It was an eventful week for NCAA basketball championship odds favorite teams. The Baylor Bears’ reign at the top of the AP Poll rankings was as short lived as that of King Henri V; the Villanova Wildcats went back to the top like bubbles in a glass of champagne (in fact, they shall be known henceforth as Champagne Villanova); and the Duke Blue Devils fell nearer to the nether world. And the Kansas Jayhawks remained fixed in the No. 2 spot. Status quo? Ay caramba!
Baylor Basketball Championship Odds
Baylor hit the proverbial glass ceiling. After a 15-game winning streak and being voted the No. 1 school for the first time in history, the Bears lost to the West Virginia Mountaineers at the WVU Coliseum. As it turns out, though, this was not an unforeseen event. According to Joe Boozell of NCAA.com, “no college basketball team would be expected to win at West Virginia,” and “Baylor was expected to fall” from the pinnacle of the AP Poll.
The shocker was that they dropped all the way to the 6th spot, behind the Kentucky Wildcats. As David Cassidy might say, The Higher They Climb the Harder They Fall. Looks as though the Bears didn’t just disappoint the public betting NCAA basketball, but the Elders of the Poll as well. Are the Baylor Bears just a flash on the pan, or will they be able to catch lightning in a bottle? Can thunder strike twice? Somehow, Ben Franklin seems more suited to answer these kinds of questions.
The Nova Wildcats are the living proof that you can indeed bounce back from an upset and remain a NCAA basketball championship odds favorite. Universitas Villanovana went 14-0 until being knocked down a peg by the Butler Bulldogs. They fell from the tippy top to the No. 3 spot, stayed there for a couple of weeks, didn’t like the view, and regained the summit. The Wildcats are public betting NCAA basketball favorites in their remaining games and are projected to return to the college basketball tournament and possibly win it back-to-back.
The Blue Devils keep plummeting faster than the Iranian rial. Duke was No. 7 last week and they probably look back on that nostalgically from their current 18th spot. Some guy once said something about the last being the first, and the first being the last, and the Blue Devils are taking the latter part to heart – Duke was a nearly unanimous No. 1 preseason selection, but now they are on the wrong end of the top 20.
Needless to say that the Devils lost quite a few public betting NCAA basketball brownie points when it was announced that head coach Mike Krzyzewski would miss an indeterminate number of games due to lower back surgery. Duke went 13-18 in 1995, when coach K missed the second half of the season because of a previous back surgery. Nonetheless, even on his deathbed – which he’s definitely not on – Krzyzewski could outcoach most of his peers, and as long as he draws breath, the Blue Devils will continue to be a NCAA basketball championship odds favorite.