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March Madness finals gambling Guide: When is the march madness finals 2024?

Last Updated on 07/09/2024
Fact checked by: Vicky Winters

In search of the latest 2024 March Madness finals picks? With our guide, you’ll find all you need to bet with a little more confidence on this year’s NCAA Division I college basketball tournament. We’ve got picks for the outright winner of March Madness, as well as sleeper picks for rounds like the Final Four, Elite Eight and so on. On top of all that, our guide is packed with information about the schedule, bracket release and even some useful tips you can use for making your own March Madness finals predictions.

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All about making March Madness championship game predictions

We should get the basics of March Madness covered before we give you our predictions. You’ll know that it’s an annual college basketball contest officially known as the NCAA Division I tournament.

It features something called the ‘bracket’ which is a huge grid of eliminator games that each of the 68 teams has to work through to win the March Madness title. Each round will take place in different arenas in different cities starting off in Dayton, Ohio and ending up in Houston, Texas.

The bracket will be released on March 12 at 6pm on CBS and here is the overall schedule of the 2023 March Madness:

  • March 14 and 15: First Four
  • March 16 and 17: First Round
  • March 18 and 19: Second Round
  • March 23 and 24: Sweet 16
  • March 25 and 26: Elite Eight
  • April 1: Final Four
  • April 3: NCAA championship game

Houston - No.1 in Midwest Region

After deep runs in the past two versions of March Madness with trips to the Elite Eight and Final Four, the Cougars have a big opportunity to play in front of a fervent home crowd, with this year’s Final Four hosted in Houston.

The Cougars usually get tons of offensive rebounds, and they don’t turn the ball over that much either, meaning they will carve out more chances than their opponents.

In a season where it has been hard to find truly great teams, the Cougars, who are trading at +500 are perhaps the closest thing to perfection.

Alabama - No.1 in South Region

After pounding Texas A&M to win the SEC tournament, Alabama, who are priced at a longer +700, are making all the right noises. The Crimson Tide are a terrifying prospect when in full throttle — they have 72.7 possessions on average per 40 minutes. They also lead in the effective field goal percentage (41.5 percent), and they do tend to rely on three-pointers.

Brandon Miller became the first player to be named SEC freshman of the year and solo player of the year since Anthony Davis in 2012. Questions will only intensify if Alabama doesn’t have a serious assault at the title.

Purdue - No.1 in East Region

Purdue have never been seeded lower than fifth in their past six visits to the blue-riband NCAA tournament. However, they have struggled to get past the Sweet 16 during that span, with their last appearance in that stage of the competition arriving in 2019.

Zach Edey, who is a behemoth at 7ft 4in, will be corralling rebounds, and with him in the side, well anything is possible.

Despite that, the Boilermakers, aren’t going to win any records for offense, as they operate in a rather pedestrian fashion. They aren’t great from long range, but they are well balanced, and at +1000 with most sportsbooks, they could be in with a shout.

Texas - No.2 in Midwest Region

Although things could have gone pear-shaped for Texas, interim coach Rodney Terry has got his side firing and peaking at just the right time. Texas ran riot in the Big 12 tournament, storming to three wins by an average of over 13 points per game.

They also enjoyed a double-digit victory over the reigning March Madness champions Kansas Jayhawks for the second time in the space of eight days.

Texas are certainly battle-hardened, and while they appear to be long shots at +1400, you wouldn’t want to count them out.

Our picks to win the NCAA basketball championship

There are a handful of college basketball teams who are way ahead of their rivals in terms of their chances of winning this year’s March Madness. Here are our picks of who could go all the way:

  • Houston Cougars: Houston are set up perfectly for winning this year’s March Madness. They are top of the NCAA rankings, on a nine-game winning streak, have unbeaten away record, and an overall playing record of 27-2.
  • Alabama Crimson Tide: Alabama may be mired in controversy at the moment, but they are still second favorites to win March Madness. With a 24-4 record and unbeaten home run, we think that the Crimson Tide could go all the way.
  • Kansas Jayhawks: Last year’s winners Kansas are looking almost as good to do it all over again. They won 25 games and lost five during the regular season and that seven-game winning streak should set them up nicely.
  • UCLA Bruins: You simply can’t discount UCLA as this team always serves up the goods at March Madness. Plus the Bruins have won their last eight games and are now sitting on a healthy 25-4 record.
  • Purdue Boilermakers: Purdue might be just outside the favorites but we can’t ignore any team with a 25-4 playing record. While they might not be consistent, the Boilermakers could go far.
  • Arizona Wildcats: Another team that is hard to predict, the Wildcats are on a 24-5 playing record and they are a good bet to make the later rounds.
  • Baylor Bears: The Bears are currently on 22-8 and while they are inconsistent, they should do well in this year’s March Madness.
  • Tennessee Volunteers: Another team on 22-8 but definitely worth a look. While their away form is mixed, Tennessee can work wonders when they have the crowd behind them.

Other contenders in our NCAA basketball finals predictions

Of course, with 68 teams taking part in March Madness, there’s every chance that one of the outsiders might cause a huge upset. Here are our sleeper picks for the winner of this year’s NCAA Division I contest:

  • Texas Longhorns: With a 22-7 record, we think that Texas could make the Elite Eight.
  • Gonzaga Bulldogs: Any team with Drew Timme in is going to do well.
  • Marquette Golden Eagles: With five wins in a row, we fancy Marquette’s chances.
  • Indiana Hoosiers: At 20-10, Indiana are an outside bet for making the later rounds.

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How we made our March Madness finals picks

We didn’t rely on just intuition to come up with our picks for this year’s March Madness. Each prediction was based on a careful combination of experience and extensive analysis of all of the relevant statistics. Here are the kinds of things that we paid most attention to:

  • Past form: Form indicates whether a team are on a winning run or a losing run. For example, Houston are currently on a nine-game winning streak which means that they’ll probably win their next game.
  • Star players: Certain stars like Gonzaga’s Drew Timme and Kentucky’s Oscar Tshiebwe are more than capable of turning a game around by themselves. This means that we’ll be sure to evaluate their form as well as any injuries.
  • Coaching experience: College basketball teams will be relying on the experience of their head coaches to guide them through March Madness. We’ll be analyzing which coaches have the best record in this competition.
  • Tournament history: Certain teams always seem to perform well at March Madness. Take the likes of UCLA who have won this competition more than any other and their run last year showed us that this can often go against regular season form.

More ways to enjoy March Madness finals betting

Of course, there’s the chance that the championship game might be such a one-sided affair that you won’t get much value from your money line bets. In which case, try some of these other ways to bet on the big game:

  • Bet on the score: Lots of people will make final score predictions for March Madness. These are usually over under bets such as whether a game will have over or under 210.5 points scored. A great way to find extra value.
  • Prop bets: These are bets unrelated to the outcome of the game. For example, you might find a sportsbook with lots of player props bets for things like points, assists, rebounds and so on.
  • MVP bets: You could also try betting on which player will be nominated as MVP for the March Madness game.

Tips for making your own March Madness championship predictions

You should remember that our picks are just predictions and there is no way that anyone is going to know exactly what is going to happen in this year’s March Madness. Despite this, we think that the following tips are invaluable for betting on this tournament:

Look for value bets

This is where you think that the sportsbook has got their odds wrong. For example, many sportsbooks have Marquette at relatively long odds despite the fact that the team are just sixth-place in the NCAA rankings.

Time your bets carefully

Remember that the odds will be shifting throughout March Madness and so betting on a favorite to win the tournament early on might give you much better odds compared to betting on them later on.

Play it safe

Don’t fall into the trap of blindly betting on your favorite team without doing your research. This is because big upsets happen all of the time in March Madness. Instead, do your homework before each game and only wager with money that you don’t mind losing. 

Conclusion - All you need to make your own March Madness finals predictions

We’ve given you the perfect start for enjoying betting on March Madness with confidence. Not only have you seen our picks for who will do well in this college basketball tournament, but we’ve given you lots of tips you can use for coming up with your own surefire predictions.

Just remember that March Madness is hugely unpredictable and you should always bet with caution rather than emotion. Plus we’ll be keeping this guide updated so that you don’t have to look too far to get even more March Madness Finals picks.

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March Madness finals predictions FAQ

👍🏻How should I bet on the March Madness 2023 bracket?

Make sure that you read our March Madness finals predictions which will give you the lowdown on how you should be betting on the bracket. Not only will we reveal our picks for winning the tournament overall, but we’ll show you some great March Madness sleeper picks too. 

🔮Where can I get good March Madness bracket predictions?

We’ve created a dedicated guide that is packed full of all of the March Madness finals predictions you’ll ever need. Don’t forget that we can also point out which March Madness betting apps you should be downloading.

👀When is the March Madness 2023 bracket release date?

We can’t really give you our March Madness finals picks without telling you when the bracket release date is. So read our guide to see when you’ll be able to see what the bracket is and we’ll give you March Madness picks for every round.

💪Who’s at the top of the March Madness 2023 rankings?

Check out our March Madness finals picks where we pay close attention to the NCAA rankings to power our predictions. Plus we can reveal how the sportsbooks’ March Madness odds compare to these rankings to see if there are any value bets available. 

❓What is the March Madness 2023 schedule?

Take a look at our guide that gives you March Madness finals predictions for the whole of this tournament. This means showing you the full schedule and letting you know when you can finally start March Madness Final 4 gambling.

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