Round of 64 Preview: Odds for Saturday’s March Madness Games

The first 16 games of the 2021 March Madness Tournament are in the books as we move onto the second half of the Round of 64 games.

March Madness is one of the most popular sports betting events of the year. Whether it’s betting on individual games or fun prop bets, there’s something for everyone. With that being said, it’s important to keep up with the latest odds and markets if you want to participate in the trend.

With all the markets and games, betting on the Round of 64 can be a bit of an overload. That’s why everything you need to know about Saturday’s games has been broken down below.

March Madness Round of 64 Odds: West Region

Odds via BetOnline as of Friday, March 19

Gonzaga (#1) vs. Norfolk State (#16)

  • Point Spread: Gonzaga -33.5 (-112) vs. Norfolk State +33.5 (-108)
  • Moneyline: Gonzaga -5000, Norfolk State +1550
  • Over/Under: Over 154 (-110), Under 154 (-110)

No. 16 Norfolk State is coming off a 54-53 win against Appalachian State in the First Four. So what’s their prize? A date with the undefeated Gonzaga Bulldogs. Gonzaga has dominated the NCAA all season long. They currently have the best odds to win March Madness too. While upsets can happen in the tournament, it’s probably not going to happen here. Gonzaga is just too good and if they’re going to lose this year, it more than likely won’t be to Norfolk State.

Oklahoma (#8) vs. Missouri (#9)

  • Point Spread: Oklahoma -1.0 (-104) vs. Missouri +1.0 (-116)
  • Moneyline: N/A
  • Over/Under: Over 140 (-105), Under 140 (-115)

Throughout the season, No. 8 Oklahoma has managed to put on some good performances. They beat the likes of West Virginia, Alabama and Texas early on in the season. However, they’ve lost five-of-six entering the tournament. On the other hand, early in the season, Missouri beat Illinois — one of the favorite top picks to make the Final Four. While both teams are relatively equal on defense, the offensive edge may go to Oklahoma.

Creighton (#5) vs. UCSB (#12)

  • Point Spread: Creighton -7.5 (-105) vs. UCSB +7.5 (-115)
  • Moneyline: Creighton -310, UCSB +260
  • Over/Under: Over 137 (-110), Under 137 (-110)

No. 5 Creighton will meet No. 12 UC Santa Barbara in the Round of 64. While Creighton is the higher seed, some are concerned with their performance of late. After all, it’s only been a week since they were upset 73-48 by Georgetown in the Big East finals.

On the other hand, UCSB has been red-hot as of late. They’ve only lost once in their last 19 games and look to carry that momentum into the Round of 64. If they keep playing their brand of basketball, UCSB could score the upset.

Virginia (#4) vs. Ohio (#13)

  • Point Spread: Virginia -7.0 (-115) vs. Ohio +7.0 (-105)
  • Moneyline: Virginia -350, Ohio +280
  • Over/Under: Over 130.5 (-105), Under 130.5 (-115)

No. 13 Ohio has a daunting task in front of them as they face the 2019 March Madness championship team, Virginia. However, the defending champs haven’t been able to hit the court in a few days after having pulled out of the ACC Tournament due to COVID-19 protocols. There’s a chance that Ohio could surprise a rusty Virginia if the latter takes too long to get things going. At the same time, Virginia is known for their slow pace as they averaged the lowest possessions per game across al 357 NCAA Division I teams. This game is one you should keep your eye on.

USC (#6) vs. Drake (#11)

  • Point Spread: USC -6.5 (-112) vs. Drake +6.5 (-108)
  • Moneyline: USC -260, Drake +220
  • Over/Under: Over 138 (-110), Under 138 (-110)

To get to this point, Drake had to defeat Wichita State in the First Four on Thursday. Drake only put up 53 against Wichita State, which is drastically lower than the 77.4 ppg they averaged this season. USC is averaging just over 27 defensive rebounds per game and will look to limit Drake’s offensive chances. Drake only shot 37.7 percent from the field against Wichita State and if they play like that again, USC is just going to clean up the rebounds and not let them have a chance of advancing from the Round of 64.

Kansas (#3) vs. Eastern Washington (#14)

  • Point Spread: Kansas -10.5 (-110) vs. Eastern Washington +10.5 (-110)
  • Moneyline: Kansas -630, Eastern Washington +490
  • Over/Under: Over 147 (-110), Under 147 (-110)

No. 3 Kansas is back in action after having pulled out of the Big 12 Tournament due to COVID-19 concerns. They’ll still be missing a couple of players against No. 14 Eastern Washington, but most of their team is still there. Before having to pause their tournament run, Kansas had gone 9-2 in their last 11 games.

They’ll take on an Eastern Washington team that’s on a four-game winning streak. However, Eastern Washington isn’t great at stopping opposing teams from scoring, allowing 72.4 ppg.

Oregon (#7) vs. VCU (#10)

  • Point Spread: Oregon -5.0 (-115) vs. VCU +5.0 (-105)
  • Moneyline: Oregon -225, VUC +195
  • Over/Under: Over 137.5 (-110), Under 137.5 (-110)

Oregon may live and die by the three-point shot in the 2021 March Madness Tournament. Their three-point percentage was 37.9 on the season (22nd). However, five-of-six of Oregon’s losses came when the team show at 33 percent or worse from beyond the arc. If VCU wants to upset Oregon, they’re going to have to limit their three-point looks. Fortunately for them, VCU has held opponents to a 30.5 three-point percentage, which is 31st-best in NCAA Division I Basketball.

Iowa (#2) vs. Grand Canyon (#15)

  • Point Spread: Iowa -14.5 (-105) vs. Grand Canyon +14.5 (-115)
  • Moneyline: Iowa -1500, Grand Canyon +870
  • Over/Under: Over 145.5 (-105), Under 145.5 (-115)

No. 2 Iowa tends to like playing in high-scoring games this season. They’re the six-highest scoring team in Division I basketball, averaging 83.8 ppg. It’s clear that their strategy is that if they get into a shootout with any opponent, they have good odds of coming out on top. While maybe not as high as Iowa, Grand Canyon is still scoring 75.6 ppg, so they can hold their own offensively. It all matters how they end up playing on defense.

March Madness Round of 64 Odds: East Region

Odds via BetOnline as of Friday, March 19

Michigan (#1) vs. Texas Southern (#16)

  • Point Spread: Michigan -25.5 (-110) vs. Texas Southern +25.5 (-110)
  • Moneyline: Michigan -2500, Texas Southern +1250
  • Over/Under: Over 143 (-110), Under 143 (-110)

No. 1 Michigan enters the Round of 64 as not only one of the favorites to make the Final Four, but also one of the teams that could win the entire tournament. However, they’ve lost three games in their last five outings and will be without Isaiah Livers. Meanwhile, No. 16 Texas Southern is coming off of a First Four victory over Mount St. Mary’s.

It will be interesting to see how Michigan starts off in head coach Juwan Howard’s first March Madness game. They won’t want to disappoint him, so they’ll aim to show that their recent stretch was a fluke by trying to dominate Texas Southern early on.

LSU (#8) vs. St. Bonaventure (#9)

  • Point Spread: LSU -1.0 (-115) vs. St. Bonaventure +1.0 (-105)
  • Moneyline: LSU -118, St. Bonaventure -102
  • Over/Under: Over 144.5 (-110), Under 144.5 (-110)

This matchup is projected to be one of the closer ones in the Round of 64 as No. 8 LSU takes on No. 9 St. Bonaventure. The time may operate at a slower pace as St. Bonaventure likes to take their time throughout the game, which could frustrate LSU. St. Bonaventure’s Osun Osunniyi might be the biggest threat for LSU. He’s a seven-foot monster in the paint, averaging 2.8 blocks and 9.5 rebounds per game. There isn't really a player on LSU’s roster who can match that. So, if they can hit their shots and avoid battles with Osunniyi in the paint, LSU might be able to sway the results in their favor.

Colorado (#5) vs. Georgetown (#12)

  • Point Spread: Colorado -6.0 (-112) vs. Georgetown +6.0 (-108)
  • Moneyline: Colorado -250, Georgetown +210
  • Over/Under: Over 138 (-120), Under 138 (+100)

On paper, Georgetown’s 13-12 record may look concerning. However, most of that is due to a slow start to the season. After starting 5-10, Georgetown is 8-2 in their last 10 and hold wins over Villanova and Creighton on the season. At the same time, Colorado is No. 5 in the East Region for a reason. They also have the 17th-best offense according to the KenPom rating system. An offense of that level may be too much for Georgetown to handle as they allow 70.7 ppg.

Florida State (#4) vs. UNC Greensboro (#13)

  • Point Spread: Florida State -10.5 (-105) vs. UNC Greensboro +10.5 (-115)
  • Moneyline: Florida State -625, UNC Greensboro +485
  • Over/Under: Over 145 (-110), Under 145 (-110)

No. 4 Florida State and No. 13 UNC Greensboro are set to clash in the Round of 64 at the 2021 March Madness Tournament. As the -625 moneyline favorite, it’s clear that oddsmakers are expecting an easy Florida State victory. UNC Greensboro is the worst shooting team in the Southern Conference, hitting .425 percent of their shots from the field. That average isn’t going to cut it against Florida State, who’s averaging 78.9 ppg (32nd) and a .474 field goal percentage.

BYU (#6) vs. UCLA (#11)

  • Point Spread: BYU -3.5 (-113) vs. UCLA +3.5 (-107)
  • Moneyline: BYU -170, UCLA +150
  • Over/Under: Over 138 (-110), Under 138 (-110)

UCLA defeated Michigan State 86-80 in the First Four on Thursday to advance to the Round of 64 to face No. 6 BYU.

UCLA had to come back by 11 points at halftime to win their game, showing that they do have fight in them. However, they’ll be without leading score Johnny Juzang when they face BYU after he injured his ankle on Thursday. They’ll need him against a BYU team that’s elite at both ends of the floor. They also haven’t played since March 9, so they’ll be a lot more rested than UCLA.

Texas (#3) vs. Abilene Christian (#14)

  • Point Spread: Texas -8.5 (-115) vs. Abilene Christian +8.5 (-105)
  • Moneyline: Texas -425, Abilene Christian +345
  • Over/Under: Over 139.5 (-110), Under 139.5 (-110)

In what’s projected to be another lopsided Round of 64 March Madness matchup, No. 3 Texas takes on No. 14 Abilene Christian. Texas is the top rebounding team in the Big 12, which doesn’t bode well for an Abilene Christian team that is continuously out-rebounded. Nobody on their team has more than 5.4 rebounds per game. In comparison, Texas has the likes of Jericho Sims (7.4) and Greg Brown (6.4) cleaning up the rebounds for them. At the end of the game, whichever team rebounds better could be the deciding factor.

UConn (#7) vs. Maryland (#10)

  • Point Spread: UConn -3.0 (-110) vs. Maryland +3.0 (-110)
  • Moneyline: UConn -160, Maryland +140
  • Over/Under: Over 130 (-110), Under 130 (-110)

James Bouknight is UConn’s best player and it isn’t really close. The team was inconsistent when he was out of their lineup this season, but they’re 6-2 since he’s returned. UConn also has one of the best defenses in NCAA Division I Basketball, allowing just 64.6 ppg. On the other hand, Maryland’s offense needs a lot of work consider they’re only putting up 68.8 ppg (238th). When you consider UConn’s defense and Maryland’s inability to score, this Round of 64 matchup could be a low-scoring affair.

Alabama (#2) vs. Iona (#15)

  • Point Spread: Alabama -16.5 (-115) vs. Iona +16.5 (-105)
  • Moneyline: Alabama -1800, Iona +950
  • Over/Under: Over 147.5 (-110), Under 147.5 (-110)

No. 2 Alabama has the second-best odds (+375) of making it to the Final Four out of the East Region and they’re not going to want to let it slip against No. 15 Iona. In 30 games this season, Alabama hit 320 three-pointers on 912 attempts — the most across NCAA Division I Basketball in both categories. Meanwhile, Iona has only attempted 358. This just isn’t a good matchup for them and if Alabama hits a bunch of 3s early on, you have to assume there’s no coming back for Iona.

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Devon Platana
After graduating with a Masters degree in Journalism, Devon joined USGS to improve his sports writing skills. As a lifelong sports fan, one of Devon’s favorite things to do is analyze statistics across all sports.