With February officially coming to an end, NCAA basketball fans are gearing up for perhaps the biggest March Madness in recent memory. Now more than ever before, there seem to be upset every weekend. Not only that, but college basketball betting has also grown exponentially in the past twelve months since the Baylor Bears won their first national championship in program history. With the hype now starting to build and Selection Sunday less than a month away, sports pundits have been speculating who they believe will bring home the trophy in 2022.
As every team looks to make their final push before the madness ensues, it’s essential to know who the NCAA betting favorites are and which teams you should be putting your money on. That’s why our BestAppBet experts have collected some March Madness betting tips to help you make educated bets on the biggest tournament in college basketball.
Currently ranked as the number one team in the country (yet again), the Gonzaga Bulldogs enter the month as one of the March Madness betting favorites. Even though the team has yet to win a national title, the Bulldogs are +400 favorites to win the NCAA tournament on DraftKings for a reason.
After seeing a near-perfect season crumble at the hands of the Baylor Bears in last year’s March Madness final, the Zags bounced back incredibly. They have put up significant wins against Texas, UCLA, and Texas Tech. The Zags lead the way as the No. 1 ranked team in the US with a 23-2 record. Even after losing marquee players like Jalen Suggs and Corey Kispert.
Junior forward Drew Timme has had another incredible year with the Bulldogs, nearly matching all of his totals from last season. Center Chet Holmgren, his frontcourt running mate and the top-rated player in the 2021 recruiting class, has made an immediate impact. He’s averaged over 14 points and 9 rebounds per game. Senior guard Andrew Nembhard and sophomore guard Julian Strawther have both improved too. The latter player is red-hot right now, averaging career-highs across the board.
While they had two big-time losses against No. 24 Alabama and No. 7 Duke, the Bulldogs are still the most talented team with one of the deepest rosters in college basketball. March Madness is famous for its unpredictability, but Gonzaga at +400 offers more than enough value. Based on this season, many bettors will be backing the Zags to continue their run and clinch their first-ever national championship.
Next up, we have perhaps the most surprising team of the bunch. The Arizona Wildcats tipped off the season as long shots to even sniff a national championship at NCAA betting odds of +5000.
Under first-year head coach Tommy Lloyd, Arizona has far exceeded expectations with a record of 24-2. They are currently battling for a No. 1 seed after season-defining wins against Illinois and Michigan.
Right now, they are +800 on BetMGM to win March Madness and are easily one of the lengthiest teams in college basketball. Specifically junior center Christian Koloko and sophomore forward Azulolas Tubelis. Tubelis is slowly blossoming into a two-way star. That’s not even mentioning their leading scorer (17.4), sophomore guard Bennedict Mathurin.
The Wildcats are one of just two teams in the country ranked in the top 10 of both adjusted offensive and defensive efficiency, with the other being Gonzaga. However, they have turned the ball over at an alarming rate this year, including over 70 combined turnovers in their last four games alone. Plus, they’ve only had 6 Quadrant 1 victories this season which could become problematic come March.
While the Wildcats’ have been on the receiving end of two bad losses against ranked opponents (UCLA and Tennessee), they still have one of the best all-around teams in college basketball. They should compete with almost any other top-ranked team in the country.
At +800 to win the whole tournament, they offer some value in March Madness betting, as they should at the very least escape from regional play. Some other teams on this list might present better value given the Wildcats’ lack of experience and depth.
While maybe not quite the Kentucky Wildcats of old, they have probably been the best team in the country since the start of conference play in January. They have one of the most renowned coaches in college basketball with John Calipari and have knocked off some big-time opponents this season. Kentucky has scored wins over ranked teams such as Tennessee (No. 17), Kansas (No. 5), and Alabama (No. 25).
Wooden Award candidate Oscar Tshiebwe is on pace for a breakout campaign, averaging more than 16 points and 15 rebounds per game. Junior and freshman guards Sahvir Wheeler and Tyty Washington have also played at a high level, while senior guard Kellan Grady is on absolute fire. He recently scored 25 points against a ranked opponent (Alabama) and is averaging over 12 points per game over the season.
Even though Kentucky have not won a national championship since 2012, this year could see the stars align for coach Calipari and his coveted Kentucky squad. They have had some tough losses to the likes of Duke (No. 7), Notre Dame, LSU, Auburn (No. 3), and Tennessee (No. 17). Bettors may be concerned about this with an eye on the latter stages of March Madness, but they have more than enough firepower to compete on both ends of the floor with any other team. It helps that they have held their own against the gauntlet that is the SEC. They are still being relatively overlooked with betting odds to win the title at +800.
We expect Kentucky to make a deep run in March, as they have various times before. So don’t be shy betting on the Wildcats to bring the trophy back to Lexington.
Auburn feels like one of the most balanced teams in the US between five-star freshman Jabari Smith, UNC transfer Walker Kessler, and the Tigers’ top returning scorer Alan Flannigan. They easily have one of the most explosive backcourts in college basketball with sophomore guards, K.D. Johnson and Wendell Green Jr. only seeing three losses all season. Two of those were against ranked opponents Arkansas (No. 18) and UConn (No. 21). The other was a narrow loss to Florida on the game’s final play.
They have also managed to pull out some impressive wins, including twice over Alabama (No. 24) and once over Kentucky (No. 6). They carry legitimate NBA-bound talent and have proven they can compete with any team in the country, especially after running through the SEC. This season, the SEC has arguably been the most competitive conference in college basketball.
Bruce Pearl managed to lead this team to a Final Four in 2019 before falling off a little bit in 2020. With so many talented players on both ends of the court and one of the more battle-tested teams in the country, there’s no reason to believe that the Tigers can’t compete for a national championship in this year’s March Madness tournament.
As of right now, they are +1000 on DraftKings to win the title. That’s pretty insane for a team ranked No. 3 in the country! Auburn at +1000 feels like an absolute no-brainer for value.
Last but certainly not least, we have the Purdue Boilermakers. Not only has Purdue surged past competition and officially reclaimed its throne as the best team in the Big Ten, but they have also cemented themselves as one of the top teams in the US. That’s why they are one of the March Madness betting favorites to win the national championship next month.
Even though Purdue have had a few close calls and were on the receiving end of a brutal loss to Michigan, they have one of the most loaded rosters in the country. That includes future lottery pick Jaden Ivey and two interior forces in Trevion Williams and Zach Edey. These players have successfully formed one of the fiercest frontcourts in all of college basketball.
The Boilermakers also have more than 6 players on their roster currently shooting over 40% and have shown their incredible depth at various times throughout the season. They’ve managed to pull off some major wins with victories over Villanova (No. 8), Ohio State (No. 22), and Illinois (No. 15) twice.
While head coach Matt Painter has yet to reach a Final Four in his coaching career, and last year’s Boilermakers squad lost to North Texas in the Round of 64, they managed to bring back almost all of their starters. The team has developed some of their younger elite talents and seems prepared to make a deep run in 2022.
With NCAA betting odds of +1000 on DraftKings to win March Madness, expect Purdue to be one of the last teams remaining come March. Don’t hold back on betting on the Boilermakers, as they have invaluable tournament experience and have already proven that they can compete with anyone in college basketball.
Legal NCAA Betting in the US
When March Madness rolls around this year, there will be millions of bettors in the US watching every game to see who comes out on top. In states across the US, legal online sports betting means people can add even more excitement to NCAA games.
It’s worth noting that while every state has different laws on online wagering, there are also different restrictions on college betting in every state. For example, in New Jersey, you can’t place bets on NCAA games involving NJ teams or happening in the state. Be sure you’re aware of the local restrictions.
Even if NCAA betting is more controlled, it’s still perfectly safe where it is legalized. All you have to do is be within the borders of one of these states. Then, download a sportsbook app and enjoy all the fun that March Madness betting has to offer!