The Daily Sweat: Friday brings us 32 March Madness games to bet on

Is There Such a Thing as Too Much College Basketball to Bet On?

We think the answer to that question is no, but Friday is a great day to put it to the test. Not only is it the second day of the men’s NCAA tournament, but the first round of the women’s NCAA tournament begins. That means There are 32 NCAA tournament games that you can bet on.

We start with the men’s tournament where the underdogs beat the spreads 8-8 on Thursday. USC and Michigan State lead, and the Spartans are 1.5-point favorites. We will support MSU after the Big Ten’s strong showing on Thursday.

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Xavier is a 12.5-point favorite over Kennesaw State in a No. 3 vs. No. 14 Midwest matchup. We’ll take Kennesaw for cover, although Xavier should win straight away. This game ends just before another No. 3 vs. No. 14. Baylor is a 10.5-point favorite over UC Santa Barbara. We’ll win the Bears despite their slow start to the season, but UCSB should get the cover.

Saint Mary’s is just a 4.5 point favorite over VCU and the total in the game is just 122.5. Let’s get weird and go with the one underneath.

Vermont is a 10.5 point underdog against Marquette and we’re picking the Golden Eagles since we’ve got them all the way to the Final Four. Pitt is a 4.5 point underdog against Iowa State after beating Mississippi State in the play-in game. Iowa State unders against non-conference opponents get hit a lot, so we’re going under 131.5.

Creighton is a 5.5-point favorite against NC State and we take the Blue Jays. There wasn’t much difference in quality between Big East and ACC this year. UConn is a 9.5-point favorite over Iona in what could be Rick Pitino’s final game against the Gaels. We’re going with Iona to cover that.

Kentucky is a 4.5-point favorite over Providence on Friday. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Kentucky starts the night session as a 4.5-point favorite over Providence. In this case, we are counting on the talent of Great Britain. We want Drake to win straight away as a 1.5-point underdog against Miami, and Gonzaga should pick up plenty against Grand Canyon as a 15.5-point favorite.

FAU vs. Memphis is one of the first round games and we will cover the Owls as 1.5 point underdogs. Kansas State is now just a 7.5 point favorite against Montana State and we’re going to use that line to our advantage and take the Wildcats. Another possible upset is Kent State as a 4.5-point favorite against Indiana – we’ll take the Golden Flashes in this game – and the last game of the day is Arizona State and TCU. The Horned Frogs are 5.5 point favorites and we’ll continue to fade the Pac-12.

The women’s tournament begins

There are some much larger lines on the women’s side. If you decide to bet some of these games, you could end up in a late game blowout.

Take the line between Norfolk State and South Carolina, for example. The undefeated Gamecocks are -145 to win the NCAA tournament and have been great all year. South Carolina is an incredible 50.5 point favorite over Norfolk State. Are you ready to lay so many points?

No. 2 Maryland is a 26.5-point favorite over Holy Cross, while fellow No. 2 Iowa is a 29.5-point favorite over Southeastern Louisiana. LSU is a 31.5-point favorite against Hawaii and Utah is a 23.5-point favorite against Gardner Webb. Our strongest bias in a game with a huge spread comes between southern Utah and Notre Dame. The Irish are favorites by 21.5 points but star Olivia Miles is out for the tournament. We back Southern Utah to cover in this case.

There are also a few close games. Marquette vs. South Florida begins Friday at 11:30 a.m. ET and the line is just 1.5 points. We want the Bulls to be considered favorites in this one and earn the right to play South Carolina in the second round.

Eight NBA games

The eight NBA games offered on Friday night make up 40 NCAA tournament and NBA games to bet on. Not a bad day. The biggest game of the night is the last one as Dallas visits the Lakers. The Mavericks are on their second night of a back-to-back game after beating the Spurs on Thursday. Dallas is a game ahead of Los Angeles for eighth in the West and won’t have Kyrie Irving or Luka Doncic. That’s why the Lakers are 4.5-point favorites.

Who redeemed tickets on Thursday?

While favorites and underdogs split the 16 men’s games against the spread, the underdogs pulled out five straight wins. Missouri was a 1.5 point hound for Utah State, Maryland was a 2.5 point hound for West Virginia, Penn State was a 2.5 point underdog against Texas A&M, Furman was a 5.5- Points underdog for Virginia and Princeton was a 15.5 point dog. Point outsiders to Arizona.

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