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Rick Zamperin: There’s a lot more to betting on the Super Bowl than picking a winner

Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (10) and the San Francisco 49ers will face the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LIV on Feb. 2, 2020.
Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (10) and the San Francisco 49ers will face the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LIV on Feb. 2, 2020. EPA/JUSTIN LANE

If you are planning to wager on this Sunday’s Super Bowl, you are definitely not alone.

The National Football League‘s championship final, which will be played at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla., is one of the biggest sporting events on the planet when it comes to its television audience, the amount of food we scarf down, and the loads of money that is wagered on the game.

The American Gaming Association (AGA) announced Tuesday that a record 26 million Americans are expected to wager $6.8 billion collectively on this year’s Super Bowl, easily making it the biggest gambling day of the year.

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The survey shows that 52 per cent of respondents will bet on the Kansas City Chiefs, while 48 per cent of bettors will side with the San Francisco 49ers.

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The AGA says nearly five million people will place a bet through an online or mobile platform, 19 per cent higher than 2019, and millions more will wager with a bookie, in a pool or squares contest, or casually with family or friends.

Dan Marino’s Super Bowl predictions
Dan Marino’s Super Bowl predictions

What I like most about wagering on the Super Bowl is the proposition bets, or prop bets.

They range from the outcome of the coin toss to which team will score the game’s first touchdown to how long it will take Demi Lovato to sing the Star Spangled Banner and how many outfits will halftime show performer Jennifer Lopez wear.

Props are fantastic because it brings a larger audience to Super Bowl Sunday and makes the big game that much more exciting.

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Here are the five best prop bets (from William Hill) for Super Bowl LIV:

How long will it take for Demi Lovato to sing the U.S. national anthem?
Over 2 minutes
Under 2 minutes (I will take the over)

What will be the outcome of the coin toss?
Heads (I’ll go heads. The opening coin toss has little to no bearing on the outcome of the game, but the anticipation at that moment is incredible)
Tails

What will the first score of the game be?
Touchdown
Field goal/safety (teams usually start conservative so I’m banking on a field goal to open the scoring)

Longest touchdown of the game
Over 44.5 yards (with both teams capable of big plays I will take the over)
Under 44.5 yards

Number of Jennifer Lopez wardrobe changes during the halftime show
Over 2.5
Under 2.5 (changing outfits at least three times is a bit much, even for the Super Bowl halftime show)

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The survey was conducted for AGA by Morning Consult Jan. 21-22 and included 2,200 adults. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.