College basketball

March Madness 2018: Latest National Championship betting odds

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USA Today Sports

March Madness 2018: Latest National Championship betting odds

There are not many tasks in life more difficult than setting the perfect March Madness bracket. 

The odds of picking the perfect bracket is less than one in 9.2 quintilian, so good luck with that. 

In fact, you have a better chance of becoming an astronaut for NASA, picking a four-leaf clover or making an albatross then you do predicting the NCAA tournament outcome. 

So with that optimism in mind, let's take a look at the odds the top-ranked teams have to win the big dance, that may help you beat the bracket odds.

RELATED: MARCH MADNESS BRACKET CHALLENGE

By rank to win National Championship: Indicates Vegas odds

1. Virginia Cavaliers  (10-1) +500

2. Villanova Wildcats (7-1) +450

3. Kansas Jayhawks (18-1) +1200

4. Xavier Musketeers (14-1) +2200

5. North Carolina Tar Heels (13-1) +1800

6. Duke Blue Devils (8-1) +650

7. Purdue Boilermakers (28-1) +1500

8. Cincinnati Bearcats (45-1) +2200

9. Michigan State Spartans (9-1) +750

10. Tennessee Volunteers (48-1) +6000

11. Michigan Wolverines (25-1) +1000

12. Texas Tech Red Raiders (32-1) +4500

13. Auburn Tigers (99-1) +6500

14. Wichita State Shockers (80-1) +4500

15. Gonzaga Bulldogs (15-1) +2500

16. Arizona Wildcats (20-1) +1200

17. Kentucky (30-1) +2800

18. West Virginia Mountaineers (60-1) +4000

19. Clemson Tigers (100-1) +20000

20. Ohio State Buckeyes (125-1) +8000

RELATED: COMPLETE FIRST-ROUND SCHEDULE

The Locals: 

31. Virginia Tech Hokies (15,000-1) +50000

63. UMBC Retrievers (6,500,000-1) +30000

65. Radford Highlanders (8,000,000-1) +100000

RELATED: NINE POTENTIAL FIRST ROUND UPSETS

 

Click here to join NBC Sports Washington’s NCAA Tournament Bracket Challenge and compete against Tony Massenburg and Walt Williams for a chance to win big.

Grand Prize: If you have the highest-scoring bracket in the NBC Sports Washington Bracket Challenge, you will win four (4) lower Wizards tickets to the 4/10 Celtics @ Wizards game, an autographed Bradley Beal jersey and a 60” 4K TV!

Secondary Prize: If your bracket scores higher than both Tony Massenburg and Walt Williams, you'll get a coupon code for a free regular Jersey Mike's sub!

WANT MORE COLLEGE HOOPS? Join @TroyMachir for the March Only podcast, a month-long podcast with some of the best and brightest minds in college basketball. Subscribe on iTunes and listen below.

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Palmer's big 2nd half lifts Huskers past Maryland

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Palmer's big 2nd half lifts Huskers past Maryland

LINCOLN, Neb. -- James Palmer Jr. scored 24 of his 26 points in the second half, Isaiah Roby had all 11 of his after half, and Nebraska held off Maryland 70-66 on Tuesday night.

Palmer and Roby combined for 35 of the Cornhuskers' 40 second-half points, and they secured their first 20-win season since 2008. They won a sixth straight conference game for the first time in 20 years.

Palmer scored 15 straight points for the Huskers (20-8, 11-4 Big Ten) over a 10-minute span that ended when Roby hit one of two free throws with 2:57 left for a 64-59 lead. Roby had a double-double, with 10 rebounds, and he also blocked three shots.

The Terps (17-11, 6-9) had a chance to take the lead with a minute to play, but Glynn Watson Jr. blocked Anthony Cowan Jr.'s 3-point try, Evan Taylor came up with the loose ball and got it to Watson.

Watson missed a 3-pointer coming out of a timeout, and Roby got the rebound and was immediately fouled. He made both free throws for a 66-63 lead. Kevin Huerter's layin cut it to one point before Watson made two free throws.

Huerter went to the line with 2.8 seconds left, and after making the first free throw he intentionally missed the second. Palmer got the rebound, was fouled and put the game away with two free throws.

Bruno Fernando led the Terps with 21 points and nine rebounds. Huerter added 12 points and Darryl Morsell had 11.

BIG PICTURE

Maryland: The Terps' fading NCAA Tournament hopes might have been dashed with their seventh straight road loss.

Nebraska: The Huskers are resting firmly on the NCAA bubble and absolutely needed this win. They got it, thanks to Palmer and Roby's efforts in the second half.

UP NEXT

Maryland hosts Rutgers on Saturday. It's the teams' only meeting this season.

Nebraska visits Illinois. The Huskers beat the Illini 64-63 in Lincoln on Jan. 15.

RELATED: DMV College Basketball Power Rankings: Missed opportunities

Georgetown snaps 4-game road losing streak, tops Butler

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Georgetown snaps 4-game road losing streak, tops Butler

INDIANAPOLIS -- Marcus Derrickson tied a career-high with 27 points, on 11-of-13 shooting, for his eighth 20-plus point game this season and Georgetown beat Butler 87-83 on Tuesday night.

After Georgetown missed two free throws, Kamar Baldwin made a scoop shot in the lane and Sean McDermott stole the inbounds pass, leading to another Baldwin basket to pull Butler to 84-81 with 1:29 to go.

Butler had a chance to tie it in the closing seconds, but Baldwin's long 3-pointer was short and Jahvon Blair sealed it at the line at 4.5.

Jessie Govan had his 12th double-double of the season with 17 points and 12 rebounds for Georgetown (15-10, 5-9 Big East). Trey Dickerson, a senior averaging 3.5 points per game, set a career-high in the first half with 12 points and finished with 18.

Kelan Martin had 22 points and eight rebounds to reach 20 points for the 17th time this season for Butler (17-10, 7-7). Tyler Wideman added 19 points and Baldwin had 16 points, six rebounds and seven assists.

RELATED: DMV College Basketball Power Rankings: Missed opportunities