Best betting picks to win NCAA tournament's Most Outstanding Player award
All tournament long, VSiN will be providing you with March Madness betting odds, in-depth team analysis and expert college basketball picks. Make us your one-stop shop for all of your betting needs. But while most of the best bets you've seen on the site so far have strictly dealt with teams, we figured now is a good time to shine a little light on individual players. Keep reading for some of our favorite bets to win the Most Outstanding Player award in March Madness.
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Brandon Miller (+950) - Alabama Crimson Tide
This season, Miller averaged 19.6 points, 8.3 rebounds and 2.1 assists for the top-seeded Crimson Tide, and he did so on 45.1/40.1/85.6 shooting splits. Miller is arguably the best player in all of college basketball, with his 6-foot-9 frame and smooth shooting stroke making him nearly impossible to cover. He has also added a lot to his toolkit throughout the season when it comes to self-creation, so he’s a legitimate threat to score off the dribble.
With Alabama being a +650 play to win the NCAA tournament, it’s pretty hard not to put a little something on Miller to be the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player. It’s hard to envision a scenario in which the Crimson Tide win it all and Miller isn’t the one that is directly responsible for it. With that in mind, we’d strongly suggest putting a little something on Miller, who seems like a lock to be a top-three pick in the 2023 NBA Draft. He had four games with at least 30 points this season, and he should shine under the brightest lights of them all.
Drew Timme (+2300) – Gonzaga Bulldogs
Wouldn’t it be fitting for Gonzaga to make a title run in a year in which absolutely nobody believes the Zags can do so? Well, this Bulldogs squad got a lot better as the season progressed, and Gonzaga heads into the tournament on the heels of a blowout win over a very good Saint Mary’s Gaels team in the WCC tournament. All of a sudden, it isn’t far-fetched to think that the Zags can make a deep run, especially after drawing the banged-up UCLA Bruins as the second seed in their region.
If Gonzaga does pull off the improbable, it’d likely be Timme that ends up winning the Most Oustanding Player award. Timme is the best low-post player in the entire tournament, and he consistently puts up big numbers for the Zags. This season, Timme averaged 20.9 points, 7.3 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game. Numbers like those are plenty good enough to win something like this, and it would be quite the story if the longtime college star ended his career on a high note.
Jarace Walker (+3000) & Jamal Shead (+4200) – Houston Cougars
The Cougars are the favorites to win the NCAA tournament, as Kelvin Sampson’s team is sitting at +450 to get the job done. Star guard Marcus Sasser is the top dog for this Cougars team, and he’s the favorite to win the Most Outstanding Player award. However, Sasser is dealing with a groin injury heading into the tournament, which means Houston might not be able to lean as heavily on him as usual. That means there’s some value elsewhere, if you believe the Cougars are going to win the Big Dance.
Walker is one player you can back to win this award, as the big man is a menace on the defensive end and can flirt with double-doubles on a nightly basis. At +3000, you can do a lot worse than taking a flier on him to win this thing.
Shead is another option if you’re confident in Houston winning, as he would be the main beneficiary of Sasser not playing at 100% health. This season, Shead is averaging 10.3 points, 5.4 assists, 3.0 rebounds and 1.8 steals per game for Houston, but he has the potential to do more damage with an increase in usage rate. That makes him an interesting play here, especially at +4200 odds.
Jordan Hawkins (+5000) – Connecticut Huskies
One of my favorite longshots to win the Most Outstanding Player award is Hawkins, who is the best perimeter player for a UConn team that has the talent required to win the NCAA tournament. The Huskies are only a four seed in this event, so they will have their work cut out for them in order to get the job done. But UConn is the third-ranked team in our VSiN Team Power Ratings, so this Huskies team is as good as anyone.
Adama Sanogo is the player with the best odds to win this award for UConn, and the big man is averaging 16.8 points and 7.3 rebounds per game. So, it’s not hard to understand why the oddsmakers might believe a bit more in Sanogo as the biggest threat to take home these honors. However, Hawkins is averaging 16.1 points per game and shoots 36.8% on 7.7 three-point attempts per game. He can get extremely hot in a hurry, as evidenced by his 13 games with 20 or more points this season.
If UConn does make a deep run in this tournament, don’t be surprised if the team does so on the back of some absurd shooting performances from Hawkins. That’s why he’s a great value play here.
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