By Nick Savage & Jake Lazarus & Trevor Roughan
This March Madness, an estimated $15.5 billion will be wagered. Roughly 31 million American adults will place a traditional bet online or at a physical sports book.
Our goal is to beat the public by using the Only Players Expert Pick Tracker, experts with positive and public records who pick every tournament matchup. While shocking upsets do happen, the wisdom of the crowd fits sports gambling trends quite well.
Remember… anything can happen in March!
|Expert||2023 Record||USC @ MSU||KENN @ XAV||UCSB @ BAY||VCU @ SMC||UVM @ MARQ||PITT @ ISU||NCST @ CREI||IONA @ UCONN||FDU @ PUR||PROV @ UK||DRKE @ MIA||GCU @ GONZ||FAU @ MEM||MTST @ KSU||KENT @ IU||ASU @ TCU|
|CBS Sports||5-10||USC +2||XAV -13||BAY -10.5||SMC -4||MARQ -10.5||PITT +4||NCST +5||UCONN -9||FDU +23||PROV +4||MIA -2||GONZ -15.5||FAU +2||KSU -8.5||IU -4.5||ASU +6|
|Oddstrader||8-8||USC +2||KENN +12.5||UCSB +10.5||VCU +4||UVM +10.5||PITT +4||NCST +5||IONA +9||FDU +23||PROV +4||DRKE +2||GCU +15.5||FAU +1.5||MTST +8.5||KENT +4.5||ASU +5.5|
|Covers||8-8||MSU -1.5||XAV -12.5||BAY -10.5||SMC -4||MARQ -10.5||ISU -3.5||CREI -5||UCONN -8.5||PUR -22.5||UK -4||MIA -1.5||GONZ -15.5||MEM -1.5||KSU -8.5||IU -4||TCU -5.5|
|Sports Chat Place||2-11||MSU -2||XAV -11.5||UCSB +11.5||VCU +3.5||UVM +10.5||PITT +3.5||CREI -4.5||UCONN -9.5||PUR -22.5||UK -3.5||DRKE +2.5||GONZ -15.5.||FAU +2.5||MTST +8.5||IU -4.5||ASU +4.5|
|PickWise||7-8||USC +2||XAV -13||UCSB +11.5||VCU +4||UVM +10.5||PITT +4||CREI -5||IONA +9.5||FDU +23||PROV +4||DRKE +2||GONZ -15.5||MEM -2||KSU -8.5||KENT +4.5||N/A|
|Dimers||8-8||MSU -2.5||XAV -12.5||BAY -10.5||SMC -4||MARQ -10.5||ISU -4.5||CREI -5.5||UCONN -8.5||PUR -22.5||UK -4||MIA -1.5||GONZ -15.5||MEM -1.5||KSU -8.5||IU -4.5||TCU -5.5|
|KENN +12.5||BAY -10.5||VCU +4||MARQ -10.5||PITT +3.5||CREI -5.5||UCONN -9.5||N/A||PROV +4.5||DRKE +1.5||GONZ -14.5||MEM -1.5||MTST +8.5||KENT +4.5||N/A|
|XAV -12.5||BAY -10.5||VCU +4||MARQ -10.5||ISU -4.5||CREI -5.5||UCONN -9.5||PUR -22.5||UK -3.5||DRKE +1.5||GONZ -14.5||FAU +1.5||MTST +8.5||KENT +4.5||ASU +5.5|
14 seed Kennesaw St. will be climbing a steep, uphill battle vs 3 seeded Xavier. Kennesaw St. was consistently dominant on the offensive end when playing against schools in the ASUN Conference, while Xavier proved all season long that they can overwhelm any and every D1 team in the same fashion. In what inevitably will be a high scoring game between these two squads, most experts are siding with Xavier (-12.5 ATS), the team more proven against stiff competition.
Watch out for Creighton. Their 6th seed status does not do their team much justice. With wins against great competition like UConn, Xavier, Arkansas, and Providence, Creighton is far more battle-tested than most other teams in their seed-range this tournament. While NC St. has some impressive wins under their belt as well, Creighton has remained more consistent throughout the season, especially on offense. If they can often click on both ends of the floor simultaneously, Creighton has the talent to make a deep run this March. Experts overwhelmingly believe Creighton will handle NC St. against the spread as 5.5-point favorites in round one.
Rick Pitino’s 13 seeded Iona Gaels are no joke. They’ve won 14 straight and boast a rotation consisting of primarily seniors. For a team that has never (ever) won a game in the big dance, they certainly do not lack experience considering the makeup of their roster and pedigree of their head coach. Unfortunately for Pitino and his squad, Iona is set to play the highest regarded 4 seed in recent memory. Many believe UConn has a chance to win it all, and they sport the 9th best odds to do so among the majority of sportsbooks. Most experts believe UConn will comfortably win this game and continue their quest for a 5th championship.
Scoring against Purdue this season was just about as difficult as rocket science… probably. Despite consistently going up against strong competition in the Big 10, Purdue allowed the fewest PPG among all qualifying D1 squads. Add this level of defensive continuity to an offense ran through the presumptive national player of the year, who is 7’4 in case you were wondering, then you have a dangerous team. Regardless, Purdue’s stout defense and clock control has lead to many low-scoring games this season, which will likely hinder their ability to cover huge spreads this tournament. Experts are split on deciding an ATS winner between 1 seed Purdue and 16 seeded Fairleigh Dickinson.
March Madness just wouldn’t feel right without Gonzaga’s presence. Even as a 3 seed this year, the Bulldogs should be taken very seriously as title contenders per usual. The best player from Gonzaga’s 1 seed squad in 2022, Drew Timme, returned this season for his senior year and looked as dominant as ever. With a strong supporting cast consisting of players like Julian Strawther and Anton Watson, Gonzaga has a very solid team that most experts believe will easily handle Grand Canyon University in round one.