March Madness Elite Eight Picks For SundayTrevon Lewis
Two impressive and much-underrated teams are set to meet for a place in the 2017 March Madness Final Four. The South Carolina Gamecocks and the Florida Gators will open the action on Sunday Elite Eight. Neither is amongst the favorites to win the tournament, but they don’t care. They will deliver.
And later on, the Kentucky Wildcats and the North Carolina Tar Heels will clash in what should be an instant classic in the tournament. There is no surprise by having these two teams at this point. Both showed their best performance in the Sweet Sixteen. It might be just a preview of what both can show this weekend.
These are the March Madness Elite Eight Picks for Sunday:
(7) South Carolina Gamecocks vs (4) Florida Gators
- When: Sunday, March 26, 2017
- Game Time: 2:20 PM ET
- Where: Madison Square Garden, New York, New York
- NCAAB Spread: Florida -3.5
- Game Total: 134.5
- TV: CBS
South Carolina has been a pleasant surprise during the 2017 March Madness. Not only did they take down the evil empire of Duke, but they followed with an impressive win over Baylor. At this point, if you haven’t cashed out against the pay per head sportsbooks with backing up SC, it’s because you haven’t been paying attention.
The Gamecocks are 3-0 against the spread during the tournament. Not once have they jumped as favorites in the pay per head sites. And you know what? It doesn’t matter. The wins over Marquette (93-73), Duke (88-81) and most recently against Baylor (70-50) have been impressive on every level.
Senior guard Sindarius Thornwell is taking full control of his last run in College Basketball. Thornwell is averaging 25.6 points per game during March Madness after scoring 29 points against the Golden Eagles, and back-to-back 24-point performance against the Blue Devils and the Bears.
The Gamecocks are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 Sunday games, 20-8-1 ATS in their last 29 neutral site games, 3-0-1 ATS in their last four neutral site games as an underdog, and 5-1-1 ATS in their last seven games as an underdog of 0.5-6.5 points.
Florida has been really good as well. They are 2-0-1 against the spread after beating Wisconsin 84-83 with an overtime buzzer-beater on Friday Night. Junior guard Chris Chiozza only scored eight points on the night, but his late three-pointer is one of the highlights of the tournament.
The Gators will go as far as junior sophomore KeVaughn Allen takes them. Allen went off against Wisconsin, scoring 35 points on the night. He had been struggling during March Madness with just 11 points scored in the first two meeting. But somehow Allen remembered he’s the key to success for Florida and took his game to the next level against Wisconsin.
Florida has shown they can adapt to the team in front of them. They were able to eliminate Virginia in a defensive matchup with a 65-39 score. Wisconsin took more of them offensively. But the Gators showed up despite not covering the spread against the pay per head bookies.
They have excellent numbers when they have been listed favorites during March Madness. The Gators are 20-9-1 ATS in their last 30 NCAA Tournament games as a favorite, 3-1-1 ATS in their last five neutral site games, and 3-0-1 ATS in their last 4 NCAA Tournament games as a favorite of 0.5-6.5 points.
The issue here is South Carolina is busting and breaking every favorite they have come across.
March Madness Picks: South Carolina +3.5.
(2) Kentucky Wildcats vs. (1) North Carolina Tar Heels
- Game Time: 5:05 PM ET
- Where: FedEx Forum, Memphis, Tennessee
- NCAAB Spread: North Carolina -2.5
- Game Total: 158
- TV: CBS
It’s safe to say Kentucky vs. North Carolina is the best matchup of the Elite Eight round. These are two huge basketball programs clashing for a spot in the Final Four. And two huge coaches trying to show who’s better. Believe me; the pph sportsbooks will get a ton of action bets during this game.
Kentucky hasn’t been a reliable bet during the tournament. They failed to cover the spread against Northern Kentucky (79-70), they had a push against Wichita State (65-62) and finally delivered against UCLA (86-75).
The one thing College Basketball betting fans need to know if they cashed out against the team that mattered. The win against the Bruins showed why the Wildcats are always contenders. It showed why doubting them is a mistake.
What worries me is it took an insane offensive game from De’Aaron Fox to happen. Fox scored a career-high 39 points against UCLA and carried his team to the next round.
“All I did at halftime was say: `Guys. Are you watching this game?’ and they said yeah,” coach John Calipari said. “I said; `Ok good. You know we are playing through De’Aaron Fox. The rest of you take a back seat and play off of him.”
North Carolina, on the other hand, went back to their usual form after struggling against Arkansas in the second round. They took down Butler easily with a 92-80 win and moved to the Elite Eight.
Junior guard Joel Berry II and Justin Jackson scored 26 points each against the Bulldogs. It didn’t take a tremendous performance to happen for the Tar Heels. It was more of a great team performance on both sides of the ball.
“We got by with very little room against Arkansas,” Jackson said. “We knew it was a game of runs. Butler is a good team, and they keep on coming at you. For us, we tried to stay focused and stay poised.”
The Tar Heels are 7-3-1 ATS in their last 11 games as a favorite, 7-3-1 ATS in their last 11 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record, 7-3-1 ATS in their last 11 games overall, and 14-5-1 ATS in their last 20 neutral site games.
The Wildcats are 3-7-2 ATS in their last 12 NCAA Tournament games, 1-4 ATS in their last five games following an ATS win.
This game will come down to the last seconds. Both teams are top squads who were set to meet from the beginning. When these types of games come across, the safe move against the sports bookies is to grab the points and follow the money.
March Madness Picks: Kentucky +2.5