NCAA Tournament Predictions: Conference Betting Props
by Nicholas Tolomeo - 3/16/2011
So much gets made about conferences come March Madness. The Big East sent a record 11 teams to the NCAA Tournament this year, Conference USA somehow got two bids, the ACC only got four bids but it has plenty of quality and the Big Ten has seven bids and the ability to make plenty of noise. Here are some of the conference-affiliated NCAA Tournament predictions for betting props available on Sportsbook.com
Total Tournament Wins by Conference
Teams (11): No. 1 Pitt, No. 2 Notre Dame, No. 3 Connecticut, No. 3 Syracuse, No. 4 Louisville, No. 5 West Virginia, No. 6 St. Johns No. 6 Georgetown, No. 6 Cincinnati, No. 9 Villanova, No. 11 Marquette
There are so many factors that go into this wager it is a little overwhelming to analyze. Conventional wisdom suggests that top seeds like Pitt, Notre Dame, Connecticut and Syracuse can be expected to win at least two games each. So there is eight wins right there. You then need to find eight more wins amongst other six teams to hit the ‘over.’ That is easier said than done. Cincinnati, Villanova and Marquette are underdogs in their first-round games. West Virginia, St. Johns and Georgetown are favorites by the slimmest of margins. Best-case scenario you likely get four wins from that group and that brings you to 12 total. If three of the top seeds can get to the Elite Eight, and that is a big ‘if,’ the Big East would be up to 15 wins under this scenario, still ‘under.’ So you get the idea of just how hard it is to win 16 games between one conference, no matter how big it is.
Teams (3): No. 2 San Diego State, No. 3 BYU, No. 8 UNLV
This is an interesting conference. San Diego State gets very little respect as a No. 2 seed. BUY is not being taken very seriously without Brandon Davies, and then there is UNLV who is in the dreaded 8/9 slot. What helps the cause of the Mountain West is the path ahead of San Diego State and BYU. The Aztecs have No. 15 Northern Colorado first and then the winner of the 7/10 game between Temple and Penn State. As 7/10 matchups go, the matchup between Temple and Penn State is a weak one. BYU has Wofford first and then either St. Johns or Gonzaga. Four wins is certainly doable in those two situations and then if the brackets hold serve San Diego State gets Connecticut in the Sweet 16 and BYU gets Florida. One win out of the two games is certainly a possibility there. That leaves us at five wins and the tiebreaker could end up being UNLV, a two-point favorite against Illinois. Even if UNLV loses, the conference should have five wins in the bag from San Diego State and BYU, which would be good enough for a push.
Will any ACC team win the NCAA Tournament?
If you were planning on betting on Duke to win the National Championship at +450, this bet is not a bad option. For a slight decrease in price you get No. 2 seed North Carolina and lower seeds with plenty of potential in Clemson and Florida State.
Will any Big East win the NCAA tournament?
Will any Big Ten team win the NCAA Tournament?
These are simply odd odds. The Big East is the best conference in basketball. The Big East has record number 11 teams in the NCAA Tournament. That is four more than the Big Ten. The Big East has five teams with a seed of four or better. The Big Ten has three teams with a seed of four or better. Add it up anyway you want to and it looks like the Big East has a better chance to have one of its teams cutting down the nets. But not according to the odds, which show the Big Ten as having a better chance at winning it all. I know it just takes one team to win it all and the Big Ten has a pretty good one in Ohio State, but for the sake of value the ‘yes’ play on the Big East looks pretty good.
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