First Round Betting
One game down, one upset…has it started already?
Upsets are always a huge part of the drama around March Madness and the Arkansas-Pine Bluff Golden Lions got things rolling with the first small jab. The Golden Lions defeated the Winthrop Eagles 61-44 Tuesday night in the “play-in” game. Online sportsbooks had them listed as 3.5-point underdogs heading into the matchup.
Here’s a number to keep in mind if you still haven’t filled out your bracket yet. In the first round, double-digit favorites have a record of 44-1 straight up the last three years…so looking for upsets in those games doesn’t look like the best idea.
How have those double-digit favorites done against the spread in the opening round? They’ve been profitable for the sports betting public, producing a mark of 26-16-3 ATS.
One of the games that fits the above is the Georgetown Hoyas vs. the Ohio Bobcats.
Ranked 15th and seeded third in the Midwest, the Hoyas open the NCAA championship basketball tournament against the 14-seeded Bobcats.
Sportsbook SPORTSBETTING.com has Georgetown as a 13.5-point favorite and the Total is set at 138.
In Georgetown’s last seven games played in the month of March they are 6-1 ATS.
The Ohio Bobcats performed well in the period leading up to March Madness, going 11-1 ATS in their last 12 games and are currently in the midst of a six-game ATS win streak.
Like the Hoyas, the Bobcats are 6-1 ATS in their last seven March games.
In the Ohio Bobcats’ last 16 March games, there have been 12 Overs and 4 Unders.
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NCAA Over/Under Trend:
Did you know that since 2002 when a #8 seed has faced a #9 seed, they have produced 21 Overs and only 11 Unders. That’s a pretty strong “Over” trend.
Looking at one of those matchups, we have the Wake Forest Demon Deacons and Texas Longhorns (seeded ninth and eighth in the East Region respectively).
The Longhorns are 5-point favorites with the Over/Under set at 146.
The Wake Forest Demon Deacons have had bite when listed as underdogs of 6-points or less, going 8-1 ATS.
Texas bettors haven’t shared the fortunes of people who play Wake Forest as the Longhorns are 3-6-1 ATS in their last 10 games when favored by 6-points or less.
It all starts today as March Madness is here…best of luck with all your bets and with your bracket.
Posted: 3/18/10 3:45PM ET