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NCAA 2018-19 Tournament To Win Outright Odds: Virginia are favourites entering Final Four

Kyle Guy (credit:youtube.com)

Virginia are the favourites to win the 2019 NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Tournament entering the Final Four phase of the knockout competition in Minneapolis.

The Cavaliers, who were unceremoniously booted out by No 16 seed UMBC in last year’s tournament, were the obvious choice among the leading bookmakers being the only top seeds left in the tournament. Tony Bennett’s boys reached the national semifinals after surviving Purdue 80-75 in overtime last Saturday to win the South Regional title.  The Cavaliers earlier eliminated Gardner–Webb (71-56), Oklahoma (63-51) and Oregon (53-39). Virginia have never won an NCAA crown so Kyle Guy, De'Andre Hunter and Ty Jerome are determined to lead the school to glory after last season’s embarrassing early exit.

Standing on their way are the fifth-seeded Auburn Tigers, who reached the Final Four for the first time after beating No 2 Kentucky 77-71 to win the Midwest Region. Bruce Pearl’s wards are considered the Cinderella team of the tournament having demolished top seed North Carolina 97-80 in the Sweet 16 and No 4 Kansas 89-75 in the Round of 32. Auburn’s semi-final run was quite a surprise considering that they barely survived No 12 seed New Mexico State 78-77 in their opening game. The bad news for Auburn fans is Chuma Okeke won’t play against Virginia after suffering a left knee injury in their game against the Tar Heels. Expected to lead the Southeastern Conference champions in their historic bid are Bryce Brown and Jared Harper. 

Michigan State are the second favourites among the bookmakers to win the NCAA championship this season. Tom Izzo’s Spartans reached the Final Four for the first time since 2015 when they upset top overall seed Duke 68-67 in the East Regional final. The Blue Devils, featuring NBA prospects Zion Williamson and RJ Barrett, were the heavy favourites to hoist collegiate basketball’s most coveted title but Cassius Winston and company had other plans in mind. The Big Ten Player of the Year had 20 points and 10 assists to lead the Spartans to their ninth appearance in the national semi-finals. Michigan State earlier booted out Bradley (76-65), Minnesota (70-50) and Louisiana State (80-63). Expected to help Winston in their quest to add to their 1979 and 2000 titles are Joshua Langford, Nick Ward and Xavier Tillman. 

For that to happen, Michigan State must first hurdle Texas Tech in Saturday’s second game at the US Bank Stadium. The third-seeded Red Raiders reached the Final Four for the first time after stunning top seed Gonzaga 75-69 in the West Region final. Jarrett Culver is out to impress anew for Texas Tech after dropping 19 points against Gonzaga. Head coach Chris Beard will also count on Davide Moretti and Matt Mooney in their chase for another historic win. Texas Tech, who reached the Elite Eight last season, earlier eliminated Northern Kentucky (72-57), Buffalo (78-58) and Michigan (63-44).


*Odds correct as of 12:00 BST on 05/04/19


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NCAA 2018-19 Tournament To Win Outright Odds: Virginia are favourites entering Final Four

Virginia are the favourites to win the 2019 NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Tournament entering the Final Four phase of the knockout competition in Minneapolis.

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