2018-2019 NCAAB Futures: June '18 Edition
The 2018-19 NCAA basketball season is still months away, but that doesn’t mean that Las Vegas lacks odds for the upcoming season. Our three favorite sportsbooks already have odds on the new NCAA basketball season, but with so much to happen before tipoff in November it’s tough to pick a clear favorite. Proceed with caution. It’s always risky business picking a tournament winner at this juncture of the year.
A lot has changed for teams across the country. You’ll find that the familiar faces that dominated 2017-18 will largely be graduated or in the NBA. Villanova lost it’s top 4 scorers in Jalen Brunson, Mikal Bridges, Omari sPellman, and Donte DiVinenzo. That’s a big blow. We don’t expect them to be back in contention this year.
Teams like Kansas have a lot of talent coming back with 4 of 8 top scorers ready for the new campaign and three transfers coming into eligability. Duke comes in with a shiny new #1 recruiting class that includes RJ Barrett, Zion Williamson, Cam Reddish, and Tre Jones.
With the NBA deadline for draft declaration in the past, Bovada, 5dimes, and Betonline all have odds on NCAA futures. We’ve compiled odds for you here. These could obviously change with different circumstances like transfers, injuries, and other basketball things that happen throughout preseason.
Let’s take a look at the top 5 values in this year’s futures and why they should be considered for your NCAA futures pick.
Odds to Win the NCAAB National Championship
U.S. Bank Stadium, Minneapolis, MN, April 8, 2019
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Top 5 NCAAB Futures Picks
Most of the important players from Tennessee’s 2017-18 campaign return. This group won a share of the SEC regular team title and returns its top 6 scorers. SEC Player of the Year Grant Williams leads a veteran roster into a competitive SEC that will feature typical stalwarts like Kentucky and up and comer LSU.
Because of the turnover in the SEC and Tennessee’s deep roster return, we like the Vols at 28 to 1 and can see it happening. We’ve seen preseason polls listing the Vol’s as high as #3 when it comes to preseason rankings. If they’re even close to that, the 28-1 will be a giant gift come tourney time.
Bill Self is one of the most consistent coaches in all of College Basketball. He also has a tremendous record with transfers. I remember my sister had a friend who went to school at LMU in Los Angeles who played for the basketball team. He ended up transferring to a community college where Self found him and got him over to Kansas. Kevin Young went on to have a really great career at the school as an inspirational glue guy.
My point? Bill Self gets the most out of transfers and he’s got a lot of them on the roster at Kansas.
Dedric and KJ Lawson are both incomingtransfers from Memphis and they become eligible this year. That’s a massive deal that the college basketball world may be sleeping on. Dedric is a former McDonald’s All-American who averaged 19.2 points, 9.9 rebounds, and 3.3 assists while his brother chipped in 12.3 and 8.1 in their lone 2016-2017 Memphis Tigers campaign. This Kansas team returns a lot of talent in physical freak Sam Cuncliffe. It also adds top recruit point guard Devon Dotson.
PJ Washington and Quade Green are back and anchor the team for the new season. Kentucky is coming off a disappointing Sweet 16 finish last season. They have a top recruiting class per the norm that ranks #2 in the country.
The recruiting class includes five-star power forward EJ Montgomery, five-star Small Forward Keldon Johnson, and five-star point guard Immanuel Quickly. It could get even better if Ashton Hagans, the top point guard of 2019’s class, reclassifies to 2018.
Look out for Kentucky, they’re good value at 10 to 1 on Betonline with all this talent and a coach who isn’t a stranger to titles.
Duke lost its entire starting lineup, and yet, the Blue Devils are the odds-on favorite to win the 2018-19 tournament. Their #1 class is loaded. Zion Williamson will scare you when he goes to the rim. Cameron Reddish is going to be a scary pairing with Williamson as his sheer scoring ability is something to be reckoned with.
Coach K is one of the best when it comes to getting the most out of top talent. If Williamson and Reddish are as advertised (they are) the +700 at Betonline could look like good value going into the season.
Rui Hachimura and Killian Tillie return for the Zags. It’s surprising that they both passed on a shot at the league and now Gonzaga is looking at a possible first national title. They lost their leading scorer in Johnathan Williams III and the Gonzaga class is weaker than usual in 2018 featuring only four-star Centrer Filip Petrusev as their only top 100 national recruit. Mark Few has a way of getting the most out of lesser athletic talents. His personnel recruiting and next man up philosophy remind me of the Patriots of the NFL.
With the returning talent, the NCAA finalists are consistent and will be sure NCAA tournament participants out of the WCC. At +1200, they’re decent value at 5dimes.