The ACC is a perennial powerhouse when it comes to NCAA Basketball. Conference play gets underway in January. And as we inch towards March, who will stand out in the ACC?
The best online betting sites already have March Madness odds out, and Duke is the far and away favorite to win it all. Before you get into taking any action on the odds, you can check top sportsbooks like Bovada to see if they have any NCAA specials running.
Which ACC Teams Could Make the Final Four
Well, we just mentioned that the Duke Blue Devils are the favorites to cut the net at just +400 (4-1). But UNC is a strong favorite as well at +800. Then we have Vthe Virginia Cavaliers and the Virginia Tech Hokies coming in with a lot of value.
Duke Blue Devils
Not only is Duke ranked No. 1 in the AP polls, but the predictive algorithms at top analytical sites also have them sitting in the top spot. They have a 100% chance of getting a tournament bid, and an astounding 34% chance of standing on the dance floor longer than any other team.
This is perhaps the most highly-touted Duke team we have seen in a while. Draft pundits are already saying that the Blue Devils may make history with three Top-5 picks in the upcoming NBA Draft. At the time of writing this, Duke is 13-1 and sitting in first place in a field of talented ACC teams. The fact that Duke is at even money to enter the Final Four tells us a lot about their chances.
The Cavs are sitting in the AP Top-4, sandwiched between Gonzaga and Tennessee. But TeamRankings has Virginia rated at No. 5. So far this season they are averaging a prolific 73.9 points per game while holding opposing teams to just 51.5. They have a +22.5 point margin which is the 4th best in the entire NCAA.
As we move into tough conference play, we are going to see that margin of victory tight up quite a bit. But we should still expect at a high seeded at-large bid for the Cavaliers. Who knows, they could end up winning the ACC Tournament. They are +275 to make it to the Final Four (11-4).
If you are a betting person, the Hokies have some fantastic value this season. They are currently ranked No. 9 in the AP, but the prediction algorithms have them up at No. 5. Where the real value comes is that they are 40-1 to win the NCAAB Tournament and +1500 (15-1) to make it to the Final Four. This is a great value, considering that the algorithms love VT but the boys in Vegas are overlooking them.
North Carolina Tarheels
The Heels have a storied history in the Big Dance and their short, +180 odds of being one of the last four teams in the tournament shows us that the oddsmakers have a lot of faith in the experience of the Tarheel program.
I say this because UNC is ranked No. 12 in Associated Press, but then again… they are eight spots higher in the predictive rankings. The Tarheels have a legitimate shot at winning the ACC and getting a No. 1 seed. But even if they lose in the ACC Tournament, I don’t see them getting seeded any lower than No. 3 in any region and most likely they will be at least get in at No. 2. They have one of the most powerful offenses in the NCAA at 89.9 points per game. Their one weakness is on defense as they have allowed 72.8 per game. But they have also played some tough teams already: Gonzaga, Texas, UCLA, Michigan, Kentucky, NC State, and Stanford.
We could very well see two ACC teams in the Final Four again, which has only happened four times since 1988. In 1990 Duke and GT made it, in 1991, Duke and UNC made it, in 2004 GT and Duke made the Final Four, and in 2016, UNC and Syracuse made the cut.