2023 NCAA Tournament: Sweet 16 Best Bets (Friday)

Mar 24, 2023 - 10:30 AM

We are on to the Sweet 16 of the 2023 NCAA Tournament, as the first two rounds produced no shortage of mayhem. While there were upsets in nearly every region, can the underdogs keep barking as the regionals close out this weekend?

Let’s take a closer look.

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Friday’s Best 2023 NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 Bets

(Odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook)

(1) Alabama (-7.5) vs. (5) San Diego State | Total 137

To start things off on Friday in the South Region, the No. 5 San Diego Aztecs and the No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide will square off in the Sweet 16 of the 2023 NCAA Tournament.

For just the third time in the history of the program, San Diego State (29-6, 15-3 MWC) is in the Sweet 16 after winning games against Charleston and Furman during the first weekend of the tournament. The Aztecs have so far played lockdown defense in line with expectations, limiting both opponents to a combined 32.1% shooting percentage.

They get a different beast in this one, facing an Alabama (31-5, 16-2 SEC) team that easily defeated Texas A&M Corpus Christi 96-75 in the first round and Maryland 73-51 in the second round. While I do think this game could be closer than many expect, Alabama is just too talented across the board to not pull away in this one late.

I like a close first half, followed by Alabama blowing them out in the second.

The pick: Alabama -7.5 (-110)

(2) Texas (-4) vs. (3) Xavier | Total 148.5

On Friday, the 2023 NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16 will come to an end with a game between the No. 2 Texas Longhorns and No. 3 Xavier.

Texas managed to fend off Penn State’s late charge on Saturday to win a tight second game and move on. With just under five minutes remaining, the Nittany Lions led by three points before Dylan Disu and Marcus Carr sparked a 10-0 run by the Longhorns to take back the lead. In the victory, Disu scored 28 points and grabbed 10 rebounds.

In the Round of 32 on Sunday, Xavier defeated No. 11 Pitt 84-73. The Musketeers’ ball movement strategy was in full effect during the victory, which saw them rack up 25 assists. They gained an early advantage and stopped the Panthers’ late-game comeback attempt, as six different players scored in double figures. In the end, Jack Nunge led the club with 18 points, and a team-high 13 rebounds were added by Colby Jones.

While they’ve made a solid run, I like for the more athletic Longhorns to dominate this game down low and pull away late.

The pick: Texas -4 (-110)

NCAA Tournament Player Prop Bets

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Sweet 16 Picks & Predictions

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Check out all of our coverage for the 2023 NCAA Tournament >>

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