Morning Coffee: UCONN a heavy favourite to win it all entering Final Four
The Florida Atlantic men’s basketball team entered March Madness without a single NCAA Tournament win.
Now the Owls are two wins away from clinching a national championship.
Florida Atlantic was 200-to-1 to win the men’s title at FanDuel prior to Selection Sunday.
After becoming the third nine-seed to reach the Final Four since seeding began in 1979, FAU is all the way down to +550 to win it all this morning.
While the Owls still have the longest odds to win the title of the remaining contenders, the Owls aren’t the only surprise team to reach the Final Four.
In fact, the UCONN Huskies are the only team still standing that ranked among the top-15 contenders based on the odds to win the national championship at FanDuel prior to the Round of 64.
This is the Morning Coffee for Monday March 27, 2023.
UCONN a heavy favourite to win it all entering Final Four
UCONN was 20-to-1 to win the national championship at FanDuel once the field was set for the NCAA tournament.
San Diego State was 75-to-1 to win the title. Miami was 100-to-1.
Florida Atlantic was 200-to-1 prior to Selection Sunday and was cut to 130-to-1 prior to the Round of 64.
THE HISTORIC RUN FOR FLORIDA ATLANTIC CONTINUES‼️ pic.twitter.com/L4vT9meqr6— ESPN (@espn) March 26, 2023
After reaching the Final Four for the first time since they won the national championship in 2014, UCONN is considered the heavy favourite to win it all again at -130.
The Huskies are the 10th team ever to win each of their first four NCAA tournament games by 15+ points.
After beating Gonzaga by 28 points in the Elite Eight, UCONN opened as a 5.5-point favourite versus Miami.
For the first time in NCAA Tournament history, the Final Four will not feature a 1, 2, or 3 seed.— Field Yates (@FieldYates) March 26, 2023
UConn as a 4 is the highest-seeded team this year.
The Hurricanes are in the Final Four for the first time in school history thanks in large part to the brilliant play of senior guard Jordan Miller.
Jordan Miller. Pretty much perfect. pic.twitter.com/pWPe52daFz— Canes Men’s Basketball (@CanesHoops) March 27, 2023
Miami will need Miller to be at his absolute best in order to even have a shot to upset the Huskies as a +190 ML underdog.
Meanwhile, Florida Atlantic opened as a small underdog versus San Diego State at FanDuel.
ESPN says only 37 out of 20 million brackets picked the Final Four correctly— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) March 27, 2023
∙ San Diego State
∙ Florida Atlantic
That's .000185% 🤯
The Aztecs are the first Mountain West team to ever reach the Final Four, and their defence is the biggest reason for it.
San Diego State is 22-0 this season when they’ve allowed 65 points or fewer.
The Owls have topped that mark in three of their four tournament wins to date.
While they still have the longest odds to win the tournament at FanDuel, Florida Atlantic won’t be lacking in confidence as they head to the Final Four.
The plan that carried Florida Atlantic—a nine seed that didn’t have a basketball program until the 1988-89 season and had only played in one NCAA tournament before this year—to the Final Four in Houston.— Rustin Dodd (@rustindodd) March 26, 2023
“Perfect matchup … We are built for this moment.” pic.twitter.com/S1RC4g8YlO
Now we’ll see if they can finish what they started in a tournament that has featured plenty of surprises so far.
2023 Final Four in Houston:— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) March 26, 2023
5 seed (San Diego State)
9 seed (Florida Atlantic)
5 seed (Miami)
4 seed (UConn)
Nope. Just College Basketball. https://t.co/b1dnrZqg5T
March Madness underdogs have gone 20-40 straight up and 28-32 against the spread through the Elite Eight.
Meanwhile, the over is on an 11-5 run, but the under still leads 37-23 overall for the tournament.
Senators, Panthers set for clash with playoff implications
Best of luck to all fantasy hockey managers that are still competing for a championship ring.
Depending on your league settings, this is either the final or semifinal week.
Yours truly will be going head-to-head with Dr. Steven D’Orio’s squad – Stevie Y – in our championship week.
May the best team win.
While I’ll be focused on the fantasy implications, there are some major real world playoff implications on the line tonight in the Eastern Conference.
The Ottawa Senators are seven points back of the final playoff spot with nine games remaining.
"We're going to expect their best, it should be a good hockey game in our own building, hopefully we can have our fans behind us. They're fighting for their life just like us, that's what makes those games really good."— Ottawa Senators (@Senators) March 26, 2023
Derick Brassard on tomorrow's game against Florida pic.twitter.com/X0LDdAkKtJ
The Florida Panthers are three points back with nine games to go.
Those two teams will go head-to-head tonight in the nation’s capital in a showdown with major implications.
The Panthers are a -130 money line favourite.
Florida is +144 to make the playoffs at FanDuel. Ottawa is +2900 to make the playoffs.
"Obviously they're in the race too. To get our home fans back, to be on home ice it's going to be an exciting game. I know for sure the boys are going to come ready to play tomorrow."— Ottawa Senators (@Senators) March 26, 2023
Shane Pinto on the team excitement to be back at @CdnTireCtr for a big game against Florida pic.twitter.com/zkJhcpuXm9
Meanwhile, the New York Islanders are one point up on the Penguins with one more game played.
The Islanders, which are -320 to make the playoffs, are a +105 money line underdog for tonight’s clash with the New Jersey Devils.
NHL favourites went 4-1 on Sunday night.
Believe it or not, the lone upset was by the current favourite to win the Stanley Cup in the Boston Bruins.
The Bruins beat the Carolina Hurricanes 4-3 in overtime on the road as a +125 ML underdog at FanDuel.
Boston matched a franchise record for wins in a single season and improved to 57-11-5 with the victory.
The Bruins are down to +380 to win the Stanley Cup at FanDuel this morning.
A FanDuel best bet for Monday night in the NHL
The Colorado Avalanche are rounding into form heading into the final stretch of the regular season.
Despite several notable injuries, the defending Stanley Cup champs have won eight of their past nine games, and they’re expected to win another tonight in California.
Colorado is a -265 money line favourite at FanDuel for tonight’s game against the Anaheim Ducks.
While I lean towards the Avalanche -1.5, my FanDuel Best Bet is on the over 6.5 total goals in that contest.
Pavel Francouz is injured, which means that Colorado has been forced to lean heavily on Alexander Georgiev as their unquestioned No. 1 goaltender in recent weeks.
However, the Avalanche will be on the second half of a back-to-back, which means Jonas Johansson should get the nod versus Anaheim.
Johansson gave up four goals in a 5-4 win over Ottawa on March 16.
The Ducks should be good for two or three goals against him tonight, which means that Nathan MacKinnon shouldn’t have to do too much tonight for the over to hit.
Colorado has scored four or more goals in four of its past five wins.
I think the Avalanche win another high-scoring affair tonight.
Give me the over 6.5 goals as my FanDuel Best Bet for Monday night in the NHL.