Sports Betting Apps Meet in The Battle of the Books Elite Eight

Posted on April 5, 2021

Crazy 8’s is more than a card game.

It’s a theme for a wild Battle of the Books, which has eight teams remaining – but no No. 1 seeds in the single-elimination, March Madness-style tournament that resumes this week.

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Twitter users vote to determine which teams advance through the tournament and qualify for prizes. vote (remember to vote AND like the post). They become part of the tournament character, especially when imploring others to vote in the final hours of a close battle.

Who are this year’s Elite Eight?

battle of the books march madness bracket 2021

Elite eight matchups start Tuesday, 4/6/21.

TwinSpires opposes PointsBet Sportsbook – while defending champion, theScore battles WilliamHill Sportsbook on one side of the bracket.

In the other, upstart Tipico battles SugarHouse Sportsbook, while FoxBet Sportsbook and BetMGM, a pair of lopsided first-round winners, go head-to-head.

The winners of these contests will make up The Final Four and those winners meet in the championship. PointsBet and theScore won the first two tournaments.

Here’s how you play:

Anyone who participates in the voting on Twitter will be entered into prize drawings for a chance to win $50 free bets from several of the top NJ online sports betting apps.

  1. and follow us
  2. Check out the latest #BattleOfTheBooks poll on our feed
  3. Vote for the sportsbook you want to see move on to the next round
  4. LIKE the post. (If you don’t like the post, we won’t know you voted)
  5. And that’s it. You’re entered to win the prize in that specific voting matchup.

Place your votes at @PlayNJcom


  1. At the conclusion of each matchup, we will randomly select winners from the pool of voters for that round.
  2. Each winner will then receive a DM from us with how to claim their $50 FREE BET
  3. You can vote on every match in every round, for the maximum chances to win.
  • So make sure you follow our PlayNJ twitter page
  • And turn on the notifications for our page so you’ll be notified each time we start a new poll

Remember to place your vote AND like the post.

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The Dogs Are Running Wild

Voters have been smiling on the 8 seed, as they did last year in propelling 8th seeded theScore all the way to the championship.

The Battle of the Books is becoming synonymous with the underdog-howling magic of the actual college basketball championship.

Who are the UCLA, Oral Roberts or Oregon State version of this tournament?

TwinSpires and Tipico, which knocked off industry giants DraftKings Sportsbook and FanDuel in the first round, might nominate themselves for that honor. They made tournament history by each winning a play-in round AND THEN knocking off the No. 1 seeds.

They believe they are destined.

pete amato playnj 2020 battle of the books champion
Pete Amato,

But all they can do is vie. You vote and decide who wins.

“The underdogs have been fantastic and they have really made this tournament,” said Pete Amato, Battle of the Books founder and director.

“It looks like being the No. 1 seed is a jinx and the teams who are ranked lower have very high confidence that they can knock off the favorites. They don’t care about being a high seed and they don’t care if they have to show up for a play-in game. They all think they can prevail.

“One reason for their confidence is that the underdogs keep winning.  Now that two of the big No. 1 seeds have been eliminated, every book must feel like it’s the favorite.”

Handicapping The Next Round

The FoxBetBetMGM affair should be a shootout. FoxBet racked up an opening-round record, clocking Borgata 86-14%.  BetMGM was nearly as impressive, throttling Wynn 78-22%.

Their matchup could be the Twitter equivalent of a three-point shootout.  Take the “over.”

“This one has attracted a lot of excitement,” Amato said. “The way these books put up numbers in the first round made people in the industry say “who are these guys?’. “Every year, one or two books end up surprising a lot of people.”

TheScoreBet vs William Hill is another barnburner. All the theScoreBet does is win, breezing past its first opponent as smoothly as it blazed through the 2020 schedule. It goes against William Hill, a vastly energized company that stormed past Bet 365, 76-24%.

The London-based company proudly points to its origin. There really was a William Hill, who left school at age of 12 to work on his uncle’s farm. While there, he started collecting illegal bets from local people on his motorcycle

From there, his career blossomed and the book that bears his name is not only legal, it thrives.

PointsBet, the first Battle of the Books champ, delivered an 81-19% rout over 888 Sportsbook in its opener. And TwinSpires beat DraftKings in one of the tourney’s tightest contest, 58-42% Who has the edge here?

We’ll soon find out.

The same holds true for the Tipico – PlaySugarHouse matchup. Tipico toppled FanDuel Sportsbook, 67-33%, while PlaySugarHouse, which thumped Caesars 78-22, tries to build on its experience from last year. Sugar House Sportsbook won some nail-biters and went deep into the 2020 tournament.

Can the book go further this year?

“Voting is going to ramp up even more in the next round,” Amato said. “The users who voted know that they propelled their book to victory. They are going to tell others and more bettors are going to weigh in. It really gets exciting in the last couple of hours, especially if the competition is close.”

The books that serve this market love anything that separates them from the pack.

Battle of the Books gives them that chance.

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Dave Bontempo Avatar
Written by
Dave Bontempo

Dave Bontempo, a national multi-award-winning writer, and broadcaster, writes extensively on the evolving legalized sports-wagering world. Over the past four decades, he has called fights for all major networks, authored columns for the Associated Press, Atlantic City Press, and iGaming Player. He is in the New Jersey Boxing Hall of Fame, the Atlantic City Boxing Hall of Fame and a Sam Taub Award for broadcast excellence, given by the Boxing Writers Association of America.

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