A few teams already have their ticket to the March madness betting dance, including the Gonzaga Bulldogs, of whom many folks who plan on betting on March madness expect great things.
The Zags beat Saint Mary’s to win their fifth West Coast Conference tournament and make it to their 20th NCAA tourney. The Bulldogs advanced to the Elite Eight in 1999 and 2015. Gonzaga lost in the Sweet 16 to Syracuse in 2016.
Florida Gulf Coast Eagles
FGCU defeated Stetson, Kennesaw State, and North Florida to win the Atlantic Sun Tournament – their second in a row and third overall – and advance to their third NCAA tournament. The Eagles reached the Sweet 16 in 2013 but were eliminated by North Carolina in the first round last year.
WU defeated Charleston Southern, Gardner–Webb, and Campbell to win the Big South tournament and receive their first conference title and automatic bid since 2010, when where they lost to Arkansas-Pine Bluff in the opening round.
UNC Wilmington Seahawks
UNCW beat the College of Charleston in the Colonial Athletic Association tournament final for their second straight automatic bid. The Seahawks lost in the first round of the 2016 NCAA tournament last year.
Northern Kentucky Norse
NKU defeated Wright State, Youngstown State, and Milwaukee to win their first ever Horizon League Tournament and automatic bid in the program’s first year of eligibility after transitioning to a Division I school. Beginner’s luck, as people betting on March madness might put it.
Iona College won the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference tournament for the second consecutive season to earn entry into March madness betting. The Gales lost in the First Round to Iowa State in 2016.
Wichita State Shockers
WSU beat Bradley, Missouri State, and Illinois State to win their fourth Missouri Valley Conference tournament championship. The Shockers reached the Sweet 16 as recent as 2013 but losing to Miami (FL) in the second round last year, when they received an at-large bid.
Mount St. Mary’s Mountaineers
The Mount defeated St. Francis in the Northeast Conference Tournament Championship game to return to the NCAA Division I Tournament, at which they last appeared in 2014.
Jacksonville State Gamecocks
JSU defeated Southeast Missouri State, Belmont, and UT Martin to win its first Ohio Valley Conference tournament and make its first appearance in the NCAA Tourney. Gamecocks fans will finally be able to be betting on March madness.
The Bison beat Army, Navy, and Lehigh to win their fifth Patriot League title and first since 2013, when they lost in the second round of the NCAA tournament to Butler.
East Tennessee State Buccaneers
ETSU defeated UNC Greensboro in the final of the Southern Conference Men’s Basketball Tournament for the first time since 2010 and end a six-year absence from the NCAA tourney – the Bucs made the Sweet 16 in 1968 but were eliminated in the first round in 2010.
South Dakota State Jackrabbits
SDSU beat Omaha to win their second straight – and fourth overall – Summit League championship. The J-Rabs were eliminated by Maryland in the First Round of the 2016 march madness betting tournament.