Remember when the ACC was meek and the Big Ten was mighty?
It was just 10 days ago, Selection Sunday, that the merits of the Miami Hurricanes and play-in-game entrant Notre Dame were debated and largely dismissed by pundits.
A few talking heads brought the hardy Big Ten to the top tier bestowed on them by the selection committee.
Some of those words look exaggerated in hindsight, with Miami in the Sweet 16 as the No. 10 seed, where ACC rivals Duke and North Carolina have also advanced.
And popular Final Four pick Iowa (5) went home along with Wisconsin (3) and Illinois (4), teams who shared the Big Ten regular-season title. Michigan State (7) was also sent home — by ACC champ Duke — and the Big Ten have two teams remaining, the same number as the Big East and Pac-12.
The ACC and Big 12 each have three.
FrontPageBets takes a look at other trends heading into the Sweet 16.
It might have helped a bettor to know that Auburn, SEC regular-season champions and a No. 1 team in February, entered the Miami matchup 6-4 in a row and 2-7-1 against the spread.
ATS performance will vary due to the many variables at play such as: B. location, injuries, line movement and more, not a single indicator of success. Consider Tennessee was 7-4 in 11 games before you see Michigan and also 7-4 ATS.
But Texas Tech is a defensively oriented team with no top scorer, and the Red Raiders won’t outrun teams this late in the draw. They also entered the tournament 5-5 in their last 10 ATS games.
Arkansas takes 9 points against Gonzaga and pressed (-4) in first-round win over Vermont. The Razorbacks have been underrated by the public and are 8-2-1 in their last 11.
No one can pretend to know that Iowa State was on course for a Sweet 16 call when it was one of the last teams on the Big Dance map as an 11 seed, but the Cyclones show a certain tenacity behind tenacious guards, who are not afraid of the moment.
The Big 12 consists of Kansas, No. 1 in the Midwest, and defensive meat grinder Texas Tech, No. 3, surprisingly favored over Duke in the West.
If you think the story is against the cyclones that made it all the way to New Orleans, or that Miami’s magic is about to end, you might be right. But also note that the 2021 (UCLA), 2018 (Loyola), and 2011 (VCU) Final Four included an 11th place finish. Do you listen Michigan fans?
In 2016, 10th seeded Michigan State fell in the Final Four.
Other conferences featured in Sweet 16 2022: West Coast (Gonzaga), SEC (Arkansas), MAAC (Saint Peter’s), and AAC (Houston).
Oscar Tshiebwe (Kentucky), Kofi Cockburn (Illinois), Keegan Murray (Iowa) and Johnny Davis (Wisconsin) made up 80% of the All-America team, and only Ochai Agbaji of Kansas is still playing.
Purdue gets Saint Peter’s in the sweet 16 and Jaden Ivey, a likely NBA lottery pick, flexed All-America muscles in the first two rounds. His big shots against Texas propelled the Boilermakers into the regional semifinals.
Ivey is averaging 20 points in the 2022 NCAA tournament, but Saint Peter has been pestering Kentucky and Murray state guards about errors and questioning everything. The Peacocks have yet to see a player with the mentality or first step of Ivey’s top scorer. He has 20 or more points in 13 games this season.
Gonzaga’s Drew Timme kept the Bulldogs afloat with a brilliant second half against Memphis. Timme has 57 points in two tournament games. But for the prop players in the crowd who might consider riding him this week, Timme has had three straight 20-point attempts just once this season.
Agbaji, on the other hand, is 10-of-28 off the field with 26 total points in Kansas’ two games. He has been held under-20 in six of his last eight games.
Three #4 seeds and three #1 seeds remain standing. We know at least one #1 seed and probably more will make it to Louisiana.
No. 5 Houston continues to thrive without their top two scorers, both of whom lost to injury before midseason, and the Cougars are hardly an outsider (-2) against Arizona. The moneyline is a measly +105 at DraftKings, and the advanced metrics that put Houston in a good position as one of the top six teams to win the national championship to anger the No. 1-seeded Wildcats.
The data for UCLA’s No. 4 isn’t bad either, with Baylor eliminated as No. 1. The Bruins attempt to return to the Final Four by eliminating No. 8 East seed North Carolina. A win puts UCLA against No. 3 Purdue or Saint Peter’s on Sunday.
UCLA is preferred over UNC with 2.5 points.
Will the public trust Providence #4? A mere 2.5 point favorite over 13th-populated state of South Dakota, the brothers have buried the rabbits, and this defense of the Big East is thriving at the right time. Still, Providence has given a few reasons not to buy in — aside from the 30-point shellacking against Creighton in the conference tournament. Providence is 7-5 in their last 12 ATS games, but only Miami (+8000), Iowa State (+10000) and Saint Peter (+25000) have higher odds than the Friars’ +7000 to win it all.
Providence is also a 7.5-point underdog to No. 1 seed Kansas. Well, the Jayhawks are 18-18 ATS this season, taking on… common opponent Creighton.
It’s been a minute since a No. 4 seeded made the Final Four. The last time was in 2013 when two 4-seeded – Michigan and Syracuse – got there. Louisville, with five losses, won the tournament and defeated Michigan in the finals after eliminating Wichita State. The Cardinals’ title was vacated by the NCAA.
In the same tournament, a 15-seed made the Sweet 16, but the Atlantic Sun’s Florida Gulf Coast was stopped by Florida. Also in 2013, No. 1 seed Gonzaga lost in the round of 32.
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