College basketball fans wagered more than $3 billion on March Madness last year, according to the American Gaming Association. This year’s NCAA Tournament promises to be even more popular among sports bettors. You can improve your chances of ending the tournament in profit by sourcing high-quality March Madness picks and predictions right here.

This guide will explain how to find March Madness expert picks. We will break down the key betting markets that NCAA picks focus on and explain how to read the odds. Our guide also highlights the best sportsbooks for March Madness betting. Read on to discover NCAA March Madness picks today.

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Top 10 Sportsbooks to Bet on March Madness 

Our experts have reviewed all the leading sportsbooks covering this year’s NCAA Tournament. They identified 10 high-quality, legit sports betting sites that offer appealing odds and always pay out on time. These are the top 10 betting sites for March Madness:

  1. BetOnline – Best Sportsbook for MM 2023
  2. Bovada – Widest Choice of March Madness Prop Bets
  3. BetUS – Provides Expert Picks via BetUS TV
  4. BC.Game – Best Crypto NCAAB Betting Site
  5. XBet – User-Friendly Site for Beginners
  6. Lucky Block – Feature-Rich Crypto Betting Site
  7. – Runs an Excellent March Madness Contest
  8. Everygame – Reputable Sportsbook for Basketball Fans
  9. MyBookie – Offers Competitive NCAAB Odds
  10. BUSR – Online Racebook with College Basketball Betting Section

March Madness Picks Per Round

Before breaking down the key betting markets and explaining where to find picks, we decided to provide our own pre-tournament March Madness predictions. We have highlighted the teams we expect to prevail in each round, and then predicted which team will win the National Championship.

These March Madness predictions might provide you with inspiration if you are compiling an NCAA Tournament bracket, either for fun or in a bid to win a cash prize. BetOnline, the best March Madness betting site in the business, is running a $250,000 bracket challenge, with $75,000 going to the player with the best bracket and prizes for another 999 entrants.

First Four

We expect Mississippi State to secure a narrow win against Pittsburgh when the First Four gets underway in Dayton on Tuesday. Arizona State has enough quality to beat Nevada, while Texas A&M-Corpus Christie should beat Missouri State and Fairleagh Dickinson should ease to victory over Texas Southern.

First Round

A few upsets always occur in the first round. These are our predictions:

  • Kent State (No. 13) to beat Indiana (No. 4)
  • Penn State (No. 10) to beat Texas A&M (No. 7)
  • Illinois (No.9) to beat Arkansas (No. 8)
  • VCU (No. 12) to beat Saint Mary’s (No.5)
  • West Virginia (No. 9) to beat Maryland (No.8)
  • Furman (No. 13) to beat Virginia (No. 4)

Second Round

Thirty-two teams will be left standing when the second round gets underway. We can see these teams advancing to the Sweet 16:

  • Houston
  • Miami
  • Xavier
  • Texas
  • Kansas
  • UConn
  • Gonzaga
  • UCLA
  • Alabama
  • Furman
  • Creighton
  • Arizona
  • Purdue
  • Duke
  • Kentucky
  • Marquette

Sweet 16

Houston will advance to the Elite Eight with ease, and Texas should edge its game against Xavier. Our projected bracket has UConn taking on Kansas in a highly anticipated March Madness Sweet 16 matchup. That would be close, with Kansas installed as the clear favorite, but UConn could clinch a narrow victory. We also expect UCLA to ease to victory over TCU.

Our bracket has Furman pulling off surprise by reaching the Sweet 16, but that will be the end of the road for the Paladins, who will be dismantled by Alabama. Arizona should advance at the expense of Creighton. We also see Purdue taking on Duke in a huge game, which Purdue should win. Marquette will be too strong for Kentucky.

Elite Eight

Things will really start to heat up in the March Madness Elite Eight. If our bracket pans out, we have four exciting matchups to look forward to, and these are our projections:

  • Houston to beat Texas
  • UCLA to beat UConn
  • Alabama to beat Arizona
  • Purdue to beat Marquette

Final Four

In the March Madness Final Four, we can see Purdue and UCLA reaching the National Championship game, leaving Houston and Alabama to crash out at the final hurdle.

National Championship

We have seen some experts predicting a Houston vs. Alabama National Championship game, but we are going with Purdue vs. UCLA. That would be a great game, and Zach Edey could ultimately make the difference, powering Purdue to the championship. They are currently priced at +1100 to win it, behind Houston and Alabama in the betting, and that looks tempting.

For more details on the upcoming NCAA Tournament, you can read our in-depth March Madness betting guide.

What are March Madness Picks?

Millions of Americans make predictions on the NCAA Tournament each year. They fall into three key categories:

  • Predictions on how a specific game will unfold.
  • Long-term predictions on the winner of the tournament.
  • Bracket predictions on the result of every single matchup during the tournament.

If you make correct predictions on this cultural phenomenon, you can earn a cash profit. It is important to use a reputable sportsbook that provides reliable payouts when making your predictions. The sites featured above are based offshore, which allows them to accept customers from across the United States, but it is perfectly legal for Americans to use them, and they all pay out.

At this time of year, you will find picks on the NCAA Tournament. Some handicappers give them away for free, whereas others sell picks. It is important to establish the credentials of a handicapper before considering the picks, and we also recommend conducting your own research.

Some sportsbooks even publish picks provided by freelance handicappers. For example, the image above is a screenshot taken from BetUS, one of our top March Madness betting sites. The picks were provided for free by Jim Fuller, a former newspaper reporter who was a Heisman Trophy voter for a decade.

Today’s March Madness Picks

This section will highlight daily picks from our experts on March Madness matchups. You can bookmark this page and return throughout the NCAA Tournament to find picks and analysis on key games.

As mentioned above, BetUS is another good source of college basketball betting picks. They are available in the news section, and handicappers also provide free picks via videos at BetUS TV. You can search YouTube and Twitter for picks and predictions too, but try to stick to the cappers that have proven their credentials in the long-term and always been transparent about their records.

March Madness Predictions for Betting Markets

Most college basketball betting picks focus on which team will cover the point spread. However, you will sometimes find moneyline picks, totals, props and futures, so keep reading to learn more about these popular betting options.

Moneyline Picks

A moneyline bet is a simple prediction on which team will win a March Madness game. The sportsbooks release odds on each team, and they tell you the potential profit available by betting on either of them.

If they start with a plus, it explains how much you need to risk in order to win $100. In the example below, a $135 bet on UCLA wins $100 if successful. When they start with a plus, the numbers highlight the profit available on a winning $100 bet. A $100 wager on Arizona would net $115.

Result Odds
UCLA -135
Arizona +115

Against the Spread Picks

This is the most common way to bet on an NCAA basketball game. The betting sites give the superior team (the moneyline favorite) a points handicap, which creates a spread. It allows them to offer similar betting odds (typically -110) on either team covering.

You can then predict which team will cover. Continuing with the example used above, you would expect UCLA to be the 2.5-point favorite in the point spread betting. A bet on UCLA -2.5 would require the Bruins to win by 3-plus points, whereas a wager on Arizona +2.5 would pay off if the Wildcats won or lost by up to 2 points.

Team/Player Odds
UCLA -2.5 -110
Arizona +2.5 -110

Totals Picks

This is a simple bet on the number of points the two teams will combine for during a March Madness matchup. The sportsbooks set a line, such as 129.5 points, and you can bet “over” and “under.”

Team/Player Odds
Over 129.5 Points -110
Under 129.5 Points -110

Prop Picks

Prop bets focus on game events, team performance stats or player performance stats. Examples might include the highest scoring half in an NCAAB game, the first team to reach 15 points, whether overtime will be required or over/under on the number of points, assists, rebounds, field goals, 3-point field goals, blocks or steals a player will record during the game.

Team/Player Odds
Jalen Wilson Over 19.5 Points -110
Drew Timme Uver 19.5 Points -110

Parlay Picks

Parlays combine two or more March Madness predictions to create a single, multi-legged bet with larger cumulative odds. For example:

  • Arkansas +9.5 vs. Gonzaga (-110)
  • Texas Tech to beat Duke (-115)
  • Villanova vs. Michigan – Over 135.5 points (-110)

Combined odds: +581

That means a $1 bet would net you a $5.81 profit if all three picks proved correct. That is a larger profit than you would gain by placing three separate wagers. Handicappers rarely give out parlay picks, but you can combine their picks to form a parlay of your own.

Futures Picks

These are long-term predictions on the NCAA Tournament. The most common futures bet is a prediction on which team will win the National Championship. However, you can also sometimes bet on a team to make the Final Four, and you may find additional markets too.

How to Use March Madness Betting Picks

Follow these steps to place a bet after sourcing predictions for March Madness that you trust:

Step 1: Find a Pick You Like

In the example below, the computer pick suggests betting on Dayton to cover a 2.5-point spread against VA, and it is also suggesting over 124.5 points. If you like one of those picks, or both, find a high-quality sportsbook with competitive odds on them.

Step 2: Create an NCAAB Betting Site Account

Click here to visit BetOnline, the best sports betting site for NCAA basketball fans. When you arrive, click the green “JOIN” to open the registration form. Fill in some simple personal information and submit the form.

Step 3: Make Your First Deposit

Click the “DEPOSIT” button at the top of the homepage. Choose one of the payment methods listed. Type your deposit amount in, or select a common payment amount from the grid. Type in your details and complete the deposit.

Step 4: Claim Your Welcome Bonus

You will be awarded a welcome bonus worth up to $1,000 at BetOnline. The funds will be released when you make your first deposit. If you do not want a bonus, just opt out.

Steps 5 & 6: Find Your Pick and Place Your Bet

Choose “Basketball” from the “Main Sports” section and then select “NCAA” and “NCAA Game.” You will see a list of all the games it is covering. Click on the pick you like to add it to the betslip.

The pick and the odds will be displayed on the slip. Type in the amount you would like to wager, and it will tell you the profit you would get if it succeeds. Click to place the bet. You’ll be paid out after the game if the pick wins.

Who provides NCAA March Madness Betting Picks?

Anyone can make a prediction on a March Madness game. You will find all sorts of people posting their picks on Twitter and YouTube during March. However, it is important to seek out experts that have a proven record.

Expert betting picks fall into two separate categories:

  • Picks from handicappers
  • Computer picks

You may also see the term “consensus picks” used. However, that does not refer to expert picks. It simply tells you which side of a wager is most popular with the betting public. This information is useful, as it can highlight opportunities to fade the public (bet on an unpopular team at artificially inflated terms), but that is a subject for a separate article.

Handicapper picks

Handicappers typically rely on a combination of stats and gut instinct. The best cappers watch a huge amount of college basketball action, and they boast an encyclopedic knowledge of each team’s roster. They bolster their knowledge by using advanced analytics, and they provide predictions on how a game will unfold.

Pro bettors also seek out weak lines. Half the battle lies in finding an edge over the books. Some find early value at sites like BetOnline and place bets before public consensus moves the lines. Others wait until the lines move and fade the public at advantageous terms. They are always looking for arbitrage opportunities too, and considering strategies like middling.

Computer picks

Computer picks are created by AI programs. These programs are fed a huge volume of past performance data about each team and player. They focus on the offensive and defensive strengths and shortcomings of each team when making their projections.

Some of these programs run a large number of simulations and then aggregate their findings. They ultimately spit out a predicted final score. You can use this to make moneyline, ATS and over/under predictions. These picks have no human emotion whatsoever.

March Madness Picks Strategy

These are our top five tips for selection high-quality March Madness picks:

Establish the Credentials of a Handicapper

It is unwise to blindly follow the recommendations of an unknown Twitter handle or a YouTuber with 14 followers. Seek out established handicappers that have built up the respect of the betting public over a prolonged period. You can then delve into a handicapper’s record.

Stick to cappers that have transparently displayed their record going up and down over the course of the season or several seasons. Read their analysis and see if their methodology appeals to you. Essentially, conduct due diligence before taking their advice, and only consider paying for picks if the capper really merits it.

Beware Scams

If a random handicapper emerges out of nowhere boasting a 90% hit rate for his or her NCAAB picks, it should set alarm bells ringing. Pro bettors grind out profits in the long-term by getting around 55% of their picks correct. If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is, and we recommend you do not pay for those picks.

Conduct Your Own Research

It is important to conduct some research of your own. That allows you to check if you agree with a handicapper’s picks. You may ultimately find you disagree, and some bettors have enjoyed great success in fading particular handicappers. To fade a capper means to bet on the opposite side of the bet, going against his or her advice.

Register with Multiple Betting Sites

When you are armed with a pick you like, it is important to find the best available odds and lines. For example, a handicapper or computer may suggest under 127.5 points. However, your sportsbook may have the line at 126.5 points, whereas a rival has it at 127.5 points. Sign up with the rival site too, and you can always compare their odds and lines and grab the most favorable terms.

Check out Bracket Predictions

Bracket predictions are not necessarily designed as picks for individual games. However, they can provide some valuable insights as to which teams could cause an upset in the first round. Some experts make very shrewd upset selections when filling in their brackets, so it is always worth browsing them for information.

Where to Watch Your March Madness Predictions

BetOnline Live Basketball Streaming

BetOnline and sister site are the only sportsbooks in our top 10 that offer live college basketball streaming. You can visit the “Live Betting” section at either site, click on a game and then click the “Watch Live” button.

That will bring up a live stream of the game. You can watch on and see if your March Madness predictions prove correct. Live odds will also be displayed. They are updated throughout the game, allowing you to bet in-play if you see a market that looks appealing. Some cappers give out live, in-play picks on Twitter, which can help.

March Madness Picks – Conclusion 

March Madness is the most exciting event of the year for college basketball fans. You can heighten that excitement by betting on the action, and expert March Madness predictions can help. Just make sure you stay disciplined and stick to a tight bankroll when wagering on the NCAA Tournament.

It is also vital that you only use reputable, legit sportsbooks that pay out. We have vetted the sites listed on this page, and they are all trustworthy. BetOnline is the best choice, as it offers early lines, competitive NCAAB odds, huge limits, live streaming and same day payouts. Click the button below to visit the site and get started today.


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