March Madness futures best bets entering the Round of 32: Purdue pours it on

Purdue Boilermakers guard Sasha Stefanovic (55) and guard Isaiah Thompson (11) and center Zach Edey (15) talk on the bench during the second half against the Yale Bulldogs in the first round of the 2022 NCAA Tournament
Photo of Andrew Ortenberg

Andrew Ortenberg

NCAAB· 2 months ago

Show Bio

I'm an editor here at Pickswise who was raised in a household full of sports fanatics. Since I unfortunately never had LeBron James' jumping ability I wasn't able to make it to the NBA, and chose writing about sports as the next best thing. An avid sports bettor myself, I'm excited to get to write about the industry as it gets set to take off across the country. Buckle up.

With the First Round of March Madness now in the books, we’ve already seen a bit of chaos. And it’s been a whole ton of fun! With 32 teams now remaining, the landscape of the bracket has changed and presented opportunities to revisit the futures market. Let’s reset, take a step back, and see how the dust has settled. With the possible paths for each team becoming clearer, two potential futures worth considering jumped out to me. Odds are courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook. Let’s dive in to my two best bets to win it all:

Purdue +1800

Purdue easily defeated Yale in their Round of 64 game and now have a desirable path in the East Region. The most obvious reason for this is the fact that #2 seed Kentucky shockingly lost to #15 Saint Peter’s on Thursday. Kentucky was a team picked by many, including me, to come out of the East Region. The reason I liked the Wildcats was because I thought that they could exploit Purdue’s lack of perimeter defense, as well as battle with Purdue’s Zach Edey and Trevion Williams thanks to Oscar Tshiebwe. However, that’s why you play the games. Kentucky is out and Purdue is now the clear favorite to reach the Elite Eight. 

If the Boilermakers can reach the Elite Eight, their toughest opponent would be Baylor. The Bears would certainly have an athleticism advantage in that matchup, but I prefer Purdue’s price of +1800 to Baylor’s +1000. Baylor also has a tougher path in my opinion, as North Carolina and Saint Mary’s are both playing extremely well. With Purdue’s primary obstacle to reaching the Elite Eight now eliminated, consider adding the Boilermakers at +1800 to win the National Championship.

Kansas +950

The Jayhawks are in a similar scenario as Purdue, as their path has gotten significantly easier after the opening round of games. Kansas will face #9 seed Creighton on Saturday, but the Blue Jays will be significantly short-handed in that one. Center Ryan Kalkbrenner left the game against San Diego State after injuring his knee and has been ruled out for the remainder of the tournament. Kalkbrenner is the second-leading scorer for Creighton, and his defense is the primary reason that the Blue Jays rank 17th in the country in KenPom’s adjusted defensive efficiency. Furthermore, Creighton ranks 19th in field goal percentage defense at the rim. The on/off numbers from HoopLens paint a worrisome picture without Kalkbrenner on the floor, as the Blue Jay defense allows just 0.9 points per possession with Kalkbrenner on the floor, versus 0.98 with him off the floor. The offense is a similar story. Creighton scores 0.99 points per possession with him on the court, compared to just 0.91 with him off the court. A math degree isn’t required to see that his absence is a monumental blow to Creighton’s chances.

Kansas is obviously a huge beneficiary of Kalkbrenner’s injury, as they are currently 11.5-point favorites in their second-round game. However, this isn’t the only improvement to their path to New Orleans. #5 seed Iowa, a team picked by many to be a sleeper to win the Midwest region, lost to #12 seed Richmond in the Round of 64. Richmond now takes on #4 seed Providence, who is by-far the worst of the #4 seeds from an analytical perspective. No matter who wins that game, they will be a significant underdog to Kansas. The Jayhawks will still need to contend with the bottom-half of the bracket which includes #2 seed Auburn, but it’s unlikely that Kansas will slip up before then. Per BartTorvik’s NCAA Tournament simulator, Kansas is given a 13.7 percent chance to win the National Championship, which is only below Gonzaga’s chances. The Jayhawks would not face the Bulldogs until the final, so that is another positive of their potential path. 13.7 percent chance according to BartTorvik’s efficiency rankings also means that our +950 odds are fair. +950 equates to a 9.5 percent implied probability, so on paper we have some value with the Jayhawks. 

Pickswise is the home of free College Basketball Picks and College Basketball Predictions. With top College Basketball picks available daily, including our College Basketball Best Bets.

Virginia Bonuses

See All
FanDuel Sportsbook

$150

Bet $5, Win $150 on either NYY or CWS to win the Sunday Night Baseball matchup (30-1 Odds)!

Sign up for a new account with FanDuel Sportsbook and make your first deposit

Place a $5 bet on the Yankees or White Sox to win the Sunday Night Baseball matchup

If your teams, get 30-1 odds and win $150!

Must be 21 years or over to participate. Reward paid in site credit. Offer valid for new players only. Full terms available at FanDuel Sportsbook.

PointsBet

$500

Get 5x $100 Risk-Free Bets!

Sign up for a new PointsBet account

Make a bet of up to $100 and receive a refund if you lose

Get this offer once a day for the first 5 days you sign up

Must be 21+. Full terms are available at PointsBet.

DraftKings

$200

Bet $5 on Any MLB Game, Get $200 if Your Team Wins!

Sign up for a new account with DraftKings Sportsbook and make your first deposit

Bet $5 on any MLB team to win their next game

Win $200 in free bets + any cash winnings from your original wager

Offer valid for new players only. Must be 21 years or older to play. Reward paid in site credit. Full terms available at DraftKings Sportsbook.

BetMGM

$200

Win $200 If ANY NBA Team Makes a 3-Pointer!

Sign up for a new account with BetMGM, and make a deposit of $10+.

Place a $10 moneyline bet on any upcoming NBA game.

Win $200 if either team in your selected game makes a 3-pointer

21+ and new players only. Full terms available at BetMGM Sportsbook.

DraftKings

$150

Bet $5 on any NBA team, Get $150 in Free Bets if they win!

Sign up for a new account with DraftKings Sportsbook and make your first deposit

Bet $5 on any team to win an NBA playoff game

Win $150 in free bets if your team wins

Offer valid for new players only. Must be 21 years or older to play. Reward paid in site credit. Full terms available at DraftKings Sportsbook.

BetMGM

$200

Win $200 If A Goal Is Scored In ANY NHL Game!

Sign up for a new account with BetMGM, and make a deposit of $10+.

Place a $10 moneyline bet on any upcoming NHL game.

Win $200 if either team in your selected game scores a goal

21+ and new players only. Full terms available at BetMGM Sportsbook.

PointsBet

$2,000

Get $2,000 in Risk-Free Bets!

Register for a new PointsBet account & deposit

Receive a free bet refund up to $500 if your first fixed odds bet loses

& a free bet refund up to $1,500 if your first two PointsBetting Wager loses

Must be 21+. Full terms are available at PointsBet.

Caesars Sportsbook

$1,100

Get up to $1,100 in First Bet Insurance!

Sign up for a new Caesars Sportsbook account

Make your first deposit of $50+

If your first bet is not a winner, get it all back as a free bet (up to $1,100) if you lose!

21+. Terms and conditions apply.

BetRivers

$250

Get a $250 Deposit Bonus!

Sign up for a new BetRivers account using promo code PICKSWISE

Make a deposit & get it doubled up to $250 total

To get a $100 bonus, deposit $100

Must be 21+. Play in IA Only. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-BETS OFF

Unibet

$500

Get a $500 Risk-Free Bet!

Register for a new Unibet account & make a deposit

Place your first bet up to $500 risk-free!

Get refunded up if you lose up to $500

New players only. Terms & conditions apply. 21+. VA only.

BetMGM

$1,000

Get a $1,000 Risk Free Bet!

Register for a new BetMGM & deposit

Place your first bet up to $1,000 risk-free!

Get refunded up if you lose up to $1,000

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

FanDuel Sportsbook

$1,000

Get a $1,000 Risk Free Bet!

Register for a new FanDuel Sportsbook account & deposit

Place your first bet up to $1,000 risk-free!

Get refunded up if you lose up to $1,000

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

DraftKings

$1,000

Get a $1,000 Deposit Bonus!

Register for a new DraftKings Sportsbook account & deposit

DraftKings will match 20% of your deposit up to $1,000 total

To get a $100 bonus, deposit $500

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

Monkey Knife Fight

$100

Claim 100% Instant Deposit Match up to $100!

Register for a Monkey Knife Fight account & deposit using promo code PICKSWISE100

Monkey Knife Fight will match your first deposit up to $100

Deposit $100 and you'll get $100 bonus + a free $5 game

18+. Terms and conditions apply. You must live in one of the states where real money DFS is legal.

Yahoo DFS

$25

Get $25 in Site Credit With Yahoo DFS When You Deposit $5!

Register for a new account with Yahoo DFS and deposit $5+

Enter a $5 DFS contest

Upon entry, you will receive a bonus $25 in credit into your account!

21+ and new players only. Full terms available from Yahoo DFS.

TVG

$300

Get a $300 Risk-Free Bet with TVG Racebook!

Register for a new TVG account and make a deposit

Place your first single horse win-type bet up to $300

If your horse doesn't win you'll get a refund up to $300

21+. T&C's apply. Please gamble responsibly.

TwinSpires

$200

Get a $200 Sign-Up Bonus with Twinspires Racebook!

Open your TwinSpires.com account using offer code BET200

$200 bonus cash will be credited in increments of $100 for every $400 wagered

To earn the full $200 bonus players must wager $800 within 30 days

21+. Terms and conditions apply.