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2019 March Madness Odds: How Sweet are the 16?

College Basketball National Championship Odds

As we approach the second-last weekend of the college hoops schedule, there remain just 16 teams vying for the opportunity to cut down the net on April 8 in Minneapolis. If you stuck with the top-three seeds in your bracket, then you are sitting pretty, but here’s when the fun starts! Similarly, your futures bets are still alive if you followed the strategy and as it has been all season, the Duke Blue Devils are still the favorites at +300.

Bovada has Duke as the top team at +300 followed by Virginia at +425, Gonzaga at +450, North Carolina at +600 and Michigan State at +1000 to round out the top five teams on the oddsboard.

Do the Ducks have another win in them?

The Cinderella story of the tournament thus far and the only team in the Sweet 16 that was not seeded in the top 10 is the Oregon Ducks. The No. 12 Ducks are creating havoc in the South Region, topping No. 5 Wisconsin in the Round of 64, followed by a 73-54 drubbing of No. 13 UC-Irvine in the Round of 32.

There were high hopes for Oregon at the outset of the season as the team earned the No. 14 rank in the AP poll in the preseason rankings. However, a season-ending injury to star player Bol Bol left the Ducks in limbo. They’ve figured it out recently, though, going 10-0 SU and ATS through their last 10 games, including the first two in the national tournament.

Oregon now tips off against the Virginia Cavaliers, the No. 1 seed in the South Region, who have looked less than stellar in their first two contests in March Madness. The Ducks are peaking at the right time and if they can figure out the defensive puzzle of Virginia, then a +7000 wager for a one-in-eight chance of winning the college hoops crown isn’t a bad play.

Was Duke’s Round of 32 Scare a Sign of Things to come?

All season I have been warning about the high risk and low reward of wagering on Duke as low as +170, since any hiccup and that bet is toast. Well, that nearly came to fruition on Sunday as the Blue Devils needed to mount a last-minute comeback to sneak past the UCF Knights, earning the narrow 77-76 triumph.

Duke has a grueling schedule that lies ahead, with Virginia Tech coming in the Sweet 16, either LSU or Michigan State in the Elite Eight, and potential rematches with Gonzaga and North Carolina in the Final Four and in the final. I think oddsmakers understand this risk and have adjusted the Blue Devils’ odds accordingly as they are now +300 to win it all. I still think they are overvalued, but they have shown a great ability to overcome adversity.

North Carolina has Rolled the First Two Rounds

Since falling 69-61 on its home court to Virginia on February 11, North Carolina has gone 10-1 SU and 8-3 ATS, with its only defeat coming in the ACC tournament semifinal against Duke in a 74-73 nail-biter. Through the first two rounds of March Madness, UNC had a somewhat close battle with Iona but pulled away in the second half en route to an 88-73 triumph and followed that up with a dominant 81-59 performance vs Washington.

The Tar Heels are a well-rounded squad that has the ability to score with the best of them and showed in their game against Washington the ability to clamp down defensively as well. I think North Carolina is the cream of the crop in the Midwest Region and should advance to the Final Four where a rematch against Virginia may be on the horizon. I find it surprising that North Carolina has the worst odds of the four No. 1 seeds – I think the Heels are the best bet at +600.

Here’s a look at the entire list of odds for the 2019 college hoops March Madness:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+300
Virginia+425
Gonzaga+450
North Carolina+600
Michigan State+1000
Kentucky+1200
Michigan+1500
Tennessee+1600
Purdue+2000
Texas Tech+2200
Auburn+2800
Houston+3000
Virginia Tech+3500
Florida State+4000
LSU+5000
Oregon+7000

What a whirlwind the first two days of March Madness have been. Through the Round of 64 we have seen a dozen upsets, including three No. 12 seeds toppling 5 seeds and even a No. 13 seed edging a 4 seed. That being said, all the 1, 2 and 3 seeds advanced, including the favorite to win it all, the Duke Blue Devils at +250.

Bovada has Duke at +250 followed by Gonzaga and Virginia at +550, North Carolina at +700 and Kentucky at +1200 to round out the top five teams on the oddsboard.

Should you be concerned about the Cavs?

Just over a week ago, Virginia entered the ACC tournament as the top seed and was knocked out in the semifinal vs Florida State. The Cavs still earned a No. 1 seed in the South Region and began their tournament against Gardner-Webb. Old demons arose a year after Virginia was the first-ever No. 1 seed to lose to a No. 16 seed and the Cavaliers found themselves trailing the Runnin’ Bulldogs by six points at the half. All was good in the end, though, as they out-hooped the Bulldogs 41-20 in the second half to punch their ticket into the Round of 32.

Now, a slow start against a 16 seed isn’t the end of the world as overall the Cavaliers were a better team offensively and defensively. However, if they start slowly against a tougher team down the stretch, they may not be as fortunate. Was this a game to get their legs under them or are the Cavs just overrated at +550 and second on the oddsboard?

Gonzaga and Duke on a collision course for the Final Four

The top seeds on the left side of your bracket already danced once this season and the overall No. 1 seed, Duke, would love to earn redemption. Gonzaga and Duke tipped off in the Maui Invitational final back in late November. The Bulldogs edged the Blue Devils 89-87, handing Duke its first loss of the season, while Gonzaga improved its record to 6-0.

Both teams handled their business in the first round with the Bulldogs erasing Fairleigh Dickinson 87-49, while Duke overcame a slow start with an 85-62 triumph over North Dakota State. Both teams have defensive battles looming, with the Zags likely to collide with Michigan or Texas Tech, while Duke is likely going to tip off with Virginia Tech, a team that beat the Blue Devils in late February. Not surprising to see Duke and Gonzaga first and second on the oddsboard, but only one can advance to the championship game. Who will it be?

Who’s our Cinderella story?

We had 12 upsets in the first round, surely destroying many people’s brackets – mine included. But which team has it in them to make a Sweet 16 appearance or go even further? In the South Region, No. 12 seed Oregon and No. 13 seed UC Irvine will be tipping off against each other so there’s at least one lower seed heading to the Sweet 16. However, I think the one that caught everyone’s eyes was the No. 12 seed Murray State Racers throttling No. 5 Marquette 83-64.

In that game, Ja Morant revealed himself to the entire nation, for those who didn’t already know who he was, as he had a triple-double and single-handedly dismantled Marquette. The Racers have a tough draw in the Round of 32, going against a hot team in Florida State that knocked off Virginia to earn a berth in the ACC tournament final. I expect Murray State to put the all-out pressure on Florida State and look to create more damage down the stretch.

Here’s a look at the entire list of odds for the 2019 college hoops national tournament:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+250
Gonzaga+550
Virginia+550
North Carolina+700
Kentucky+1200
Michigan State+1300
Tennessee+1400
Michigan+1600
Purdue+2500
Florida State+2800
Houston+2800
Texas Tech+2800
Auburn+3300
Villanova+3300
Kansas+4000
LSU+4500
Buffalo+6000
Virginia Tech+6000
Murray State+6600
Wofford+6600
Florida+8000
Maryland+8000
Oregon+8000
Iowa+10000
Minnesota+12500
Oklahoma+15000
Baylor+20000
Central Florida+20000
Ohio State+20000
Washington+20000
Cal Irvine+25000
Liberty+25000

Prior to the tipoff of the national tournament, we got a look at some real contenders and pretenders over the last couple of weeks during conference tournaments. One of the most-watched teams was Duke as it won the ACC tournament and Zion Williamson returned in fine fashion, leading the Blue Devils to a big win over the rival North Carolina Tar Heels.

BetOnline has Duke atop the oddsboard at +225 followed by Virginia at +550, Gonzaga at +600, North Carolina at +800 and Kentucky and Michigan State at +1200 to round out the top five odds.

Blue Devils Proved a lot in Conference Tournament Play

Duke had a rough end to its regular season which all coincided with the injury to ACC player of the year Zion Williamson. The freshman forward was injured in the first minute of the February 20 game vs UNC when his shoe fell apart and he hurt his right knee. The Blue Devils lost that game and two of their next four games and barely edged Wake Forest 71-70.

However, Duke got its big man back for the ACC tournament and it parlayed that into an ACC title, including earning revenge with a 74-73 win over North Carolina in the semifinals. Williamson averaged 27 points and 10 rebounds in the three games in the ACC tournament and was named tournament MVP. Tough games still lie ahead for the No. 1-seeded Blue Devils but the way their prized possession is playing, it’s tough to see Duke not playing for the national title in a few weeks.

What does the Bulldogs’ Tournament Final loss mean?

Heading into conference tournaments, the No. 1 team in the AP Top 25 poll was the Gonzaga Bulldogs, who were a perfect 16-0 in WCC play and had a streak of 21 straight victories overall. Additionally, they led the nation in scoring. However, Gonzaga was stomped in the WCC championship game, falling 60-47 to Saint Mary’s.

I wasn’t sold on the Bulldogs this season because of their weak strength of schedule, which is no fault of their own, but they are 1-2 against ranked opponents, though that lone win came against Duke in the Maui Invitational final. I think Gonzaga is a good team that has the ability to fill the basket with a lot of points, but I don’t see it knocking off a couple of top teams to earn a berth in the national championship final. Not worth any value at +600.

Spartans are coming in hot

Michigan State has had a rough season, losing junior guard Joshua Langford for the season in mid-December to an injury and losing junior forward Nick Ward from late February into mid-March with a broken hand. Yet, the Spartans still finished the regular season 25-6 with a 16-4 Big Ten record winning the regular-season title, then won their three conference tournament games to win their first tournament championship since 2016.

Additionally, MSU won all three games against in-state rival Michigan. Sparty is a well-balanced and well-coached team led by head coach Tom Izzo. They have the ability to work the ball inside and have success from two-point range, while also having senior guard Matt McQuaid looming on the wing waiting to nail a triple. This team is peaking at the right time, winning 10 of its last 11 games. Getting a No. 2 seed is disgusting, though: Michigan State will have a tall task in Duke if it wants to make it to the Final Four – tough to wager at +1200.

Here’s a look at the rest of the odds for the 2019 college hoops national championship:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+225
Virginia+550
Gonzaga+600
North Carolina+800
Kentucky+1200
Michigan State+1200
Tennessee+1400
Michigan+1600
Texas Tech+2000
Auburn+2500
Florida State+3300
Purdue+3300
Virginia Tech+3300
Houston+4000
Iowa State+4000
LSU+4000
Kansas+5000
Kansas State+5000
Louisville+5000
Marquette+5000
Villanova+5000
Wisconsin+5000
Buffalo+6600
Florida+6600
Syracuse+6600
Cincinnati+8000
Maryland+8000
Mississippi State+8000
Nevada+8000
Wofford+10000
Baylor+15000
Iowa+15000
Ole Miss+15000
Oklahoma+15000
Oregon+15000
Seton Hall+15000
Saint Mary’s+15000
UCF+15000
VCU+15000
Washington+15000
Ohio State+20000
Arizona State+25000
Minnesota+25000
Murray State+25000
New Mexico State+25000
Saint Louis+25000
St. John’s+25000
UC Irvine+25000
Utah State+25000
Belmont+50000
Georgia State+50000
Iona+50000
Liberty+50000
Montana+50000
Northeastern+50000
Northern Kentucky+50000
Old Dominion+50000
Temple+50000
Vermont+50000
Yale+50000
Abilene Christian+100000
Bradley+100000
Colgate+100000
Fairleigh Dickinson+100000
Gardner-Webb+100000
NC Central+100000
North Dakota State+100000
Prairie View A&M+100000

There is just one final weekend ahead of conference tournaments and many teams are jockeying for seeding in their respective conferences, which ultimately helps in the NCAA Tournament seedings. As it has been all season and remains as we near the end, Duke is the heavy favorite at +210 to win the national championship in just over a month.

Bovada has Duke as the +210 favorite followed by Gonzaga and Virginia at +800, Kentucky at +900 and North Carolina and Tennessee at +1100 to round out the top six teams on the oddsboard.

When will Zion Return for Duke?

The Blue Devils will be heading to Chapel Hill this Saturday to tip off against their rivals, the North Carolina Tar Heels, and will likely be without projected first overall NBA draft pick Zion Williamson. The six-foot-seven forward was injured in the first minute of the game against UNC on February 20 and hasn’t been on the court since, and is doubtful to play in the rematch this Saturday.

Duke has gone 3-2 SU in the five games without Williamson, including the 88-72 home loss to then-No. 8 UNC, and has averaged 75.4 ppg, which is nine points below its season average of 84.6. Most recently, Duke narrowly edged lowly Wake Forest 71-70 on March 5. Coach Mike Krzyzewski says that Zion should be good for the beginning of the ACC tournament, but I would be hesitant about whether he’s 100 percent and would be wary of laying a wager at +210 with these question marks.

UNC is taking care of business down the stretch

I haven’t written much about the Tar Heels for a futures bet because I really couldn’t get a good gauge of them. Some nights UNC looks like one of the best teams in the nation, while on other nights it would look a little flat. However, since a 69-61 loss at home to Virginia on February 11, UNC has been on a tear, winning six straight games by an average margin of 15.83, with only two of the victories coming by fewer than 10 points.

The big issue for me about the Tar Heels has been their defense, which is surrendering 73.1 points per game this year. That being said, I thought holding Florida State to just 59 points on February 23 and Duke to 72 showed a lot of improvement. Additionally, senior Cameron Johnson is chipping in 21.3 ppg since the Virginia loss, over four ppg more than his season average. If UNC can continue to work out the kinks on defense, a +1100 wager isn’t a bad play for a team that appears to be peaking.

Virginia flexing offensive muscles

Virginia is having a masterful season, sporting a 27-2 record ahead of its season finale against Louisville on Saturday. Its only two defeats have come against Duke (with Zion Williamson), by two at Cameron Indoor Stadium and by 10 at John Paul Jones Arena. The defense has been talked about over and over again, leading the nation by allowing just 54.1 points per game (51.6 at home).

Recently, the offense has come around as the Cavs have poured in 77.67 ppg over their last three games, which is five points better than their season average. They put on an absolute clinic from beyond the arc at Syracuse on March 4. Virginia matched a school record with 18 triples in that game, led by Kyle Guy, who shot 8-for-10 from long range.

This should be a warning call to the rest of the teams in the nation that if you give Virginia space beyond the arc, it will bury treys with ease and run up the score. No surprise that the Cavs are tied with Gonzaga at +800 for the second-best odds – they are a great wager.

Here’s a look at the full list of odds for the college hoops national championship:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+210
Gonzaga+800
Virginia+800
Kentucky+900
North Carolina+1100
Tennessee +1100
Michigan+1200
Michigan State+1400
Nevada+2500
Kansas+2800
Texas Tech+3500
Iowa State+4000
LSU+4000
Wisconsin+4000
Houston U+5000
Marquette+5000
Auburn+5500
Purdue+5500
Villanova+5500
Mississippi State+7000
Virginia Tech+7000
Buffalo+7500
Florida State+8000
Kansas State+8000
Louisville+8000
Syracuse+8000
NC State+9500
Iowa+10000
Maryland+10000
Nebraska+10000
Ohio State+10000
Arizona State+12500
Cincinnati+12500
Florida+12500
Indiana+12500
Oklahoma+12500
St. John's+12500
TCU+12500
Texas+12500
Washington U+12500
Arizona+15000
Butler+15000
Connecticut+15000
Furman+15000
Miami (FL)+15000
Minnesota U+15000
Oregon+15000
Seton Hall+15000
Texas A&M+15000
Wichita State+15000
Xavier+15000
Clemson+20000
Memphis State+20000
Penn State+20000
Vanderbilt+20000
Baylor+25000
Creighton+25000
Notre Dame+25000
UCLA+25000
West Virginia+25000
Loyola University Chicago+30000

The regular season has just a week and a half left and under five games remaining for the majority of teams, with conference tournaments looming a mere two and a half weeks away. Duke, as it has been all season, remains the favorite, but for the first time all year, its odds took a drop, falling from +160 seven days ago to +210 today. Meanwhile, Gonzaga, a team that beat Duke, has emerged with the second-best odds at +850.

Bovada has Duke leading the way at +210 followed by Gonzaga at +850, Kentucky at +900, Virginia at +950 and North Carolina and Tennessee at +1100 to round out the top teams on the oddsboard.

Tread Cautiously with Duke without Zion

Many futures bettors became very anxious when they saw Duke’s superstar and projected No. 1 NBA draft pick Zion Williamson blow out his shoe and injure his right knee in the first minute against UNC last Wednesday. The Blue Devils looked out of sorts for the remainder of that game, getting thumped 88-72 by the rival Tar Heels at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Not long after, Duke fell 77-72 on the road to Virginia Tech on February 26.

In the three games without Zion, including the UNC loss, the Blue Devils are scoring just 73 points per game, a dozen points below their season average of 85. We don’t know what the extent of this injury actually is – we’ve heard that it’s a mild knee sprain – but if this is anything that’s going to linger with that big man, those +210 odds are a big stay-away for me.

Zags continue to climb the oddsboard

Although Gonzaga’s odds didn’t change from last week to this at +850, all the teams around the Bulldogs fell and they moved from fifth on the oddsboard up to second. Additionally, with the Tennessee loss to Kentucky a couple of weeks ago and Duke falling to UNC, the Zags are now the No. 1 team in the AP poll, returning to the top for the first time since early December. The Bulldogs fell from the top spot after dropping consecutive games against then-No. 7 Tennessee and then-No. 12 UNC in mid-December.

It’s really difficult to judge how good the Bulldogs are, though. They do have a narrow 89-87 win over Duke in the Maui Invitational in late November, but then dropped those two aforementioned games against Tennessee and UNC. Since then, Gonzaga has rattled off 18 straight wins, none against a ranked opponent. On paper, +850 seems like great value for the Zags, but we won’t know how they’ve progressed from those losses until the tournament actually begins, and by then their odds may fall sharply.

Kentucky’s Odds May Rise after This Weekend

Kentucky hosted then-No. 1 Tennessee on February 16 and handed the Vols an 86-69 defeat. Can the Wildcats pull off a similar outcome Saturday when they visit the Thompson-Boling Arena? Kentucky has had a very interesting season, opening the year against Duke and getting thumped 118-84, suffering its other three losses by two or fewer points, and posting four wins over ranked opponents, including the aforementioned victory over then-No. 1 Tennessee.

The Wildcats don’t blow many teams away in one particular statistical category, but rather they are a well-balanced squad that can find a way to win in high- or low-scoring games. Kentucky ranks 48th in points scored per game while being rated as the 28th-best defense, surrendering 64.9 ppg. I have been carrying the Kentucky flag for the last few weeks, getting a futures bet on the Wildcats at +2000 following their 77-75 loss at Alabama to open SEC play. I think at +900 they are still providing good value.

Here’s a look at the full list of odds for the college basketball national championship:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+210
Gonzaga+850
Kentucky+900
Virginia+950
North Carolina+1100
Tennessee +1100
Michigan+1200
Michigan State+1400
Nevada+2200
Kansas+2800
Iowa State+4000
Texas Tech+4000
LSU+4500
Auburn+5000
Marquette+5000
Houston U+5500
Villanova+5500
Purdue+6000
Mississippi State+6500
Buffalo+7000
Louisville+7000
Virginia Tech+7000
Nebraska+7500
Florida State+8000
Syracuse+8000
Wisconsin+8000
Kansas State+9000
NC State+9500
Cincinnati+10000
Iowa+10000
Ohio State+10000
Oklahoma+10000
Arizona State+12500
Florida+12500
Indiana+12500
Maryland+12500
St. John's+12500
TCU+12500
Texas+12500
Arizona+15000
Butler+15000
Connecticut+15000
Furman+15000
Miami (FL)+15000
Minnesota U+15000
Oregon+15000
Seton Hall+15000
Texas A&M+15000
Washington U+15000
Wichita State+15000
Xavier+15000
Clemson+20000
Memphis State+20000
Penn State+20000
Vanderbilt+20000
Baylor+25000
Creighton+25000
Notre Dame+25000
UCLA+25000
West Virginia+25000
Loyola University Chicago+30000

There are just over three weeks remaining in the college hoops schedule and there’s a new No. 1 in the AP poll that now coincides with the top team on the oddsboard and that’s the Duke Blue Devils. As it has been all season, Duke is the favorite at +160, climbing from +170 last week.

Bovada has Duke on top at +170 followed by Tennessee at +750, Kentucky at +775, Virginia at +800 and Gonzaga and Michigan at +850 to round out the top teams on the oddsboard.

Duke needs to take Care of Business Down the Stretch

The Blue Devils have had two hiccups this season, falling 89-87 in the Maui Invitational final against then-No. 3 Gonzaga and suffering a stunning 95-91 overtime upset loss at home vs Syracuse in mid-January. Outside of those two games, Duke has dismantled teams, with 19 of its 23 wins coming by double-digit margins, including an 81-71 road win over then-No. 3 Virginia.

With just six games remaining, the Blue Devils are in the driver’s seat to roll into the national tournament. However, two of those final six games are against archrival UNC, including a clash at the Dean Smith Center to close out the season. I still don’t believe a team should be that much of a favorite in a grueling tournament, but I don’t see us getting any better value on the Blue Devils between now and the beginning of the tournament.

Did Tennessee Show its true colors?

I have flip-flopped on my feelings toward the Vols this season, part of me saying the reason they were No. 1 was because of their terrific win streak and a three-point win over then-No. 1 Gonzaga in early December. However, when I watched them play, they moved the ball around efficiently and moved opposing defenses around like chess pieces leading to easy lay-ins. But the biggest red flag for me was that Tennessee had the 43rd-toughest strength of schedule and during its 19-game winning streak, only one game was against a ranked foe.

That changed last Saturday when Tennessee played its first ranked opponent since December 9, paying a visit to Rupp Arena to tip off against the No. 5 Kentucky Wildcats. The Volunteers got a rude awakening in that game, getting thumped 86-69, and promptly fell from No. 1 to No. 5 in the AP poll. They followed that up with a 12-point win over Vanderbilt but chipped in just 22 points in the second half, not the response I was looking for. Tennessee remains second on the oddsboard at +750 and I would avoid it at all costs.

Kentucky continues to climb

A few weeks ago, you could have got Kentucky at +2000, following its 77-75 loss at Alabama to open SEC play, but now those odds have free-fallen to +775 and it sits third on the oddsboard. The reason I like the Wildcats more than the Vols is that they have had a tougher strength of schedule (23rd) with five wins over ranked opponents, including the win over Tennessee.

Kentucky is very well-rounded, gets the majority of its offense from inside the arc and absolutely punishes opponents on the glass. The Wildcats are 24th in the country in offensive rebounding, including No. 7 at home. Additionally, they have a good defense, restricting opponents to 40.6 percent shooting (29th) and allowing just 65.3 ppg (32nd). Kentucky has to visit Thompson-Boling Arena in early March. That could be a statement game.

Here’s a look at the full list of odds for the 2018-19 college basketball national championship:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+160
Tennessee+750
Kentucky+775
Virginia+800
Gonzaga+850
Michigan+850
Michigan State+1200
Kansas+1800
Nevada+2200
North Carolina+2500
Marquette+3500
Houston U+5000
Purdue+5000
Syracuse+5000
Villanova+5000
Auburn+5500
Iowa State+6000
Kansas State+6000
Texas Tech+6000
LSU+7500
Louisville+7500
Virginia Tech+7500
Wisconsin+8000
Buffalo+9000
Florida State+9000
Indiana+10000
Mississippi State+10000
NC State+10000
Cincinnati+12500
Florida+12500
Iowa+12500
Maryland+12500
Ohio State+12500
St. John’s+12500
Arizona+15000
Arizona State+15000
Nebraska+15000
Oklahoma+15000
Oregon+15000
Seton Hall+15000
TCU+15000
Texas+15000
Texas A&M+15000
UCLA+15000
West Virginia+15000
Wichita State+15000
Clemson+17500
Connecticut+17500
Miami (FL)+17500
Penn State+17500
Xavier+17500
Baylor+20000
Butler+20000
Furman+20000
Minnesota U+20000
Vanderbilt+20000
Creighton+25000
Loyola University Chicago+25000
Memphis State+25000
Notre Dame+25000

Odds as of February 20 at Bovada

Conference tournaments are less than a month away, we are in crunch time and oddsmakers have adjusted the odds, tightening up the true contenders for the 2019 national championship. As it has been all year long, Duke tops all others on the oddsboard at +170, but No. 1 Tennessee has closed the gap and is providing much more value at +750.

Bovada has Duke leading the way at +170 followed by Tennessee at +750, Kentucky and Virginia at +800 and Michigan at +850 to round out the top five teams on the oddsboard.

Are we seeing Holes in Duke’s game?

Over the last week, we have seen a high and low of Duke, but the results remained the same and that was the team walking away with a victory. The Blue Devils went into John Paul Jones Arena and grabbed an 81-71 triumph over then-No. 3 Virginia to complete the season sweep over the Cavaliers.

However, three days later, Duke trailed by 23 points with under 10 minutes to go at then-No. 16 Louisville before mounting a massive comeback for the 71-69 triumph. Two things we learned from that: First, we can never count out the Blue Devils, because when they get hot, they are unstoppable. Second, the Cardinals used good ball movement to get the Blue Devils out of position for good looks at the rim, as they had 17 assists in the game.

I’ve been saying the value on Duke is not worth it at +170, but it is scary to think that when the Blue Devils were down and out, they came back from the dead to earn a victory, proving just how dangerous they are. It’s apparent that defense isn’t the way to beat the Blue Devils but rather trying to match them basket for basket in a high-scoring affair like Syracuse and Gonzaga did.

Gonzaga has been tearing through the WCC

Should there be more attention paid to Gonzaga? The Bulldogs were the first team to top Duke, and the only team to beat a fully healthy Blue Devils team, in the Maui Invitational final. That being said, the Bulldogs had a hiccup in mid-December, dropping back-to-back games, first against then-No. 7 Tennessee in the Air Force Reserve Classic at Talking Stick Resort Arena 76-63 and then at then-No. 12 North Carolina 103-90.

Those are the only two defeats Gonzaga has suffered this year and it has rattled off 14 straight wins since then, though all of them have come against unranked foes. It leads the nation with 91.4 points per game, four points better than second-place North Carolina. On the defensive side of the ball, it has restricted foes to 65.3 points per game, the 34th-fewest in college basketball. The Bulldogs shoot well both inside and outside the arc and I think at +900 there’s some real value here.

Is Houston a threat to win it all?

I have been getting a lot of questions on the value of Houston as it sits No. 9 in the AP poll and holds a 23-1 record at the time of this article. The Cougars sit 17th on the oddsboard with odds of +6500 so why isn’t everyone hammering that line? I think there’s a couple of factors keeping people away from them. Most notably, their strength of schedule ranks 86th and they have only had two games against ranked opponents, both of which are no longer ranked.

The defense has been very stout for Houston, which ranks fifth in the nation by limiting opponents to just 60.7 points per game and is second in opponent shooting percentage at 36.4. The Cougars offense ranks 99th at 75.2 points per game, but their field-goal percentage of 44 percent is only 180th in the country.

I think Houston is a strong team that may earn a win or two in the NCAA Tournament, but I have a hard time seeing them shutting down one of those upper-echelon offenses and although +6500 looks juicy, I would recommend you stay away.

Here’s a look at the full list of odds for the 2018-19 college basketball national championship:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+170
Tennessee+750
Kentucky+800
Virginia+800
Michigan+850
Gonzaga+900
Michigan State+1100
Kansas+1800
Nevada+2200
North Carolina+2500
Villanova+4000
Marquette+4500
Purdue+5000
Syracuse+5000
Auburn+5500
Texas Tech+5500
Houston U+6500
Iowa State+7000
Virginia Tech+7000
Louisville+7500
Wisconsin+8000
Florida State+8500
Kansas State+8500
Buffalo+9000
Nebraska+9000
Cincinnati+10000
Indiana+10000
LSU+10000
Mississippi State+10000
NC State+10000
Ohio State+10000
Oregon+10000
Arizona State+12500
Florida+12500
Iowa+12500
Maryland+12500
Oklahoma+12500
St. John’s+12500
UCLA+12500
Arizona+15000
Clemson+15000
Connecticut+15000
Penn State+15000
Seton Hall+15000
TCU+15000
Texas+15000
Texas A&M+15000
Washington U+15000
West Virginia+15000
Wichita State+15000
Xavier+15000
Butler+17500
Miami (FL)+17500
Vanderbilt+17500
Baylor+20000
Creighton+20000
Furman+20000
Minnesota U+20000
Notre Dame+20000
Loyola University Chicago+25000
Memphis State+25000

Odds as of February 14 at Bovada

 

The college hoops schedule is in the final month of play and we are starting to get a clearer picture of the teams that may end up competing in the March Madness. I’ve outlined teams that have the best odds (still Duke at +170) and provide the best value (Kentucky +900), and now I’m going to focus my attention on teams that you should fade when the national tournament begins.

Bovada has Duke still the favorite at +170 followed by Michigan and Tennessee at +750, Virginia at +800 and Kentucky at +900 to round out the top five teams on the oddsboard to win the NCAA Tournament.

Kansas Jayhawks (+1600)

When the preseason AP Top 25 was released, it was the Kansas Jayhawks topping the list. They were overtaken by Duke after its terrific start to the season but returned to the top spot after then-No. 1 Gonzaga fell to Tennessee and UNC in December. However, the Jayhawks have fallen down to 13th this week and following a loss at Kansas State on February 5, I expect them to tumble further.

The reason I don’t see Kansas pushing for a national championship this year is its inability to win on the road. The Jayhawks have played 11 games away from home this season, including neutral-site games, and have a 5-6 SU record, going 1-6 SU in their true road games. Kansas pours in 80.92 ppg at the Allen Fieldhouse, scoring fewer than 80 points in just five of its 12 games there. However, it scores just 66.57 ppg in true road games, topping 70 points only twice in those seven games. In neutral-site contests, it averaged 79.75 ppg with half the games going under 80 points.

Although the Jayhawks swept their four neutral-site games, three of them against then- or now-ranked teams, I just think they are going to struggle away from home in the tournament and at +1600 I really don’t see any value there.  

Virginia Tech (+6000)

Virginia Tech has been ranked in the AP poll all season, reaching as high as ninth last month, and is currently ranked 11th, while sitting 16th on the oddsboard. At +6000, the Hokies seem like a decent wager, especially after they dismantled then-No. 23 NC State in front of its home fans 47-24 – that’s not the halftime score, that was the final. However, that was just the second win over a ranked opponent, dropping three other chances, including most recently falling 72-64 at home to then-No. 16 Louisville.

The reason I wouldn’t hitch my wagon to the Hokies is they haven’t proved they can step up in big games. In three contests against teams ranked higher than 20th, Virginia Tech is 0-3 with an average losing margin of 17, including losing by 22 at then-No. 4 Virginia. The Hokies are surrendering an average of 10 more points per game in ACC play compared to its non-conference schedule. They are also scoring 11 fewer points per game in conference play compared to non-ACC competition.

I think that the Hokies are a good team that could potentially make a Sweet 16 appearance, but I think when they tip off against tougher competition, they just aren’t at that level and will get rolled as they did against Virginia and UNC.

Here’s a look at the full list of odds to win the 2019 college hoops national championship:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+170
Michigan+750
Tennessee+750
Virginia+800
Kentucky +900
Gonzaga+1000
Michigan State+1000
Kansas+1600
Nevada+2000
North Carolina+2400
Villanova+4000
Auburn+5000
Syracuse+5000
Texas Tech+5000
Purdue+6000
Virginia Tech+6000
Iowa State+7000
Marquette+7000
Buffalo+9000
Florida State+9000
Louisville+9000
Wisconsin+9000
Cincinnati+10000
Houston U+10000
Indiana+10000
Kansas State+10000
LSU+10000
Nebraska+10000
Arizona State+12500
Florida+12500
Iowa+12500
Mississippi State+12500
NC State+12500
Ohio State+12500
Oklahoma+12500
St. John’s+12500
Arizona+15000
Clemson+15000
Connecticut+15000
Maryland+15000
Oregon+15000
Penn State+15000
Seton Hall+15000
TCU+15000
Texas+15000
Texas A&M+15000
UCLA+15000
Washington U+15000
West Virginia+15000
Wichita State+15000
Xavier+15000
Butler+17500
Furman+17500
Miami (FL)+17500
Vanderbilt+17500
Baylor+20000
Creighton+20000
Minnesota U+20000
Notre Dame+20000
Loyola University Chicago+25000
Memphis State+25000

Odds as of February 6 at Bovada

We are nearing crunch time in the college hoops schedule with many teams having right around 10 games remaining before conference tournaments begin. As we head into the final month of the regular season, the Duke Blue Devils remain heavy favorites to go on and win the national championship in April at +170. However, there are other teams starting to hit their stride and could knock off Duke when the NCAA Tournament begins.

Bovada has Duke at +170 followed by Michigan and Tennessee at +750, Virginia at +800 and Gonzaga at +1000 to round out the top five teams on the oddsboard.

Kentucky’s Rolling through the SEC

I outlined my case for value on the Kentucky Wildcats in this article last week when they were +2000. Shout-out to them for not burning me after praising them, even with three tough games following my update, including back-to-back wins over ranked teams in then-No. 22 Mississippi State and then-No. 9 Kansas.

The defense has really stepped it up recently, with only the high-scoring Auburn Tigers scoring more than 65 points against Kentucky over its last six games. The Wildcats are by no means on cruise control for the rest of the season, though, as they have two upcoming games against now-No. 1 Tennessee in a home-and-home series.

I think those games with Tennessee are really going to show how this team has improved from its season-opening blowout at the hands of Duke. I said last week that Kentucky’s odds are going to climb as the season progresses. The Wildcats were +2000 and are now up to +1200. Get on them sooner rather than later.

Duke Has Some Big Games Ahead

The Blue Devils are getting all of the love this season, as people drool over their stars in Zion Williamson, R.J. Barrett and Cam Reddish. They showed they were human when they were upset in overtime at home 95-91 by unranked Syracuse in mid-January, although starting point guard Tre Jones was injured in that contest. Following that loss, they had a narrow 72-70 victory over then-No. 4 Virginia, also at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Duke has 11 games remaining on its schedule, six of them against currently ranked opponents, most notably at now-No. 3 Virginia, at now-No. 15 Louisville, at now-No. 12 Virginia Tech and at now-No. 9 North Carolina. I would be very surprised to see the Blue Devils get through that schedule unscathed and if they were to take a few losses, we might be able to get Duke at a better value than +170.

Is Tennessee Worthy of being No. 1 in the AP Poll?

For just the second time in school history, Tennessee sits atop the AP poll. Its previous No. 1 ranking came in 2008 but lasted just one week as it lost its first game, at Vanderbilt, after becoming the top-ranked team in the nation. A similar situation nearly played out this year as the Vols’ first contest after being voted No. 1 came at Vanderbilt and they needed overtime to survive in an 88-83 victory. For the second week in a row, they remain the top team in the nation.

However, they have had just two games against ranked opponents, albeit against then-No. 2 Kansas and then-No. 1 Gonzaga. Tennessee fell 87-81 to Kansas in the NIT Season Tip-Off, but it topped Gonzaga 76-73 in the Air Force Reserve Classic. I get that the Vols are 18-1 and have been punishing teams with their fourth-ranked offense, but I think they’re vulnerable defensively and when they play stiffer competition, they could be in for a rude awakening. They are definitely a strong team and I look forward to their upcoming games with Kentucky but +750 right now is a stay-away for me.

Here’s a look at the full list of odds for the 2018-19 college hoops national championship:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+170
Michigan+750
Tennessee+750
Virginia+800
Gonzaga+1000
Kentucky+1200
Michigan State+1200
Kansas+1600
Nevada+2000
North Carolina+2400
Auburn+4000
Villanova+4000
Syracuse+5000
Texas Tech+5000
Virginia Tech+6000
Florida State+7000
Iowa State+7000
Kansas State+8000
Marquette+8000
Purdue+8000
Indiana+8500
Arizona State+9000
Buffalo+9000
Louisville+9000
Wisconsin+9000
Cincinnati+10000
LSU+10000
Mississippi State+10000
Nebraska+10000
Florida+11000
NC State+11000
Ohio State+11000
Oklahoma+11000
Arizona +12500
Houston U +12500
Iowa+12500
Maryland+12500
Oregon+12500
St. John’s+12500
TCU+12500
Texas+12500
UCLA+12500
Wichita State+12500
West Virginia+13000
Butler+15000
Clemson+15000
Connecticut+15000
Miami (FL)+15000
Penn State+15000
Seton Hall+15000
Texas A&M+15000
Washington U+15000
Xavier+15000
Furman+17500
Vanderbilt+17500
Baylor+20000
Creighton+20000
Minnesota U+20000
Notre Dame+20000
Loyola University Chicago+20000
Memphis State+20000

Odds as of January 30 at Bovada

We are in full swing of conference play in the college basketball season with the NCAA Tournament looming just a mere two months away. Duke, as it has been all season, remains the heavy betting favorite, dropping from +180 at the start of conference play to +175 at the time of this article.

The tournament is extremely difficult to get through and +175 to win it all doesn’t provide much value so I’m going to take a look at some other teams that may have the ability to beat Duke and pad your wallets better than it would.

Bovada has Duke at +175 followed by Michigan at +800, Virginia at +850, Tennessee at +900 and Gonzaga at +950 to round out the top five teams on the oddsboard.

The Virginia Cavaliers (+850)

Virginia was the last undefeated team in the nation, outlasting Michigan by a few hours as the Wolverines fell to Wisconsin 64-54 earlier Saturday before the Cavaliers were topped 72-70 by then-No. 1 Duke on Saturday evening. That game came at Cameron Indoor Stadium where Duke has won 13 of its last 14 matches with an average winning margin of 28 and has beaten everyone with the exception of Virginia by 10 or more points  – a feather in the cap for the Cavs.

The Cavaliers lead the nation by yielding just 52.9 points per game, including just 49.8 ppg when teams visit them, which is what the Blue Devils will be doing on February 9. I think they are playing with added motivation this season after becoming the first No. 1 seed in March Madness to be eliminated by a No. 16 seed, getting rolled 74-54 by UMBC last year. The Cavs are an experienced team and I think they are a force to be reckoned with. At +850, they are definitely worth a wager.

The Michigan State Spartans (+1400)

One of the hottest teams in the nation recently is Tom Izzo’s Michigan State Spartans, who are riding a 12-game winning streak with an average winning margin of 17. Sparty has played five games against ranked opponents, going 4-1 SU and ATS with an average winning margin of 16.25. The only loss came in its season opener against then-No. 1 Kansas.

Michigan State is good on both sides of the ball. It has the No. 10 offense in the nation at 83.8 points per game and over its winning streak has limited foes to just 60.17 ppg, which would rank fifth in college basketball if it were a season average. Similar to Virginia, Michigan State made an early exit from the tournament last year, getting bounced by Syracuse 55-53 in the second round as a No. 3 seed. The Spartans collide with Michigan twice in their last four games and that’ll really show us what they have.

The Kentucky Wildcats (+2000)

Kentucky has the worst odds of the three teams that I think are providing good value to win the national championship in early April. The Wildcats opened the season with a 118-84 beatdown at the hands of Duke and I think people have that game locked in their memories. They have dropped two more games, falling to Seton Hall 84-83 in overtime and 77-75 at Alabama at the beginning of conference play.

However, the team appears to be finding its identity since that loss to the Crimson Tide, rattling off four straight wins, including two on the road, most notably winning at then-No. 14 Auburn 82-80. The defense has really come alive for the Cats as they have limited their opponents to just 64.75 points per game over their last eight games, including just 60 ppg in their last four home games. We are really going to see what Kentucky is over the next few weeks as it has eight matches against current-ranked teams in its next 13 overall. If it finds success down the stretch against those teams, that +2000 is going to rise.

Here’s a look at the full list of the 2018-19 college basketball championship odds:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+175
Michigan+800
Virginia+850
Tennessee+900
Gonzaga+950
Kansas+1300
Michigan State+1400
Nevada+1800
Kentucky+2000
North Carolina+2200
Auburn+4000
Texas Tech+4000
Villanova+4500
Virginia Tech+5000
Florida State+6000
Syracuse+6000
Wisconsin+8000
Buffalo+8500
Indiana+8500
Kansas State+8500
Marquette+9000
Purdue+9000
Arizona State+9500
Oregon+9500
UCLA+9500
Arizona+10000
Cincinnati+10000
Florida+10000
Iowa State+10000
LSU+10000
Maryland+10000
Mississippi State+10000
Ohio State+10000
Oklahoma+10000
NC State+11000
West Virginia+11000
Wichita State+11000
Baylor+12500
Butler+12500
Clemson+12500
Houston U+12500
Iowa+12500
Louisville+12500
Nebraska+12500
St. John’s+12500
TCU+12500
Texas+12500
Connecticut+15000
Loyola University Chicago+15000
Miami (FL)+15000
Notre Dame+15000
Penn State+15000
Texas A&M+15000
Vanderbilt+15000
Xavier+15000
Creighton+20000
Furman+20000
Memphis State+20000
Minnesota U+20000
Seton Hall+20000
Washington U+20000

Odds as of January 22 at Bovada

Archived Articles

We are just over a month into the college basketball schedule, and as it’s been since the start of the season, the Duke Blue Devils continue to dominate the oddsboard, topping all other schools with odds of +200 to win the 2019 national championship. Duke has been the favorite since the preseason when it opened at +450 and since people have seen its exciting gameplay, money has poured in and that line has dropped to +200.

Bovada has Duke leading the charge at +200 followed by Gonzaga at +800, Kansas at +1000, Virginia at +1400 and Nevada at +1500 to round out the top five schools on the oddsboard.

Blue Devils thrilling fans into betting on them

Duke grabbed a lot of attention by opening the season with a dominant 118-84 triumph over then-No. 2 Kentucky that fueled the fire behind the Blue Devils as many are crowning them before the conference schedule even begins. They are led by a three-headed monster of R.J. Barrett, Zion Williamson and Cam Reddish, with the trio of freshmen each averaging double-digit points on the season. Barrett is tops on the team with 24.2 points per game, while Williamson electrifies the crowd with his thunderous dunks en route to 20.4 points and nine rebounds per game.

The Blue Devils did stumble in the Maui Invitational final, falling 89-87 to then-No. 3 Gonzaga as the Bulldogs shot over 50 percent from beyond the arc and from the floor overall, while Barrett couldn’t get a layup to land late as he looked to push the game to overtime. There is still a lot of basketball to be played, but as the young team continues to learn and grow under coach Mike Krzyzewski, it only makes sense that Duke is the favorite to clip the net off the rim at the end of the year.

Kansas not getting any love

Sitting atop the AP poll, but not the oddsboard, are the Kansas Jayhawks. The undefeated Big 12 team has stormed out of the gate to an 8-0 start, including knocking off then-No. 10 Michigan State in the season-opening game 92-87 and also edging then-No. 5 Tennessee 87-81 in overtime before the Volunteers toppled then-No. 1 Gonzaga 76-73. Duke’s recruiting class was already mentioned, but the Jayhawks’ young guns are no slouches either – three 2018 McDonald’s All-Americans in Devon Dotson, Quentin Grimes and David McCormack.

But what sets Kansas apart from Duke is its veteran players as the Blue Devils are led by rookies while the Jayhawks are led by junior forward Dedric Lawson, who is averaging 19.1 points and 10.6 rebounds per game, and senior guard Lagerald Vick, who is also chipping in with 16.3 points per game. At +1000, oddsmakers are overlooking a dangerous Kansas Jayhawks team that lost in the Final Four last year.

Here’s the full list of the 2018-19 college basketball championship odds:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+200
Gonzaga+800
Kansas+1000
Virginia+1400
Nevada+1500
Michigan+1600
Kentucky+1700
North Carolina+2200
Auburn+2500
Michigan State+2900
Tennessee+2900
Villanova+2900
Texas Tech+5000
Kansas State+6000
Florida State+6500
Iowa+6500
Oregon+6500
Purdue+6500
Virginia Tech+6500
West Virginia+6500
Florida+7000
UCLA+7000
Wichita State+7000
Wisconsin+7000
Louisville+7500
Maryland+7500
Syracuse+7500
Cincinnati+8000
Ohio State+8000
Mississippi State+8500
Texas+8500
Arizona+9500
Arizona State+10000
Baylor+10000
Buffalo+10000
Clemson+10000
Indiana+10000
LSU+10000
Miami (FL)+10000
Notre Dame+10000
St. John’s+10000
Vanderbilt+10000
Xavier+10000
Marquette+12500
NC State+12500
Penn State+12500
Texas A&M+12500
Connecticut+15000
Loyola University Chicago+15000
TCU+15000
Butler+20000
Creighton+20000
Iowa State+20000
Memphis State+20000
Minnesota U+20000
Seton Hall+20000
Washington U+20000

Odds as of December 10 at Bovada

Archived Articles

College basketball is back in your life and oddsmakers have made some slight changes on the oddsboard for the 2018-19 national championship. The Duke Blue Devils put in a strong season-opening performance and remain the favorites at +300, making them more of a favorite than in the preseason when they were +450.

Bovada has Duke leading the pack at +300, followed by Kentucky at +550, Kansas at +950, and Gonzaga and Nevada at +1000 to round out the top five schools in the nation.

Duke has turned heads early

The AP poll had the Blue Devils ranked fourth to begin the season, while oddsmakers had them as the consensus favorites to win the national championship. Duke had a tough task to open the year, colliding with Kentucky, ranked No. 2 both in the AP poll and on the oddsboard, at the Bankers Life Fieldhouse in the State Farm Champions Classic. The Blue Devils turned heads in that contest with a dominant 118-84 triumph as projected first overall draft pick R.J. Barrett dropping a game-high 33 points in 32 minutes played. They don’t play another ranked team until conference play begins in early January, so expect them to remain atop the leaderboard.

Kansas providing great value

Last season was a successful one for Kansas, making it to the Final Four before being beaten out by the eventual champs, the Villanova Wildcats. The Jayhawks (+950) are ranked No. 1 in the AP poll and got the season off on the right foot, taking on No. 10 Michigan State in the early game of the Champions Classic. Of the three 2018 McDonald’s All-Americans that Kansas recruited, it was Texas guard Quentin Grimes shining the brightest in the season opener as he scored a game-high 21 points to lead his new team to a 92-87 victory. Coming off a strong season last year and with their new recruits playing strong early on in the year, at +950 the Jayhawks are definitely worth a wager.

Here’s the full list of 2018-19 NCAA basketball championship odds:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+300
Kentucky+550
Kansas+950
Gonzaga+1000
Nevada+1000
North Carolina+1500
Villanova+1600
Virginia+1800
Tennessee+2800
Michigan+3300
Michigan State+3500
Oregon+3500
Indiana+4000
Syracuse+4000
UCLA+4000
West Virginia+4000
Auburn+4500
Florida+5500
Purdue+5500
Wichita State+5500
Texas Tech+7000
Mississippi State+7500
Cincinnati+8000
Florida State+8000
Miami (FL)+8000
Virginia Tech+8000
Ohio State+8500
Arizona+10000
Arizona State+10000
Clemson+10000
Kansas State+10000
LSU+10000
Louisville+10000
Marquette+10000
Maryland+10000
NC State+10000
St. John’s+10000
Texas+10000
Texas A&M+10000
Vanderbilt+10000
Wisconsin+10000
Xavier+10000
Baylor+12500
Butler+12500
Penn State+12500
TCU+12500
Notre Dame+15000
Seton Hall+15000
Iowa State+20000
Loyola University Chicago+20000
Memphis State+20000
Washington U+20000

Odds as of November 8 at Bovada

Archived Articles

The college basketball schedule tips off at the start of November and it is the Duke Blue Devils at +450 who have the best odds to win the national championship this season. Duke has already touched the court in a trio of games north of the border, winning all three games by a combined score of 285-185.

Bovada has Duke atop the oddsboard at +450 followed by Kentucky at +500, Kansas at +750, and Gonzaga and Nevada both at +800 to round out the top five teams in the nation heading into the season.

Duke poised to win its first championship since 2015

The Blue Devils (+450) have done a fantastic job recruiting for the upcoming season, having three players projected in the top four for next year’s NBA draft. Those three freshmen are Zion Williamson, a power forward from North Carolina, Cam Reddish, a small forward from Pennsylvania, and R.J. Barrett, a small forward from Toronto, Ontario, Canada. This could be the first time that players from the same school go in the first two picks in the NBA draft since Anthony Davis and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist in 2012 with both players coming from Kentucky. The Wildcats won the national championship that year.

Duke won the national championship in the 2014-15 season and hasn’t reached the Final Four since. Last year, the school lost in the ACC semifinal to North Carolina and was eliminated in the Elite Eight in overtime against Kansas at the NCAA Tournament. In addition to their high-level freshmen, the Blue Devils frontcourt is filled with juniors and seniors, including former five-star recruit, junior center Marques Bolden.

Has Kansas equaled Duke’s recruiting class?

The Jayhawks (+750) reached the Final Four last season for the first time since 2012, but they were beat out by the eventual champs, the Villanova Wildcats. Head coach Bill Self went right to work building for the upcoming season as he landed three 2018 McDonald’s All-Americans in Texas guard Quentin Grimes, North Carolina guard Devon Dotson and Virginia center David McCormack. In addition to their strong class of recruits, Kansas also returns sophomore center Udoka Azubuike and junior guard Lagerald Vick. The Jayhawks have made it to the Elite Eight or further in each of the last three years, but haven’t won a national championship since 2008. At +750, perhaps this is the year they can return to supremacy.

Here’s the full list of 2018-19 NCAA basketball championship odds:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+450
Kentucky+500
Kansas+750
Gonzaga+800
Nevada+800
Villanova+1200
North Carolina+1200
Virginia+2200
Michigan State+2800
Michigan+3500
Oregon+4000
Tennessee+4000
Auburn+5000
West Virginia+5000
UCLA+5000
Indiana+5000
Syracuse+5000
Florida+6000
Purdue+6000
Wichita State+6000
Texas Tech+7000
Arizona+8500
Virginia Tech+9000
Cincinnati+9000
Clemson+9000
Arizona State+9000
Ohio State+9000
Miami (FL)+9000
Florida State+9000
LSU+9500
Wisconsin+10000
Texas+12500
Texas A&M+12500
Xavier+12500
St. John’s+12500
Maryland+12500
Vanderbilt+12500
NC State+12500
Louisville+12500
Mississippi State+12500
Kansas State+12500
Penn State+15000
Baylor+15000
Seton Hall+15000
Butler+15000
TCU+15000
Notre Dame+15000
Washington U+20000
Loyola University Chicago+20000
Iowa State+20000
Memphis State+20000

Odds as of October 12 at Bovada

Archived Articles

The Duke Blue Devils are the favorite to win the 2018-19 NCAA college basketball championship after an impressive tour through Canada showcasing the skills of Ontario’s R.J. Barrett and the phenom that is Zion Williamson. 

Last week, the Blue Devils toured Canada and took care of business against university sides in Toronto and Montreal. They defeated Ryerson University 86-67, the University of Toronto 96-60 and McGill University 103-58. 

Kentucky Was The Early Betting Favorite, Now Second

John Calipari’s Wildcats hold the distinction of leading all NCAA schools in NCAA Tournament appearances (58), games won (126) and Sweet 16 appearances (43) and have played in 17 Final Fours (second all-time). Their eight NCAA championships are second only to UCLA’s 11 national titles. Kentucky’s last three titles have come since UCLA last won in 1995, with the Wildcats most recently hoisting the trophy in 2012.

Four members of the 2017-18 Wildcats were selected in the NBA draft: Kevin Knox to the Knicks at No. 9, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander to Charlotte at 11, Jarred Vanderbilt to Orlando at 41 and Hamidou Diallo to Brooklyn at 45. A fifth player, Wenyen Gabriel, went unselected at the draft but signed with Sacramento’s Summer League squad. Sacha Killeya-Jones and Tai Wynyard have decided to transfer. Kentucky has slipped from +600 to +700 over the past two months.

Other Movers On the OddsBoard

Villanova, the 2017-18 national champion, has moved from +850 all the way to +1200 as classes are about to start. The Tennessee Volunteers have seen their odds move from +2800 to +4000, Auburn +2000 to +4000 and Virginia Tech from +4000 to +8000.

The teams that have seen their odds improve include Gonzaga +950 to +800, Michigan State +3300 to +2800, and Arizona jumping from +10000 to +7500.

Below is a full list of 2018-19 NCAA basketball championship odds:

2018-19 College BASKETBALL Champion Odds
TeamOdds
Duke+450
Kentucky+700
Kansas+750
Gonzaga+800
Nevada+800
Villanova+1200
North Carolina+1200
Virginia+2200
Michigan State+2800
Oregon+3500
Michigan+3500
Tennessee+4000
Indiana+5000
Auburn+5000
West Virginia+5000
UCLA+5000
Syracuse+5500
Florida+6000
Texas Tech+6000
Purdue+6000
Wichita State+6000
Arizona+7500
Virginia Tech+8000
Cincinnati+8000
Clemson+8000
Arizona State+8000
Ohio State+8000
Miami (FL)+8000
Florida State+8000
LSU+8500
Wisconsin+9000
Xavier+9900
St. John's+9900
Texas+9900
Texas A&M+9900
Louisville+10000
NC State+10000
Mississippi State+10000
Kansas State+10000
Maryland+10000
Vanderbilt+10000
Seton Hall+12500
Baylor+12500
Penn State+12500
Butler+12500
TCU+12500
Notre Dame+15000
Loyola University Chicago+20000
Iowa State+20000
Washington U+20000
Memphis State+20000

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