NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 Odds: North Carolina Leads ACC Favorites

by abournenesn

Mar 23, 2016

Atlantic Coast Conference schools are high among the favorites to win the NCAA Tournament heading into the Sweet 16, led by a North Carolina Tar Heels team that trails only the Kansas Jayhawks with +425 odds to win the title at sportsbooks monitored by

Top-seeded in the East Region, the Tar Heels have seen their odds improve from a strong +600 a week ago after posting a pair of double-digit wins over No. 16 seed Florida Gulf Coast and No. 9 Providence, and will look to atone for an early exit at last year’s NCAA Tournament when they face No. 5 Indiana on Friday as 6 1/2-point chalk.

North Carolina has claimed five national championships in its illustrious history, but the trends are not on its side against Indiana, who will look to extend a solid 3-1 straight up record against the Tar Heels in Friday night’s matchup at Wells Fargo Center.

The Virginia Cavaliers closely trail North Carolina on the March Madness odds, pegged at an improved +575.

Virginia entered the tournament atop the Midwest Region bracket but trailing No. 2 Michigan State at the sportsbooks. However, the Spartans’ stunning first-round loss to No. 15 Middle Tennessee has opened the door for the Cavaliers to advance to the Final Four for the first time since 1984.

The defending-champion Duke Blue Devils face a tougher road back to the national championship, starting with a Sweet 16 clash with No. 1 Oregon as 2 1/2-point underdogs.

Pegged as the four-seed in the West, Duke eked out a close 71-64 win over No. 12 Yale on Sunday after failing to cover a 10-point spread in a 93-85 first-round win over No. 13 UNC Wilmington, improving its recent record to 5-4 straight up, but just 2-6-1 ATS.

With confidence waning at the sportsbooks, the Blue Devils have seen their March Madness odds climb modestly this week to +1800.

No. 3 Miami also faces a tough test when it battles No. 2 Villanova in a South Region Sweet 16 matchup Thursday, and lag at the back of the pack at +2800 to win the NCAA Tournament, while the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and Syracuse Orange represent the ACC at the bottom of the national championship odds, each at +3300.

The Jayhawks continue to lead the way as +350 tournament favorites, while Oklahoma follows the Cavaliers and Tar Heels at +750, and the Ducks join the Wildcats, rounding out the front of the class at +1200.

Iowa State, Gonzaga and Maryland sit alongside Miami at +2800 on the updated March Madness futures, while Wisconsin joins Syracuse and Notre Dame as +3300 longshots.

Thumbnail photo via Bob Donnan/USA TODAY Sports Images

Thumbnail photo via North Carolina Tar heels odds

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