Before you fill out your bracket or place a bet, here are betting trends to know for the 2017 NCAA tournament.
There is incredible power in understanding how teams, players, leagues and markets have reacted to various scenarios. Using Bet Labs massive database of proprietary sports betting information you can easily build and explore data-driven betting systems. Our database goes back to 2004, the trends include all games in that time frame unless otherwise mentioned.
1-seed vs. 16-seed
A No. 1 seed has never lost to a 16-seed. Since 2004, the top seeds are 48-0 straight-up. Only 37 games actually had money-lines associated with them and despite a perfect record a $100 bettor would only be up $93 (crazy!)
Despite never losing, that doesn’t mean the 1-seeds are locks to cover the spread. In that same time frame they are just 25-23 ATS vs. the lowest seeded teams in the tournament. When the No. 1 seed is a favorite of 20 or more points and is getting 60% or more of the bets the teams are just 9-15 ATS.
2-seed vs. 15-seed
2-seeds aren’t perfect like 1-seeds but they have topped the 15-seed most of the time (44-4 straight-up since 2004). Of course a No. 2 has fallen four times since 2012 in the first round.
If all the bets (80% or more) are on the 2-seed look out, they are 0-5 ATS in those games.
3-seed vs. 14-seed
The No. 3 seeds are 40-8 straight-up in our database vs. No. 14 seeds but at least one 3-seed has been upset in the first round in each of the last four tournaments.
The 3-seed has been favored by double-digits vs. 14-seeds in 27 of 48 games since 2004, they are just 14-13 ATS in those contests.
4-seed vs. 13-seed
At least one 4-seed has lost to a 13-seed in nine of the last 12 tournaments.
Purdue is the only 4-seed not favored by double-digits. Since 2004, No. 3 seeds favored by less than 10 points have gone 20-14 ATS vs. No. 13 seeds.
5-seed vs. 12-seed
The 5-12 matchup is probably the first upset you’ll pick in your bracket and with good reason. A 12-seed has pulled an upset in all but two tournaments since 2004. The 5-seed is just 28-20 straight-up in our database and 10-10 straight-up in the last five years.
The No. 5 seeds have had only one winning tournament vs. No. 12 seeds since 2007 and have gone 13-22 ATS in those years.
6-seed vs. 11-seed
At least one 11-seed has defeated a 6-seed every year in our database going back to 2004. The No. 6 seeds are just 26-22 straight-up costing a $100 bettor $571.
6-seeds Maryland and Creighton are small favorites. If the line were to move and those teams were to become underdogs, 11-seeds as favorites are 5-1 ATS since 2004.
7-seed vs. 10-seed
No. 7 seeds haven’t been upset as often as No. 6 seeds in the first round. Against No. 10 seeds, 7-seeds are 30-18 straight-up overall and 25-9 straight-up when favored.
All but one 7-seed this year is favored in their matchup (the exception is Dayton vs. Wichita State). Favored 7-seeds are 20-13 ATS since 2004.
8-seed vs. 9-seed
This is supposed to be the most evenly matched game in the tournament and it often is. 8-seeds have won just 56% of the games against 9-seeds since 2004 and have been favored in just over half the games (26 of 48).
It has been profitable to bet the underdog in this matchup. The team getting points has gone 28-17 ATS since 2004.
There are 32 Pro System picks for the First Round of the NCAA Tournament