March Madness 2021: BetsByBob's First Round Day One Best Bets and Predictions
The first round of the tournament. Quite possibly my favorite two days of the year as a college basketball junkie. We are going to have great games going on all day long, and I can’t wait to soak it all in after missing this last year. Below are my three best bets for the day, and also my contest plays for the Pickswise $10,000 Capper Contest!
Make sure you also check out our picks on the side and total for EVERY first-round game for the NCAA Tournament. Let the March Madness continue!
Loyola Chicago Ramblers (-4.5 ) to beat Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
I have to be honest, I liked Georgia Tech’s chances in this one before the news broke loose on Moses Wright. But now, without their star big man, and ACC player of the year, the Yellow Jackets are in trouble. Wright is a massive part of the success that Georgia Tech has had this season. Rodney Howard is going to have to step in, and will have a tough time filling those shoes. Even tougher, he is going to be asked to guard Cameron Krutwig.
Loyola Chicago comes in with the number 1 rated defense according to KenPom, and are also one of the best teams at scoring at the rim. I expect the Ramblers to get the ball inside to Krutwig early and often, and I am not sure the Yellow Jackets will be able to stop him. It’s a tough break for Georgia Tech here, but Loyola Chicago should roll.
Be sure to check out our full game preview for Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets vs. Loyola-Chicago Ramblers.
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North Texas Mean Green (+7.5) over Purdue Boilermakers
Backing the Mean Green here in a game that I expect to be a complete dogfight. North Texas has flown under the radar for most for the majority of the season, but they are a well-rounded squad. Led by senior guard Javion Hamlet, the Mean Green should be able to put up a solid battle against a Purdue team that I am not as high on. Both teams like to work at a slow, methodical pace, and can see this one being back and forth. I give North Texas a good shot to pull out a straight upset here as a 13 seed, so I will gladly take the points here.
Be sure to check out our full game preview for North Texas Mean Green vs. Purdue Boilermakers.
Click here to check out college basketball analyst and insider Jon Rothstein’s best picks!
Virginia Tech Hokies (PK) to beat Florida Gators
The Hokies come into their showdown against the Gators with a bit of a chip on their shoulder. They feel as they have been overlooked for much of the season, and frankly, I agree. This is solid group, and have a deep rotation of guards they can deploy against Florida. The Hokies have the ability to shoot the ball well, and they are going to need to do so to beat this Gators team. If Virginia Tech can play through Keve Aluma and Justyn Mutts and score inside, I like their chances in this one.
Be sure to check out our full game preview for Virginia Tech Hokies vs. Florida Gators.
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