Updated March Madness betting odds and lines for 2021 as we look ahead to the business end of the College Basketball season.
After tipping off on November 25, the 2021 NCAA March Madness tournament is nearly upon us. This year’s March Madness will take place in Indiana.
Last year’s March Madness was sadly cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Based on projected numbers the cancelation of last year’s College Basketball tournament resulted in a loss of $9.1 billion in betting handle at the legal US sportsbooks.
March Madness is definitely going ahead this year. We will talk you through how the tournament works, the current March Madness betting odds and lines, how to bet on March Madness, where to bet on March Madness and overall March Madness betting strategy.
March Madness Betting Odds
Here are the current favorites for this year’s March Madness ahead of the tournament’s March 18 start date. These futures odds are from William Hill Sportsbook.
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As we know, a lot can change between now and the tournament’s March 18 start date. However, the sportsbooks think Gonzaga is the team to beat heading into March Madness 2021.
The three favorites for the tournament are currently Gonzaga, Baylor and Michigan Wolverines. After these three College Basketball heavyweights, there is a lengthy gap in the betting odds.
When is March Madness 2021?
March Madness 2021 will begin on Thursday, March 18, 2021. The tournament lasts over two weeks and will end on Monday, April 5, 2021.
Where is March Madness 2021?
March Madness 2021 will be played entirely in the state of Indiana. This is unlike any other March Madness that has come before, with COVID-19 issues restricting movement of teams around the United States.
The majority of the tournament’s 67 games will take place in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Where to bet on March Madness 2021
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March Madness 2021 Team Futures
Current favorites to win March Madness are the Gonzaga Bulldogs. Gonzaga’s run over the past ten years has been incredible and they’ve taken this form into this year’s College Basketball season by winning every game.
The Baylor Bears are currently second favorites to win March Madness 2021. They seem to have the total package, ranking one of the best in both scoring offense and scoring defense. Their record against ranked team is remarkable too.
Next in the current March Madness team futures odds are the Michigan Wolverines. Michigan haven’t been quite as flawless as Gonzaga or Baylor this season but are certainly performing admirably in all facets of their game.
Head Coach Jay Wright and his Villanova Wildcats team will be looking to turn their experience into success. This year’s team is looking similar to previous title winners in terms of their scoring offense and defense, so they are definitely a team to look out for.
Iowa Hawkeyes have star man Luka Garza, which instantly puts them in March Madness contention. Iowa rank one of the best in scoring, assists and three-point percentage and as a result has one of the most dangerous offenses in college basketball at the moment.
Ohio State Buckeyes came up just short against arch-rival Michigan in one of the best college basketball games of the year. But their incredible duo Duane Washington Jr. and E.J. Liddell are a force to be reckoned with and their record against ranked teams this season is impressive.
How does March Madness work?
March Madness is a 68-team, single-elimination NCAA College Basketball tournament.
The ‘madness’ of 67 exciting games within a 19 day period makes March Madness one of the most action-packed events on the American sports calendar.
The participating schools are announced on ‘Selection Sunday’, which is also when with the exact seeding and March Madness brackets are announced.
The first 32 teams are entered into March Madness as a reward for winning their conferences. The remaining 36 teams are determined by a 10-member selection committee made up of athletic directors and conference commissioners. Once all 68 teams have been announced, the final March Madness brackets are released.
The NCAA Evaluation Tool (NET) is used to determine the remaining 36 ‘at-large’ teams to be given entry to March Madness. The NET utilizes the following metrics:
- Game results
- Game location
- Scoring margin
- Offensive efficiency
- Defensive efficiency
- Strength of schedule
- Quality of wins and losses
How to bet on March Madness
Just like any NBA betting or team sport betting, March Madness provides sports bettors with an opportunity to bet on a wide variety of markets.
Here are just some of the popular betting markets associated with college basketball and March Madness specifically. By understanding these betting markets, you will have a much clearer understanding of how to bet on March Madness.
March Madness futures bets
March Madness futures bets are bets made on the long-term outcome of March Madness. For example, you can bet on the winner of March Madness from today.
Other March Madness futures bets also include conference winners. If you think you can predict the Big 12 Tournament winner or the PAC-12 Tournament winner, then March Madness futures bets are for you.
March Madness moneyline bets
With 68 teams in the March Madness tournament, there is plenty of opportunity to bet on March Madness moneylines from March 18.
Most sports bettors will know what a moneyline bet is. This is when you simply predict who will win the game outright, regardless of margin.
Moneyline bets are popular choices when building a March Madness parlay or when the two College Basketball teams matched up together are very close to call.
March Madness over/under totals bets
A March Madness over/under totals bet is when you choose a pre-determined over or under on a March Madness game. The over/under could focus on total points in a game, number of three-pointers, number of points scored by a specific player, and more.
March Madness over/under totals bets are predetermined by the sportsbooks and provide added excitement for college basketball bettors.
March Madness against the spread bets
Similar to March Madness over/under totals bets, March Madness against the spread bets (ATS) are based on predetermined figures by the sportsbooks.
Betting against the spread is when you bet on a handicap for one team. For example, Gonzaga could head into a matchup with Houston as 5-point favorites. Betting on Gonzaga -5 against the spread would mean Gonzaga must win by 6 points or more for your bet to cash.
Betting against the spread means that you will get odds very close to even money. This is because the teams have been handicapped by the sportsbooks to make the betting market as even as possible.
March Madness live betting
March Madness live betting is on offer at the majority of legal online US sportsbooks and gives you the opportunity to bet in real time on key events.
Throughout a game, odds on betting markets will continue to change, so consider live betting and taking advantage of these changes.
March Madness parlay betting
In under 3 weeks, 68 teams battle it out in an action-packed schedule. This gives sports bettors the opportunity to build enticing March Madness parlays with the chance of winning big money.
March Madness parlays are a great way to enhance your wager’s odds. Whether it is combining multiple moneyline bets, over/under bets or player props, parlays are extremely popular in all sports betting, including College Basketball.
Where can you legally bet on March Madness this year?
Anyone at least 21 years old and located within the following states will be able to place a legal sports bet on March Madness this year:
Simply click on the state of choice from the list above to get access to some of the best and exclusive March Madness free bet offers available at the legal US sportsbooks.