March Madness Betting Trends: Teams to Fade on 2nd-Half Odds
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The NCAA Tournament is its own beast. It’s an independent event, which means teams can’t be ordinarily defined by what happened in the preceding weeks, let alone months.
And while against the spread (ATS) trends during the regular season are relatively fickle, they’re an important data point to glean to determine value. From there, you can further deduce the signal from the noise.
For this particular betting trend, three teams have been awful against the second half number.
One team sticks out: the Kentucky Wildcats.
Kentucky is a historically embarrassing 5-16 against the second-half spread this season.
The second-worst team — Gonzaga (8-17-2 ATS) — is almost four games better. San Diego State is the third-worst team in the country with an 8-17-1 record.
Teams theoretically should be roughly .500 in these markets, assuming a perfect market at equilibrium.
And while Kentucky has been mispriced all year, that doesn’t indicate it’ll continue come tournament time. Teams in these positions should regress to the mean.
But, given the variance of a one-game sample size, the randomness of a single sporting event and the fact that each game is an independent event, it’s best to use this factoid as one more datapoint for your broader thesis.
If you were already bullish about Providence ATS against Kentucky — or Grand Canyon ATS vs. Gonzaga — this may bolster that argument.
The two other worst teams against the second-half spread? Montana State (6-14-1 ATS) and Michigan State (9-16).
Kentucky is about a 1.5-point second-half favorite against Providence, according to FanDuel. The Zags are 7.5-point favorites against Grand Canyon and San Diego State is -2.5 on the 2H line.
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