March Madness West Region Predictions | Odds & Best Bets

Frank AmmiranteSenior Sports Writer
Last Updated: Mar 16, 2023

March Madness is finally upon us, so it’s time to break down the tournament to help you fill out your brackets.

The West Region looks tough, featuring a few national-championship contenders like Kansas, UCLA, and Gonzaga. We also can’t count out teams like UConn or Saint Mary’s.

With that in mind, let’s dive into the region to determine best bets and predictions for the bracket’s West quadrant.

March Madness West Region Best Bet

Read on for more NCAA Tournament West Region betting tips for 2023 March Madness.

March Madness West Region Schedule 2023

  • Round 1: Thursday, March 16 - Friday, March 17 (Des Moines, Iowa; Albany, New York; Denver, Colorado; Sacramento, California)
  • Round 2: Saturday, March 18 - Sunday, March 19 (Des Moines, Iowa; Albany, New York; Denver, Colorado; Sacramento, California)
  • Sweet 16: Thursday, March 23 - Friday, March 24 (New York City, New York; Las Vegas, Nevada; Kansas City, Missouri; Louisville, Kentucky)
  • Elite 8: Saturday, March 25 - Sunday, March 26 (New York City, New York; Las Vegas, Nevada; Kansas City, Missouri; Louisville, Kentucky)

Track the latest March Madness West Region Odds with our CBB lines comparison:

March Madness West Region Teams Seeded

1. Kansas Jayhawks
2. UCLA Bruins
3. Gonzaga Bulldogs
4. UConn Huskies
5. Saint Mary’s Gaels
6. TCU Horned Frogs
7. Northwestern Wildcats
8. Arkansas Razorbacks
9. Illinois Fighting Illini
10. Boise State Broncos
11. Arizona State Sun Devils/Nevada Wolf Pack (First Four Game)
12. VCU Rams
13. Iona Gaels
14. Grand Canyon Lopes
15. UNC Asheville Bulldogs
16. Howard Hawks

March Madness West Region Top 4 Seeds

1. Kansas

The defending champions are well-equipped for another deep run. This is a balanced team with the ideal combination of star power, depth, and coaching to cause problems in this tournament. Led by forward Jalen Wilson, the Jayhawks are a deserving 1-seed.


The Bruins are an experienced team, featuring seniors Jaime Jaquez Jr. and Tyger Campbell, two holdovers from the side that went to the Final Four two years ago. UCLA’s stifling defense will cause fits for their opponents, setting them up nicely for a deep run.

3. Gonzaga

The Bulldogs are a 3-seed this time around, following three straight years as a 1-seed. However, they still have the pieces in place to make noise. Gonzaga has a high-powered offense, led by senior forward Drew Timme, who is now their all-time leading scorer.

4. UConn

The Huskies had an impressive season highlighted by a win over one of the tourney favorites in Alabama. UConn boasts a strong big man and wing duo in Adama Sanogo and Jordan Hawkins. They’re coming in hot, having won eight of their last nine.

March Madness West Region Cinderella

5 Saint Mary’s

The Gaels have one of the best defenses in the tournament, coming in 9th in Adjusted Defensive Efficiency, according to Pomeroy’s rankings. Saint Mary’s has a win over Gonzaga plus a close loss to top-seeded Houston on their resume, so don’t sleep on them.

My other favorite West Region Cinderella candidate is Nevada. If Nevada can get past the First Four, they can go on a Cinderella run. The Wolf Pack ranks 44th per KenPom, ahead of higher-seeds like Missouri.

These two potential Cinderella teams can really bust your March Madness bracket.

March Madness West Region First-Round Upset

9 Illinois defeats 8 Arkansas

These are two evenly-matched teams, with the Fighting Illini (33rd) and Razorbacks (20th) each ranking well in Pomeroy’s rankings. Arkansas is favored by 2.5 points per our CBB odds, but they’re coming in cold, having lost four of their last five.

Also consider picking these West Region Round 1 upsets:

  • 10 Boise State defeats 7 Northwestern
  • 11 Nevada/Arizona State defeats 6 TCU

March Madness West Region Winner Prediction

UCLA defeats UConn to win West Region

Here we have a matchup between KenPom’s No. 2 (UCLA) and No. 4 (UConn)-ranked teams. Each of these sides is better than their tourney seed suggests. The Bruins have the best defense in the nation, making them my pick to win the West region.

According to our March Madness winner odds, the Bruins are a terrific value bet in that market as well, coming in at +1200 odds.

March Madness West Region Best Bets

UCLA to Win West Region (+275) | DraftKings Sportsbook

WAGER: 1 Unit

Despite their No. 2 seed, the Bruins are the favorites to win this region, ahead of top-seeded Kansas (+350). UCLA’s tourney experience and stout defense make them a major threat to reach the Final Four for the second time in three years.

This is my top March Madness betting pick for the West Region.

UConn to Win West Region (+400) | DraftKings Sportsbook

WAGER: 1 Unit

The Huskies have the pieces in place to get to the Final Four. This team ranks sixth in Adjusted Offense and 14th in Adjusted Defense, according to Pomeroy’s rankings. Their win over Alabama during the season highlights their high upside in this tournament.

If you’re interested in other regions, find out more NCAA Tournament predictions.

Saint Mary’s to Reach Sweet 16 (+210) | DraftKings Sportsbook

WAGER: 1 Unit

The Gaels have a good enough defense to keep them competitive throughout this tournament. While they’d have their hands full in a likely matchup against UConn if they get to the Round of 32, we’re getting some good value at +210 odds.


Frank Ammirante

Frank Ammirante is a Senior Sports Writer at The Game Day. Previously, he wrote for 4for4 Football and RotoBaller. Frank is a member of the Fantasy Sports Writer's Association while maintaining an active presence within the community. He has competed in industry contests like the Scott Fish Bowl, The Great Fantasy Baseball Invitational, and more. Frank will be making his debut in Tout Wars this year. He's got a diverse sporting background, but specializes in football and baseball.

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