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Opening 2022 March Madness Odds Favor Gonzaga as NCAA Tournament Champions; Baylor +1200 to Repeat


Gonzaga players in huddle

Gonzaga’s Drew Timme, second from left, and Corey Kispert shake hands in the closing moments of Gonzaga’s 76-58 win over Pacific in an NCAA college basketball game in Stockton, Calif. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)

  • Gonzaga opened as the +900 favorite to win the 2022 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament
  • Baylor, which beat Gonzaga in the 2021 title game, are in a group at +1200 as the second-betting choice
  • Michigan and Florida State also opened at odds of +1200

Barely past the heartbreak of their 86-70 loss to the Baylor Bears in the championship game of March Madness, the Gonzaga Bulldogs didn’t have to wait long for reaffirmation.

The opening line is out for the 2022 NCAA men’s basketball championship and it’s the Zags who are the +900 chalk to win it all.

Gonzaga went 31-1 this season, coming up one win shy of their first NCAA title and becoming the first unbeaten NCAA champions since the 1975-76 Indiana Hoosiers.

The title-winning Bears (28-2) are in a group of three schools at +1200. The Michigan Wolverines and Florida State Seminoles are also at +1200.

The Houston Cougars and UCLA Bruins, losing semifinalists in the Final Four, both open at odds of +2000.

2022 NCAA Tournament Odds

School Odds
Gonzaga +900
Baylor +1200
Florida State +1200
Michigan +1200
Ohio State +1400
Villanova +1400
Kansas +1800
Duke +2000
Houston +2000
Illinois +2000
Kentucky +2000
Louisville +2000
Texas Tech +2000
UCLA +2000
Virginia +2000
Virginia Tech +2000
West Virginia +2000
Michigan State +2500
Oklahoma +2500
Purdue +2500
USC +2500
Wisconsin +2500
Arkansas +3000
Creighton +3000
Oregon +3000
Alabama +3300
North Carolina +3300
Syracuse +3300
Auburn +4000
Clemson +4000
UConn +4000
Drake +4000
Iowa +4000
LSU +4000
Maryland +4000
Memphis +4000
Oklahoma State +4000
Oregon State +4000
Texas +4000

Odds as of April 6th at DraftKings. 

The 2021-22 NCAA men’s basketball season gets underway in November. The championship game will be held on the first Monday in April 2022.

Gonzaga a Consistent Presence

Bulldogs coach Mark Few has averaged 28 wins per year over the past the 22 years. His winning percentage of 83.4% leads active coaches.

Drew  Timme will be the heavy Wooden Award favorite if he doesn’t opt into the NBA Draft. Andrew Nembhard should also return. Anton Watson, Julian Strawther and Dominick Harris will step into more prominent roles.

Incoming five-star guard Hunter Sallis has already committed to the Zags and they’re expected to land Chet Holmgren, the nation’s top high-school prospect. As well, Gonzaga is favored to gain North Carolina transfer Walker Kessler.

Seminoles Stepping Closer

Florida State, and not the traditional bluebloods of Duke, North Carolina or Virginia, was the best team in the rugged ACC last season. The Seminoles have made it to the second weekend of the past three NCAA Tournaments.

Coach Leonard Hamilton has his team ready to go every season. The Noles will add Houston transfer Caleb Mills, the preseason AAC Player of the Year last season, as well as freshmen Matthew Cleveland and Jalen Warley to a group that will include Anthony Polite, Balsa Koprivica, and Raiquan Gray, if the latter doesn’t opt into the NBA Draft.

Bruin Up Another Run

UCLA wasn’t a one-off this season as much as the Bruins were ahead of the curve. Unless Johnny Juzang opts to enter the NBA Draft, UCLA coach Mick Cronin figures to have every vital piece of his Final Four squad back in action next season.

A healthy return from Chris Smith and the addition of five-star wing Peyton Watson will only make the Bruins that much stronger.

A Bears Pair?

Does it make sense to think Baylor, a team that will lose four of five starters, could emulate that 2007-08 Florida Gators and wear back-to-back March Madness crowns?

Probably not. Then again, Adam Flagler, Matthew Mayer, and Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua were all impressive off the bench for the champs.

Kendall Brown and Langston Love are incoming five-star recruits. And expect Baylor to pursue guard help via the transfer portal.

The Bears won’t be a perennial top-five in the rankings, but they’ll be part of the discussion.


Robert Duff

NFL NBA MLB NHL NCAAF NCAAB Tennis Sports Writer

NFL NBA MLB NHL NCAAF NCAAB Tennis





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