CBB Simulations Reveal Best Bets to Win Power Conference Tournaments

CBB Simulations Reveal Best Bets to Win Power Conference Tournaments article feature image
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Billy Hurst-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Kentucky Wildcats fans cheer

  • The ACC, Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC college basketball conference tournaments tip off this week.
  • Using The Action Network simulations, we determine which teams have betting value to win their conference tournaments.

Six teams have already punched their tickets to the NCAA tournament. Over the next week, 26 more automatic bids will be given out to the winners of conference tournaments.

The power conference tournaments tip over the next two days. The ACC, Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC titles are up for grabs. Which teams will cut down the nets?

To find out, we ran 10,000 simulations of the power conference tournaments using our bracket simulator. To identify bets with positive expected value we converted each team’s odds to win the tournament from Westgate into an implied probability and compared it to our model.

Based on our projections, these are the teams offering bettors value to win their respective conference tournament:

ACC Tournament – Charlotte, March 12-16

Zion Williamson is expected to play in the ACC Tournament. Before Zion’s injury, Duke was 23-2 and averaging 86.4 points per game. In the six ACC games that the star freshman has missed, the Blue Devils have gone 3-3 and are averaging 74.5 ppg.

Our model assumes Zion is healthy and that Duke will play like the team we saw on the court before a blown out sneaker changed Coach K’s squad from championship favorite to a .500 team. If you believe Zion is fully healthy, like our model, then Duke at 7-4 odds is the best bet to win the tournament.

Note: Miami, Notre Dame, Boston College, Georgia Tech, Wake Forest and Pittsburgh are included in the field (100-1). The teams combine to win the tournament 0.0% of the time.

Big East Tournament – New York, March 13-16

There is no clear value bet in this conference tournament. Villanova is the favorite but has lost four of its final eight games. Marquette, the second-best team in the Big East, has lost four in a row.

There are eight teams with 15-1 or better odds of earning the automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. The bracket is wide open, which should make for a fun watch, but doesn’t create a solid betting opportunity for gamblers.

If you are interested in placing a wager, my colleague Eli Hershkovich makes a case for a longshot to surprise.


Big 12 Tournament – Kansas City, March 13-16

Defense wins championships and it has been Texas Tech’s calling card all season. The Red Raiders are second in the nation in scoring defense (58.6 ppg), first in defensive efficiency and first in effective field goal percentage.

Tech has a 39.0% chance to win the tournament in Kansas City, which is twice as likely as any other team. Chris Beard’s crew should win and bettors are getting the Red Raiders at 3-2 odds.

Big Ten Tournament – Chicago, March 13-17

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