Sweet 16 Odds (03/26/13)

By John Ewing

Updated value bets for the Sweet Sixteen after simulating the remainder of the 2013 NCAA Tournament bracket 50,000 times.

The first weekend did not disappoint, top seeds Gonzaga and Georgetown were knocked out. The West region has been obliterated and there is a number of Cinderella’s looking to dance to the Final Four (#12 Oregon, #13 La Salle, and # 15 Florida Gulf Coast). While your bracket may have been busted we were able to navigate a crazy first weekend to go 7-3 on normal+ against-the-spread and over/under plays (70% ATS and O/U). For next weekend's picks click here.

Below we look for value in the odds to win the 2013 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship as well as the odds to win each region. We utilize our updated Bracket Odds to find the likelihood of a given team cutting down the nets.

To determine if a team has value we look at what their current odds are to win the title and compare that to our projected odds for a championship. For example, Oregon is listed at 33/1 to win, in order for us to feel comfortable wagering on Oregon they would need to win the title 2.9% (which is 1/(1+33)) of the time. We project the Ducks to win it all 0.3%, meaning there is no value in placing a bet at 33/1 odds.

National Title Value Bets

Duke (29-5, 14-4 ACC)

Final Four – 28.2%, Champion – 9.1%

Duke is in the Sweet 16 for the fourth time in five years. This marks the 27th time that the Blue Devils will play in the second weekend of the tournament. Duke, 12-to-1 to win the title, will have to defeat Michigan State and Louisville to reach the Final 4. An issue for the Blue Devils in the tournament has been foul trouble. If Mason Plumlee and Ryan Kelly can play their typical minutes it will be difficult for any team to bounce the Dukies out of the bracket.

Additional Value Bets – Indiana at 5/1 odds

Below are the odds for each remaining team.

Region  Seed  Team Odds Odds Needed Projected Odds
Midwest 1  Louisville 3/1 25.0% 21.8%
Midwest 12  Oregon 33/1 2.9% 0.3%
Midwest 3  Michigan St. 14/1 6.7% 3.6%
Midwest 2  Duke 12/1 7.7% 9.1%
West 9  Wichita St. 40/1 2.4% 1.4%
West 13  La Salle 66/1 1.5% 0.4%
West 6  Arizona 18/1 5.3% 1.9%
West 2  Ohio State 15/2 11.8% 9.2%
South 1  Kansas 12/1 7.7% 2.1%
South 4  Michigan 11/1 8.3% 7.0%
South 3  Florida 19/4 17.4% 17.3%
South 15  FGCU 75/1 1.3% 0.0%
East 1  Indiana 5/1 16.7% 20.7%
East 4  Syracuse 20/1 4.8% 2.2%
East 3  Marquette 40/1 2.4% 0.6%
East 2  Miami (FL) 15/2 11.8% 2.4%

Regional Value Bets


Louisville (31-5, 14-4 Big East)

Final Four – 41.7%, Champion – 21.8%

Louisville began the tournament as our second most likely champion winning 16.2% of the time. After the first weekend of play the Cardinals have become our most likely champion winning it all 21.8% of the time. The primary reason for the change is that Louisville has favorable matchups leading to the championship game. Louisville does not face a team greater than 9% likely to win the tournament, compared to Indiana and Florida who would have to face each other and are 20.7% and 17.3% likely to win respectively.

Additional Value Bets in the Midwest Region – Duke at 11/4 odds

Region  Seed  Team Odds Odds Needed Projected Odds
Midwest 1  Louisville 5/7 41.7% 52.4%
Midwest 12  Oregon 9/1 10.0% 3.6%
Midwest 3  Michigan St. 7/2 22.2% 15.8%
Midwest 2  Duke 11/4 26.7% 28.2%


There are no values bets in the West region. If you really feel the urge to get down then La Salle is your closest option to a value bet. We project the Explorers to win the region 9.6% of the time. While there is no value in a 1/1 bet on Ohio State, the Buckeyes are the most likely winner taking the West 48.5% of the time.

Region  Seed  Team Odds Odds Needed Projected Odds
West 9  Wichita St. 13/4 23.5% 21.2%
West 13  La Salle 9/1 10.0% 9.6%
West 6  Arizona 2/1 33.3% 20.7%
West 2  Ohio State 1/1 50.0% 48.5%


Florida (28-7, 14-4 SEC)

Final Four – 55.7%, Champion – 17.3%

The Cinderella story of Florida Gulf Coast is what the tournament is built on. Unfortunately for the Eagles they are about to face a team that is more athletic and better coached. The Florida Gators are the most likely team to reach the Elite 8 (91.0%) and Final 4 (55.7%). If we switched the South region with the Midwest (Louisville) then Florida would become our most likely champion.

Additional Value Bets in the South Region – Michigan at 5/2 odds

Region  Seed  Team Odds Odds Needed Projected Odds
South 1  Kansas 5/2 28.6% 14.0%
South 4  Michigan 5/2 28.6% 29.0%
South 3  Florida 4/5 55.5% 55.7%
South 15  FGCU 15/1 6.3% 1.3%


Indiana (29-6, 14-4 Big Ten)

Final Four – 54.6%, Champion – 20.7%

Indiana survived a scare Sunday from Temple as Victor Oladipo hit a 3-pointer with 14 seconds remaining to put the game out of reach. Indiana had an off night shooting and defensively struggled to stop Khalif Wyatt (31 points). Indiana was able to survive and advance because of their success getting to the foul line. Cody Zeller drew as many fouls (8) and shot as many free throws (8) as Temple combined for as a team. While Indiana’s odds to win the tournament have decreased from 23.5% to 20.7%, their odds to win the region have increased from 49.8% to 54.6%.

Additional Value Bets in the East Region - None

Region  Seed  Team Odds Odds Needed Projected Odds
East 1  Indiana 1/1 50.0% 54.6%
East 4  Syracuse 15/4 21.1% 16.2%
East 3  Marquette 7/1 12.5% 9.2%
East 2  Miami (FL) 2/1 33.3% 20.0%