Friday was another entertaining day in and out of the Tuley’s Takes home office as the NCAA tournament saw underdogs bounce back even though there weren’t the major upsets that we saw Thursday.
That was especially true in the night sessions (games starting after 6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT) as favorites went 5-3 SU but dogs actually led 7-1 to take a 17-15 ATS record overall as the first round came to an end. In addition to the three minor outright upsets (Iowa State over LSU, TCU over Seton Hall and Michigan State, which closed as a consensus 1-point dog, over Davidson), there were four games in which the fave won but the dog covered the spread. That should quiet the “just pick the winner” crowd for at least a little while.
One of those was our Best Bet day of the day with Colgate + 7.5 vs. Wisconsin. We had the right side nearly the whole game until Wisconsin exceed the spread late as Colgate went cold and Wisconsin made its free throws. Colgate made a late basket to get back within 7 and then fortunately let Wisconsin dribble out the final seconds without fouling to cover.
That improved us to 24-9-1 ATS (72.7 percent) with our top play the past 34 days, though we lost our other three NCAA tournament bets on Virginia Tech, Montana State and Delaware. So, it was a losing day overall for yours truly, though I did cut my losses a little by winning my top NHL 1P Over plays on the Panthers-Ducks as the Panthers’ scored their second goal of the first period with 6.9 seconds to spare!!! Yep, it ended up being a wild day.
Let’s get to the general recaps of Friday’s betting action and then try to find some winning bets for Saturday (and a look ahead to Sunday as well).
CBB: Faves went 10-6 SU overall on Friday, but dogs led 10-6 ATS with Unders going 10-6. Faves went 22-10 SU overall in Thursday and Friday's first round but dogs ended up leading 17-15 ATS while Over/Unders ended up at .500 at 16-16.
More CBB: Faves went 5-3 SU and ATS in the day sessions with only minor upsets by No. 11 Notre Dame (+ 4.5, + 165 ML) in 78-64 win vs. No. 6 Alabama, No. 10 Miami (+ 2.5, + 125 ML) in 68-66 win vs. No. 7 USC and No. 7 Ohio State (+ 1, + 100) in 54-41 win vs. No. 10 Loyola-Chicago. Over/Under went 4-4.
Even more CBB: Faves went 5-3 SU in the night sessions, but dogs led 7-1 ATS. The minor upsets were by No. 11 Iowa St. (+ 3, + 144 ML in 59-54 win vs. No. 6 LSU), No. 7 Michigan State (+ 1, + 100 ML in 74-73 win vs. No. 10 Davidson) and No. 9 TCU (+ 1.5, + 102 in 69-42 rout of No. 8 Seton Hall). Underdogs covering in losses were No. 15 Cal State-Fullerton (+ 18.5 in 78-61 loss to No. 2 Duke), No. 16 Wright State (+ 22 in 87-70 loss to No. 1 Arizona) and No. 14 Colgate (+ 7.5 in 67-60 loss to No. 3 Wisconsin). Unders went 6-2 in the night games.
NBA: Faves went 8-4 SU with upsets by the Hawks (+ 6 vs. Grizzlies), Cavaliers (+ 2.5 vs. Nuggets), Lakers (+ 8 at Raptors) and Pelicans (+ 2 at Spurs), but dogs led 8-4 ATS as Blazers (+ 14.5 at Nets), Wizards (+ 6 at Knicks), Rockets (+ 3 vs. Pacers) and Thunder (+ 14.5 at Heat) covered in losses. Unders went 7-5.
NHL: Faves went 4-2 with the only upsets by the Sabres (+ 330 in 1-0 win at Flames) and Capitals (+ 145 in 4-3 win at Hurricanes). Unders went 3-2-1 with the push coming in the Bruins' 4-2 win at the Jets with a betting total of 6 goals.
(Note: for the reasons behind why I like each NCAA tournament pick, check out the VSiN Daily Best Bets file at VSiN.com as our main purpose here is making sure we get the best line value by deciding whether to bet right away or wait until closer to gametime.)
Memphis + 10.5 vs. Gonzaga: I gave this out in the Best Bets file on our website’s home page as it’s my top play for Saturday’s second round of the NCAA tournament, but a lot of books have lowered the line to 10 so shop around and get the best number ASAP.
Pistons + 7.5 at Cavaliers: The Pistons are still among the worst teams in the Associations, but they continue to outperform the bookmakers’ expectations as they’re 12-0-1 ATS in their last 13 games and 13-0 ATS if you were able to get + 4.5 in their 106-102 loss vs. the Clippers last Sunday.
Devils-Oilers 1P Over 1.5 -170 (DraftKings): We barely got there with a win on Friday, but we’ll keep adding these plays to our daily portfolio as long as they’re profitable. Saturday’s top play is on the Devils, who have been very good to us since we jumped on the bandwagon about midway through their current 28-7 run with 1P Overs (VSiN colleague Pauly Howard also loves them with the “Will there be a goal in the first 10 minutes” prop as they’re on a 28-4 run). Looks like more books (BetMGM, William Hill) are going with Over 2, so shop around. Looking for a parlay partner, I’d recommend the Blackhawks-Wild 1P Over 1.5 -150 as the Wild are on a 10-0 run with 1P Overs.
Illinois + 4.5 vs. Houston: This line opened as high as Houston -5 and as low as -4 and has mostly settled at 4.5, but I believe it’s more likely to go down when the public sees No. 4 Illinois is an underdog and getting + 4.5 to No. 5 Houston.
Michigan State + 6.5 vs. Duke: Tom Izzo continues to get his teams to peak in March and I believe the Spartans will be properly prepared to try and end Coach K’s swan song. Even if they don’t get the job done, they should be able to keep this close enough.
Good luck today (and every day!).