The Sweet 16 lines in the NCAA tournament are usually very tight and tough to beat, and thankfully I got through the Thursday games with decent results on my picks, going 3-1. I got wins with the Dayton and San Diego St spreads, and got a win with the Florida money line. I took a loss with the Baylor/Wisconsin total, but in the Sweet 16, I’ll take 3-1 any day!
The four Friday Sweet 16 games present more interesting matchups and handicapping scenarios, and I’ve decided on my opinions on the betting odds for those four games.
Starting out, Michigan, who has looked very impressive handling their opponents so far in the tournament, is matched up against Tennessee, this year’s play-in game upstart making a deep run. The professional handicappers at SBR who previewed this game this week are split on where the value on the spread might lie, and I’m gonna pass on the spread altogether, my pick will be on the total where I think I’m seeing legitimately solid betting value, my favorite pick out of the four games.
Then we have Iowa St/UConn, where Iowa St is a small favorite despite dealing with some injury issues. UConn has been one of those hot-and-cold teams this year, at times looking mediocre when playing unimpressive opponents, but then also beating Florida outright, and when they’re on their game, looking like world-beaters. Troy West from AllPlaysWin.com, SBR contributor Jeff Grant, and I, all agree on the side with value in this game. Is that the kiss of death and an indication to fade? Maybe, maybe not. But we’re all in agreement, and we’ll see how the game turns out.
Then we have the fascinating Kentucky/Louisville game, and this one has seen the line move significantly in Kentucky’s favor, from +5.5 down to +4. Kentucky of course is coming off of a win over #1 seed Wichita St. Kentucky is young, but also loaded with NBA talent. And Louisville, of course, is Louisville, a juggernaut of an elite program. I previewed this game with Tony George, and also discussed it with Joe Duffy from OffshoreInsiders.com earlier this week, and we’re prepared to go out on a limb with a bit of a longshot prediction on this game.Then finally, Virginia/Michigan St is sure to be an awesome game to watch, with Michigan St a small favorite, and getting all the hype from TV analysts. A bunch of the professional handicappers at SBR, though, like Virginia to come out on top. I see their points, but fading Tom Izzo with a talented team in deep March is just not something I’m prepared to do right now. Instead, my analysis on the game has led me to decide to take a shot with the total as my pick on the game.