Bookmaker's Corner: An Early Look at NCAA Basketball Futures
by Richard Gardner | Bodog Sportsbook Manager - 11/12/2009
NCAA basketball betting has tipped off and Bodog's got all of your odds to win the SEC East, SEC West, Pac 10, Big East, Big 12, Big Ten Conference, and of course - the national championship.
Kansas (4/1), Kentucky (5/1), North Carolina (15/2) and Duke (10/1) are the early favourites to win the national championship. Pretty shocking, huh? It's almost like those four schools have some sort of strong college basketball tradition.
Michigan State and Villanova, both at 12/1, are also drawing some betting interest. In fact, they've attracted more action than Duke. Maybe futures bettors are getting sick and tired of wasting money on the Blue Devils, who haven't won it all since 2001, despite heading into a number of tournaments with a high ranking.
This year's Duke team is once again stocked with talent, but depth could be a concern. If the Blue Devils suffer any injures, they could be in trouble.
You might also notice a change of style from coach Mike Krzyzewski's team. No longer will it be dominated by the guards and perimeter shooting. This year it's about size, with up to six players between 6-8 and 7-1 in the rotation.
With a lot of newness to the team, early-season bettors might want to avoid backing Duke until it irons out the wrinkles. There aren't many better college coaches than Krzyzewski, so one strategy futures bettors might consider is to wait and see if Duke struggles off the hop. If it does, the futures number should go up. Pound it then and hope the necessary adjustments are successfully implemented.
Butler (50/1), Tennessee (25/1) and Purdue (22/1) are possible dark horses.
The Boilermakers are an interesting team thanks to junior forward Robbie Hummel, who might just end up being the Big Ten Player of the Year. He's one of those players that makes the others around him better. It's a nice quality.
Hummel appears to be back in top form, which is good news for Purdue fans and bettors.
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