March madness betting East regional final: Baylor/South Carolina versus Florida Gators
The Bears have not made it to the Elite 8 since 2012, but March madness odds favour them to do so this year, provided the South Carolina Gamecocks don’t have one more upset in them. USC could just call it a season, for having vanquished the Duke Blue Devils is quite a feat in and of itself, but the G-Cocks also have designs of reaching their first regional final in the history of the school. The Gators would probably be the favourite against either, though. Florida has breezed through the first two rounds of the NCAA tournament, and with Duke and Villanova out of the picture, the East region seems to be theirs for the taking.
NCAA tournament West regional final: Gonzaga Bulldogs versus Arizona/Xavier
The Zags have won their last five straight games, are 34-1 overall, won the WCC regular season and tournament, and have the 2017 WCC Player of the Year in Nigel Williams-Goss. But while the Bulldogs have been a staple of the NCAA tourney for almost two decades, they have only advanced to the Elite 8 two times. This year will mark the third such occasion though, if March madness odds are anything to go by. Common wisdom says they will face the red-hot Arizona Wildcats but, can one help rooting for the Xavier Musketeers? They do bring back fond memories of both the X-Men and Alexandre Dumas.
March madness betting Midwest regional final: Kansas Jayhawks versus Michigan/Oregon
Kansas’ Sweet 16 opponent Purdue has lost all three of this season’s games in which the Boilermakers have been underdogs, and – March madness odds willing – the Jayhawks will make sure Purdue goes 0-4. That will leave either the Michigan Wolverines or the Oregon Ducks as KU’s Elite 8 opponent du jour. The Wolverines are 7-0 since their not-so-close call – which was to Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571 what the SS Andrea Doria was to RMS Titanic, but still. The Duck’s march madness has been more like April Sanity, considering that Iona College and Rhode Island – Oregon first and second round opponents, respectively – are hardly la crème de la crème. Who does belong to the cream of the crop? The Kansas Jayhawks, of course.
March madness betting South regional final: North Carolina Tar Heels versus UCLA/Kentucky
With nemesis Villanova gone, UNC is the heavy favorite to win it all this year – which of course takes for granted the fact that they will defeat Butler in the Sweet 16 and go on to face either the Bruins or the Wildcats (the Tar Heels would presumably prefer the latter to at least get the chance to beat a team called the Wildcats). And speaking of the smiting of one’s enemies, UK suffered a crushing loss to UCLA back in December, made all the more humbling because the Wildcats were on top of the world at the moment – if by ‘the world’ one means the AP poll. According to the Universitas Kentuckiensis Athletics website, the Wildcats ‘grew’ since that defeat. Well, they’re still young and developing. Oh, they didn’t mean it literally. So much the better, then.