Baylor Vs. Syracuse Predictions | March Madness Round 1 Betting
8 Baylor Bears Vs. 9 Syracuse Orange Betting Preview
It’s been a rocky season for coach Jim Boeheim and the Syracuse Orange. But when they face the Baylor Bears in the first round of the 2019 March Madness tournament, they will open as favorites, trying to avoid early elimination. The March Madness betting line opened with the Orange as favorites by 1.5-points when the bracket dropped. Around Monday afternoon it moved up to 3-points, and now it has settled at 2-points. It wouldn’t be surprised if the line closes at 2.5-points with some money coming on Baylor’s side.
Neither of these two teams had a particularly smooth season. Syracuse’s highlight in the regular season was beating the Duke Blue Devils as visitors back in January. They played a monster game against Duke and built on it in the next few weeks. Still, the Orange would close the season with a little shaky confidence, losing five of their last seven games straight up. Syracuse’s implied probability of winning this game and advancing is about 57%. Is that good enough to cover the spread as 2-point favorites? I would say there is a good chance the betting sites haven’t valued the Orange as they should. They are not tournament champion worthy at +16000 to win it all, but an early elimination would definitely be a surprise.
If Syracuse’s confidence has been low over the last few weeks, Baylor’s is laying down on the floor. The Bears have lost four games in a row entering the tournament, with straight up losses to Kansas State, Oklahoma State, Kansas, and Iowa State. If we are fair, Baylor overachieved this season. The expectations were not high for the program in 2019, and just by reaching March Madness, their job is pretty much done. The Bears are +21000 to win the tournament. That’s beyond a long shot.
Baylor’s implied probability of upsetting Syracuse is around 46%. That’s close to a 50-50 shot, meaning the spread has a lot of value for the betting sites. If you are going to make a bet over the Bears, wait until the last minute to see if the March Madness odds reach +2.5 for the dogs. We are looking to take advantage of that half of a point. If the line drops and you still like Baylor, then there is more value on taking them in the money line to win straight up. For my money, I’m going to grab Syracuse to win and advance while covering the 2-point spread. Tournament experience is a big deal. The Orange have in coach Jim Boeheim a mastermind during the Madness, especially in the early stages of the tournament.
Syracuse is a team that can catch fire and find a confidence boost with a good performance in the early rounds. Keep that in mind for the second round. What’s the play? Syracuse -2.
Spread: Syracuse -2
Money line: Baylor +115 vs Syracuse -135
Game Total: 131
Date: Thursday, March 21, 2019
Game time: 8:57 PM ET
Venue: Vivint Smart Home Arena, Salt Lake City, UT
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