2 Saturday NCAA Elite 8 Picks in the O'Sullivan, Baller Challenge – Houston vs Villanova, Arkansas vs Duke

Houston Cougars vs. Villanova Wildcats, 6:09 pm Eastern, Arkansas Razorbacks vs. Duke Blue Devils, 8:49 pm.
It's a battle of Wildcats and Cougars in the Elite 8.
It's a battle of Wildcats and Cougars in the Elite 8.@NovaMBB on Twitter

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O'Sullivan NCAA Tournament: 35-28, -$5.18

Baller NCAA Tournament: 32-30, -$28.90

Follow us on Twitter: @OSullyPicks, @Fats_Baller

(Standing Caveat: The universe is chaotic. Life is unpredictable. Things happen. Like injuries. And COVID protocols. In following Seattle O’Sullivan’s betting advice, be advised that you should always monitor your bets during the day to make certain unforeseen things have not occurred which might change your wagering opinion. Thank you.)

Friday Results

Saint Peter’s Peacocks vs. Purdue Boilermakers, 7:09 pm Eastern

O'Sullivan's Pick: Saint Peter’s +12.5 (-105), bet $10.50 to win $10

WIN: Saint Peter's wins 67-64, +$10

Baller's Pick: Saint Peter’s +12.5 (-110), bet $11 to win $10

WIN: Saint Peter's wins 67-64, +$10


Providence Friars vs. Kansas Jayhawks, 7:29 pm Eastern

O'Sullivan's Pick: Kansas -7 (-110), bet $11 to win $10

LOSS: Kansas does not cover, wins 66-61, -$11

Baller's Pick: Kansas -7.5 (-110), bet $11 to win $10

LOSS: Kansas does not cover, wins 66-61, -$11


North Carolina Tar Heels vs. UCLA Bruins, 9:39 pm Eastern

O'Sullivan's Pick: North Carolina +2.5 (-110), bet $11 to win $10; North Carolina +120, bet $5 to win $6

WIN: North Carolina covers, winning 73-66, +$10

WIN: North Carolina wins 73-66, +$6

Baller's Pick: North Carolina +2 (-110), bet $11 to win $10

WIN: North Carolina covers, winning 73-66, +$10


Iowa State Cyclones vs. Miami Hurricanes, 9:59 pm Eastern

O'Sullivan's Pick: Miami -140, bet $14 to win $10

WIN: Miami wins 70-56, +$10

Baller's Picks: Iowa St. +2.5 (-110), bet $11 to win $10; Game Under 133 (-110) bet $11 to win $10

LOSS: Iowa St. doesn't cover, Miami wins 70-56, -$11

WIN: Miami wins 70-56 = 126, Game under 133, +$10

Saturday Elite 8 Picks

Houston Cougars vs. Villanova Wildcats, 6:09 pm Eastern

O'Sullivan's Pick: Villanova +2 (+100), bet $10 to win $10

Baller's Pick: Villanova +2.5 (-110), bet $11 to win $10

O'Sullivan: Houston is ranked nine spots ahead of Villanova in the KenPom Rankings, and have a 10th-ranked adjusted defense to Villanova’s 24th. But even though I’ve been wrong about the Cougars for two weeks now, I continue to think they’re just a little scattered and don’t quite take care of the basketball as much as they should. This has been fine against teams that make mistakes too – but Villanova doesn’t seem to make mistakes. The Wildcats are just…sturdy. Villanova’s backcourt of Justin Moore, Collin Gillespie, and Caleb Daniels are just….steady. They will not be afraid of Houston’s athleticism, they will take care of the basketball, and they will stay in this game. I think this is the game where Houston’s injuries come back to haunt them. I know I’ve been saying that; don’t care. I’m saying it again.

Baller: I know Houston plays defense, but Villanova runs an offense which will neutralize some of Houston's athleticism – and Villanova also plays defense.

Arkansas Razorbacks vs. Duke Blue Devils, 8:49 pm Eastern

O'Sullivan's Pick: Duke -170, bet $20 to win $11.76

Baller's Pick: Game Under 147.5 (-110) $11 to win $10

O'Sullivan: It’s common wisdom that by the end of a college basketball season, the freshmen “aren’t really freshmen anymore.” Well, the last two games for Duke in this tournament have made their freshman full-on fifth-year seniors. Battles against Michigan State and Texas Tech have given the Blue Devils “opportunities for growth,” and going up against Arkansas, they are used to both the pressure of the tournament and the pressure of playing in Coach K’s last season. Arkansas knocked off top-seed Gonzaga on Thursday night, and deserve credit for that. But while they’re athletic and frenetic, they make mistakes as much as they make great plays. Razorback JD Notae made a bunch of clutch plays…and a bunch of ill-advised choices. I think if any team is likely to press too hard tonight and allow their usual pace to actually take them out of rhythm, it’s Arkansas. Duke’s adjusted-offense is 2nd in the country, and in the second half of the Texas Tech game, their shooting was starting to find the hoop. I think they manage the Razorback’s hectic play with newfound poise, and pull out a close one.

Baller: I'm not betting a -170 moneyline and the 4-point spread has me in a quandary. However, I do think both teams will play defense and there may be a little tightness, so I'll go with the Under.

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