One of the best things about March Madness is the upsets and unpredictability of the tournament. While it is impossible to see everything coming in college basketball this time of year, there are a few teams that have the makings of being a March Madness Cinderella.
There are certain principles most of us know are true when picking upsets. Do not pick a No. 16 seed to win, as they have never defeated a No. 1 seed. Pick at least one No. 12 seed to upset a No. 5 seed. According to NCAA.com, the No. 12 seeds win almost 36 percent of their games, a high rate for an underdog. This may tell you the seeds to identify, but it doesn’t narrow down the teams. That’s where we are here to help identify the teams that have the best chance of pulling off an upset.
According to NCAA.com, seeds 10-15 average about six upset wins in the first round every year. Before you go picking your six upsets, here is a word of caution. While we like these teams chances in the opening round, very few sleepers have a chance of making it past the Sweet 16. Picking the wrong upsets could end up costing you your bracket pool, so proceed with caution. Your Final Four picks should be full of familiar names, as the majority of upsets happen in the opening round of games. As the tournament progresses, there tends to be less and less Cinderellas.
What are you looking for in potential sleepers in this year’s tournament? A team does not need to have all these characteristics, but some combination could be the right formula for pulling off upsets in March. Look for strong guard play, and it is an added bonus if the team as NCAA tournament experience. A team that shoots it well from the three-point line has a chance to get hot in a couple March Madness games allowing them to pull off upsets.
Teams in smaller conferences that have won both their regular season and conference tournaments. This indicates they were a dominant mid-major team and displayed consistency throughout the season. Have they been tested with a strong non-conference schedule allowing them to play against teams in major conferences like they will face in the tournament? Finally, allow Vegas to be your friend, by identifying matchups with narrow point spreads.
The teams listed below are the sleepers I expect to make some noise in the tournament, and will be updated once the matchups are announced.
Here are the teams who will wear Cinderella’s slipper during the 2018 NCAA tournament.
March Madness Upset Picks 2018
GettyLoyola has a good chance to make some noise in the NCAA tournament.
Loyola heads into March Madness on a 10-game win streak, and did not lose in the month of February. Like most of the mid-major teams I like, they not only won the MVC regular season title, but followed it up with by winning the …read more