Ex‘seed’ing expectations

Mar 22, 2005 8:56 AM

With seven of the top 16 seeds going down after the first weekend of March Madness, one wonders if the favorites will make a stand en route to the Final Four.

If a Cinderella emerges next week in St. Louis, the odds tend to favor the lucky winner to emerge from Albuquerque. That group has Washington and Louisville battling to see which should have been seeded No. 1. It’s the best game on the board Thursday, listed as a pick’em at Station Casinos.

The Vermont fan was in hog heaven, as were many of the bettors who sided with the Catamounts as a nine-point dog against Syracuse. And, Bucknell provided even more thrills with its stunning win over Kansas — arguably the most overrated team in the field of 64.

Last week our basketball guru David Stratton was a perfect 7-0, taking all the underdogs. Smart man, that Stratto. This corner came through with a 5-2 mark, including the Bucknell matchup.

The betting didn’t go so well, with two of my choices in Round 2 (Bucknell and Nevada) each failing to cover by half a point on my tickets. The real burn was that the Bucknell line went up to 9½ against Wisconsin. I had the Bucks at 8½.

Oh well, it’s over and done. On to this week. Here are the ones I like.

OKIE ST PK over Arizona: These Cowboys are a second half team and will have too many rebounders for Cameron Frye to handle. Like OSU vs. Illinois.

VILLANOVA +10 over N.Carolina: Tar Heels have to fight karma. Nova’s famed upset of Georgetown was 20 years ago. Plus Syracuse site is Big East turf.

KENTUCKY —5 over Utah: Just can’t see this Utah team, even with the giant Bogut, doing any better than the other 88 Utes teams that lost to Big Blue.

ILLINOIS -10½ over Wis-Milwaukee: Chicago site makes this basically a home game for Illini. Just too much speed for UW-Milwaukee to overcome.