The College Basketball season is fianlly here, and there is no better time than the present to review the latest March Madness odds. While the defending champs, UConn , opened as the betting favorite, there is a new favorite atop the National Championship odds board.
The Huskies odds to win March Madness are still among the leading contenders at (), but there are several teams with shorter odds, i.e., Kansas (), Duke (), and Purdue ().
NCAA Basketball March Madness odds are subject to change at any time, especially once the season gets underway. So, be sure to come back to this page for the latest March Madness odds!
2024 March Madness Betting Odds
*Odds as of today
It is not unusual to see the defending champions installed as the betting favorite to win the national championship when betting odds open. But it is also not unusual to see fans get behind the blue bloods causing their odds to rise to the top of betting boards.
At this time of year, it is not hard to find teams with value. Why? Preseason favorites rarely go on to win the national championship. Only one has done so since 2010; Baylor in 2021 at +800, but Gonzaga also had +800 odds in the preseason.
It’s tempting to go with one of the teams at or near the top of betting boards, but history has proven it is not wise to overlook anyone.
Odds Of Winning The NCAAM Championship: Best Bets
Plenty of things can happen and probably will over the course of the offseason that could alter the 2023-24 national championship picture. However, we are here to break down the current betting favorites to win March Madness.
It is clear that the Jayhawks are the best team in the country heading into the season. Not only is there a championship pedigree of this roster already, but they added some big names, and none bigger than Michigan transfer Hunter Dickinson.
He will join a talented freshman trio of Jamari McDowell, Johnny Furphy, and Elmarko Jackson in Lawrence this season, which helps cushion the blow of the departures from Grady Dick and Jalen Wilson.
Combine one of the most talented rosters in the country with one of the best coaches ever in Bill Self, and Kansas is in a good spot to win its fifth National Championship, and second in the last three seasons.
The Blue Devils had some growing pains in the first year without Coach K at the helm. But they got it together in time to become a contender in the eyes of many for the 2023 title. With Mark Mitchell and Tyrese Proctor expected to come back and a talented recruiting class coming in, hopes are understandably high for Jon Scheyer’s second season.
They may not be as experienced as Kansas, but the Blue Devils, as always, enter the season with one of the most talented rosters in the country.
The Boilermakers are coming off an embarrassing end to the season last year, becoming the second No. 1 seed to lose to a No. 16 seed in the Match Madness tournament. They are basically bringing back everyone, including Fletcher Loyer and the reigning Naismith College Player of the Year, Zach Edey.
They come in with experience and a bad taste in their mouths. Purdue should once again be one fo the top teams in the country and will compete for the National Championship.
It is getting harder to get behind the Wildcats to win a national championship since Kentucky has failed to make it to the second weekend of the tournament since 2019. But with the recruiting class John Calipari is bringing in (four top-ten recruits), if he can get the team to gel the championship drought may end.
Odds To Win 2023-24 National Championship: Longshots and Value Bets
While long shots may rarely emerge and go on to win the national championship in other sports, it is not unusual to see that happen in men’s college basketball. UConn is proof of that; they had +8000 preseason odds prior to winning the 2023 National Championship, +6500 prior to winning in 2014, and +4000 in 2011.
For that reason and considering how well some smaller schools performed in the 2023 March Madness Tournament, we like these teams as potential long shots to win the national championship next year:
They’ve come close several times in recent years, making it to the Elite Eight in the last two tournaments. They just can’t seem to get over the hump. But with the talent that the Bulldogs have coming in every year, there is no reason to doubt whether Gonzaga will have a championship-caliber team next season.
The Owls are a relative newcomer to the spotlight, but they are expected to bring back many of the pieces they had in 2023 next year. Time will tell if they do, but considering how well they played throughout the 2023 NCAAM Tournament, there is certainly value in the Owls at
San Diego State ()
The 2023 runner-up definitely deserves some consideration as bettors start to think about 2024. With the exception of UConn, their defense proved itself to be championship-caliber. But the Aztecs need to become better at generating offense. Yes, defense wins championships, but not if the offense can’t score. At there is value to the Aztecs, but they need to make some moves in the offseason for it to remain.
Other teams worth considering include:
- Maryland ()
- Michigan State
- Tennessee ()
- Creighton ()
- Xavier ()
Best Sports Betting Apps For NCAA Basketball Odds 2024
How can you find the best sports betting apps for March Madness? Who you can bet with will depend on who operates in your state and the restrictions (if any) on college betting in your state. This is where seven of the best betting apps operating in the U.S. are licensed to take bets and their current bonus offer:
- DraftKings: AZ, CO, CT, IL, IN, IA, KS, LA, MD, MI, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, TN, VA, WV & WY
- BetMGM: AZ, CO, DC, IL, IN, IA, KS, LA, MD, MI, MS, NJ, OH, NV, NY, PA, TN, VA, WV & WY
Bonus Offer: Up to $1,000 paid back in Bonus Bets. *All States except DC, MA, MS, NY & ON. Promo Code: TODAY
- Caesars: AZ, CO, IN, IA, IL, KS, LA, MD, MI, NJ, NY, OH, PA, TN, VA & WV
- Bonus Offer: Caesars Sportsbook to get up to $1,250 + 1000 Tier Credits + 1000 Reward Credits®, Promo Code: TODAY1000
- BetRivers: AZ, CO, IL, IN, IA, KS, LA, MI, NY, PA, WV & VA, CT & NJ
Bonus Offer: 2nd Chance Bet Up to $500 ($100 max in NY)
- FanDuel: AZ, CO, CT, IL, IN, IA, LA, MI, NJ, NY, PA, TN, VA, WV, WY
- PointsBet: CO, IL, IN, IA, KS, LA, MD, MI, NJ, NY, OH, PA, VA & WV
Bonus Offer: Get up to $250 in 2nd Chance Bet Credits
The online marketplace for March Madness odds vary, sometimes wildly, and fluctuate regularly, putting those who have done their homework in the best positions to capitalize on March Madness bracket predictions. Incentives are aplenty, too.
March Madness Odds: Line Movement & Implied Probability to Win
Implied probabilities are calculated using odds offered by DraftKings.
Last Updated: PDT.
Why Do March Madness Betting Lines Move?
The betting lines for a game can move for a number of reasons. One or both teams could have key players ruled out. But the primary reason why a line will move is that a significant amount of money has been placed on one side of the bet. In such a situation, should that side of the bet win, the house loses. So, to protect themselves, sportsbooks will adjust the odds to encourage betting on the other side of the line.
Unexpected line movements can happen when a lot of money is placed on one side of a bet by a small number of big bettors (sharps).
When it comes to futures odds, i.e, NCAAM Championship odds, the same principle applies. But during the tournament, odds will move because there are fewer teams alive, and each remaining team has a better chance of winning March Madness simply because they are still playing.
What is Implied Probability?
Implied probability refers to the likelihood of a particular outcome based on the odds. For example, DraftKings list UConn at +1400 odds to win the 2024 NCAAM Championship. Those odds translate to a 6.67% implied probability Connecticut will repeat as NCAAM champions in 2024.
To figure out the implied probability for a wager, you can use our implied probability calculator.
How To Bet On March Madness
Bettors wanting to put money down on March Madness have several options they can choose from, including the following:
- Point Spread: When you bet the point spread, you are betting n the margin of victory of the game. The spread for underdogs will be listed with a (+); the number gets added to the team’s final score. If that number is higher than the other team’s score, you win your bet. When you bet on the favorite, the March Madness spreads are listed with a (-) and get subtracted from the final score.
- Moneyline: Betting on the moneyline is betting for one team to win straight up over the other. The number listed tells you how much you stand to win if you pick the winner.
- Total: Sportsbooks will include a number representing the projected total score. Bettors can bet on whether the actual total score will be over or under that number.
- Parlay: Parlays are great if you want the chance to win more money. Rather than place several individual bets, you place one bet comprised of several individual bets called legs. The more legs in your parlay, the more you stand to win. However, miss one leg and you lose the bet.
- Prop Bets: Also referred to as proposition bets, prop bets are wagers on the occurrence or non-occurrence of an event other than the outcome of the game. Some states have restrictions on prop bets for college events like March Madness.
- Futures: Futures are bets you can make on something that will occur in the future. Betting on who will win the national championship is the most common; other examples include betting on conference winners or betting on whether a team will make the Final Four.
Types Of March Madness 2024 Bets Available All Season
Online sportsbooks will offer odds (futures) for the NCAAM and NCAAW National Championship throughout the season. But some will offer additional ways bettors can put money on March Madness. The following are the types of March Madness bets bettors can find at sportsbooks throughout the NCAA season until the final matchup is determined:
- Outright Winner: The simplest bet has players wagering on the team that wins the Championship. And, given the current Super Bowl odds, any winning bet would pay out a huge ROI (between +500 to > +10,000).
It is also not unusual to see odds for the exact matchup and the exact outcome once the Tournament gets underway. When it gets closer to Tournament time, many sportsbooks will offer odds on teams to make the Final Four, too.
Read More: Best College Basketball Betting Sites
This list is also not a comprehensive list. Sportsbooks will often try to get creative and offer odds on a market the competition does not. With an event like March Madness, the options are truly endless.
March Madness Odds: History And Betting Tips
The following table contains the odds (via SportsOddsHistory.com) for the last 13 NCAAM Championship winners along with who the favorites were in the preseason and prior to Round 1 of the Tournament:
|Year||NCAAM Champion||Odds (Preseason/Prior Rd 1)||Favorite (Preseason)||Odds||Favorite (Prior Rd 1)||Odds|
|2023||Connecticut (31-8)||+8000/+1600||Gonzaga/North Carolina||+900/+900||Houston||+500|
|2017||North Carolina (33-7)||+1900/+535||Duke||+335||North Carolina||+535|
|2012||Kentucky (38-2)||+550/+185||North Carolina||+350||Kentucky||+185|
Here are a few trends that could be helpful for bettors as they decide on who to wager on:
- No team seeded from No. 9 to 16 has ever made the championship game.
- No. 1 seeds have a 25% chance of making the Finals and a 16% chance of winning.
- No. 2 seeds have a 20.8% chance of making the Finals and a 9% chance of winning.
- No. 3 seeds have an 11.8% chance of making the Finals and a 7.6% chance of winning.
- The highest seed to win is No. 8 (Villanova in 1985).
March Madness Odds: Restrictions On College Sports
While March Madness is insanely popular, some states have had concerns over the integrity of the game and athletes when it comes to sports betting. As a result, some states have imposed restrictions on betting on college sports:
- New Jersey: Betting is prohibited on college teams from New Jersey or on college sports events held in New Jersey.
- Illinois: Betting is prohibited on games involving teams from in-state colleges and universities; prop betting and in-play prop betting are also banned.
- Colorado: Betting on games involving teams from Colorado is legal, but bets on player performance are not (player prop bets). Sorry, Buffalo fans– no college bowl props the next time C.U. makes a bowl game.
- Tennessee: Betting on games involving teams from Tennessee is legal, but bets on player performance (player prop bets) and live prop betting are not. That means no college bowl live betting on the Volunteers.
- Virginia: Betting is prohibited on games involving teams from in-state colleges and universities; no prop bets or in-play betting.
- New Hampshire: Betting is prohibited on games involving teams from in-state colleges and universities.
- New York: Betting is prohibited on collegiate sports events held in-state and on games/events involving teams from New York.
- Oregon: Betting on college sports via the state-run app is prohibited, but you can bet on them at a tribal casino that offers sports betting.
- Rhode Island: Betting is prohibited on college teams from Rhode Island and on events held in-state.
- Washington DC: Betting is prohibited on games involving teams from in-state colleges and universities.
- Arizona: No prop bets allowed, player or team.
- Connecticut: Betting is prohibited on games involving in-state colleges and universities.
- Illinois: Player prop bets on players from in-state teams are banned.
- Iowa: No player props on players from in-state teams.
March Madness Odds FAQ
Bookmakers concoct their own futures, and game spreads and totals odds, then adjust those figures according to the market. If a flow of limited wagers comes in heavy on one team, expect the odds on that team to decrease and odds on other teams to increase, to attract money elsewhere, and, ultimately, to limit the book’s exposure and liability.
KenPom serves as the odds foundation for many sportsbooks, to which they themselves will admit, but they also factor their own oddsmakers’ power ratings and experiences, and an innate feel for the games and public appetite.
March Madness odds can be found on websites for many of the Vegas retail sportsbooks. Plus, online sportsbook apps that are legal in Nevada also carry odds.
Handicappers, and some of their ideas and selections, can be found on social media, and there are some very wise voices on other platforms, like the Vegas Stats and Information Network (VSiN) whose flagship voice is of the legendary broadcaster, Brent Musburger.
Although it requires many years to perfect, it is rewarding to do your own homework. Excellent resources include teamrankings.com and KenPom’s excellent databases, whose annual fee of $20 is a pittance. Those can be invaluable in helping bettors form their own power ratings and edges, leading to anomalies that can sometimes be glaring when comparing what a line should be to what’s on the big board in the books.
The NCAA pegs the odds of picking all 63 games of the NCAA Tournament correctly at 1 in 9.223 quintillion, a quintillion being one billion billion—a number requiring six commas. The debate, though, is ongoing, as a Duke professor says it’s closer to 1 in 1.4 trillion, and one at DePaul pins it at 1 in 128 billion. Hey, what’s a comma or two?
Many do, but each property’s offerings can vary. In many physical books in Vegas, adjusted in-game odds are available during the two or three minutes of commercial breaks—better wear your track shoes—and at the longer halftime breaks. Online offerings can be instantaneous, but a poor internet connection and heavy traffic can affect those transactions.