The second day of the NCAA tournament’s first round and by the end of the day we’ll be down to 32 teams. Friday, like Thursday’s first day, provides gamblers with 16 games.
Will there be any big upsets? Can Virginia survive a No. 16 seed, something they weren’t able to do in last year. Can the UC Irvine keep representing as the only California team remaining in the tournament?
We at OG News take a look at five of the games and give our picks to some of the games we think could pay off for bettors.
1. Virginia vs. Gardner-Webb +22.5
Last year Virginia became the first No. 1 seed to lose to a No. 16 seed in the history of the NCAA Tournament. They were picked by many to win the tournament and the embarrassing loss ruined many brackets.
This year they are again a No. 1 seed, and the second pick at 5/1 to win the tournament. They are 22.5-point favorites to beat Gardner-Webb. Think they are going to lose again? No chance.
Think they will cover the 22.5 points? Definitely.
Take Virginia and give away the points.
2. Iowa vs. Cincinnati -3.5
Cincinnati is the better seed at No. 7, and is playing a virtual home game in Columbus, Ohio. So why are they only favored by 3.5 points to No. 10 Iowa?
Bearcats coach Mitch Cronin has a possible answer.
“You’ve got to remember they’re a team that was ranked in the Top 25 a lot more than we were,” Cronin said. “hey had some big wins early. They can really, really play offense.”
The one advantage Cincinnati has is a deep bench. It will be hard for Iowa to tire them out.
Take Cincinnati and give away the points.
3. Colgate vs. Tennessee -17.5
Auburn has given the rest of the country the blueprint on how to defeat Tennessee after its 20-point victory over the Vols in the SEC Championship final.
The formula is simple; spread the floor, play aggressive defnse and have success from the three-point line. Unfortunately for Colgate they only have one of those three elements. The Raiders are 13th nationally in Three-pointers.
The bad news is they don’t have the athletes to keep up with Tennessee. They should, however, cover the 17.5 points they are getting.
Take Colgate and the points.
4. UC Irvine vs. Kansas State -4.5
Kansas State is a No. 4 seed, but could be an upset victim to No. 13 UC Irvine. The Anteaters have the weapons to counteract the Wildcats strengths.
The first is their defense around the rim, where they are ranked first in the nation. The second is UC Irvine’s defense at the perimeter.
If Kansas State is going to win, and cover the 4.5 points, they are going to have to overcome those obstacles. It doesn’t seem like they will.
Take UC Irvine and the points.
5. Oregon vs. Wisconsin -2
This could be the lowest scoring game of the first round. Both teams are far better on defense than offense, and both are comfortable playing a slow, methodical game.
Wisconsin has made defense their trademark and can grind with the bet of them. Oregon, though, is no slouch defensively.
The Badgers are favored by two points, but the Ducks have momentum, including winning the Pac 12 Championship.
Take Oregon and the points.