March Madness Opening Round Bets: Friday Edition

Sup guys. Yesterday’s plays that I recommended went 5-4, not great but not awful. The bad news is that after a day of drinking and watching basketball for 11 hours, I am in no condition to write as long of a post for Fridays games. However, because I love you all, I am going to do a very brief game by game preview and note any plays. As I said yesterday the real value is to be had in game, so make sure you are watching with a prudent eye.  I do want to post my in game plays on twitter, but realistically if I am out watching the games, and betting in game, by the time my bet is in and I go to post it, the line is off the board. I will do my best today though. On to the previews:

Oregon vs Wisconsin -2

This is one of those games where everybody falls in love with the hot team playing a team that was solid but not sexy all season. I am sure most people reading this have Oregon winning this one in their brackets, and I think that is incorrect. Wiscy takes care of business here, as their elite defense is going to be able to stifle Oregons very “meh” offense.

Bet: Wisconsin -2

Iowa vs Cincinnati -4.5

I don’t think I am going to play this game at all unless we get a really good in game line. This kind of reminds me of the Minnesota-Louisville game which scares me off of my initial Cincinnati lean. Iowa sucks and is lucky to be in the tournament, but that doesn’t mean they can’t steal a win here; almost all of their wins were stolen, ugly arguably lucky ones.

Bet: None

Oklahoma vs Mississippi -1

Guys, one constant in my gambling writing is preaching the fact that you don’t have to bet on games with no edge. I can’t find an edge here no matter what angle I attack it from. I do think this will be a game of runs, so if one side here gets down 10 at any point i would recommend in-gaming the other side, but other than that, I got nuttin!

Bet: None

NKU vs Texas Tech -12.5

Yesterday’s action was fun and all, but there was no OMG shocker. I have a strange feeling about this game. NKU is a very good team and Texas Tech has a history of taking teams lightly. They have a losing record against the spread this year. Watch out here. Of course, I also said Northeastern could beat Kansas and they lost by a million, so tread lightly with these underdogs, but screw it, gimme the points.

Bet: NKU +12.5

Cal Irvine vs Kansas State -4.5

Cal Irvine is definitely an upset you picked in your bracket. I do try to stay away from the easy upset picks that the public is all over, but it is easy to see how this would happen. Kansas State is without Dean Wade who is crucial to their offense. Without him, KSU is going to struggle to score, which not only could lead to an outright loss, but even if it doesn’t five points will be a lot to win by to cover. Expect a very low scoring game that comes down to the wire.

Bet: Irvine +4.5

Colgate vs Tennessee -17.5

I’m nothing if not transparent with you guys; I am a blogger who loves to bet, but I am not some human computer who knows everything about every team. So I would be lying if I said I know anything at all about Colgate aside from the fact that their name is easily made into toothpaste puns. Actually that is not true; I know they can shoot the 3 like razy, but don’t do much of anything else. I am low on Tennessee overall, but I will likely wait until later in the tournament to fade them.

Bet: None

Gardner Webb vs Virginia -21.5

Virginia is going to kick the shit out of GWB. I feel bad for them; they did not ask to be in this position. They are a 16 seed who is happy to be there, and they have to go against the team that, last year, became the only number 1 seed to ever lose to a 16. They are going to take all the embarrassment from that night out on Gardner Webb and win this one by 30+. One of my favorite bets of the day

Bet: Virginia -21.5, also Virginia 1h is solid

ASU vs Buffalo -5.5

I think this line is about right; Buffalo is the better team but I cant help but worry that ASU is this years “play in team that gets hot” which seems to happen every year. I don’t know, this one falls into the “don’t force it” category. If ASU comes out hot and I can get a solid Buffalo in-game line, great. But if not, no plays in this one.

Bet: None

Washington vs Utah State -3

Fade the Big East and fade the Pac-12. Its that simple.

Bet: Utah State -3

NDSU vs Duke -26.5

As we saw with Kentucky and Gonzaga, ass whoopings do happen in the tournament. My issure is always that you never know when Coach K is gonna pull his guys to rest them for round 2. If Duke wanted to they could win this game by 30+ but I do think they could take their foot off the pedal, and one thing NDSU can do is shoot 3s. I’m not messing around with this one, Ken Pom predicts a 88-63 Duke win and I could see this falling on either side of the number.

Bet: None

Georgia State vs Houston -12

Georgia State did give us one of the better upsets of the last decade, when they beat Baylor as a 14 seed with coach Ron Hunter’s son RJ draining a 3 to win it. That wont happen again; this is a mismatch in almost every aspect of the game. Houston by 20 or more.

Bet: Houston -12

Liberty vs Mississippi State -6.5

Mississippi State, you are officially on upset alert. Liberty is a pretty legit team; they play at a turtles pace and shoot a lot of threes. That is a huge formula for first round upsets. Mississippi State also does not defend the three very well, so opportunities will be there. I expect an ugly game that is decided by less than 5 points either way.

Bet: Liberty +6.5

Iona vs UNC -22

When I was watching UNC in the ACC Tournament, I noted that if they play a team in rd 1 that won’t slow them down, they will score 100 points and win by a ton. Iona is a great matchup for them. I expect this game to go similar to the Gonzaga game last night; total domination from the start.

Bet: Unc 1h and game

VCU vs UCF -1

No clue in this one. On to the next.

Ohio State vs ISU -5

Personally I have ISU to close out a bunch of moneyline parlays. In terms of laying 5, I am a little more hesitant. I do think that OSU sucks; the talent on this team is NIT level. ISU dominated the Big 12 Tournament, but they have been very Jeckyll and Hyde all season and are prone to horrible performances. I am pretty confident with ISU in moneyline parlays, but can’t go further than that.

Bet: no bet, but ISU could be a good leg for ML parlays.

St Louis vs Virginia Tech -10

Much like last night, tonight’s slate ends with a dud that will likely be fallen asleep during. Va Tech’s defense is designed to force their opponents into chucking 3’s and SLU can not shoot 3’s. Tech also gets point guard Justin Robinson back for this one. If he is fully healthy, Tech could make a run in this tournament. The pace of this game will be slow though, so covering double digits can be tough. I do think that Va Tech wins this one something like 64-53.

Bet: I would lean towards laying the 10, but like ISU, I like this as a ML parlay leg.

Note: A Va Tech/ISU/Houston ML parlay pays -115. I love that!

That’s what I got for ya today. Check us out on Twitter @BrandedBets for in game action, and let’s get that money.

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