Corrigan's Gambling Corner: March Madness, Round of 64 Best Bets - March 18, 2022
Welcome back to the gambling corner.
With the Round of 64 in the 2022 NCAA Tournament in full swing, we're expecting a fun Friday full of March madness action.
Every half-point matters in March, so trying to get the best number possible is very important if you want to turn a profit during the tournament.
There are a lot of winners out there for the taking, so let's make a couple of bucks while we enjoy another full day of hoops.
We would love you to tail our picks, but we would especially love you to make a lot of money. As a sign of courtesy, we included the parlay odds for all three of our picks. We just ask that you always remember to gamble responsibly.
Here are tonight's plays.
*Odds via FanDuel Sportsbook
Loyola Chicago Ramblers vs. Ohio State Buckeyes
After defeating Illinois on their homecourt, Ohio State had a chance to backdoor the Big Ten regular-season title. Instead, the Buckeyes lost to Maryland, Nebraska, and Michigan to end the season, and they suffered a second-round exit in the Big Ten tournament to a bad Penn State team.
On the other side, the Ramblers waltzed their way to a second consecutive MVC conference championship, and they come into the tournament covering four of their last five games, with an ATS +/- of 10.8 over their last five games.
I do like the Buckeyes to win this game, but their defense is the key to finding a winner. Ohio State's defense is ranked 131st in KenPom's defensive efficiency rating, and during their cold streak to end the season, they are giving up 73.6 points per game. The Buckeyes' defense is better than what their stats say, but they have to go up against a Loyola Chicago offense that is scoring 73.4 points per game and is one of the best shooting teams in the country.
The Ramblers are a defensive-minded team, but Ohio State has a dangerous offense led by future first-rounders E.J. Liddell and Malaki Branham. Ohio State is putting up 73.8 points per game, and they are ranked 20th in effective field goal percentage (54.8%), 21st in shooting efficiency (1.150), and 26th in shooting percentage (47.4%).
The over has been the most profitable side of the total for both of these teams, and I like this game to go well over this number.
Pick: Over 132 (-110)
Montana State Bobcats vs. Texas Tech Red Raiders
Montana State won six games in a row to end the season to clinch the Big Sky championship and their first tournament appearance since 1996. The Bobcats covered in four of their last six, and they are 18-14-1 ATS this season, including a perfect 5-0 record ATS at a neutral site.
The Red Raiders stumbled down the stretch, only covering once in their last six games, but Texas Tech is still one of the most profitable teams in the country. On the season, the Red Raiders are 21-13 ATS, and they are 4-2 ATS at a neutral site.
Montana State's offense is ranked 49th in scoring (75.4), and they are one of the better shooting teams in the country, but they have not faced a defense as good as Texas Tech. The Red Raiders' defense is ranked seventh in scoring (60.3), 22nd in effective field goal percentage (45.5%), and fourth in shooting percentage (38.4%).
You are going to find out how much I love this Texas Tech team throughout the tournament, but I think they are giving out too many points in this one.
I like their defense to stun a Montana State offense that has yet to play a defense as good as this.
Pick: Under 132.5 (-110)
Yale Bulldogs vs. Purdue Boilermakers
Purdue may be the most dangerous team in the tournament. It has long been my philosophy that you should always ride the team with a player that has the capability to take over a tournament. For the Boilermakers, that player is Jaden Ivey.
Ivey earned First-Team All-Big 10 honors this season, and he put up 17.4 points per game on 35% shooting from deep. The only thing that would make Purdue scarier than they already are is a 7'4" center who is automatic in the paint.
Oh, wait, that is exactly what Purdue has.
As always, Yale is a fine team, nothing more and nothing less. They are a middle-of-the-road offense and defense, and they do not have a single player that concerns me on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball. Although the Bulldogs are 4-1 ATS in their last five, I do not see how they are going to have an answer for Ivey or Zach Edey. Purdue has not been a great team to bet on this season (13-20-1 ATS), but they are so much more talented than Yale that this might be the biggest blowout of the first round.
Pick: Purdue -16.5 (-110)
PARLAY ODDS: (+595) 1 UNIT TO WIN 5.95 UNITS
Photo: Getty Images