March Madness Sports Betting Update: Favorites Crushing

The first weekend of March Madness 2019 is in the books and it’s a good time to reflect back on all the action that went down at over the weekend.  Our March Madness Sports Betting contest was off to a raging start and there’s still plenty of time to get in.  Especially now that most of you realize you won’t win millions of dollars with a perfect bracket, get into our sports betting league and have some fun for the rest of the tourney.

As for the betting in the tournament so far, the betting results between favorites and underdogs are pretty even.  The underdogs certainly got off to a hot start to the tournament in the Round of 64 but ended up losing steam on Saturday and Sunday.

So far, point spread favorites are 37-11 SU and 23-25 ATS in the NCAA Tournament. However, the favorites are coming off a Round of 32 in which every favorite won outright and posted a collective 11-5 ATS record in Round 2 (69% ATS success).

Upsets?  What Upsets?  

As mentioned above, betting favorites are 37-11 SU – winning 77 percent of the time so far during March Madness. And while we did get some shockers in the first round – like Murray State, Liberty, UC Irvine, and Oregon (all of which many bracketologists had pegged to begin with) – upsets were hard to come by in the Round of 32.

All 16 favorites went on to win their Round 2 games, and if you had parlayed $100 on each of their moneyline odds (to win outright), you would have walked away with $9, 684.74 Sunday night.

The largest moneyline favorites of the Round of 32 were Gonzaga -1,400 and Duke -1,300. Neither of which covered the spread in their weekend wins.  Duke backers should have actually had their worlds destroyed by UCF but some last second blunders (up by four and attempted ally oop dunk with 1:30 left and not boxing out a rebound on Zion’s FTA) let Duke stay alive and UCF couldn’t get the last second layup or put back to go.

What about Totals?

Overall, the NCAA Tournament has produced a 25-26-1 Over/Under count through the First Four, Round of 64 and Round of 32 games.  So basically dead even on the totals.  Over/Under results have been relatively even in each region of the bracket.  Outside of the Midwest Region which has posted a 5-7 Over/Under count heading into the Sweet 16.

Best Conference Overall?

Entering the NCAA Tournament, the ACC, Big Ten and SEC were the three basketball-rich conferences, sending a collective 22 total teams dancing.  So far, the Big Ten has flexed its basketball betting muscles, posting a 10-5 SU and 10-5 ATS mark through the first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament, with three teams – Michigan State, Michigan, and Purdue – all making it into the Sweet 16.

The SEC posted a 9-3 SU and 4-8 ATS record so far, with four teams – LSU, Tennessee, Auburn, and Kentucky – still alive.

The ACC has been a money pit for point spread bettors, but only if you were betting on the moneyline.  They went 10-2 SU but just 3-9 ATS in the opening week of the tournament. All three No. 1 seeds out of the ACC – Duke, UNC, Virginia – are into the Round of 16 as well as Virginia Tech and Florida State.

Most Popular Bets?

Going against Joe Public wasn’t a bad strategy for the first week of the NCAA Tournament.

According to the Wannamakeabet consensus numbers, which track the percentage of bets on either side of the point spread for every game, teams drawing 60 percent or more of bets went a collective 10-11 SU and just 8-13 against the spread for the round of 64 and 32.

With all four No. 1, No. 2, and No. 3 seeds still alive, the tournament is really for the taking. Top seed overall Duke has looked far from dominant in its first two March Madness efforts, but remains a +220 betting favorite to win the national championship.

No. 5 Auburn is getting some respect from oddsmakers, set at +3,000, ahead of No. 3 seeds Houston (+5,000) and LSU (+6,000) as well as No. 4 seeds Virginia Tech (+5,500) and Florida State (+6,000).

And strangely for this tournament, there is only one Cinderella left.  The No. 12 Oregon Ducks, who have been on fire since their run to the Pac-12 championship.  Here are the most recent NCAA Tournament futures odds from DraftKings Sportsbook.  Get a free $500 bet when you register for a new account through

No. 1 Duke +220
No. 1 Virginia +420
No. 1 Gonzaga +550
No. 1 North Carolina +550
No. 2 Michigan State +850
No. 2 Kentucky +1,200
No. 2 Michigan +1,500
No. 2 Tennessee +1,800
No. 3 Purdue +2,000
No. 3 Texas Tech +2,300
No. 5 Auburn +3,000
No. 3 Houston +5,000
No. 4 Virginia Tech +5,500
No. 4 Florida State +6,000
No. 3 LSU +6,000
No. 12 Oregon +11,000

And that’s a wrap for our March Madness Sports Betting update for this week.  Stay tuned to our Blog this weekend for more insights and predictions as we head to the Sweet 16.  And don’t forget to join as a new member if you haven’t already.  Bet points on games instead of real money every day of the week in our sports betting leagues.

Chase Knox covers college basketball for

Leave a Reply