March Madness Odds Favorites With Most to Prove

Posted by Ted Merrick on March 9, 2016 in

On Sunday night, we’ll know the 68 teams that are set to square off in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament, and eight of them will be springing into action on Tuesday as the “First Four” matchups take place. In a year when there is not a lot of consistency, there are some teams with larger chips on their shoulders than others. Let’s take a look at some of the NCAAB betting spread.

March Madness Odds Favorites With Most to Prove

 

 

Kentucky

The Wildcats have dominated some of the nation’s best teams this year — and then they’ve had some of the real no-name programs knock them off. They went to Kansas in the SEC-Big 12 challenge and took a double-digit lead…and then gave it away. They lost at Tennessee, and then they destroyed the Gators down in Gainesville. Then they lost at Vanderbilt, of all places. John Calipari’s model is to rebuild each year with a fresh recruiting class geared for winning NOW. This is a team that will have a major grudge factor in the tournament.

Iowa

Led by Jarrod Uthoff, the Iowa Hawkeyes looked ready to steamroll through the Big Ten, while programs like Michigan State and Wisconsin, the more traditional powers in the conference, were going to take a step back. However, in the second half, the Hawkeyes started dropping big games, both at home and on the road, and Indiana vaulted from eighth place to the top of the conference by the end of the regular season. Expect Iowa to enter the tournament either angry…or frustrated.

Oklahoma

The Sooners were the #1 team in the nation for several weeks this year — keeping that top ranking even after they lost to Iowa State. However, dropping both matchups with Kansas finally knocked the Sooners out. If they really believe they are the best team in the nation, the Big 12 tournament and March Madness give them a chance to prove it.

Duke

The Blue Devils fell out of the Top 25 rankings for the first time in this decade, showing that the strains of rebuilding were showing in the program. They had a player get reprimanded by the ACC for tripping his opponents when things weren’t going his way. Then, they started winning a little bit, shocking UNC on the road and giving themselves a decent seed in the ACC tournament. They definitely enter March Madness with a chance to prove the naysayers wrong.

The AAC Teams

Tulsa, Connecticut, Temple and Cincinnati all have shots at March Madness, but some predictions have two (or even three) of these teams shoehorned into the First Four games, with teams from the Power 5 conferences with arguably inferior pedigrees getting higher seeds. The only way for these teams to change the perception of AAC talent is to start winning games on the biggest stage.