Betting Advice, Predictions and Trends for Sweet 16

Betting Advice, Predictions and Trends for Sweet 16
© USA Today

The opening two rounds have been completed and only a fraction of the millions of brackets remain intact as we enter the Sweet 16 Round of the Tournament.

I did two brackets and one is within the 53% quartile of the 15 million brackets submitted. One is not in that bad of shape if Texas Tech defeats Gonzaga in the Regional Final and Villanova defeats Texas Tech in the championship game.

In this article, though I am going to provide the college basketball betting intelligence to help you sift through the overwhelming number of possible outcomes for the Sweet 16 Round.

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How Do the Cinderellas perform in the Sweet 16?

Seeds 10 through 16 in the Sweet 16 Round have gone 18-16-1 against the spread for 53% winners spanning the past 15 tournaments.

This tournament has four of the eight matchups in the Sweet 16 Round involving a team wearing the glass slipper with a seed of 10 and higher.

Only two 15-seeds previous to this tournament have made it to the Sweet 16 Round. Last year Oral Roberts shocked the NCAA basketball world with an upset win over the No. 2-seed Ohio State Buckeyes.

They then went on to the Sweet 16 and nearly pulled off another upset, losing to the Arkansas Razorbacks as 72-70 as 11.5-point underdogs.

In 2013, 15-seed Florida Gulf Coast was priced as a 14-point underdog and lost to the Florida Gators 62-50.

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For the third time, we have a 15-seed appearing in the Sweet 16 with Saint Peter’s, which took down the No. 2-seed Kentucky Wildcats and then defeated a 30-win Murray State team in the Round of 32 by the final score of 70-60 installed as an eight-point underdog.

Currently, Saint Peter’s is priced as a 12.5-point underdog against the Purdue Boilermakers, who were ranked No. 1 in the nation earlier this season.

So, a small sample size says to take the points, but more detail on this matchup is in my trio of Sweet 16 Best Bets.

Looking at the 13 and 14 seeds combined, there have been three teams to advance to the Sweet 16 over the past 15 tournaments.

Bradley as a 13 seed lost to 4-seed Memphis 80-64 in 2013 as a 6-point underdog. In 2012, 4-seed North Carolina beat 13-seed Ohio 73-65, with the Tar Heels a 10-point favorite. In 2013, 4-seed Wichita State beat 13-seed La Salle 72-58 as a 4.5 favorite.

So, while the fun of March Madness is the early upsets, there have not been any 14-seeds to make the Sweet 16 over the past 15 tournaments and the 13 seed has gone a small sample sized 1-2 against the spread.

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Grouping the Seeds and Lines

The 2-seed Villanova Wildcats will square off the 11-seed Michigan Wolverines, with the Wildcats priced as 5-point favorites. There have been 12 matchups of the 1 or 2 seed going up against the 10 through 14 seeds and the top-seeded teams favored by 3.5 to 9.5 points have earned an 8-4 against the spread record for 67% winning bets.

There are three No. 1-seeds remaining and those have gone 29-25-1 against the spread for 54% over the past 15 tournaments.

Put the Houston Cougars on your radar as they take on the No. 1 seed Arizona Wildcats. The last several NCAA Champions have come from the top-3 rankings in BPI and the Cougars ranked third before the start of the tournament.

These matchups where the 1-seed received 60% or more of the tickets bet has seen that No. 1 go 6-9 against the spread for 40% winners and if favored by 10 or fewer points has produced the same record.

The 2-seed Duke Blue Devils are catching extra attention as Coach Mike Krzyzewski goes through his final NCAA Tournament. There is not much help from the database based on seedings of a 2 vs 3-seed or even the 3-seed being favored over the 2-seed. Wish there was.

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Some Trends and Angles to Guide Us

Providence vs Kansas

Providence looks to take down Kansas, knowing they are 13-2 against the spread when facing an opponent that is outscoring their opponents by four or more points per game this season. They are also 10-1 against the spread facing opponents like Kansas that outscoring their opponents by eight or more points.

If you like Kansas to cover the spread over Providence, you will love to know that Providence is 3-11 against the number when playing in neutral court settings over the past three seasons.

Iowa State vs Miami

The Iowa State Cyclones are 10-2 against the spread when facing defensive teams that are averaging 14 or fewer forced turnovers per game spanning the last two seasons.

Miami is 10-2 against the spread when facing a team averaging 21 or more 3-point attempts per game.

Saint Peter’s vs Purdue

Saint Peter’s is 10-2 against the spread when facing a team after game No. 15 of the regular season and taking on an opponent averaging 21 or more 3-point shot attempts.

It is also a near-perfect 11-1 against the number when facing a team after game No. 15 and taking on an opponent that is called for 17 or fewer fouls per game.

North Carolina vs UCLA

UNC is 3-11 against the spread when taking on an opponent that has outscored its opponents by eight or more points per game over the past two seasons.

UCLA is 3-10 against the spread when facing a strong shooting opponent making 46% or more of their shots in games played this season.

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