Just about every team in the East Region of the 2022 March Madness Tournament is a threat to win in the group. From powerhouses like defending champion Baylor, Kentucky, North Carolina, and UCLA to strong mid-major contenders in Murray State and Saint Mary’s, there’s a ton of excitement to be had in the wide array of possible matchups ahead.
Nitrobetting is ready to dish out some timely assists to our bettors all throughout the 2022 March Madness season. This time, we’ve come up with three bold predictions for the East Region of the national tournament, as well as the NCAAB odds to win the national title for several of the teams from this stacked group.
3 Big 2022 March Madness Betting Predictions for the East Region
Baylor Will Not Repeat as Champions
Top-seeded Baylor should have no problem escaping from its first-round matchup against Norfolk State. However, the Bears, who are (+1,200) favorites to win back-to-back national titles, are in for a rough ride with how the 2022 national tournament’s bracket panned out.
Waiting in the second round for Baylor is either No. 8 seed North Carolina or No. 9 seed Marquette; the former being an annual contender at the Big Dance and the latter being revitalized thanks to famed head coach Shaka Smart’s debut season for the Golden Eagles. However, we predict that the Bears will be knocked out of the tournament in the Sweet 16 round to the team we have as the eventual winners from the East Region.
Murray State Knocks Out Kentucky in the Second Round
John Calipari and the second-seeded Kentucky Wildcats actually have better odds to win than Baylor at (+900). This season’s squad is one of the most-experienced rosters that Calipari has had to work with in recent memory to give the Wildcats plenty of credibility heading into the Big Dance; not to mention arguably the best big man in the entire tournament is Oscar Tshiebwe (17.0 PPG, 15.1 RPG, 60.2 FG%).
However, waiting in the wings of the second round are the Murray State Racers (+10,000), who finished as the No. 19 team in the country in the polls and have won 20 straight games en route to capturing the Ohio Valley Conference title. Murray State, a top-40 offensive and defensive unit per KenPom, has Cinderella potential written all over it and Kentucky is in for a shocker. That’s especially considering that the Wildcats came up short of winning the SEC title and had just the second-best record in the conference during the regular season.
UCLA Emerges as the Beast of the East
As we’d recall, the UCLA Bruins had a magical and exciting run to the Final Four last season. This time around, head coach Mick Cronin and the boys from Westwood are back for another long run as All five of UCLA’s starters from last year’s campaign are ready for another wicked dance at the ball.
In turn, the fourth-seeded Bruins have decent odds at (+1,600) to win the national title to date. The standout from last year’s tournament, Johnny Juzang, is still UCLA’s top scorer averaging 16 points per game. However, Jaime Jaquez Jr. has recently given the Bruins another potent scoring option heading into the Big Dance, as Jaquez averaged 23 points over the last five games. UCLA could very well face Baylor in the Sweet 16 and we have the Bruins upsetting the reigning champs to reach the Final Four stage for the second straight year.
This is just one of the many sports betting guides that you can read here at Nitrobetting news. Stay tuned for more NCAAB game previews and articles and don’t forget to check out the latest Basketball betting odds on the sportsbook.
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