Elite Eight March Madness Betting: Baylor Bears Analysis and Odds vs. Arkansas
There was a point in the season when many thought the Baylor Bears might go through the regular season undefeated. And that would have set up one heck of a title game against Gonzaga, which remains unbeaten to this day.
That championship game might happen anyway. But unfortunately, it won’t be one where someone’s “0” has to go.
There is little doubt among observers that Baylor is the second-best team in the country. And the road got a little easier with a couple of upsets in this region.
Now Baylor plays for a spot in the Final Four as they take on the Arkansas Razorbacks in the South regional final.
It takes place at Lucas Oil Stadium at 9:57 PM ET on Monday night, with CBS televising it.
At BetOnline, Baylor is favored in the Elite Eight March Madness betting odds:
|Arkansas||+7½ (-110)||148½ (-110)||+295|
|Baylor||-7½ (-110)||148½ (-110)||-355|
And keep in mind that with Odds Boosters, you are going to be able to cash in on nice payouts on pre-selected parlays, every day of the week!
What slowed Baylor up
The Bears were sailing along with a 17-0 record when the COVID-19 virus came along. So they were not able to take the floor for about three weeks. When they came back they shot just 8-for-25 from three-point territory in a sluggish 77-72 victory over Iowa State, which was winless in Big 12 play.
Then they were beaten 71-58 by Kansas, which held them to 6-for-26 beyond the arc. This was significant, obviously, because Baylor is 40.8% from downtown, which is second-best in the nation. At the time of that loss, they were tops in that category.
They were also tripped up by Oklahoma State in the Big 12 tournament. But now they seem to have recovered, as back-to-back wins over Wisconsin and Villanova would seem to indicate. Or have they? Baylor has shot just 32% from three-point range in this tournament.
What else characterizes Baylor?
After making just three of 19 triples against Villanova, we’re not sure such long-range wizardry is reliable. But even if a slew of three-pointers can’t be expected, Scott Drew’s team has other things to hang its hat on.
For example, when they miss shots they can go get ’em. Baylor pulls down almost 37% of all available rebounds, and that ranks them sixth in the nation. They will have Arkansas on its toes whenever the ball goes up.
Another superlative about the Bears is that they know how to force turnovers. They are third in that category as well. Expect them to exert quite a bit of pressure, especially in the half-court.
Guys to watch
The thing about Baylor is that they bring some balanced offense to the table. For example, against Wisconsin, Jared Butler and Davion Mitchell both had 16 points, while 17 points were added by Matthew Mayer, an energetic 6-9 forward who mostly comes in off the bench.
You can expect that both Butler and Mitchell will be playing their trade in the NBA someday. And guards MaCio Teague and Adam Flagler are both among the top 35 players in the nation in Offensive Rating, as it is compiled by KenPom.
And don’t forget…..
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