Friday’s Sweet Sixteen Best Bets

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The back half of the Sweet 16 is here and we have the other eight teams after some good games yesterday. Now we turn our attention to some of the more shocking teams like Princeton making it here. Will they advance? Will Houston or Alabama be the next #1 see to fall? There is a lot of intrigue with these games already, but I think we should bet on a couple to make them more interesting for us.

Xavier vs. Texas, 9:45 ET

This could be the best game of the night, and we have it to end the evening. Xavier is one of the better Big East teams and played very well close to the end of the season. Before losing to Marquette in the Big East Championship, they were on a five-game winning streak. They weren’t without their struggles but they did go 6-6 against ranked opponents this season. The first two games of the tournament weren’t too difficult for them, but the game against Kennesaw State was probably closer than they would’ve liked. They disposed of Pittsburgh with relative ease. Texas arguably had the most strange of seasons for any of the remaining teams (although Alabama could look for this award too for certain reasons). After firing head coach Chris Beard for allegations, Texas was able to rebound and put together a really good campaign. They are currently on a six game winning streak and were able to handle business in the Big 12. The first game against Colgate went according to plan and Texas won with ease. The next game was a bit more of a struggle against Penn State, but they were able to escape with the victory. Here is how I think Texas wins this game – it will start with their defense. They’ve done a good job of limiting opponents scoring opportunities. They have a tendency to force opponents into bad shots and turnovers. The way they lose is if they cannot control the boards against a good rebounding Xavier team. Xavier’s defense isn’t at the level of Texas, and I don’t think they are as efficient offensively. I’m going to back Texas in this game at -4.5.

Miami vs. Houston, 7:15 ET

I was wrong about a few things in this tournament, one of the big things that I’ve been wrong about since the Conference Tournaments was Indiana. Miami was able to knock off the Hoosiers in their last game and it wasn’t really close. I thought that Miami was one of the better teams in the ACC but the problem with them has been consistency. You just get a random clunker of a game. They almost had one against Drake. You can’t afford to have those types of games against a team like Houston. Houston has been considered the best team in the country for a lot of the season and has looked every bit of it in their past two games. Aside from a surprising loss to Memphis in the conference tournament, they have won 15 of their past 16 games. Houston has a good combination of defense and offense where either can beat you on any given night. They force turnovers at a good rate and they also are able to grab a good portion of rebounds. This game should be tough if Miami shoots well. If Miami can get out into space they should rack up points and make this game very tough on Houston. I’ll take the points with Miami as I think this should be closer to a five-point game than the +7 I can get with the Hurricanes now.

For more sports betting information and plays, follow David on Twitter: @futureprez2024

Written by David Troy

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