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03/29/2013 07:53 AM
NCAA Tournament Trends: Betting Sweet 16 Returnees
by Marc Lawrence

With the 2013 NCAA tournament entering the Sweet 16 round, let’s take a different perspective in analyzing the teams that have arrived. This one pertains specifically to teams that are returning to the Sweet 16 for the second straight year.

All hand of deck

Taking a look at this year’s list of returnees, we find half of last year’s field returning. They include, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Louisville, Marquette, Michigan State, Ohio State and Syracuse.

According to our database, since 1992, teams making a right-back appearance in the Sweet 16 are 63-43 SU and 48-56-2 ATS in this round of the tourney.

The cutline, however, is often times the pointspread.

That’s confirmed by the fact that favorites of more than six points are 35-3 SU and 23-15 ATS in these games. Priced at anything less (dog or favorite of six or fewer points), they dip drastically to 28-40 SU and 25-41-2 ATS in competitive contests.

This year’s teams making the cut (favored by six or more points) are: Florida and Louisville.

Not quite a 10

Looking at it from a varied perspective, Sweet 16 returnees seem to struggle when arriving off a win of less than 10 points, going just 25-24 SU and 17-30-2 ATS. This year that would include Marquette and Ohio State.

Florida, Kansas, Louisville and Michigan State each appears to be spared by their degree of favoritism.

Note: Indiana and Syracuse face one another.

Seedy development

As expected, the top two seeds fare the best in Sweet 16 games as returnees, going 48-15 SU combined. Against the spread, however, they are a lukewarm 32-31 ATS.

No. 3 seeds have fared the worst, going 5-7 SU and 3-9 ATS as returnees in this round. Not good news for Marquette or Michigan State.

Ironically, the Eagles failed in this same role as small favorites, losing 68-58 as small favorite versus Florida.

Sayanora

When Sweet 16 returnees arrive and are forced to take on top-quality foe with a win percentage of .850 or greater, they spring a major leak, going 7-16 SU and 8-14-1 ATS including 4-14 SU and 4-13-1 ATS in they won fewer than 30 games last season.

If these same guys are facing a foe off a win of 15 or more points they capsize, going 0-7 SU and 1-6 ATS.

The life rafts are ready and standing by for Michigan State this Friday.

The bottom line is you can draw your own conclusions, if you like. But make no mistake, when it comes to handicapping teams in the Sweet 16, the winners will likely be the better-qualified teams that have “been there-and-done that”. Or those who know how to keep a ship afloat, if you know what I mean…
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03/29/2013 07:54 AM
JACK JONES

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NCAA-B Mar 29 '13 (7:35p)
Michigan vs Kansas Michigan
+2-106 at 5dimes
25* NCAA Tournament GAME OF THE YEAR on Michigan +2

The Michigan Wolverines represent my strongest release of the entire 2013 NCAA Tournament Friday when they take on the Kansas Jayhawks in the Sweet 16. It's easy to see that the Big Ten is the best conference in the country, and it should not be an underdog to Kansas because of it.

In fact, the Big Ten has sent four teams to the Sweet 16 compared to just one for the Big 12. Kansas even had to escape with a 64-57 win over Western Kentucky as a 21-point favorite in the opening round, and erase a 9-point first half deficit against UNC, just to get here.

The Jayhawks were even gifted home-court advantage in the first two rounds as they had to only travel 40 miles from campus over to Kansas City. With home-court advantage gone, and playing a much tougher opponent, Kansas' luck runs out tonight.

Michigan came into the NCAA Tournament undervalued due to a rough stretch to close out the season. They have proven that with a 71-56 victory over South Dakota State as a 12-point favorite, and a 78-73 blowout of VCU as a 3.5-point favorite.

Once again, the Wolverines are undervalued tonight as an underdog when they are clearly the superior team. Michigan is 7-1 ATS in all tournament games this season. The Wolverines are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 vs. Big 12 opponents. The Jayhawks are 4-12 ATS in their last 16 vs. Big Ten. Take Michigan Friday.



NCAA-B Mar 29 '13 (9:45p)
MICHIGAN STATE vs DUKE DUKE
-2-106 at 5dimes
15* Michigan State/Duke Sweet 16 Friday No-Brainer on Duke -2

The Duke Blue Devils are the superior team in this match-up with the Michigan State Wolverines. This is a very evenly-matched game coaching-wise with Coach K and Tom Izzo going at it, but Coach K clearly will have the better talent on the floor, and that will show Friday night.

The key factor here is the health of Ryan Kelly, who has been the key to the Blue Devils' success this season. In fact, Duke is a sensational 20-1 in all games that Kelly has played in this year. He is clearly the motor that makes this team run.

One look at the history between these teams and it's easy to see that Coach K has not only out-coached Izzo, but he's also had the better talent. In fact, Duke is 6-1 in its last 7 meetings with Michigan State dating back to 1998. All six of those victories have come by 5 points or more.

Duke is 7-0 ATS in road games after a non-conference game this season. The Spartans are 6-16-1 ATS in their last 23 games following a SU win of more than 20 points. The Blue Devils are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 neutral site games. Roll with Duke
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03/29/2013 07:54 AM
NCAA's Biggest Betting Mismatches: Sweet 16

Finding a chink in the oddsmakers’ armor is tough come tournament time. But we peel back some of this week’s Sweet 16 matchups, looking for some underlying mismatches that could make or break your college basketball bets this March.

Oregon Ducks vs. Louisville Cardinals (-10, 127.5)

Ducks’ turnover troubles vs. Cardinals’ killer defense

Oregon may not be your conventional Cinderella, having won the Pac-12 title, but the Ducks are definitely going to feel like underdogs if they can't cure their case of the butter fingers against No. 1 Louisville in the Sweet 16. Oregon has been able to get by in the first two games despite turning the ball over 36 times, something that has plagued it all season.

The Ducks cough the ball up 15.1 times per game and now go against a swarming Cardinals defense that forces 18.9 turnovers a game – second most in the nation. Louisville pressured Colorado State to turn the ball over 19 times in the Round of 32 and forced 25 in its first-round win over NC A&T.

Kansas Jayhawks vs. Michigan Wolverines (+1.5, 137)

Jayhawks veteran Jeff Withey vs. Wolverines’ freshman Mitch McGary

Mitch McGary is going to be a great basketball player. The freshman big has shown flashes of his potential, like Michigan’s win over VCU this past weekend in which he scored 21 points and grabbed 14 rebounds. But those numbers came against a smaller Rams lineup and the Wolverines 6-foot-10 center has struggled against true size this season.

No player in the country plays as big as KU’s fifth-year senior Jeff Withey. The Jayhawks’ 7-foot-2 shot swatter is an impact player on both ends of the floor and makes a career out of taking it to softer frontcourts, like he did versus UNC Sunday. McGary often finds himself in foul trouble against bigger opponents. He was limited with four fouls against Indiana in the season finale and had similar issues versus Illinois’ long frontcourt.
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03/29/2013 07:55 AM
CBB

Louisville is 12-0 since losing in five OTs to Notre Dame Feb 9, winning last seven games by 12+ points each; Pitino is 4-0 in this round with the Cardinals (4-0 vs spread) winning by 14-19-39-13 points. Louisville is #2 in country at forcing turnovers (28.2% of time). Oregon turns ball over 21.5% of time (#264 in country); they lost by 11 to Cincinnati on neutral floor in only game vs Big East foe; they've won last five games, allowing 57-55 points in two tourney wins. Since 2001, #1 seeds are 8-2 vs spread in this round when facing someone other than a 4-5 seed (15-18 vs 4-5 seeds). Teams that won Pac-12 tourney are 3-2 in this round, 1-4 vs spread, 0-2 as underdogs, losing by 13-14 points.

Since 2005, Duke is 1-4 in this round, despite being favored in all five of the games, losing as favorites of 5-5-2-4 points. Since 1987, Duke is 8-3 vs Big Dozen teams in NCAAs; they're 2-1 vs Michigan State, winning 85-74 (-5) in '94, 68-62 (-12) in '99, losing in '05 78-68 (-5). Blue Devils beat Minnesota by 18, Ohio State by 5 in two tilts vs Big Dozen teams this year. Spartans are 14-2 outside Big Dozen play, but one of losses was 67-59 at Miami, its only game vs ACC team. Since '01, underdogs are 9-7 vs spread when 2-seed faces a 3-seed in this round. Spartans are holding teams to 29.8% from arc; Duke makes 40.3% behind arc, 5th in country. Appling hurt his shoulder last week, is expected to play here.

Bill Self is 5-1 (3-3 vs spread) in Sweet 16 games at Kansas, winning by 15-3-15-20-3 points, losing only to Michigan State (-2.5) in '09- they've won 12 of last 13 games (lost at Baylor), winning first two tourney tilts by 7-12, allowing 57.5 ppg. Michigan beat K-State by 14, West Virginia by 15 in its two games vs Big X teams; Wolverines won first two games in NCAAs by 15-25 points after going 6-6 in last 12 regular season tilts. #1 seeds are 15-18 vs spread in this round when facing a 4-5 seed (8-2 vs others). Michigan is young (#339 in experience), doesn't sub much (#325 in bench minutes) but their 54.6 eFG% is #11 in country. Jayhawk foes shoot just 38.7% inside arc; Michigan better make some 3-pointers.

Florida Gulf Coast is first 15-seed to get this far; they beat pair of teams last week (Hoyas/Aztecs) that struggle on offense, now Florida (28-1 in games decided by 10+ points, 0-6 in games decided by less than 10) are presenting a different problem- Gators shoot 38.3% from arc, 55.1% on 2-pointers are #28 in experience. FGCU has five losses to teams ranked outside top 200, but not now; this confident, athletic team has only two seniors in its rotation, but Comer is superior PG who has Eagles running and playing with swagger. Florida won its last five Sweet 16 games (4-1 vs spread) winning by 9-4-8-9-10 points. Hard to go against the Eagles here, but when Cinderella goes down, it often goes down by a big score.
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03/29/2013 07:55 AM
Spartan

Triple Dime Bet
I am strongly suggesting you take Louisville and lay the ten points against Oregon.

Dana Altman has had a very solid run with his club this year and I still think he is one of the more underrated coaches in the business. But I predict it all ends here. Cardinals pull away and clear the number guys. No, it's not a lock. My clients know I don't play that game. But it is a valid Triple Star, take Pitino's Cardinals guys.
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03/29/2013 07:56 AM
CBB

Friday's NCAA games
Underdogs are 14-6 vs spread in regional semis last 2+ years.

Louisville is 12-0 since losing in five OTs to Notre Dame Feb 9, winning last seven games by 12+ points each; Pitino is 4-0 in this round with the Cardinals (4-0 vs spread) winning by 14-19-39-13 points. Louisville is #2 in country at forcing turnovers (28.2% of time). Oregon turns ball over 21.5% of time (#264 in country); they lost by 11 to Cincinnati on neutral floor in only game vs Big East foe; they've won last five games, allowing 57-55 points in two tourney wins. Since 2001, #1 seeds are 8-2 vs spread in this round when facing someone other than a 4-5 seed (15-18 vs 4-5 seeds). Teams that won Pac-12 tourney are 3-2 in this round, 1-4 vs spread, 0-2 as underdogs, losing by 13-14 points.

Since 2005, Duke is 1-4 in this round, despite being favored in all five of the games, losing as favorites of 5-5-2-4 points. Since 1987, Duke is 8-3 vs Big Dozen teams in NCAAs; they're 2-1 vs Michigan State, winning 85-74 (-5) in '94, 68-62 (-12) in '99, losing in '05 78-68 (-5). Blue Devils beat Minnesota by 18, Ohio State by 5 in two tilts vs Big Dozen teams this year. Spartans are 14-2 outside Big Dozen play, but one of losses was 67-59 at Miami, its only game vs ACC team. Since '01, underdogs are 10-7 vs spread when 2-seed faces a 3-seed in this round. Spartans are holding teams to 29.8% from arc; Duke makes 40.3% behind arc, 5th in country. Appling hurt his shoulder last week, is expected to play here.

Bill Self is 5-1 (3-3 vs spread) in Sweet 16 games at Kansas, winning by 15-3-15-20-3 points, losing only to Michigan State (-2.5) in '09- they've won 12 of last 13 games (lost at Baylor), winning first two tourney tilts by 7-12, allowing 57.5 ppg. Michigan beat K-State by 14, West Virginia by 15 in its two games vs Big X teams; Wolverines won first two games in NCAAs by 15-25 points after going 6-6 in last 12 regular season tilts. #1 seeds are 15-19 vs spread in this round when facing a 4-5 seed (8-2 vs others). Michigan is young (#339 in experience), doesn't sub much (#325 in bench minutes) but their 54.6 eFG% is #11 in country. Jayhawk foes shoot just 38.7% inside arc; Michigan better make some 3-pointers.

Florida Gulf Coast is first 15-seed to get this far; they beat pair of teams last week (Hoyas/Aztecs) that struggle on offense, now Florida (28-1 in games decided by 10+ points, 0-6 in games decided by less than 10) are presenting a different problem- Gators shoot 38.3% from arc, 55.1% on 2-pointers are #28 in experience. FGCU has five losses to teams ranked outside top 200, but not now; this confident, athletic team has only two seniors in its rotation, but Comer is superior PG who has Eagles running and playing with swagger. Florida won its last five Sweet 16 games (4-1 vs spread) winning by 9-4-8-9-10 points. Hard to go against the Eagles here, but when Cinderella goes down, it often goes down by a big score.
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03/29/2013 07:59 AM
DCI College Basketball
The Daniel Curry Index

03/29/13 Predictions

Season
Straight Up: 3897-1359 (.741)
ATS: 1894-1919 (.497)
ATS Vary Units: 5255-5572 (.485)
Over/Under: 626-592 (.514)
Over/Under Vary Units: 722-721 (.500)

NCAA Tournament
Midwest Regional Semifinals at Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, IN
Louisville 71, Oregon 58
Duke vs. Michigan State: TOO CLOSE TO CALL

South Regional Semifinals at Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, TX
Kansas 72, Michigan 66
Florida 73, Florida Gulf Coast 60
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