NCAA Tournament Betting: Pair Of Sharp Total Picks For Saturday

Mark Lathrop

Saturday, March 19, 2016 12:39 PM GMT

Today our NCAAB Handicapper looks at a few contested 9-seed vs. 1-seed matchups and finds superior O/U totals value inside. Start winning big with our betting tips.

Connecticut vs Kansas
In the first 9-1 matchup we are going to look at the 9-seeded Connecticut Huskies (25-10) play the 1-seed Kansas Jayhawks (31-4). These teams haven’t played in decades so it will be an interesting matchup to say the least. Out of the gate, the Jayhawks are favored by 8-points at 5Dimes, while the O/U total has opened at 140 at Pinnacle.

Kansas comes into this game after destroying Austin Peay in the first round by a scored of 105-79. They actually pushed as a 26-point favorite where I took the line, but the total went way over the consensus line of 151. I was all over that line (pats self on back) and am looking to back the strong offensive trend that Kansas has going right now. They shot 55.7% from the field in that game against Austin Peay, and hoisted up 70 attempts in the process. You’d think they would have slowed down a bit after going up big, but they didn’t. That’s a good sign coming into this game for the Over.

Connecticut also comes into this game after going over the total of 131 in their 74-67 win over 8th-seeded Colorado. Connecticut plays at a much slower pace than Kansas and hasn’t had a total posted for them over 140 for 11 straight games now. The reason for this is their defense, as the Huskies only allow opponents to score an average of 63.2 points per game against them this season.  They do average 73.4 points per game though, so they do have the ability to put up enough points to get over this total. Look for Kansas to push the pace in this game and for UCONN to get to their scoring average, which make Over 140 at Pinnacle the 2nd round NCAA tournament pick.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: Over 140
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

 

Butler vs. Virginia
In this second 9-1 matchup we have the Butler Bulldogs (22-10) looking to upset the 1-seed Virginia Cavaliers (27-7). These two teams have also not met in decades and the Cavaliers have been instilled as a 7-point favorite to start, while the O/U total can be found as high as 130.5 on the NCAA tournament odds board.

The Cavaliers have quite a trend going favoring the Under as they have racked up a 12-20 O-U record on the year, while the Under has cashed in 12 of their last 14 games. This is to be expected from one of the top defensive teams in the country. Making matters even worse, is the plodding pace that the Virginia offense plays at. They only average 53 attempts per game, but they get good shots, making 48.9% of them from field goal range.

Butler does play at a faster pace than Virginia, averaging 60 attempts per game, a 46.6% field goal percentage, and 80.3 points. However, they exhibit a very strong home/away split in scoring and only average 74.9 points per game away from their home court. The Bulldogs have tightened up in conference tournament and NCAA tournament play, cashing the Under in both games thus far. Look for Virginia to dominate pace, and unless one team shoots the lights out from 3-point range, this game should go Under 130.5 as one of your NCAAB Picks.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: Under 131
Best Line Offered: at Bovada