whole thing: the favored golfer or someone else from the field.
  • To make cut: PGA Tour events run over four days, with cuts taking place after the second day. You can place your bets on which golfers you think will advance to the final rounds.
  • Round leaders: In addition to betting on the tournament as a whole, you can also zero in on the individual rounds and place your wagers on who you think will post the top score.
  • Head-to-head: Sportsbooks will pair up two golfers in a head-to-head matchup. It works just like a moneyline bet in that you just have to choose which one you think will post the higher score.
  • Group betting: Similar to the head-to-head bet, these wagers revolve around groups of three or four golfers. You may see them listed as 2 or 3 balls. The goal for the bettor is to pick out the golfer who scores the best.

For tournament winners and high finishers, odds will come out several days in advance of the next event. The odds are typically listed in descending order, with all those scheduled to be in the field represented.

Wagers such as head-to-heads and 2 or 3 balls will come out closer to the event itself. In all cases, the odds on golf may move after the initial release based on market action. You can always shop around at multiple books to find the best prices and most appealing matchups.

Live betting on golf online

All segments of golf betting are seeing a surge in interest, but one area has seen a particularly noteworthy spike. Live betting affords users the opportunity to play along with the tournament in real time as the action plays out.

You’ll see updated odds for many of the standard bets, but it goes much deeper than that. Live betting has advanced to the point where you can wager on individual shots and holes. Offerings will vary, but here’s a taste of what you might see.

  • What will Dustin Johnson card on this hole — eagle or better/birdie/par/bogey or worse?
  • Who will have the longer tee shot on hole seven — Colin Morikawa or Bryson DeChambeau?
  • Total putts for Justin Thomas on this hole — over/under 1.5?

The live betting market moves incredibly fast. Leading operators are up to the task with platforms that respond instantly. Odds are constantly updating based on what’s happening. A good part of the fun is looking for potentially exploitable opportunities.

IL sports betting apps are the best way to take advantage of all that live betting has to offer. You can be logged in on mobile at any time to catch up on the event’s action and to live bet. It’s also the perfect complement as you view the happenings on the big screen.

Prop betting for golf

For even more ways to wager on golf, you need to explore the various prop offerings that are available for each tournament. Prop bets are essentially like having some side action on a round or the tournament as a whole.

Many of them revolve around the performance of golfers in the field. Here’s a look at some of the more common prop bet types you’ll see.

  • Who will post a better score in round two — Rory McIlroy or Brooks Koepka?
  • How many birdies will Justin Thomas have in round three — over/under 5.5?
  • Will any golfer score an ace in the final round — yes/no?

There will also be props that are based on the tournament as a whole, such as on the nationality of the winning golfer. Props can also make for a handy research tool since many of them are based on specific player performance metrics.

For example, while you are researching the field, take a look at the available offerings. Golfers who are listed with lofty expectations — such as a large over/under on the number of birdies carded — could be in line to have themselves a solid tournament, at least as far as the oddsmakers see it.

How to bet on golf’s major tournaments

As mentioned earlier, the biggest events of the year in golf are the four major tournaments. While each PGA Tour event garners a good deal of interest, the attention really peaks for these signature showcases of the best that golf has to offer.

The majors will also bring plenty of casual fans to the betting window, while those who remain engaged with the sport all year round may ramp up volume. Let’s take a look at the key details for the next edition of each of the four events.

2021 Masters betting

The 2020 edition was been pushed back to the fall, but in 2021 it will return to its April slot in traditional Masters fashion.

  • Dates: April 8-11, 2021
  • Location: Augusta, Georgia
  • Course: Augusta National Golf Club
  • Length: 7,475 yards
  • Prize pool: $11.5 million in 2020
  • Par: 72
  • First held: 1934
  • Defending champion: Dustin Johnson
  • Most wins: Six, Jack Nicklaus

2021 PGA Championship betting 

This event has been pushed up the calendar in recent years and is now typically the second major on the docket.

  • Dates: May 20-23, 2021
  • Location: Kiawah Island, South Carolina
  • Course: Kiawah Island Golf Course
  • Par: 72
  • Length: 7,873 yards
  • Prize pool: $11 million in 2020
  • First held: 1916
  • Defending champion: Collin Morikawa
  • Most wins: Five, Jack Nicklaus, Walter Hagen

2021 US Open betting  

While each of the majors is challenging, many view the US Open as being the most difficult to win.

  • Dates: June 17-20, 2021
  • Location: La Jolla, California
  • Course: Torrey Pines Golf Course
  • Par: 72
  • Length: 7,698 yards
  • Prize pool: $12.5 million in 2020
  • First held: 1895
  • Defending champion: Bryson DeChambeau
  • Most wins: Four, Willie Anderson, Ben Hogan, Bobby Jones and Jack Nicklaus

2021 Open Championship betting  

Formerly known as the British Open, this is typically the last of the four majors, but far from the last significant golf event of the season.

  • Dates: July 15-18, 2021
  • Location: Kent, England
  • Course: Royal St. George’s Golf Club
  • Par: 70
  • Prize pool: $10.75 million in 2019
  • First held: 1860
  • Defending champion: Shane Lowry
  • Most wins: Six, Harry Vardon

Golf events held in Illinois

The PGA Tour makes its way to Illinois twice a year. Here’s what you need to know about this pair of annual events.

John Deere Classic

This event is typically held in early July and usually right before The Open Championship.

  • Location: Silvis, Illinois
  • Course: TPC Deere Run
  • Par: 71
  • Yards: 7,257 yards
  • Prize fund: $6.2 million
  • First held: 1971
  • Defending champion: Dylan Frittelli
  • Most wins: Three, D.A. Welbring and Steve Stricker

BMW Championship

This is a FedEx Cup Playoff event that’s typically held in the latter part of the PGA season.

  • Location: Olympia Fields, Illinois
  • Course: Olympia Fields Country Club
  • Par: 70
  • Yards: 7,343 yards
  • Prize fund: $9.5 million
  • First held: 2007
  • Defending champion: Jon Rahm
  • Most wins: Two, Dustin Johnson and Tiger Woods

Where can you get free golf bets?

From time to time, sportsbooks will offer up promotions for both existing and new users. You’ll see things like odds and profit boosts, special parlay opportunities and even free bets. A free bet sportsbook bonus is just like the name implies: No-strings-attached funds to wager with.

Several of our recommended operators offer up free bets to new users who create an account via our exclusive links. For existing customers, the best places to check at online sportsbooks are in the sportsbook lobby, the promos tab, or in any promotional emails you receive.

For a quick example, let’s say that you received a free bet of $25 to place on whatever you wished. You use the funds to wager on a golf head-to-head matchup and come out on top. Your account will be credited with your winnings.

The winnings are yours to do with as you wish, but note that you won’t also be credited back the amount of the free wager since you used it already. Free bets can be a great way to boost your bankroll and overall return rate, so keep your eyes peeled.

What are the rules for betting on golf?

For those new to golf, it can seem like a sport that has a ton of rules to digest. That’s true to an extent, but it’s also not that tough to get up to speed once you spend some time wrapping your head around how it all works.

It’s a similar story from a betting perspective. There are basic rules with golf betting that aren’t all that different from other sports, but there are also a few that are specific to the game. Here are some of the main ones you need to know.

  • Bets are considered valid once the tournament gets underway. Wagers on golfers who wind up withdrawing beforehand will be considered void.
  • The tournament must be completed as scheduled within a reasonable period of time. In the event of weather or other circumstances that cause the entire event to be called early, many operators require a minimum of 36 holes to be completed to settle bets.
  • For head-to-head bets in which golfers finish in the same position, the bet will be considered a draw or push.
  • For golfers who withdraw or are disqualified during the event, bets will be graded as losing wagers.

Those are the basics, but the exact handling may vary here and there by operator. As such, it’s always a good idea to review the house rules for golf to avoid any unpleasant surprises. If you can’t find a dedicated section on golf, search through the help menu for betting rules.

 5 top tips for beginner golf bettors

Golf can make for an excellent addition to an overall sports betting strategy. The sport itself is lots of fun and entertaining once you understand what’s going on, and your interest likely will only grow if you start betting.

Naturally, there is a learning curve involved for those who are new to the game. The good news is that those who are willing to put in the effort may find some handsome rewards down the road. Here are some tips you can use as you get started with betting on golf and developing your own golf betting system.

1. Understand how scoring works

First things first, you need to get a handle on how scoring and cut rules work for the PGA. What’s a birdie? When do cuts take place at PGA events? These are just two of the questions to dig into. If you spend some time on the basics and build a foundation, the rest of the learning process will be that much easier.

2. Become familiar with golfers on the PGA Tour

The same applies here. While you may know some of the household names, it’s important to go deeper and get a handle on who’s who. The Official World Golf Ranking is a great place to start. You can research players in the field, how they’ve fared this season and much more.

3. Know your course

The PGA Tour is rolling nearly year-round. Each stop is at a different locale, and by extension, played on a completely different course. It’s important to know the conditions for the upcoming event. Golfers can excel on certain courses while coming up flat elsewhere, so this is valuable intel to dig into.

4. Check past performances and recent play

The PGA makes regular tour stops, so be sure to take the time to review the results from the last few editions of the current event. This can provide you with great clues on who could be in line for a good weekend and who may not.

5. Stay engaged with PGA news and betting info

As interest in the PGA Tour continues to grow in betting circles, so too does general media coverage. You should do your best to stay on top of the latest happenings and other tidbits you may need to know. It’s a long tour season. Key pieces of info here and there can add up to a lot over the long run.

Perhaps the most important key to success with PGA betting is a willingness to continually learn and adapt as needed. You’re not going to be an expert overnight, but those who remain diligent in their efforts can become more than proficient before too long.

Golf Betting FAQ

How are golf bets handled when a round is suspended?

As a general rule, bets for suspended rounds will remain live until it’s completed. The caveat comes with extended delays that may come up due to weather or unforeseen circumstances. For cases such as this, it’s best to consult with the house rules at the book you are playing on for complete clarity on what to expect in the unlikely event that it happens.

Do different courses have an impact on golf betting?

Absolutely. The PGA Tour is all over the place, and each course has its own characteristics. Some courses may favor strong drivers, while others may be more geared toward those who excel on the fairway. There are also courses that are filled with hazards while others are open and unintimidating. It’s important to always review what the course is like and how it may play for the events you plan to bet on.

Who has won the most majors in golf?

Jack Nicklaus is atop the all-time list with 18 wins at major events. His last victory came at the 1986 Masters. Tiger Woods is in second place with 15 major wins, the last of which came at the 2019 Masters. Walter Hagen is in third with 11 major wins, followed by Ben Hogan and Gary Player, who have won nine apiece.

Is it harder to bet on golf in comparison to other sports?

While it can take some time to get up to speed for those who know nothing about golf, it’s really not that different from learning to wager on any new sport. For those who at least have the basics down, the curve isn’t so tough. If you’re starting from scratch, a little bit of time and effort will go a long way toward helping you understand things.

Are there any key stats that can be useful for golf betting?

From a broad perspective for beginners, recent play and past performance at the current venue are solid indicators to lean on. As you move forward, there are several advanced stats that can prove to be useful. Included on the list are birdie or better percentage, strokes gained and proximity to hole.

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