2018 NCAA Tournament Regional Futures Betting Picks
On of the best ways to bet on the upcoming NCAA Tournament from a value standpoint is on the futures odds that are released by online sportsbooks to win each of the four regions in the tournament bracket. Picking your Final Four and then betting on each of the four teams to go out and get it done can provide a nice boost to your overall NCAA Tournament betting bankroll.
East Region: Top-Valued Play
If all four No. 1 seeds in the NCAA Tournament lived up to their lofty expectations, you make a small fortune betting region futures. Of the four top-seeded teams in this year’s tournament, the one No. 1 seed I would take to the bank is the Big East’s Villanova Wildcats.
With an overall record of 30-4, there were a few minor hiccups along the way. However, this remains one of the most consistent and balanced teams in the nation. The Wildcats are just two years removed from winning a national title and while some of the faces have changed since then, that championship DNA is a huge part of this team’s makeup.
Villanova’s betting odds to win the East Region have been set at an even-money +100, but there is still a great deal of value in that number. The lone stumbling block could be No. 2 Purdue at +220, but I would still take the Wildcats to win that game if the two meet in the Elite 8.
South Region: Top-Valued Play
The Virginia Cavaliers are the top seed in the whole tournament at 31-2 overall, but the tournament’s selection committee did not do them any favors with the upcoming gauntlet they will have to face to win the South Region. Their betting odds to survive are +100, but I do not see any value in the Cavaliers as an even-money favorite.
Right out of the gate, Virginia could face a tough challenge from Creighton at +4000 odds in the second round. Waiting in the wings is the winner of a No. 4 vs. No. 5 matchup between Arizona (+280) and Kentucky (+600). Both teams have solid momentum on their sides from recent conference tournament wins, but I am riding the Pac-12’s Wildcats all the way to the Final Four.
Other obstacles in this region are No. 3 Tennessee at +500 and No. 2 Cincinnati at +220, but Arizona is playing with a huge chip on its shoulder given the rough ride it has already been on this season and that adds value to its odds in my book.
Midwest Region: Top-Valued Play
The three heavyweights in this region are No. 1 Kansas at +200, No. 2 Duke at +150 and No. 3 Michigan State at +160. All three teams have shown the capability to win a national title this season and all three have some very concerning losses on their resume. They each boast a head coach that knows how to win this time of the year and they each have the talent on their roster to beat any team they face along the way.
This region pick is a gut call, plain and simple. Michigan State’s loss to the Big Ten Tournament raised a red flag as did Duke’s in the ACC. Head-to- head, my lean is towards the Blue Devils after beating the Spartans early in the season. In a head-to- head matchup against the Big 12’s Jayhawks for a spot in the Final Four, I give the slight edge to Duke as well.
West Region: Top Valued Play
I look at this region as the Wild, Wild West. Xavier is the top seed at +330 betting odds to win and No. 2 North Carolina is the favorite at +250. You cannot forget about No. 4 Gonzaga at +250 after its run to the title game last season. The dark horse in this race is No. 3 Michigan at +300.
Looking at the bracket in the West, I am going with Gonzaga in the top half and Michigan in the bottom half in what should be a great matchup in the Elite 8 for a spot in the Final Four. The Bulldogs probably have the better all-around credentials, but my lean is with the Wolverines, who appear primed to continue its impressive run in the Big Ten Tournament deep into this
tournament as well.
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