NCAA 2011 Bracket Tips

First off, no one knows anything. Don’t listen to other peoples advice because they are just stupid as you. That’s not saying you’re stupid but just know that other people don’t know. Let’s just take an example from the weekend. Baker and Shee, two people who follow college bball more then most people I know, thought that Louisville was an easy pick over Uconn in the Big East Tournament. So they lay the 3 points and what happens, they can’t even pick the winning team right let alone beat a spread. It’s nothing against them but the idea is that it doesn’t matter who you are this tournament is a big crap shoot and it’s better to be lucky then good. So after reading this entry, why would you listen to me? I’m going to give some practical advice that might help.

The lines are already up for the first round games, USE THEM. This is so obvious but the common folk aren’t privy to this info and I’m actually a bit hesitant to even write this but I sort of figure it won’t matter because it’s so random anyhow. The people who can handicap the games best are VEGAS, not your best friend who watches every bball game. Generally double digit point spreads aren’t easy to overcome and picking a game like this as an upset is pretty stupid. Also the -115 is an indicator that this is where the action is coming in on. I tend to believe the public is usually wrong and I’m swayed to the -105 SOMETIMES. Some games that come to mind after reviewing the lines (i’m picking outright winners not ATS):

Gonzaga (+1.5) against St. Johns – People make up their minds by seeds and this one looks closer then it should be.
Kansas State (-2) against Utah State – This should be a good indicator of how far to take Kansas St in this years tourny. Not very.
George Mason (-1.5) vs Villanova – I’d almost consider betting this one because Nova’ is on a skid.
FSU over Texas A&M (pick) – 10 seed getting a pick em should say something.
Washington (-5.5) over Georgia – Big spread, will give UNC a tough matchup.

After following this tourny for so many years now there are also two other stand out factors. Seniority and a big shot player. After watching the Fab Five last night, it’s very rare that you have 5 freshmen take you to the championship game. Senior led teams have experience and as CK4 would say “act like they’ve been there before.” Duke and Kansas come to mind. I think players like Jimmer are important too because they can take their team on their backs and win the. It’s good to point out though that these teams don’t usually make it passed the Sweet Sixteen. A final note, which Bake points out, is to choose a team that relies on good shooting is a risky move. If they are hitting their shots they seem unstoppable but an off night can easily result in a loss, think Notre Dame. I like the more stable teams like Ohio St who have both an inside out presence and won’t have that inconsistency.

I’m not going to divulge my picks. I also consider how smart it is to keep the same bracket for different pools. Seems smart to diversify the picks a bit to give yourself a better chance of winning one rather then all 3. Don’t forget this is the absolute best time of year for basketball and the most fun days of the year are Thurs and Friday. Have fun.