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March Madness East Bracket Betting – Early Preview Of Upcoming NCAA Basketball Action

Posted by Washington Tucker on 2/6/2014 2:31:06 AM

It’s time for America’s favorite tournament, the one-and-done college basketball showcase produced by the NCAA. What will happen in the East Region bracket? Get an early overview.

NCAA basketball betting: Thursday Games – March 17

(5) West Virginia vs. First Four winner: UAB or Clemson

What WVU coach Bob Huggins has done with the Mountaineers is nothing short of remarkable. This year’s West Virginia team is a shadow of the outfit that made the Final Four in 2010. A West Virginia-Clemson game would be close, but one thing to consider is that the winner of the play-in game between UAB and Clemson has to play two games at different sites with a very short turnaround time. UAB-Clemson tips off late Tuesday night in Dayton, Ohio. A hasty trip to Tampa for a 12:25 p.m. game on Thursday presents a difficult situation for the Blazers or Tigers. West Virginia is in the catbird seat.

(4) Kentucky vs. (13) Princeton

Princeton might be hard for Kentucky to figure out for a half, but the Wildcats are long and physically sculpted. Kentucky will dominate on the glass in this contest and manage a reasonably decisive victory.

March Madness betting: Friday Games – March 18

(1) Ohio State vs. (16) Play-In Winner: UT-San Antonio or Alabama State

This 1-16 game won’t be different from the ones that have come before. Ohio State should not be the least bit concerned about its first foe in the Big Dance. This is just not a game that involves any matchup threats for the top seed. Nothing from Texas-San Antonio or Alabama State, two small-conference champions, will ever bother the No. 1 overall seed in this tournament.

(8) George Mason vs. (9) Villanova

The 8-9 game pits two teams that offer different profiles to look at for sports betting experts. Villanova lost 10 of its last 15 games to tumble way down the S-curve. Coach Jay Wright’s Wildcats were part of the Big East Conference’s 11-team NCAA Tournament contingent, but they fell to a very low seeding. Villanova is disjointed right now. The Cats squandered a large lead against lowly No. 15 seed (in a 16-team event) South Florida in the first round of the Big East Conference Tournament. Villanova won’t become a better team overnight. The George Mason Patriots, the regular-season champions of the Colonial Athletic Association, went 16-2 in that conference and own the resilience Villanova lacks. Take George Mason without a second thought in this matchup.

(6) Xavier vs. (11) Marquette

In recent NCAA Tournament history, Xavier has shown that it can advance in a bracket. The Musketeers took Kansas State into double overtime in 2010 before losing in the West Regional semifinals. Marquette lost in the first round of last year’s NCAA Tournament, falling to Washington as the No. 6 seed in a 6-11 game. Xavier guard Tu Holloway will control this game for the regular-season Atlantic 10 champions.

(3) Syracuse vs. (14) Indiana State

Syracuse could have gotten a much more difficult opponent here. Indiana State comes from a weak conference, the Missouri Valley, and was only the third-best team in that league during the regular season. The 14th-seeded Sycamores aren’t imposing in the paint, and that’s why the Orange will frolic on the backboard. Syracuse will be able to generate the kinds of looks it wants. Even when Syracuse misses, the Orange will be able to rebound on a regular basis and steamroll ISU.

(7) Washington vs. (10) Georgia

This is a classic contrast in styles. The Huskies love to play high-octane, run-and-gun ball, while Georgia is a powerful team with a quality NBA-caliber big man in the form of Trey Thompkins, an active 6-10 beast who will severely challenge Washington’s undersized front line. This game comes down to tournament experience: Washington won two tournament games last year and made the Sweet 16. Georgia doesn’t have that winning edge; the Bulldogs choked in the SEC Tournament quarterfinals against Alabama last Friday. Georgia is a mentally weak team with a low basketball IQ. Expect Washington to make more plays down the stretch and survive.

(2) North Carolina vs. (15) Long Island

The Tar Heels have their share of weaknesses, chiefly their youth. This is a North Carolina team that was lost for the first two months of the season. Larry Drew II was a complete flop as the UNC point guard, only to be replaced by freshman Kendall Marshall, who occupied the starting role more than 50 percent of the way through the season. Yet, pundits were easily able to see that Marshall could distribute the ball to his teammates at the right times and in the right spots. Marshall wobbled in the ACC Conference Tournament this past weekend, but he’s still the best man Carolina has. Future foes could threaten UNC, but Long Island University will not be too hard to handle for Carolina.

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