Arizona NCAA Tournament Odds
Posted by Ryan James
March 24th, 2014
The Arizona Wildcats were a favorite during the regular season to win the 2014 NCAA Tournament at 10/1 odds. Arizona has undoubtedly exceeded my expectations by making it to the Sweet 16, but I would argue they had one of the easiest paths of the remaining teams in the field. Arizona boasts the No. 5 ranked scoring defense in the country currently allowing a mere 58.3 points per game. They were also the No. 1 ranked team in the country for over seven weeks this season. The 6/1 odds are probably a fair valuation of the Wildcats chances to win the tournament. They should easily get past San Diego State for a trip to the Elite 8, and for that reason they are probably worth a look.
Updated Odds: 6/1
February 20th, 2014
Last year the Wildcats made in exit in the Sweet 16 when they lost by three points to Ohio State. Arizona picked up wins over Belmont and Harvard to get to that point. Following that loss they were listed with 15/1 odds to win the 2014 NCAA Tournament. By the start of the season that number had crept up to 18/1, but the Wildcat’s impressive run to open the season saw that number drop dramatically in December. With an undefeated record, Arizona’s odds have been as low as 7/1 for a tournament championship this season.
Arizona will probably come into the NCAA Tournament as a No. 2 seed. I would argue they are probably not worthy of such a high seeding, but after the top four or five teams it is truly anyone’s game. Syracuse, Florida, Duke, Kansas and Wichita State can all make a claim to be seated higher than the Wildcats. If Arizona suffers another pair of losses before selection Sunday I can see them being listed as low as a No. 3 seed.
I think Arizona is a bad bet to win a National Championship this year. Their 10/1 odds simply do not pay well enough to make the Wildcats a value play. Arizona has only faced one opponent that was ranked at the time of play. The conference features several good teams, but none that are great. I think the weak schedule has the Wildcats overvalued. If we had seen Arizona play six or seven ranked opponents this year it would be a lot easier to have confidence in the Wildcats going into the tournament, but the fact that they have been the best of the mediocre makes them an easy team to stay away from.
Arizona NCAA Tournament Odds: 10/1