My Sweet 16 trends set the table for another high profile weekend of betting College Hoops! Strong data from a handful of Sweet 16 matchups, plus the top Consensus bets.
College basketball bettors have had a few days to collect their thoughts after what some are calling the wildest First and Second Rounds of March Madness tournament history.
Records were set for upsets but in the Covid era, it really isn’t all that shocking. Nothing has been normal about the way last year’s season was shut down, or the way this season powered through. We are where we are, though, and Sweet 16 odds are giving everyone a chance to take another kick at the can.
Top of the Heap
Gonzaga came into the tourney like a wrecking ball and have held to their form, scoring 98 and 87 points in two double-digit wins. Creighton’s record against winning teams the past two seasons is 26-16 ATS, including a 15-5 ATS record in the second half of the season.
(5) Creighton vs. (1) Gonzaga
Sunday, March 28 at 2:10 PM ET
Line: Bulldogs -13 and O/U 158
At +277 odds and with a total of 158, Sunday’s game against Creighton projects as the second-highest Sweet 16 game of the weekend. The loftiest total belongs to Arkansas and Oral Roberts at 159. On a $100 bet, sportsbooks are paying back +$232 that the Golden Eagles and Razorbacks will be the weekend’s biggest shootout.
- When the Zags score more than 80 points, they are 46-27 ATS the past three seasons.
- Neutral court faves that have scored 80-plus points in back-to-back games are 55-28 ATS (66%) against an average defensive team that allows
Current odds to win the NCAA Tournament favor the Zags at +135. Next up is Baylor (+377), Michigan (+879) and Houston (+919).
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USC coach Andy Enfield is 9-0 ATS with the Trojans in the NCAA Tournament and his flawless record is getting more attention than usual, thanks in part to widespread legalization of sports betting in America. Basically, broadcasters other than Al Michaels can now reference spread betting without getting a talking to from their network’s hallway monitor.
(7) Oregon vs. (6) USC
Sunday, March 28 at 9:45 PM ET
Line: Trojans -2.5 and O/U 139
This line opened at USC -1 and quickly jumped, despite CBB Consensus data suggesting 57% action on the Ducks. USC throttled Kansas 85-51 on Monday and they are 12-3 the past two years away from home following a double-digit win.
- Enfield’s tournament record since 1997 is 34-18 ATS (65%).
The Ducks have won 12 of their past 14 games and Will Richardson led the team with 40 minutes in the upset win over Iowa. Richardson had 19 points, third behind Chris Duarte (23) and LJ Figueroa (21). The Ducks shot 56% overall, well ahead of their 47.6% season average.
Sweet 16 Trends: Seeing Double
With all the upsets in Rounds 1-2, it was only a matter of time before bettors started showing the underdogs some love. According to my Consensus numbers, the money on three of four double-digit seeds is rolling in.
Oral Roberts leads the way with 75% action as an 11.5-point dog. Syracuse is fetching 68%, followed by Oregon State at 64% from contrarian bettors. Here are some Sweet 16 trends supporting the underdog this weekend.
(15) Oral Roberts vs. (3) Arkansas
Saturday, March 27 at 7:25 PM ET
Line: Razorbacks -11.5 and O/U 159
Arkansas has played UNDER four consecutive games, including their 68-66 win over Texas Tech.
- Neutral court favorites that average 77-plus points per game are only 32-64 ATS (33%) following a string of three or more UNDERS.
The Razorbacks scored 82 PPG this season, including 79.8 on the road. In their past five, the pace has slowed down a touch to 76.2 per game. Note that the Golden Eagles have allowed 75.7 PPG on the year. They are also 7-0 ATS this season when scoring 75-80 points on the road.
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(11) Syracuse vs. (2) Houston
Saturday, March 27 at 9:55 PM ET
Line: Cougars -5.5 and O/U 140
The Saturday nightcap sees a pair of teams that are both averaging more than 35% shooting from beyond the arc.
- The Orange possess a 42-19 ATS (69%) record as a neutral site dog since 1997.
Houston has won nine in a row since Feb. 21, going 6-3 ATS. With all the top seeds from the Midwest eliminated, they can taste the Elite 8 but covering is another story.
(12) Oregon State vs. (8) Loyola Chicago
Saturday, March 27 at 2:40 PM ET
Line: Ramblers -6.5 and O/U 125.5
It looks as if the UNDER is getting attention in this Midwest matchup, down from an opener of 126. There is a high volume angle supporting the move, where strong defensive teams like Loyola are 202-141 UNDER (59%) on neutral court against average defensive teams. The Ramblers allowed just 55.8 points this season, holding No. 1 seed Illinois to 58 in last weekend’s upset.
- Hot shooting teams like the Ramblers, that hit more than 47% their past three-straight, are 85-132 ATS (39%) vs. a foe that held its last opponent to less than 33% shooting.
Loyola Chicago has shot 47-plus-percent in five-straight games. The Beavers held Oklahoma State to 27.7% in their 80-70 victory on Sunday.