The Sweet 16 portion of the NCAAB tournament begins tomorrow at 1:40 PM CST. The Oregon St. Beavers (12) will be taking on the Ramblers of Loyola-Chicago (8). Wow, an 12 vs. 8 match-up in the Sweet 16?! That cannot be to common in March Madness history. If the parody of past year’s was not “maddening” enough for one such fan, than this year should be providing plenty. In fact, up to this point, the average remaining seed in the tournament is a 6 seed. Hypothetically, the level of competition remaining is equivalent to our USC’s, BYU’s, Texas Tech’s, and San Diego St.’s of the world. Interestingly enough, of these four 6 seeds, only USC is left standing. This Sweet 16 has produced a 15, 12, and two 11 seeds, for better or worse…
If you’re like myself, than your bracket is busted beyond belief. That doesn’t mean that my plays haven’t been covering! (Wink, wink). There is still a lot of tournament left for us to increase our bankroll heading into the start of the 2021 MLB season. By this point in the tournament, the little number next to each team might as well not enough be visible (team seed). Do not let this little number alter or manipulate your thought process in relation to your knowledge and
intuition of recognizing value on your plays. The most important statistical component to review before handicapping the Sweet 16 is a team’s Created Possession Margin. This statistic can be found by taking a team’s rebound margin and adding it to their turnover margin. Be wary of siding with teams that fall within the negative side of this statistical category. The round of 64 and round of 32 provide some of the most exciting moments in all of the tournament. Teams that no one has ever heard of take down the big school and games are being played all throughout the day. However, once the Sweet 16 begins, upsets are not quite as prevalent. This is not to say that underdogs don’t cover the point spread as much; no, not at all! Simply proceed with caution when taking those underdogs on the money-line. A spot that I love to angle and search for a significant edge comes when a Power-5 Conference program is a “lower” seeded team and is still standing by this point. What do I mean by this? Typically, if one of these teams remains, than it means one of two things (or both): one, they were undervalued throughout the season and/or two: they are peaking at the right time as far as their performance is concerned. So what are some of these teams that are still alive in the tournament? USC, Oregon, Oregon St, UCLA, and Syracuse would qualify as potential undervalued Power-5 schools. Look for a few of these teams to really rely on their strength of schedule and experience to will them to covering their respective point-spreads.
Best of luck during this 2021 Sweet 16 and don’t let the seed scramble your brain! My best play for the Sweet 16 is Florida St. (+3) vs. Michigan: PICK – FLORIDA ST. Since I briefly touched on the MLB season, here is a 2021 MLB Mock Draft to get you geared up for the upcoming season that is right around the corner!