Expert Betting Preview for the 2018 March Madness First Round

Posted by Aaron . on March 14, 2018 in

The NCAA Tournament Betting action has arrived. March Madness is in the air, and we are ready for a 96-hour binge of straight basketball. Thursday and Friday feature the first round games, and you cannot get to the second round without a first-round win. Let’s take a look at some of the biggest first-round games, as we preview the 2018 March Madness First Round.

Expert Betting Preview for the 2018 March Madness First Round

Top Seeds

The top seeds in the tournament all have games where there is a ton of pressure on them. A top seed has never lost in the tournament. This season, the teams looking to knock them off are UMBC, who takes on Virginia, Radford gets Villanova, Penn will take on Kansas and the winner of North Carolina Central and Texas Southern will get the Xavier Musketeers.

Second Seeds

In the battle of 2 seeds against 15 seeds, Cincinnati, Purdue, Duke and North Carolina will all be on display. The Cincinnati Bearcats get Georgia State in the first round. Purdue, out of the Big Ten will face a pesky Cal State Fullerton squad. Then – the two ACC teams in Duke and North Carolina will take on Iona and Lipscomb respectively.

Third Seeds

We move to the third seeds where the Michigan State Spartans and Michigan Wolverines both landed. Michigan gets a battle-tested Grizzles team, while the Spartans get Bucknell. There are some concerns with these two Big Ten teams as they had some time off since they played. Tennessee gets Wright State in the first round, and Texas Tech will look to avoid an upset from Stephen F. Austin.

Fourth / Fifth Seeds

The danger zone sits with the 4 and 5 seeds. Every year, a 4 or 5 seed gets knocked off in the first round. The 4 seeds are Arizona, Wichita State, Gonzaga, and Auburn, while Kentucky, West Virginia, Clemson and Ohio State get the 5 seeds. It seems Arizona and Gonzaga may have been under-seeded, but this is their time to prove that. In the South – Kentucky takes on Davison, while Arizona battles Buffalo.

Out East – Wichita battles Marshall and the West Virginia Mountaineers battles Murray State. Out West – Ohio State battles San Diego State and Gonzaga gets UNC Greensboro. The final region – Midwest – Clemson battles New Mexico State and Auburn takes on Charleston.


For the 6/11 games, these are always interesting to watch. In the South – the 6th seeded Miami Hurricanes get a shot at the Missouri Valley champion Loyola. In the East – Florida takes on St. Bonaventure after the Bonnies took down UCLA. In the West – Houston takes on San Diego State, and the Midwest features TCU against either Arizona State or Syracuse.

The Aztecs look like a safe bet for the 2018 March Madness First Round.

7 Seeds

The 7 seeds are another to be careful about. Many times, the hungry 10 seed is just as good or better than the 7 seed. In Nashville, Nevada gets Texas. In Detroit – Arkansas battles Butler. Going out to Charlotte – Texas A+M will take on Providence, and finally in Pittsburgh, Rhode Island and Oklahoma play in the first tournament game of the weekend.


Last, but not least – the 8/9 games are always super competitive. The winners get the top seeds in the region. In the South – Creighton will take on the Kansas State Wildcats. This will be a battle of wills on offense vs. defense. In the East – Virginia Tech takes on Alabama, with Villanova waiting. In the West – Missouri takes on Florida State, and Seton Hall battles North Carolina State as part of the Midwest Region.

We hope you enjoyed previewing the 2018 March Madness First Round games. Best of luck with all your betting during the NCAA Tournament. We will be back next week with a look at the Sweet 16, and give our picks as to who will be heading to the NCAA Final Four!