NCAA Tournament 2019 Second-Round Odds and Top Bets to Back

NCAA Tournament 2019 Second-Round Odds and Top Bets to Back

The field of 64 is now 32. We've seen favorites topple lower seeds, underdogs rise to the occasion, and even witnessed history with Wofford's Fletcher MaGee.

March Madness betting is in full effect, as there's plenty of more action heading into round two. With $8.5 billion expected to be wagered on this year's event, it's only natural we continue to break down bets moving into the Round of 32.

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Saturday’s Round 2 Bets to Back

Michigan basketball

Best Bet

No. 10 Florida vs. No. 2 Michigan

There are not many 'best bets' as the March Madness field thins out.

Michigan enters their second game of the NCAA Tournament taking on one of the hottest teams in the country. As impressive as Florida has been leading up to the tournament, they are somewhat fortunate to be in this position.

The Gators allowed Nevada to almost come back and beat them after a large lead throughout most of the first half. The seniors for Florida stepped up when it counted, but don't expect Michigan to play from behind a large lead as Nevada did.

The Wolverines handled a very active and relentless Montana squad, showcasing their third-best defensive rating in the country. Michigan hasn't allowed an opponent to shoot 41 percent or better since one-and-done games started back in the Big 10 Tournament.

Florida has seen high field goal percentages in recent games though, along with limiting turnovers against Nevada. The Gators did have 18 turnovers in their loss to Auburn, so Michigan's success will have to come from either forcing bad shots or getting turnovers.

The Wolverines have the size inside to disrupt shots from Florida's big men Keyontae Johnson and Kevarrius Hayes. It also helps that the Wolverines have John Beilein who has seen two Final Four appearances, including last year.

As impressive as Florida has been to end the season, when push comes to shove it's hard to bet against the Wolverine's defense. There's also a concern for Florida closing games out, which has been an issue all season.

Pick: Michigan -1.5 over Florida

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Best Value Bet

No. 6 Maryland vs. No. 3 LSU

Both Maryland and LSU almost saw themselves on the wrong side of an upset. LSU allowed Yale to shoot their way back into the game, while Maryland was in a back-and-forth battle with Belmont.

Both Bruno Fernando and Jalen Smith were big factors in the win over Belmont, but LSU has both the size and skill to match and even overpower Maryland's bigs.

This game may very well come down to guard play, as an excellent matchup between Tremont Waters and Anthony Cowan is expected. Both these teams are very similar in skill, the only big difference being LSU's experience overall.

Will Wade's absence hasn't seemed to affect this team for better or worse, as they still have issues closing out games. LSU's last two losses came by six points or less, so there is a strong value bet to be made with the alternate spread.

Pick: LSU +3 over Maryland

Best Long-Shot Pick

No. 7 Wofford vs. No. 2 Kentucky

It's official. Wofford's Fletcher MaGee is the all-time leader for 3-pointers made. When you have the greatest 3-point shooter in NCAA history, you have a chance to win, let alone cover.

What makes Wofford's chances to pull off a long-shot cover possible is the absence of Kentucky's P.J. Washington. Kentucky's leading scorer is expected to be out a second game, which may be blood in the water for Wofford.

Wofford plays great defense, but they also score a ton of points. The Terriers entered the NCAA Tournament with the second-highest offensive rating in the nation.

Wofford also has the big man presence to deal with Kentucky senior Reid Travis, so scoring may become an issue for the Wildcats. It may seem unlikely, but Wofford is actually a considerable long-shot bet.

Pick: Wofford +6 over Kentucky

Saturday’s NCAA Second-Round Odds

6 Maryland (+108) v 3 LSU (-129)O/U 138.5LSU -2
2 Kentucky (-225) v 7 Wofford (+185)O/U 132UK -5
10 Florida (+245) v 2 Michigan (-305)O/U 123MICH -6.5
12 Murray State (+165) v 4 FSU (-200)O/U 144FSU -4.5
1 Gonzaga (-1250) v 9 Baylor (+850)O/U 148ZAGA -13
10 Minnesota (+425) v 2 Michigan State (-560)O/U 141.5MSU -10
6 Villanova (+143) v 3 Purdue (-175)O/U 137PUR -3.5
4 Kansas (+118) v 5 Auburn (-141)O/U 17.5AUB -2.5

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Sunday’s Round 2 Bets to Back

Jordan Bone

Best Bet

No. 10 Iowa vs. No. 2 Tennessee

Despite a close game against Colgate, Tennessee should defeat Iowa. Iowa's offense was able to bail them out of a tough defensive battle against Cincinnati.

Tennessee's offense has been the surprise over their last two games, struggling to eclipse 80 points after averaging 81.8 per game this season.

Don't expect Tennessee's offense to stay in this rut, as Iowa's defensive rating ranks 233rd out of 353 teams. Cincinnati just doesn't have the same offense that Tennessee has between Grant Williams and Jordan Bone alone.

Iowa does have the offense to keep pace with Tennessee if the Volunteers are knocking down shots. However, the difference comes on the defensive side which is something Iowa has a huge disadvantage in.

Tennessee's defense also ranks within the nation's top 75, so Iowa's offense will have their work cut out for them to begin the game. It would take a major defensive lap from Tennessee to fall victim to the Hawkeyes.

Pick: Tennessee -375 over Iowa

Best Value Bet

No. 13 UC-Irvine vs. No. 12 Oregon

Two teams who saw the right side of an upset now face each other with a Sweet 16 spot on the line. UC-Irvine defeated a stagnant offense in Kansas State as Oregon pulled away from their game against Wisconsin.

Both teams enter this game with tons of momentum, UC-Irvine not losing since January. Oregon is on a current nine-game winning streak themselves, showcasing their 28th-rated defense in the country.

It's safe to say that UC-Irvine was lucky to see Kansas State's Dean Wade on the bench and not in uniform. Even with Wade on the bench, Kansas State had a comfortable lead throughout the first half.

Suddenly, Kansas State missed 11 straight shots and saw their lead crumble with a tied game at halftime. From there, Irvine pulled away as the Wade-less Wildcat offense struggled without their catalyst on the floor.

For Oregon, they showed no fear in their game against Wisconsin. The Ducks have a scary swag to their game right now, and Kenny Wooten is playing out of his mind.

The combo-threat of Peyton Pritchard and Wooten, along with the defense Oregon has played all season long, makes this seem like an easier pick than it might actually be.

Pick: Oregon -5 over UC-Irvine

Best Long-Shot Pick

No. 6 Buffalo vs. No. 3 Texas Tech

The biggest difference in this game is the experience. Buffalo has pretty much all seniors playing this game, the same players that saw ample action in last year's tournament.

Texas Tech's offense is led entirely by a sophomore, a good one keep in mind. Texas Tech's offense is their defense though, earning the top defensive rating in the nation.

The problem for Texas Tech is that Buffalo has a top-25 defense themselves, not to mention a top 20 offense that averages roughly 85 points per game.

Buffalo has shooters everywhere and actually matches Texas Tech in length. The Bulls are also battle-tested, despite what many say about their lack of a schedule.

The Bulls defeated a DeAndre Ayton-led Arizona team by 20 points in last year's tournament and won tough road games this season against both West Virginia and Syracuse.

It's tough to consider this a long-shot bet, but it's very rare to see Buffalo in many people's Sweet 16 brackets this season. Buffalo is much better than advertised, which includes the seeding the committee gave them.

Taking Texas Tech to cover a Buffalo spread would be playing this one safe. Taking Buffalo to win straight up is a long-shot to many.

Pick: Buffalo +143 over Texas Tech

Sunday’s NCAA Second-Round Odds

10 Iowa (+300) v 2 Tennessee (-375)O/U 156TENN -8
9 Washington (+460) v 1 North Carolina (-590)O/U 149UNC -10.5
6 Buffalo (+143) v 3 Texas Tech (-167)O/U 146.5TT-3.5
1 Virginia (-770) v 9 Oklahoma (+575)O/U 128.5UVA -11.5
12 Oregon (-225) v 13 UC-Irvine (+185)O/U 122.5OREG -5
1 Duke (-1000) v 9 UCF (+700)O/U 143DUKE -13
12 Liberty (+375) v 4 Virginia Tech (-480)O/U 125.5VT -9
11 Ohio State (+185) v 3 Houston (-225)O/U 131HOU -5.5

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