NCAA Tournament 5 Best Predictions Against The Spread: First Round Friday

David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

NCAA Tournament 5 Best Predictions Against The Spread: First Round Friday

Fearless Predictions

NCAA Tournament 5 Best Predictions Against The Spread: First Round Friday


What 5 NCAA Tournament games appear to be the best bets and the best picks against the spread going into first round on Friday?

NCAA Tournament Fearless Predictions, Game Previews 
CFN Fearless Predictions & Game Previews
Every Game Preview & Prediction
CFN Expert Picks: Every First Round Game

Brackets schmackets. Anyone and everyone can fill one out. I did, and it’s already busted – I’m SO reading that Loyola – Georgia Tech matchup wrong – but the money you invest on these games is forever.

Or for five minutes until you reinvest, but that’s more fun than getting some 12-seed you never heard of right over that 5, right?

Here are five NCAA Tournament first round Friday games that appear to be a wee bit favorable against the spread.

Click on each game for the game preview and fearless prediction.

5. (5) Tennessee vs (12) Oregon State

LINE: Tennessee -8
ATS PICK: Tennessee
Bet on this, BetMGM latest line

Never be one of those people who gets weird over a half a point. It all evens out over a lifetime, so if you like a pick, make it, and don’t get into a twist over the line changing …

OH (bleep)ing (bleep) … Tennessee went from 7.5 to 8?

A half a point means a whole lot in basketball – not as much as people like to believe in football – but this whole tournament is just getting started, so I’m not bailing on my core beliefs quite yet.

Speaking of abandoning belief systems, I came into the bracket season determined to pick against the Pac-12 whenever possible, and I think I ended up picking Pac-12 teams whenever possible – except for the conference tournament champion.

Falling for the conference tournament champion that rises up out of the blue is always dicey. The gimmicky tournaments are the last things anyone sees, so the lines are always a wee bit skewed. This one is about right – even with the extra half a point, and it doesn’t matter.

Tennessee might be flaky, but the defense was the best in the SEC in field goal percentage, and Oregon State isn’t exactly automatic from the field. I’m not buying that the Beaver threes that were dropping like the beat around the 23 minute mark of any Carl Cox mix are going to keep going.

Tennessee is too good at slowing teams down on the inside, and it’ll hold up on the outside shooters. Oregon State won’t get the Vol turnovers.

NEXT: Arkansas vs Colgate


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