www.bookmaker.eu is the most reputable online sportsbook offering squares on the New England Patriots vs. Seattle Seahawks NFL Super Bowl (XLIX) scheduled for February 1, 2015. For anyone reading after the fact, do note that Bookmaker runs multiple squares pools every day of the week. They offer these even for regular season NFL games, college football, MLB baseball, NBA basketball and more.
The reason I am making this now as a news post, is that the Super Bowl is when casual gamblers start looking for NFL squares. There is a lot of bad advice on forums, suggesting players buy squares with random forum posters they don’t know from the internet. There is also a lot of pointing to less than reputable sportsbooks running pools. Hence the reason for this post is to cover what Bookmaker offers, and whether or not they might be the best pool for your specific situation.
Bookmaker Super Bowl Office Pool Specifics
The number of different pools offered for the 2015 Super Bowl at Bookmaker is staggering. To access these, log-in to their site, and from the sportsbook page click contests. Next select office pools. Here is a list of ones currently open as the time of this post.
- $2 squares pool – pays $120 full game winner, $60 to half time winner.
- $2 squares pool – pays $120 on full game winner, $60 on full game reverse
- $5 squares pool – pays $200 to final, $100 to final reverse, $100 to 1st half final, $50 to 1st half reverse.
- $5 squares pool – pays $200 to final, $100 to first half, $50 to 1st quarter, $50 to 3rd quarter
- $10 squares pool – pays $400 to final, $200 to final reverse, $200 to 1st half final, $100 to 1st half reverse.
- $10 squares pool – pays $400 to final, $200 to first half, $100 to 1st quarter, $100 to 3rd quarter
- $20 squares Pool – pays $1,000 to final, $400 to first half, $200 to 1st quarter, $200 to 3rd quarter.
- $20 squares pool – pays $800 to final, $400 to final reverse, $400 to 1st half final, $200 to 1st half reverse.
- $50 squares pool – pays $1250 to final, $625 to final reverse, $750 to first half, $375 to first half reverse, $500 to 1st quarter, $250 to 1st quarter reverse, 3rd quarter, $250 to 3rd quarter reverse.
- $100 squares pool – pays $2500 to final, $1250 to final reverse, $1500 to first half, $750 to first half reverse, $1000 to 1st quarter, $500 to 1st quarter reverse. $1000 to 3rd quarter, $500 to 3rd quarter reverse.
As these sell out Bookmaker has been opening additional pools that match those that sold out. If one you are looking for has no squares left, be sure check their website again the following day.
How Super Bowl Squares Work
Super Bowl squares are a very simple contest that requires no skill or strategy to win. When purchasing a square you end up on a page that looks like this:
You simply pick the square you want to purchase, the money will be deducted from your account and you are in. When the game is about to start, the contest closes. By automation the top row and side column will have the # symbols replaced with an actual number. This is 0-9 in the top row, and 0-9 again in the side column. Again it won’t be in order. It is randomly generated, but all numbers will be covered. You then see if the final digit of each team’s score matches the winning scores assigned to your square.
Is Bookmaker the Super Bowl Best Squares Contest?
The answer to this is: “it depends”. You will notice most of Bookmaker’s Super Bowl square contests have their prize pool raked 10%. This means they pay out $0.90 for each dollar they take in. This of course is a disadvantage to the player. If you know of a local pool, such as at work, a sports bar, etc. that pays out 100%, you “MIGHT” be better off with these. However a couple issues come up.
There are certain scores more likely to occur than others in NFL football. Teams most commonly have a final score that ends in 7 or 0, and least commonly have scores ending in 2 or 5. Using NFL key numbers from Cleanup Hitter, the chart to the right shows which numbers have the most value. With a local pool, you have to trust that the numbers added to the top row and side column were randomly selected. Otherwise, it is easy to rig a squares pool in such a way certain players, such as an insider, have a massive advantage.
The second issue is you have to hope the pool owner pays the winners timely, if at all. Players winning an office pool only to be stiffed is certainly not an unheard of occurrence.
The final issue is that in private office pools paying 100%, tips are general expected. How much to tip is of course voluntary. However, if you’re in an environment where you can anticipate low tippers will be criticized, this could play a bigger factor. For example if everyone at the bar, or even less ideal at the place you work, is likely to say “this cheapskate only tipped 3%” you might be pressured to give more.
At Bookmaker all these issues are solved. As you can read about in my Bookmaker.eu review, this is the most reputable betting site servicing players residing in the United States. I have no doubt the numbers are randomly assigned. I also have no doubt they will pay winners of each pool. While most pots are raked 10%, there is no tipping involved at all. Just me personally, if playing 2015 NFL Super Bowl squares, my strong preference would be to do so here.