2018-19 NCAA Basketball Futures – Who Will Win March Madness?

2018-19 NCAA Basketball Futures – Who Will Win March Madness?

The 2018-19 NCAA basketball season features a clear narrative - Duke vs the world. R.J. Barrett and Zion Williamson - two of the best NBA prospects in college basketball - decided to join the Blue Devils to unite for a one-and-done championship in 2019. The overwhelming talent of Duke will likely clash with the elite programs of Kentucky and Kansas to determine the 2019 March Madness champion.

The favourites are:

  • Duke +200
  • Kentucky +700
  • Kansas +800

NCAA Basketball March Madness Favorites

Duke

The combo of Zion Williamson and R.J. Barrett might be unprecedented in NCAA basketball history. Nearly all betting sites list Duke as strong favorites because of these phenoms, both of whom could end up as the first overall pick in the 2019 NBA draft. Duke’s roster also boasts top recruits like Tre Jones, brother of Tyus, along with Cam Reddish, another smooth scorer and outstanding athlete.

R.J. and Zion will take center stage, but they’ll be supported with versatile teammates who will help make the most of Barrett and Williamson. This team’s one of the most talented college clubs in a long time. Anything less than an NCAA championship will be a disappointment.

Duke To Win the NCAAB Title Odds
+200

Kentucky

Just because Duke landed the two most impressive prospects doesn’t mean that the Wildcats don’t have sky-high expectations of their own. Coach John Calipari will have several sophomores return after a disappointing loss in the sweet 16 to Kansas State. Reid Travis joined the roster in the offseason, crafting one of the deepest rotations in the NCAA.

Just because Duke landed the two most impressive prospects doesn’t mean that the Wildcats don’t have sky-high expectations of their own.

The best one-and-done prospects tend to capture most of the attention for March Madness and other college competitions, but teams with returning players typically perform well in a single elimination tournament. Previous experience with teammates and coaches allows clubs like Kentucky to focus on performance instead of figuring out chemistry issues. Top prospects recruited include Keldon Johnson, Ashton Hagans and E.J. Montgomery

Kansas

Kansas were painfully close to making the NCAA Tournament championship finals last season, falling short in the final four to Villanova, who went on to complete their immaculate run through the bracket. This team recruited a pair of five-star prospects for their backcourt, including point guard Devon Dotson and shooting guard Quentin Grimes. Center David McCormack finished a shade under five-star status, but he’s considered a top-thirty recruit.

The Jayhawks also added double-double machine Dedric Lawson, who transferred from Memphis after two seasons, averaging 17.2 PPG and 9.6 RPG during his collegiate career. He’ll pair with Udoka Azubuike to form one of the most fearsome front courts in America. If the freshman backcourt meshes well with their proven bigs, Kansas will enjoy another long tournament run.

NCAAB Dark Horses

  • Gonzaga +1200
  • Nevada +1200
  • North Carolina +1200
  • Virginia +1200
  • Villanova +1800

Gonzaga didn’t make a massive recruiting splash, but they found Filip Petrusev, an intriguing Serbian who could add an interesting wrinkle to a club already loaded with experienced talent. Nevada was one of the best mid-seeds of the 2018 tournament, upsetting two-seed Cincinnati before falling to Cinderella Loyola in a thriller. Adding Caleb Martin from NC State will boost Nevada into a top-five seed.

North Carolina will lean on Luke Maye again, who put up 16.9 PPG and 10.1 RPG last season. The Tar Heels lost a shocker to Texas A&M in the second round, a result they’ll improve upon in 2019. Virginia will need to deal with the stigma of becoming the first one seed to lose in the first round by rebuilding confidence over the upcoming months.

2018 March Madness champions Villanova are considered on the fringe of dark horse contenders after completely dominating the tournament. They recruited Jahvon Quinerly, Cole Swider and Brandon Slater to join returning heroes like Eric Paschall and Phil Booth.

NCAAB Longshots

NCAA Basketball Longshots

The best teams to bet on for NCAA futures tend to involve clubs which are all but guaranteed to at least participate in the March Madness tournament. In 2018, some of the stronger clubs around the United States may find themselves on the outside looking in when March rolls around.

Tennessee were ranked third last tournament, falling to 11-seed Loyola in a shocking second-round upset. The Volunteers will be longshots, but their previous experience should serve them well if they earn a solid draw in the bracket. The Ducks didn’t participate last season, but Oregon’s program typically bounces back well when faced with adversity. Oregon could surprise after snagging Bol Bol and Louis King during recruiting. 

Indiana received a massive boost to their program when Romeo Langford committed to their program. He’ll pair well with senior Juwan Morgan, who came into his own with averages of 16.5 PPG and 7.4 RPG.

Keep an eye on teams like UCLA, Syracuse and Michigan State, who may rise in the rankings.

  • Tennessee +3000
  • Oregon +3500
  • Michigan State +4000
  • Indiana +4500
  • Syracuse +4500
  • UCLA +4500
  • Auburn +5000
  • Wichita State +5500
  • Florida +6000
  • Michigan +6000
  • West Virginia +6000

NCAA Basketball Hail Mary Picks

The following teams don’t have much of a chance against the elite men’s division one clubs of the NCAA. Cinderellas like Loyola do happen, but the lowest qualifier to win was Villanova in 1985 as the eighth seed. Some of these schools may qualify for March Madness, but don’t expect a championship.

  • Cincinnati +9000
  • Florida State +9000
  • Purdue +9000
  • Virginia Tech +9000
  • Kansas State +10000
  • Marquette +10000
  • Mississippi State +10000
  • Wisconsin +10000
  • Arizona State +12500
  • Clemson +12500
  • Iowa State +12500
  • LSU +12500
  • Maryland +12500
  • Miami +12500
  • North Carolina State +12500
  • Notre Dame +12500
  • Ohio State +12500
  • Penn State +12500
  • St. John’s +12500
  • TCU +12500
  • Texas +12500
  • Texas Tech +12500
  • Vanderbilt +17500
  • Washington University +17500
  • Arizona +20000
  • Butler +20000
  • Louisville +20000
  • Memphis State +20000
  • Seton Hall +20000
  • Xavier +20000
  • Baylor +30000
  • Loyola University Chicago +30000
  • Texas A&M +30000

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