The first two rounds of the 2019 NCAA Tournament are in the books. All of the No. 1 seeds advanced to the Sweet 16 in March Madness and only two teams are seeded No. 5 or lower. Following opening weekend, the national championship odds have now seen a slight shift, according to Darren Rovell.
Duke is still seen as the overall favorite, but its title odds have dropped significantly. The Blue Devils needed a late tip-in from R.J. Barrett to knock off the No. 9 seed UCF Knights. Virginia, North Carolina, and Gonzaga’s title odds have gotten better after strong performances through the first two games.
Michigan State has the best title odds of the No. 2 seeds after throttling conference rival Minnesota. The Spartans potentially have an Elite Eight matchup with Duke, which is a matchup that college basketball fans across the nation are looking forward too. Michigan has been the best looking two seed as the Wolverines cruised past Montana and Florida.
Kentucky and Tennessee both had struggles in their second-round matchups against Wofford and Iowa. Both SEC teams are not mentioned among the tournament’s top five title odds, but they are both capable of cutting down the nets in Minneapolis. All the three seeds advanced to the Sweet 16, but their title odds are much lower than the top seeds in front of them.
LSU needed a buzzer beater from sophomore point guard Tremont Waters, but the Tigers were not even supposed to be here because of all the turmoil the program is facing. Head coach Will Wade has been suspended indefinitely for his comments made on an FBI wiretap. Interim coach Tony Bedford has done a fantastic job guiding the Tigers, but they have narrowly escaped upsets in consecutive rounds.
The nature of the NCAA Tournament is to survive and advance, so close calls are expected. The slight shift in title odds is also understandable, but Duke is still the clear favorite to cut down the nets in Minneapolis.
March Madness resumes with the Sweet 16 on Thursday, March 28.