The 2014 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament is just over a month away, with teams entering crunch time as they try to set up for a run at the national championship. It starts with performing well in conference, and then ultimately the conference championships.
The battle for the four No.1 seeds in the tournament will be quite exciting down the stretch as well.
If the selection committee were to make its decision today, the four top seeds would likely all come from different conferences. They would be Arizona, Florida, Kansas, and Syracuse. This is a testament to the parity around the nation for the top teams.
Just on the outside of the No.1 seeds would be teams like Michigan State and Wichita State. The Shockers made the Final Four last season as a No.9 seed but are currently one of two undefeated teams in the nation. Wichita State could certainly make the argument for a No.1 seed, or at the very least a No.2 seed.
How do oddsmakers see it shaping up?
It’s very similar to how the No.1 seeds would be set. Bovada Sportsbook has to take into account the teams that they believe will get one of the four No.1 national seeds. Hypothetically it would be the easiest trip to the Final Four in Dallas.
Of the four teams mentioned however, it’s tough to distinguish who has the edge. This is evident in the payouts. Arizona, Florida, and Kansas have all been set with equal 13/2 payouts. All three are on top of their conference standings and in great position. While there is no team in the country this season without a weakness, these are three of the most complete teams in the country.
But the funny thing is that it’s Syracuse who is the No.1 ranked team right now. The Orange are undefeated in their first year in the ACC. By no means is this team being disrespected on the betting line though, going off at 7/1. That is essentially the same payout that the three teams in front are receiving.
Even behind the top-four favorites though the betting odds do not jump up. They continue to increase gradually. This indicates that Bovada believes many teams still have a shot. There are currently 14 teams that are receiving a payout of 25/1 or better.
The 2014 national championship betting lines for College Basketball will continue to be formed throughout the season. Once the field is announced, expect to see a sharp adjustment according to how the seeding was finalized.