Sweet 16 Betting Lines

Sweet 16 Betting Lines

And then there were 16. The first weekend of the 2014 NCAA Tournament proved to be kind to the top seeds, with the exception of undefeated Wichita State who bowed out to Kentucky. The Big Ten, SEC, and Pac-12 each have three teams remaining, while the ACC is down to only Virginia after losing five of six representatives. Here are the early lines for the Sweet 16 games.

(11) Dayton vs. (10) Stanford -2.5 – Bracket-busting matchup here. Both the Flyers and Cardinal are playing some inspired defense. The latter held presumed number one pick in the upcoming NBA draft, Andrew Wiggins, to four points on 1-6 shooting. This one could be ugly to watch.

(4) UCLA vs. (1) Florida -5.5 – Offense against defense. The Bruins have the size and athleticism to give the Gators fits, but they must improve from beyond the arc where they went 9-30 in the first two tourney games. Florida hasn’t allowed an opponent to score more than 61 points in nine straight. UCLA has netted at least 74 in 13 of their last 14.

(6) Baylor vs. (2) Wisconsin -4 – The Bears looked dominant in their first two games, especially on the glass with a combined 22 more rebounds than Nebraska and Creighton. The Badgers used a punishing second-half to dispose of a dangerous Oregon team and will need another stingy defensive effort to move on.

(4) San Diego State vs. (1) Arizona -6 – A rematch of a November 14th game won by Arizona, 69-60. Aztecs rank second in the nation in points allowed, Wildcats rank 5th. Arizona has more talent across the board, but Xavier Thames totaled 53 points for San Diego State on opening weekend and is capable of carrying them further.

(7) Connecticut vs. (3) Iowa State PK – A pair of solid teams that didn’t get much pre-tournament hype. The Huskies’ Shabazz Napier and the Cyclones’ Melvin Ejim are two of the country’s most underrated players. Winner faces either Virginia or Michigan State.

(4) Michigan State vs. (1) Virginia -1 – The Spartans veteran lineup tangles with the nation’s best defense. This one will be physical battle between two teams with similar styles. Virginia’s guards must shoot well to counter State’s superior size in the paint.

(11) Tennessee vs. (2) Michigan -2 – The Volunteers pushed Florida to the limit in the SEC tournament and are on a roll since. Forward Jarnell Stokes has notched 61 points and 45 rebounds in three tourney games. The Wolverines can score from anywhere on the floor and just dropped 14 three-pointers on Texas.

(8) Kentucky vs. (4) Louisville -5 – The talking heads and pundits love this one. Hated interstate rivals. Calipari versus Pitino. The last two NCAA champions. Kentucky’s fab freshman against Louisville’s savvy upperclassmen. This should be a doozy. Prepare for a glut of familiar storylines over the next few days.