Courtesy of Tony George
And so it begins. The fever of March Madness kicked off with Championship Tourney Week, and surprises were the flavor of the day almost every day. Numerous Heavyweights went down, Purdue, North Carolina, Kansas in a shocker to name a few, and there were many others to numerous to mention. The fever rises again this week with the filling out of the brackets, numerous recreational sports bettors dipping their toes into sports betting and affecting lines.
The Cinderella Story is yet to unfold in March Madness as their always is one, as we saw Duke and Michigan both peak at the right time in their respective Tourneys, although you truly must hand it to Michigan as the Cinderella of the Conference Tourneys. Bear in mind as well, while we all know Duke quite frankly is Duke with Coach K, they were a 4 seed in that Tourney.
BETTING MARCH MADNESS BOTH NIT AND NCAA TOURNEY’S IS A DIFFERENT ANIMAL
Who is peaking, who is fading, what teams matchup well against their first round opponents, and what teams don’t. Then you measure style of play, Tempo, the all-important guard play from teams, the crucial and almost always deciding factor Free Throw Percentage, and of course depth of teams as they play numerous games to win a conference tourney and then are playing within 48 hours of each game in Rounds 1 and 2.
Power ratings, no matter what you use, Saragin, Ken Pom or others are also suspect as you cannot rely solely on them for overlays against the spread. There are numerous intangibles to consider, player on player match-ups you must know, as well as coaching tendencies and experience as well as location and travel. and bear in mind these are 19 year old kids, not seasoned Pro’s in an 5 game Playoff. This is one and done, immense pressure, adrenaline and highs and lows. Anyone have a teenager in their house, and if so Need I say more?
Included in this article are just a few tips and angles in short form that has led me to being ranked in the March Madness Top 10 Rankings EACH of the past 3 years and #1 in 2015 at Sports Watch, a respected Monitor where I went 71% over 36 games in March Madness that year. Always there is luck involved in March Madness with a record like that, but also experience and discipline play into it and I have 25 years of looking at March Madness.
DO NOT FORGET THE NIT Tourney – I kill it every year in this tourney – This is not a neutral floor till the Final 4 hit Madison Square Garden. So think of this, many of these teams including #1 Seed Syracuse are not in the NCAA Tourney because quite frankly they could not win on the road.
Higher seeded teams in this tourney HAVE HOME GAMES! Syracuse was 1-11 on the road this year and while they should have been in the big dance, they were not because of this fact. THAT SAID look closely when handicapping the NIT as this years offering is loaded with teams that could easily end up in the Sweet 16 in the Big Dance, but are relegated to this tourney, because they had road issues or even perhaps injury issues at some point.
The rub is that many of these higher seeded teams are disappointed to not be in the Big Dance (like Bowl Teams disappointed and play like it) and you have to be careful laying big points with them early because the lower seeded teams bring enthusiasm and momentum into these big games, because I can assure for instance that UNC Greensboro is wound up to go play Syracuse. Just an example.
- Less is more – Low Volume Early – there will be upsets and wild covers – Spreading it around is Doom
- Free Throw Percentage both Season Long and Last 5 games needs to be researched
- Good Guard Play – A strong Back-court is crucial to success in post season
- Because the Media states the 12 vs 5 seed is always an upset matchup – do not buy into it
- Research Strength of Schedule closely – Crucial element
- REMEMBER YOU ARE BETTING INTO NUMBERS – NOT GAMES!
- Look at Strength of conference (ACC – Big 12 Loaded and PAC 12 not type scenario)
- Coaching Experience in Post Season Tourney Play – Big Advantage – there are numerous guys besides Coach K, Rick Pitino, Roy Williams that have been here, some of these coaches with other teams but none the less coaching experience is key.
- Look for teams with Momentum versus teams that limped in. EXAMPLE – USC limped in – Have not beaten anyone with a winning record since January 28th. Duke rolls in after winning ACC Tourney beating the hell out of 3 Top Ranked teams (as a #4 Tourney Seed) and are now 100% healthy. Just an example.
- FLAT BET – Anything can happen, good handicapping helps but unloading on 1 or 2 games is bad bankroll management. Equal Amounts of money on every wager, flat bet. That way 56 % to 60% + Winners is a money Maker!
Just a Few Tips and Thoughts Gents. Enjoy March Madness responsibly and cash out some tickets baby!
My March Madness available at www.tonygeorgesports.com March Madness Package just $200 this season.