2023 Sweet 16 Best Parlay Plays
2023 SWEET 16 BEST PARLAY PLAYS – We’re down to the last 16 teams, and that means there’s not a lot of daylight in between the squads. With the lesser seeds mostly having gone home (Princeton an obvious exception), the spreads tend to tighten and moneylines become a more reasonable play.
We’ve also only got four games a day now, so parlays become a reasonable option.
You can pair two games per window, or pair regional games to create a winning bet. Given how most people’s brackets have turned out, pairing games from the same region might not be the way to go, so time slots look like the better choice here.
Here are a few parlays that look like they offer a lot of value.
Early Thursday Action
Michigan State-Kansas State Over 137.5 and Arkansas-Connecticut Over 140, +265
The market’s starting to react to an abundance of UNDERS in the first two rounds, and that means we might have a few overcorrections here.
In the East Region, Kansas State makes teams play at its pace. The Wildcats have played to the OVER in four straight NCAA tournament appearances, and they will look to push the tempo. They’ll also try to establish themselves early from beyond the arc.
That was how they beat Kentucky, as K-State trailed late in the game before unleashing a barrage of 3-pointers that kept the blue Wildcats from ever getting even again.
Michigan State shoots 3-pointers with the best of the best. The Spartans rank third in the nation in 3-point percentage, and they’re liable to go off for some deep shots at any point in the game.
Once they get hot, this number’s likely to go up pretty quick. As long as the game is played at K-State’s pace, the over is likely to cash.
In the other early game, expect the clock to stop frequently. Arkansas and Connecticut both play aggressive defense, which means fouls should be called throughout the game.
Arkansas in particular gets to the line regularly, so as long as the Razorbacks are even half-decent with their foul shots, the over should cash.
Connecticut shouldn’t be a worry there; the Huskies rank 25th nationally at sinking their free throws. If both teams play their usual aggressive style, the whistles should push this game over.
Late Thursday Action
Tennessee ML and UCLA ML (+152)
This is usually where the lower seeds start to bow out, and Florida Atlantic has a bad matchup in Tennessee.
The Volunteers love to grind teams down and make they play a gritty, ugly game. Florida Atlantic can play that style, but the Owls are a little lucky to be here at this point.
They needed a Memphis mistake to get past the first round, and then they got the benefit of facing Fairleigh Dickinson instead of Purdue in the second round.
Tennessee did this the hard way in locking down Louisiana and Duke, and the Volunteers’ defense has a pretty big advantage in facing a mediocre offense. Florida Atlantic will be forced to play Tennessee’s game here.
Can the Zags Stop the Bruins?
UCLA should have the advantage over Gonzaga for a different reason: the Bulldogs’ defense just isn’t up to the challenge of slowing down the Bruins.
UCLA returns much of the team that fell to Gonzaga two years ago in the Final Four, and the Bruins ae now more experienced and ready to handle this matchup.
Gonzaga can make shots, but the Bulldogs’ defense has struggled much more than usual, and that should provide the Bruins with the slight edge.
Friday Night Action
Alabama -5 and Xavier-Texas Under 149 (+194)
Getting this many points to play with on Texas feels too easy, because it comes with a danger.
Xavier could get hot from 3-point range the way Penn State couldn’t. But the Nittany Lions lost that game because of the Longhorn defense forcing them into subpar looks.
The Musketeers are likely to meet the same fate. Texas is all about defense under Rodney Terry, and this total seems quite high for a Texas game.
To pair it, I’ll buy a couple points on the line to get value with Alabama. The Crimson Tide run everyone to death, and San Diego State hasn’t seen an opponent like this one all season long.
Alabama can run all day and put up some big numbers, and I don’t think the Aztecs have the speed to stick with the Tide. This feels like it becomes a comfortable win for Alabama as long as the Tide doesn’t get frustrated early.
Tennessee ML/UCLA ML
Michigan State-Kansas State Over 137.5
AND Arkansas-Connecticut Over 140
Alabama -5/Xavier-Texas Under 149