March Madness Friday Betting Preview

The rest of the Round of 64 teams make their 2023 NCAA Tournament debuts on Friday, including the last No. 1 seed, the Purdue Boilermakers.

Purdue, the No. 1 seed from the East Region, opens the tournament against the Fairleigh Dickinson Knights. At Bovada Sportsbook, the Boilermakers are 23-point favorites.

Purdue heads into the tournament on a five-game winning streak but hasn’t been a good bet lately at 1-4 against the spread in its last five games and 2-7 ATS in the last nine. In the NCAA Tournament, the Boilermakers are only 4-3 straight up and ATS in their last seven games when favored.

The Knights easily won their First Four matchup against the Texas Southern Tigers 84-61 as 2.5-point underdogs. As an underdog, the Knights are 5-2 SU and 6-1 ATS in their last seven games. Including their First Four win, they’re 2-4 SU and 4-2 ATS in their last six NCAA Tournament games.

Saint Mary’s favored to snap VCU’s winning streak

No. 12 vs No. 5 seeds always seem to get hype in the opening round of the tournament and on Friday one garnering attention is in the West Region between the No. 12 VCU Rams and No. 5 Saint Mary’s Gaels. At Bovada, the Gaels are 4-point favorites.

Saint Mary’s has been hard on bettors lately at 1-4-1 ATS in its last six games. In the NCAA Tournament, the Gaels are 5-9 SU and ATS in their last 14 games, but when favored they’ve won three straight.

VCU is on a nine-game winning streak with a 7-2 record ATS. As an underdog this season, the Rams have won three straight, but in the tournament as an underdog they’ve lost six straight at 3-3 ATS.

In the 2017 NCAA Tournament, Saint Mary’s defeated VCU 85-77 as a 4-point favorite.

Miami has been a bad bet lately as chalk in tourney

Another 12 vs 5 matchup to watch Friday is in the Midwest where the No. 5 Miami Hurricanes face the No. 12 Drake Bulldogs as 2-point favorites.

Miami enters the tournament on a four-game ATS losing streak. When favored this season, the Hurricanes were 21-3 SU but only 11-12-1 ATS. In their last six tournament games when favored, they’re 1-5 ATS.

Drake is making only its fourth NCAA Tournament appearance since 1972. In three games during that span, the Bulldogs are 1-2 SU and 0-3 ATS. This season as an underdog, they were 2-3 SU and ATS.

Kent State has covered spread in 8 straight games

Sticking in the Midwest, another matchup garnering attention on Friday is the No. 4 Indiana Hoosiers vs the No. 13 Kent State Golden Flashes as 4-point favorites.

Indiana is 2-6 ATS in its last eight games. When favored this season, the Hoosiers were 19-5 SU and 12-11-1 ATS, which includes going 1-5 ATS in their last six.

Kent State has been a solid bet as an underdog this season with eight straight wins ATS. In the NCAA Tournament, the Golden Flashes have lost four straight at 1-3 ATS.

The Hoosiers and Golden Flashes met up in back-to-back tournaments in 2001 and 2002. In 2001, the Golden Flashes upset the Hoosiers 77-73 as 6.5-point underdogs. The Hoosiers returned the favor the following year with an 81-69 win as 3.5-point chalk.