Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Vegas oddsmakers call midwest region 'insane', selection committee 'frauds'

Much has been said about the way the selection committee structured this year's NCAA Tournament bracket. And now Las Vegas oddmakers have added their two cents to the conversation as well.

“That’s probably the hardest bracket I’ve ever seen in my whole life,” LVH Superbook assistant sports book director Ed Salmons told the Las Vegas Sun. "It was over-the-top insane.”

The portion of the bracket Salmons was referring to is the Midwest Region, which has top seed Wichita State potentially having to go through the likes of Kentucky, a preseason top three team, Louisville, the defending champs, Duke and Michigan, among others. Many felt immediately after the draw was revealed that Louisville was under-seeded as a four and that the undefeated Shockers generally got the shaft.

Furthermore, it appears that all of the betting favorites lie within the Midwest Region, which presents a notable challenge to the oddsmakers.

Four of the top 10 teams the Superbook listed in odds to win the title at the beginning of the week — Wichita State, No. 2 seed Michigan, No. 3 seed Duke and No. 4 seed Louisville — were stuffed into the region. Add No. 5 seed Saint Louis and No. 8 seed Kentucky to the mix, and Wynn Las Vegas sports book director Johnny Avello said the Midwest could have six of the top 20 power-rated teams.

Salmons called the committee "a bunch of frauds" and opined that the NCAA should turn the selection process over to bookmakers instead of its own committee.

I don't know if I would go to that extreme. But this year's bracket definitely has some eye-raising questions attached to it.

Via College Basketball Talk

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