College basketball futures tend to be even more unpredictable than futures in most other sports. You have a huge field of potential teams to start with. With just five starters and thirteen players in total on each team, there is potential there for one or two excellent players to overcome a team that has better talent overall. College basketball teams are also notoriously streaky with regards to shooting, so if a team gets hot or cold at the right time their fortunes can change on a dime. This is nowhere more apparent than the NCAA Tournament, where top teams often fall in the early rounds to smaller schools.
The table below lists the top teams according to the odds at 5Dimes sportsbook. We recommend 5Dimes for basketball betting because they offer reduced juice, giving you an edge you aren’t likely to find anywhere else.
Villanova is the 2017-18 NCAA Tournament Champion in what was truly a dominating season. The Wildcats lost just four games in the regular season (32-4) and made their bracket look easy, winning by an average of almost 19 point per game, including a 17-point win over Michigan in the championship.
Despite that dominance, Duke is currently listed as the favorite to take home the trophy next season. Villanova is listed with the second-best odds (along with Kansas), but their future is a bit unknown with some key upperclassmen likely heading to the NBA Draft. The rest of the teams at the top of the list should come as no surprise as they seem to be here every year: Kentucky, North Carolina, Michigan State, Gonzaga, Virginia, and Michigan are all expected to compete for the title next season. Check back closer to the start of the season to see how recruiting and player turnover impacts these odds.
Projected Final Four: Duke, Villanova, Kansas, Kentucky
Included in the table below are the regular season records for each team last year, their conference, Power Index (average margin of victory last season), current odds, change in the odds from the last update, and the normalized implied probability to win the NCAA Tournament based on the current market odds.
|TEAM||2017-18 Record||Conference||2017 Power Index||Odds||Change||NCAA Tournament|
|Michigan State||30-5||Big Ten||15.3||+2500||None||2.26%|
|West Virginia||26-10||Big 12||10.5||+3500||None||1.63%|
|Texas Tech||26-9||Big 12||9.8||+5000||None||1.15%|
|Ohio State||25-9||Big Ten||8.6||+7000||None||0.83%|
|Penn State||23-13||Big Ten||7.6||+8250||None||0.70%|
|St John’s||16-17||Big East||-0.4||+9000||None||0.65%|
|Seton Hall||22-12||Big East||5.6||+9000||None||0.65%|
|Kansas State||24-11||Big 12||4.1||+10000||+2500||0.58%|
|Iowa State||13-18||Big 12||-2.6||+17500||+5000||0.33%|
|Saint Mary’s||30-5||West Coast||12.5||+22500||None||0.26%|
|San Diego State||22-11||MWC||8.3||+22500||None||0.26%|
We’ve included the probability for each team to win the tournament based on the odds and the field listed (NCAA Tournament column). It is sometimes easier to grasp what the odds are trying to say when thinking in terms of percentage probability versus how much a $100 bet would payout (e.g. +500 means a $100 bet would pay out $500). The change column shows how much the odds have improved or decreased for that team since our last update. If a team is “New” this means they were not listed as of our previous update. Our Power Index is the approximate number of points a team would be favored by on a neutral court against an average college basketball team.
Be sure to check out the daily college basketball odds each night of the season to see if there is any value with these teams or others.