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There’s no tournament in American sports that quite rivals the thrill of NCAAB Tournament.
The electric one-and-down bracket style format lends itself to nonstop action and drama, making it a sports bettors' dream.
With online sports betting expanding throughout the US, it has never been easier to wager on the Tournament. Many online sportsbooks offer incentives to new customers in the form of bonus bets and bet credit back for losing wagers.
NCAAB Tournament Odds
The NCAAB Tournament Bracket
NCAAB Tournament (also known as the NCAA Tournament) is College Basketball’s postseason tournament consisting of 68 teams. The Tournament provides a mix of big-time programs from power five schools to lesser-known entities from mid-major and small conferences.
The winner of each D1 Conference gets a representative accounting for 32 of the participants. The remaining 36 teams qualify via an “at-large bid,” which is determined by an NCAA Selection Committee.
Among the factors considered by the committee include overall record, strength of schedule, and quality of wins. The vast majority of these bids go to Power-5 conference schools (i.e, Duke, UCLA, Kentucky, etc.)
The last eight teams selected by the Committee square off, with winners advancing into a final field of 64. The teams are then separated into four equal regions (East, West, South, Midwest) and given seeding from 1-16, which are determined by the Committee. This often causes a fair degree of controversy.
Selection Sunday takes place the weekend before the tournament when the NCAA Selection Committee unveils the bracket, and the field is set.
Survive and Advance
What makes NCAAB Tournament so exciting is that every game is do-or-die. If you win, you advance, if you lose, you go home.
The opening weekend of NCAAB Tournament is as action-packed as you will get, with Round One and Round Two immediately cutting down the field. The first round takes place over two thrilling days of wall-to-wall basketball spanning over 12 hours.
There’s no rest for the weary as the second round begins the following day. When it’s all said and done, only 16 teams emerge out of the first weekend.
Upsets are extremely common in the early rounds leading to chaos in the brackets.
The tournament then picks up the following weekend with the Sweet Sixteen and the Elite Eight before ultimately culminating at the Final Four the following week.
When a little-known team makes an unexpected run through the bracket, they are referred to as a Cinderella. This often makes for the most compelling storylines of the tournament.
2023 NCAAB Tournament Schedule
- Round of 64: March 16-17
- Round of 32: March 18-19
- Sweet Sixteen: March 23-24:
- Elite Eight: March 25-26:
- Final Four: April 1:
- NCAA Championship Game: April 3
How to Bet on NCAAB Tournament with Picks and Parlays
Picks and Parlays is your home for free College Basketball picks all season long and will be featuring a range of NCAAB Tournament predictions and betting odds, including spreads, moneylines, totals, and more.
If you are looking for NCAAB Tournament analysis and insight, check out our free college basketball picks. Our expert handicappers will be breaking down the madness from multiple angles providing a range of odds and best bets.
You can find all of our free picks at the top left corner of our homepage.
For those new to the world of online sports betting, you can check out our comprehensive breakdowns of different online sportsbooks to find the one that’s right for you. Some different features to look for might include the following:
- The best available odds
- Best mobile app
- Largest selection of prop bets
- Biggest welcome bonus
If you’re looking to capitalize on some NCAAB Tournament betting promos, we have a range of exceptional betting offers from the top online sportsbooks, including instant bonus bets and bet credit back if you don’t win.
NCAAB Tournament Betting Options
There are several types of bets you can make during the NCAA Tournament. Some options are more popular than others.
Among the most popular methods of wagering are traditional game lines. This includes spreads, moneylines, and point totals.
A point spread is determined by oddsmakers based on the perceived discrepancy between the two teams. The handicap evens the playing field allowing bettors to wager at similar odds on either side of the betting line.
- North Carolina -3.5
- Texas +3.5
With this point spread, UNC would need to win by four or more points to cover the spread. Texas would cover with an outright win or a loss by three or fewer.
Moneylines involve simply picking the winner. Because most matchups favor one team, you will get less favorable odds when backing the favorite and more advantageous odds when backing the underdog.
- Kansas -200 (bet $200 to win $100)
- Indiana +150 (bet $100 to win $150)
Point totals are just a matter of picking the combined number of points the two teams will score. If you expect a lot of offense, you would bet the over. Inversely, if you expect more of a defensive struggle, you take the under.
The line might look like this:
- Over 136.5
- Under 136.5
If you are confident in your bets, you can combine multiple selections to get a better payout. This is referred to as a parlay.
A popular method of constructing a parlay is backing multiple favorites to win on the moneyline; however, you can get as creative as you like depending on your risk tolerance, how much you want to wager, and the size of the payout you are looking for.
Just be careful with adding too many legs to your parlay because if just one team loses, your entire bet grades as a loss.
You can also make college basketball prop bets. These are side wagers that are not necessarily correlated to the overall outcome of the game. They might include things such as:
- Race to 10 points
- Villanova to score over 65 points
- Arkansas to win the first half
Depending on the state you are located in, you might also be able to bet on NCAAB Tournament player props that relate to individual performances. Many states restrict this type of betting for college sports, so be sure to check the rules of your home state to see if you can make these types of bets.
Rather than betting on a game-by-game basis, you can make long-term bets on the outcome of the NCAA Tournament.
If you are confident in your bracket and want to make some additional bets, futures are a great way to go.
Examples of popular NCAAB Tournament futures include
- Tournament winner
- Region winner
- Which Conference will the winning team be from
NCAAB Tournament Live Betting
As online sports betting continues to expand, so too does the popularity of in-game live betting. This method of wagering allows you to lock in a bet in real time, fueling the level of excitement to an even greater degree.
Live markets allow you to capitalize on a betting line you like at even better odds than might be available before the game starts.
You can place live bets on all standard NCAAB Tournament betting odds and props.
Remember, when placing a live bet, the odds tend to change drastically. Also, be sure not to chase any losing bets by doubling down on the live markets.
Past NCAA Tournament Champions
What makes NCAAB Tournament so thrilling is the unpredictability. With that said, several College Basketball programs have stood out over the course of Tournament history.
Here’s a look at some of the all-time National Title record holders:
- UCLA: 11
- North Carolina: 6
- Duke: 5
- Indiana: 5
- UConn: 4
- Kansas: 4
- Villanova: 3
Q: When does NCAAB Tournament start?
A: NCAAB Tournament begins with Selection Sunday on March 12th. After the first four battle it out on March 14-15th for their right to join the field of 64, Round 1 begins on March 16th.
Q: Where can I bet on NCAAB Tournament?
A: You can bet on NCAAB Tournament at any of the online sportsbooks featured above as long as you are located in a legal betting state.
Q: What are the best NCAAB Tournament bets?
A: There is no shortage of excellent NCAAB Tournament bets you can make. Some popular wagers include spreads, moneylines, totals, parlays, and props.
Q: Which School has won the most National Titles?
A: UCLA holds the record with 11 National Titles
Q: What is the lowest seed to win NCAAB Tournament?
A: The lowest-seeded team to ever win the NCAA tournament is Villanova in 1985 as an 8 seed