NCAA Tournament Picks: Saturday's Elite 8 Moneyline Value Plays

Swinging Johnson

Saturday, March 26, 2016 5:37 PM UTC

Saturday, Mar. 26, 2016 5:37 PM UTC

Saturday night will feature two huge games between No. 1 and No. 2 seeds with Oregon tipping off against Oklahoma and Kansas meeting Villanova. Let's peruse the NCAA Basketball odds money lines and see why the underdogs will win outright in both games.

6:09 PM EDT Oklahoma vs. Oregon
Both teams are having surprisingly sensational seasons as the Sooners have won a school record nine games over ranked opponents with their 77-63 shellacking of Texas A&M in the Sweet 16, installed as 2 ½ point favorites by the NCAA Tournament odds makers. Big 12 Player of the Year Bobby Hield has been setting a torrid pace all season and kept his mojo alive with 17 points and 10 boards in their win against A&M. Perhaps the best thing going for the Sooners right now is that all their players are getting into the act with Jordan Woodward netting 22 and five Sooners scoring in double figures. This is a team with experience as four of Oklahoma's five starters have a combined for 103 games in their starting roles. That maturation is evident and though the Sooners have had head scratching moments of lethargy at times this season, that malaise has not reared its ugly head lately as the Sooners have won six of their last seven.

Oregon is no slouch, having won 11 straight and cashing for all those who have included the Ducks in their NCAA Tournament picks on seven of those 11 occasions. The Ducks won the Pac-12 regular season and tournament titles and ousted the defending national champions, the Duke Blue Devils, in their last outing by the score of 82-68 and easily cashing as 3 ½ point neutral site favorites. All that being said the Sooners boast the best college basketball player on the court in Bobby Hield coupled with a three-point game that is among the very best in the nation.

Oklahoma has oodles of experience and is playing their best defense of the season. Yes, Oregon can score but this one will be physical which is why Oklahoma will control the pace and tempo of the game, limiting Oregon's shots and torching them from beyond the arc when the opportunity arises.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: Oklahoma +104
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle


8:49 PM EDT Villanova vs. Kansas
Both these teams have absolutely cruised their way into the Elite Eight with Villanova winning by an average of 23.3 and Kansas with an 18 point margin of victory. The Wildcats are not only shooting the lights out, connecting on over 63 percent of their shots against third-seeded Miami of Florida, but went 18-of-19 from the charity stripe. That demonstrates a team that is not only firing on all cylinders but disciplined from the free throw line as well.

The Jayhawks were sluggish in the opening of their 79-63 win over Maryland and held only a two-point lead at the half. But Kansas found their groove and steamrolled the Terps in the second half leading to the 16 point victory. Offensively the Jayhawks are amongst the best in the nation and have averaged 85.6 points in their three tournament games. All that is fine and dandy but tonight they will be opposed by a Villanova squad that is averaging an even better 88.3 PPG in the tourney and are playing air-tight defense limiting their opponents to only 64.3 PPG versus Kansas's highly respectable 67.6.

The stats will show that these two clubs are on a collision course that sees both peaking at the right time. However, the 'Cats are now scoring even more prolifically than their opponents tonight while their defense remains stout. This will not be a game decided by the point spread, which currently indicates Kansas as two-point favorites. No, this is going to be a Wildcats straight up victory so let the squares send it on the Jayhawks because after all, they're Kansas. That's the mindset of an uninformed public. Be on the sharp side and grab the vig instead of laying it.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: Villanova +140
Best Line Offered: at Bovada

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