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How To Bet on Virginia: Money to be Made on the Spread

How to bet Virginia

With conference play in full swing now, just two undefeated teams remain in the nation – the Michigan Wolverines (17-0) and the Virginia Cavaliers (16-0). In addition to Virginia’s fantastic record, what you may not know is it has been a very profitable spread bet this season, going 13-3 ATS while being favored in every game, and a $100 bet on each of those games would have profited you $881.82. I’m going to break down how Virginia can pad your bankroll as the season progresses.

Cavaliers’ Defense is second to none, but don’t sleep on their offense

Points have been hard to come by for opposing teams when they tip off against Virginia this season. Just two schools have been able to chip in more than 60 points and one of those, then-No. 24 Maryland, was able to sink 71 points. Overall, the Cavs are surrendering an average of just 51.7 points per game, which is the fewest in the nation and even an improvement upon their top-ranked defense from a year ago that gave up an average of 54 ppg.

Virginia is 16-0 SU and 13-3 ATS this season.

Additionally, they are restricting opponents to just 50.5 shots per game, the sixth-lowest number in college basketball, and those teams are converting just 37 percent of those shots, the fourth-lowest rate in the country. They have been able to limit their foes’ scoring by holding them to an average of 28.5 rebounds per game, which is the fewest in the NCAA.

Offensively, they are no slouches despite their low points per game average. Virginia is scoring 74.2 ppg, 140th out of 353 teams, but they shoot 48.1 percent from the floor to rank 31st in college basketball. This is important because they take just 54.2 shot attempts per game, but 34.8 percent of their points come from beyond the arc and they connect on 40.9 percent of their three-point attempts for the No. 7 mark in the NCAA. The Cavs have had five games in which they scored 80 or more points and have eclipsed that total in three of their last five games.

Virginia is Playing with a chip on its Shoulder

This isn’t a quantifiable stat but I think Virginia has something to prove this season. Last year, the Cavs finished the season atop the AP poll and had a No. 1 seed in the March Madness bracket. However, their run was short-lived as they became the first team in tournament history to be upset by a 16 seed as UMBC picked up a 74-54 victory.

Virginia hasn’t left anything in doubt thus far this season, rattling off 16 straight wins, with only four of them coming by fewer than 10 points. This is essentially the same core from last year with Kyle Guy, Ty Jerome and De’Andre Hunter and following that early exit last year, I think they want to show they are for real and I think they will continue thumping teams.

How Should you Approach Virginia for the Remainder of the Season?

Virginia is 16-0 SU and 13-3 ATS this season with an average winning margin of 22.56 points but has an average spread of 16.75. Typically, we see these top teams dominate the non-conference schedule by putting up some pretty aggressive scores, but the Cavs have actually gotten stronger as the season has progressed. In their first eight outings, they had three games settled by fewer than eight points, while in their last eight they’ve won all by eight or more. Additionally, they have a 20.5-point winning margin through their first four games in ACC play.

Virginia has earned bettors a profit of $881.82 on spread bets

Since conference play began, Virginia has been favored by double digits once, when it closed with a 12.5-point spread at Boston College in a game it won 83-56. Excluding Duke and North Carolina, if the Cavs are favored by fewer than 10 points, they are absolutely worth a wager regardless of location. Teams that are able to work the ball inside against Virginia seem to have the most success – Maryland took just 17 three-pointers all game while scoring 71 points, the most against the Cavaliers this season. Similarly, Dayton lost 66-59 but took just 14 shots from beyond the arc.

If opponents take a lot of threes, this really helps Virginia’s offense because of its three-point defense – teams are hitting just 25.1 percent from long range – and rebounding prowess. The Cavs quickly move back up the court and score with their high-efficiency offense that converts 48.1 percent of its shots. Looking ahead to upcoming opponents, Notre Dame ranks 32nd in the country for most three-point attempts per game, while Miami and Virginia Tech are tied for 96th and Louisville ranks 118th. These are all spots where I would take the Cavs on the spread if they are favored by fewer than 15 points.