Arizona ended up as the No. 2 overall seed on the true-seed line. With Gonzaga obviously picking the West region, Arizona picked the South region and will host the festivities in San Antonio.
Villanova and Tennessee picked up the other two top seeds in the region, but there are plenty of other storylines and matchups to be found.
Plus, there’s a few profitable angles to look at among our South Region betting picks.
March Madness South Region Schedule
- Round 1: Friday, March 19-Saturday, March 20
- Round 2: Sunday, March 21-Monday, March 22
- Sweet 16: Saturday, March 27-Sunday, March 28
- Elite 8: Monday, March 29-Tuesday, March 30
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March Madness South Region Teams & Matchups
Each South Region team’s March Madness odds to reach the 2022 Final Four are provided by Caesars, current as of Monday, March 14, at 9 p.m. ET.
(1) Arizona (+160)
(16) Wright State/Bryant (NA)
(8) Seton Hall (+3000)
(9) TCU (+3000)
(5) Houston (+600)
(12) UAB (+5000)
(4) Illinois (+800)
(13) Chattanooga (+6000)
(6) Colorado State (+4000)
(11) Michigan (+2000)
(3) Tennessee (+400)
(14) Longwood (+12500)
(7) Ohio State (+2500)
(10) Loyola-Chicago (+2500)
(2) Villanova (+350)
(15) Delaware (+20000)
March Madness South Region: Top 4 Seeds
Tommy Lloyd should be National Coach of the Year, turning around Arizona impressively quickly and making the Wildcats a junior version of Gonzaga – just led by a syndicate of international players.
The Cats play super fast (eighth in Tempo) and were top-five nationally in both 2-point percentage (57.5%) and 2-point defense (41.9%).
Arizona is amazing. However, the injury to Kerr Kriisa makes the ‘Cats vulnerable, especially in the backcourt. The Cats rolled to a Pac-12 tournament title without him, but we’ll see if his absence takes effect on Arizona in the Big Dance.
- Print your 2022 March Madness bracket.
Villanova basketball. A Fourtune 500 company.
Jay Wright’s squad doesn’t stop. Collin Gillespie runs a slow-paced progression offense (345th in tempo) that lives on the perimeter and finds open 3-point shots (23rd in 3-point rate, 59th in 3-point shooting).
Villanova shouldn’t be tested by Loyola or Ohio State, but Tennessee would be a tough matchup.
Speaking of the Vols, Rick Barnes’ team has seen a resurgence in the second half of the season.
Kennedy Chandler redefined Tennessee’s offensive output and increased the ceiling of this team. Moreover, as a freshman, he’s only gotten better throughout the season.
However, it’s worth noting coach Barnes has not been the most productive coach in March.
Rick Barnes teams are 1-11-1 ATS in their last 13 NCAA Tournament Games. Since Texas made the Elite 8 in 2008, Barnes' teams have made it past the first weekend once in 9 trips, including being knocked out in the 2nd round as a 3-seed in 2018 when the Vols lost to 11-seed Loyola.
— Chris Fallica (@chrisfallica) March 14, 2022
Illinois definitely over-performed its pre-season expectations, picking up a Big Ten regular-season title.
However, Illinois did drop the Big Ten tournament game to a red-hot Indiana team. However, that’s likely not the biggest deal,as team’s that win their conference tournament often underperform in the Dance.
Illinois has a tough draw, though. Chattanooga is not to be messed with, and Houston would be equally as tough. If the Illini somehow got through that, they then would have to play Arizona. Tough scene.
March Madness South Region: Round 1 Upset Pick
(10) Loyola-Chicago over (7) Ohio State
I’m not a big Ohio State believer. The Buckeyes are immensely talented offensively but have young guards and a bad defense. One that should get diced up by a reinvigorated Loyola-Chicago offense – one that finished seventh in eFG% (56.3%).
The Ramblers are experienced and coming off a dominating Missouri Valley tournament run. One that saw an underperforming-to-that-point defense overcome issues and dominate its opponents.
March Madness Region Predictions
Plus, lest we forget how well the Ramblers have run in the tournament lately, making the Final Four in 2018 and the Sweet 16 last season. Meanwhile, Holtmann hasn’t made it past the second round in four seasons at the helm in Columbus.
I’ll take Loyola on the ML.
Other West Upsets To Consider (1 to 3 games)
- (13) Chattanooga over (4) Illinois: Malachi Smith is as dangerous of a player as there is in college hoops, and that plays well in March.
- (9) TCU over (8) Seton Hall: I don’t think this is that close. TCU has been frisky and Seton Hall collapsed in the second half of the season.
- (#15) Delaware over (2) Villanova: At the least, grab the Hens catching 16 points, because that’s too many points to hand a slow-tempo ‘Nova team.
March Madness South Region: Cinderella
(10) Loyola Chicago
If Loyola can beat Ohio State, why can’t it beat Villanova? Or Tennessee? Or Arizona?
The great part about backing the Ramblers is how good the team is at shooting the ball. Loyola scored 1.071 PPP in spot-up situations this season, which ranked top-20 nationally.
The Ramblers can get hot from 3 very easily, and that’s the perfect recipe for a Cinderella run.
Another South Cinderella To Consider
- (14) Chattanooga: Again, Malachi Smith. Plus we can fade Houston in the second round, too.
March Madness South Region Prediction
South Region Winner Pick: (1) Arizona over (3) Tennessee
The chalk is going to come to the top in this region. And I believe Arizona is the easy pick to win this region, even with Kriisa sidelined.
I think Tennessee makes a run and beats Villanova in the Sweet 16.
While it’s been all pain and suffering for Vols fans underneath Barnes, this year feels different. That offense is legit and should be able to keep up with anyone.
March Madness South Region: Best Bets
All March Madness betting odds are current as of March 14.
Loyola Chicago To Win South Region (+2500) at Caesars
This is good value for a Ramblers team that’s done it before. The offense is deadly, the defense is trending up, and it’s a nightmare to play Loyola in a tournament setting.
Ohio State is toast. Villanova is probably already shaking in its boots. And Tennessee is no sure-fire bet considering coach Barnes’ history.
I’ll take a shot with Loyola at 25/1 with our CBB bet of the day.
Colorado State +2.5 (-110) vs Michigan at Caesars
I am not buying the 11-seed Wolverines laying over two against the David Roddy-led Rams.
Michigan stumbled its way through the season, totally underperforming pre-season expectations despite playing in a wildly overrated Big Ten conference.
Colorado State is one of the best offenses in the nation, ranking top-20 in offensive efficiency, eFG%, and offensive turnover rate. The defense is more questionable, but the Rams are big and strong in certain areas, like defensive turnover rate.
The Rams are going to dice up Michigan’s lackluster defense, which is especially weak on the perimeter. Roddy is the perfect player to beat the Wolverines, who are weak on the wings this season after losing Isaiah Livers and Franz Wagner last season.
Delaware +15.5 (-110) vs Villanova at Caesars
As mentioned, this is too many points for Villanova to lay. The Wildcats play too slow to blowout teams on a consistent basis, despite how talented the team is.
Delaware is a tough team with a bunch of high-level scorers.
Jameer Nelson Jr. averaged close to 14 points per game this season and scored in double-figures in all three of Delaware’s CAA tournament run. Back the Hens to keep it close-ish in this one.
UAB +8.5 (-110) vs Houston at Caesars
I think Houston wins this game, but the Cougars are overvalued in general.
And the public will be all over Houston after last season’s Final Four push. Houston is due for negative shooting regression on defense and is weak on the perimeter with Marcus Sasser sidelined.
Look for Jordan “Jelly” Walker to slice-and-dice Houston in this game.