NCAA Tournament Midwest Region Betting Breakdown

Here we are at the final installment of our regional breakdowns for the NCAA tournament.

We’ve already broken that down west, east and South, Now it’s time to focus on the Midwest region. Kansas (+200) is the top ranked in the region and the favorite to reach New Orleans.

Closely followed by No. 2 Auburn (+260) and No. 5 Iowa (+375) before a big descent to No. 3 Wisconsin (12/1) and No. 4 Providence (25/1).

As we wrap up our regional previews, here are my ratings of the best value, favorites to avoid, and a pick to move forward.

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Value Pick: No. 2 Auburn Tigers (+260)

To be honest I don’t see much value in this region compared to the other three.

However, I promised a pick and her Auburn for the simple reason that she should make her way to the regional finals. While I ranked the Tigers as the weakest two seeds overall, I also ranked Wisconsin as the weakest three seeds overall. Additionally, all of the other realistic contenders in Auburn’s half of the section — No. 6 LSU, No. 7 USC and No. 10 Miami — don’t have the talent of a regional finals team.

However, there are quite a few positives associated with this Auburn roster. It ranks 10th in Adjusted Efficiency Margin and has the sixth best Adjusted Defense Efficiency in the tournament.

Auburn Tigers' Devan Cambridge #35, Dylan Cardwell #44 and mascot Aubie celebrate after defeating the Alabama Crimson Tide.
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Michael Chang

It also racked up a string of impressive victories this season — one each against Kentucky and LSU, and two against Alabama — and had a top-20 schedule among tournament teams, so we know Auburn is battle-hardened.

However, the end of the season was less than inspiring. The Tigers have lost four games in their last nine games. However, my lack of trust in other sites leads me to believe that this is a safe option that could provide a hedging opportunity that makes it the best “value”.

Hands Off: No. 3 Wisconsin Badgers (12/1)

Some bettors might be drawn to a high price for a top 3 seed, but I believe there is a reason for the price.

There is a possibility that the Badgers will be eliminated in their opening round matchup against Colgate, who ranks sixth in the tournament field in terms of effective field goal percentage. For context, the Badgers are 67th in the same category.

Additionally, Wisconsin ranks 33rd in adjusted efficiency margin (according to and enters the tournament as the fourth luckiest team in the field.

Back-to-back losses to Nebraska and Michigan State to close out the season won’t inspire much confidence either. After all, Big Ten player of the year Johnny Davis could still be feeling the effects of an ankle injury. Unless he’s fully healthy, I can’t imagine Wisconsin doing better than the regional semifinals.

Johnny Davis (1) of Wisconsin shoots against Caleb McConnell (22) of Rutgers during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, February 12, 2022 in Madison, Wisconsin.
Johnny Davis

While the price may be tempting, stay away from Wisconsin and let it prove it to you.

Pick to Advance – #1 Kansas (+200)

Ultimately, I think the winner of a theoretical regional semifinal between Kansas and Iowa goes to New Orleans, but I just trust the Jayhawks that much more.

Head coach Bill Self’s team ranks sixth in adjusted efficiency margin while also playing the third-toughest schedule in the nation. Well, as mentioned before, the committee gave them a region with what I considered to be the weakest two, three and four seeds.

Betting on March Madness 2022?

The only potential stumbling block is the Hawkeyes. Iowa will likely match Kansas’ pace and try to run. If they get hot, Iowa can bet anyone. However, it also has the 41st best adjusted defensive efficiency in the tournament, and I don’t think that’s sustainable, especially against a Kansas offense that ranks sixth in adjusted offense efficiency.

Finally, based on regional composition, I believe there is an implied probability advantage with Kansas. I should have closer to its price. to +145, so I’m happy to give it a try at +200. NCAA Tournament Midwest Region Betting Breakdown


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