The college basketball regular season is quickly approaching the finish line. Many teams only have a few games remaining on their schedule before gearing up for postseason play.
This means that bettors will soon be able to get some action down on March Madness betting in WV.
Since the NCAA was forced to cancel last year’s tournament, there should be an overwhelming amount of excitement this season.
The good news for bettors in the Mountain State is that their WVU Mountaineers are poised for a quality seed. The latest bracket projections from ESPN show WVU in a No. 3 spot at the moment.
While the Mountaineers certainly have a chance to make a run to the Final Four, there are several teams with better odds.
Even though Kansas isn’t at the top of the Big 12 Conference, it appears that Baylor has taken over as the national power. The Bears are 18-0 and have basically secured one of the No. 1 seeds in the Big Dance.
WVU will have the opportunity to give Baylor its first loss next week.
While it’s likely that a lot of wagers will come in for the Mountaineers at WV online sportsbooks, plenty of other teams will see action too.
Let’s examine the other top college basketball teams with the best odds to win the title as the calendar turns to March.
NCAA Tournament betting at WV sportsbooks
There is a clear top tier of college basketball in 2021. Often, elite teams are able to separate themselves from the pack, but this year is on a different level.
Both Baylor and the Gonzaga Bulldogs are still undefeated and look mostly unstoppable.
These two programs are so far ahead of everyone else that WV DraftKings actually has a prop where it’s those teams against the field. The online sportsbook gives Baylor and Gonzaga odds of -110 to win the National Championship, compared to everyone else in the field at -134.
With the tournament including 68 teams total, these odds provide a good understanding of how talented the Bears and Bulldogs are.
According to FanDuel Sportsbook WV, the Zags are the favorite to win it all at +250. Baylor is listed at +300.
Gonzaga features four players who average more than 10 points per game, led by sophomore forward Drew Timme. He’s scoring over 19 points a game, while also pacing his team in rebounds and blocks.
Senior Corey Kispert is playing a major role as well. He is accounting for 19 points and about five rebounds per game this season.
It’s true that Gonzaga is playing in a much easier conference in the WCC; however, it has taken down lots of good teams. It defeated the Mountaineers, Kansas, Iowa and Virginia.
The one team that might be able to match the Bulldogs is Baylor.
The Bears maintained their unbeaten record in the much more difficult Big 12.
Similar to the Bulldogs, Baylor has more than one guy who can hurt you. The trio of Jared Butler, MaCio Teague and Davion Mitchell combine to average over 45 points per contest.
Of course, the Big 12 is tough enough, but Baylor beat several other top opponents. This list includes No. 5 Illinois, which it took down by 13 points back in early December.
Although many will pick both these teams to reach the championship, it will be interesting to see if they’re capable of surviving March Madness.
Additional top Final Four contenders
Michigan is at the head of the pack following the likely top two seeds in the NCAA Tournament. The Wolverines are 17-1 overall and play in arguably the most difficult conference in college basketball in the Big Ten.
The conference currently features five teams ranked in the AP Top 25, with several others just outside. It’s very possible that a total of 10 teams from the Big Ten will reach the field of 68.
Big man Hunter Dickinson is Michigan’s best contributor. The seven-foot freshman leads his team in points and rebounds with averages of 15 and eight, respectively.
Senior forward Isaiah Livers is an issue for opposing defenses, as well. He’s scoring more than 14 points per game, while shooting about 43% from beyond the arc.
FanDuel shows Michigan with the third-best odds to win the championship at +600.
There is a sizable drop-off in odds after the Wolverines. The next clumping of teams is as follows:
- Villanova +1200
- Iowa +1600
- Houston +1800
- Illinois +1800
- Ohio State +1800
- Alabama +2000
- West Virginia +2200
- Florida State +2300
- Texas +2300
- Creighton +2500
Villanova is one of the most underrated teams almost every season. Head coach Jay Wright is in his 20th year with the program, and he seems to never disappoint.
The Wildcats won the title in 2016 and 2018. They’ve qualified as a No. 1 or No. 2 seed in the last five NCAA Tournaments.
FanDuel gives Nova odds of +135 to grab a top seed in this year’s bracket.
Even though there aren’t many games remaining, the ones left could determine a lot. This final stretch, along with conference tournaments, will establish where teams end up in the Big Dance and how sportsbooks alter their odds going forward.