The NCAA Tournament is right around the corner, which means it’s time to start determining who’s a contender and who’s a pretender.
There are no shortage of dynamic clubs in the mix to cut down the nets at the Caesars Superdome in New Orleans on April 4. Defending champion Baylor is among the favorites to repeat, which no college team has done since Billy Donovan and the University of Florida did so in 2006-07.
But Gonzaga, who Baylor topped in the national championship game in Indianapolis a year ago, is also among the favorites as perennial contender Duke, which is trying to send out legendary head coach Mike Krzyzewski with a sixth national championship before he retires at season’s end.
NCAA Tournament Betting Odds 2022
Here’s a look at the top-10 teams in terms of odds to claim the national championship in April as of Tuesday, February 8 (odds via Caesars).
- Gonzaga +500
- Kentucky +850
- Auburn +900
- Arizona +1000
- Purdue +1100
- Duke +1300
- Baylor +1500
- Kansas +1600
- Villanova +2500
- UCLA +2500
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NCAA Tournament 2022 Favorites
Gonzaga is eyeing its third Final Four appearance in the past six seasons and is easily the odds-on favorite given its talent and status in the West Coast Conference — the Bulldogs are the only mid-major in the top-10.
The Zags have a loaded offensive team led by junior forward and preseason player of the year favorite Drew Timme. Gonzaga is averaging more than 90 points per game and has convincing victories over UCLA and Texas.
Coach Mark Few is still seeking his first national championship as Gonzaga’s coach, despite the fact he and the Bulldogs have won the West Coast Conference postseason tournament eight of the past nine years and have reached the championship game twice since 2017. Will this finally be the year?
NCAA Tournament 2022 Contenders
Duke (+1000) and Auburn (+1000), each of whom has been near the top of the rankings all season, follow Gonzaga as betting favorites. Bruce Pearl‘s Tigers have been in the top-3 in the national rankings for most of the season, including a multi-week stint atop the rankings in February.
The Blue Devils, led by likely ACC player of the year Paolo Banchero, are having a resurgent 2021-22 season after failing to qualify for the NCAA Tournament a year ago. Kryzyzewski, who announced this season would be his last in June, has not coached in a Final Four game since the Blue Devils’ last championship in 2015 but is trying to go out on top and win a national title in his fourth consecutive decade.
Considering the current college basketball lines, there is some value to be had here.
Purdue (+1100) and Baylor (+1200) have each been dominant in their respective conference all season. The defending-champion Bears have a balanced-scoring offense and a dominant defense that has kept them in the mix for the Big XII regular-season championship and a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. The Boilermakers have shaken off a couple of close losses in conference play, including one on a buzzer-beater at Rutgers in December, to stay near the top of the national rankings.
John Calipari’s Kentucky (+1200) club is led by Oscar Tshiebwe, the co-favorite for the Wooden Award (+500 according to DraftKings). The Wildcats, like Duke, did not qualify for the NCAA Tournament a year ago but are poised to make a run toward the Final Four for the first time since their memorable undefeated 2015 season.