The Monday morning bracket pool discussion is, as usual, prevalent with Selection Sunday headlines emblazoned at every world wide web college basketball portal. It would be a misstep to overlook the largest of seeds in the 2018 Big Dance. While bracket pools typically don’t require that participants select the winners of the First Four games in Dayton the likes of Arizona State, Syracuse, LIU and Radford are all capable of winning and advancing to a Round-of-32 game or further. The Vegas and Offshore sportsbooks not only offer odds to win the overall national championship but specific regions, as well. Odds to Win 2018 Big Dance Regions: Nova 10-to-11 in East.
College basketball trends are not the end-all when filling out your brackets. However, there are a number of interesting situations across the last two decades that deserve attention.
Big Dance Historical Trends
- Since 1997 not school has won the title tilt with 10 or more losses.
- All but one of the past 20 champions have had at least 26 wins at season’s end, save the Syracuse Orange in 2003.
- The left coast schools last raised the NCAA basketball championship trophy in 1997 when the Arizona Wildcats earned the crown.
- Since the last West Coast win in 1997 the team furthest west to raise the trophy were the 2008 Kansas Jayhawks.
- The overall No #1 seed in the “Dance” has been the last team standing just once since 2001. And only four times since the tournament expanded to 64 teams in 1985.
Regional Historical Trends
- All four No #1 seeds in the tournament have made the Final Four just once in bracket history. It occurred in 2008 when the eventual champion Jayhawks defeated the Tigers of Memphis in overtime.
- Most relevant is that only three Final Fours have been without a No #1 seed (1980, 2006 and 2011)
- Across the last half-decade there has been a No #7 seed or larger make the final weekend of the tournament.
After winning the national championship in 2016, Villanova entered the 2017 Big Dance as the selection committee’s overall No #1 seed. The 31-3 Wildcats were placed in the East Regional and faced the winner of the First Four contest between the Mt. Saint Mary’s Mountaineers from the Northeast Conference (19-15) and the New Orleans Privateers (20-11) from the Southland Conference.
Nova failed to advance beyond the Round-of-32 in last season’s tournament losing to No #8 seed Wisconsin.
The oddsmakers of the World’s Largest Race and Sportsbook, WestGate of Las Vegas, opened Nova as 10-to-11 chalk to advance to the Final Four winning the East Regional. A complete list of teams and their odds to win their regions are as follows.
Odds to Win 2018 Big Dance Regions: Nova 10-to-11 in East