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Saturday Elite 8 Sharp Report

cougs

The weekend is here! And so is the Elite 8. Here are the updated odds to win the NCAA Tournament at BetMGM.

Kansas +275

Houston +350

Duke +400

Villanova +600

North Carolina +600

Arkansas +1000

 

Now, let's discuss where the smart money is flowing for tonight's Elite 8 action...

 

6:09 p.m. ET: Houston vs Villanova

The Elite 8 showdown takes place in the South Region. Houston (32-5 SU, 25-12 ATS) is the 5-seed. The Cougars just took down 1-seed Arizona 72-60 in the Sweet 16, winning outright as 1.5-point dogs. Previously, Houston beat 4-seed Illinois 68-53, covering as 3.5-point favorites, and edged 12-seed UAB 82-68, covering as 8.5-point favorites. Meanwhile, Villanova (29-7 SU, 19-15-2 ATS) is the 2-seed and just beat 11-seed Michigan 63-55 in the Sweet 16, covering as 4.5-point favorites. Villanova also beat 7-seed Ohio State 71-61, covering as 5-point favorites, and crushed 15-seed Delaware 80-60, covering as 15-point favorites. 

This line opened with Houston listed as a short 2-point favorite. Respected money has laid the chalk, driving Houston up from -2 to -2.5. Teams with a line move in their favor are 28-19 ATS (60%) this March Madness. Ken Pom has Houston winning by two points (65-63). He has Houston ranked 2nd and Villanova 11th. Houston is -145 on the moneyline. We've also seen some sharp money hit the under, dropping the total from 129 to 128. These are two of the slowest teams in terms of tempo in the country. The under is 2-1 for both teams this March Madness. 

 

8:49 p.m. ET: Arkansas vs Duke

This primetime West Region clash will likely be the most heavily bet game of the night. Arkansas (28-8 SU, 21-14-1 ATS) the 4-seed. The Razorbacks just shocked 1-seed Gonzaga 74-68, winning outright as 9.5-point dogs. Arkansas also beat 12-seed New Mexico State 53-48, failing to cover as 6.5-point favorites and took down 13-seed Vermont 75-71, failing to cover as 5-point favorites. Now they must face 2-seed Duke (31-6 SU, 19-15-3 ATS), who just edged 3-seed Texas Tech 78-73, cashing as a pick'em. Previously, Duke dismissed 7-seed Michigan State 85-76, covering as 6.5-point favorites, and crushed 15-seed CS Fullerton 78-61 but failed to cover as 18.5-point favorites. 

This line opened with Duke listed as a 4-point favorite. The public is riding the Dukies in Coach K's last hurrah, yet we've seen this line remain frozen at 4 or even dip to 3.5 at some shops. This signals liability on Arkansas plus the points. Ken Pom has Duke winning by four points (76-72), which is right on the number. He has Duke ranked 8th and Arkansas 16th. The total hasn't budged off the opener of 147.5.

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