Sports B.I.T. - NCAA Tournament Upsets Are No Surprise To Vegas

Teddy Covers

Monday, March 21, 2016 5:47 PM UTC

Monday, Mar. 21, 2016 5:47 PM UTC

Teddy and Pualy are back with another SportsBIT for Monday. They break down the Big Dance and how betters can capitalize and come out ahead in the NCAA Tournament odds boards.

Smart Betting Done Right
On SportsBIT for Monday, Teddy and Pauly break down the Big Dance the way bettors want the Big Dance to get broken down — from a pointspread perspective.  Just once, we wish we could turn on Sportscaster and find quality, accurate betting information.  But we can’t, which leaves a great window for a show like SportsBIT, a daily look at the pointspread information that bettors NEED to know

And while the mainstream media world spent the weekend screaming about shockers, bracket carnage and an epic level of upsets, the actual pointspread results from the first two rounds of the Big Dance tell a very different story.  Betting favorites, in fact, had a winning weekend against the spread over the first four full days of the tournament. 

Favorites of -2 or higher went 15-14 against the NCAA basketball odds boards in the opening round, then 8-6 ATS over the weekend, a combined 23-20 ATS.  If you bet every favorite for one unit, you slowed a slight profit; if you bet every dog, you lost more than five units with juice included in the mix.  For all the ‘dogs are dominating’ jargon that filled the airwaves, the dogs, in fact, were NOT dominating here in Las Vegas.

From a totals standpoint, blindly betting every game Over the total was a moneymaking strategy in the first round, with the numbers showing a 19-12-1 to the Over mark for those 32 games.  The new 30 second shot clock certainly had an impact, and there were a good handful of late game foul-fests where the late flurry of ‘scramble points’ were aided by that shorter shot clock in this year’s tourney compared to season’s past.


Carnage? There's Nothing Here To Gasp About
But the pendulum swung back the other way over the weekend with ten Under bets cashing compared to only six Overs.  The aggregate numbers don’t tell us too much here — in a very short sample size, this result looks fairly ‘randomized’.

And for all the talk about carnage, there are only four teams seeded higher than #5 still standing.  From a Vegas standpoint, the fact that those four teams are still standing is anything BUT a shocker.  

Notre Dame was favored at tip-off in both of their NCAA Tournament games, so there can’t be a surprise that they won them both. It was the same story with Gonzaga, favored in both games. Syracuse was in the pick ‘em range against Dayton and -6 (or higher) against Middle Tennessee — no shock that they went 2-0 last weekend either. So of the four lowest seeded teams still standing, only one of them actually pulled off any kind of an upset.  Wisconsin was favored over Pitt in the first round, but closed in the +4 range against Xavier on Sunday. Check out the full show right here

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