2023 NCAA Tournament: Final Four Parlay Picks & Predictions

Mar 29, 2023 - 4:56 PM

It has been a March filled with Madness, maybe more so in the history of the NCAA Tournament, as no team higher than a four seed has made its way to this weekend’s Final Four in Houston. Just because the schools involved aren’t Blue Bloods, it doesn’t mean the basketball isn’t going to be incredible.

Let’s take a look at a two-team parlay I have cooked up for this Saturday’s action.

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2023 March Madness: Final Four Parlay

(Odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook)

(5) San Diego State (-2) vs. (9) Florida Atlantic | Total 131.5

In a national semifinal on Saturday in Houston, the ninth-seeded Florida Atlantic Owls, and the fifth-seeded San Diego State Aztecs make their Final Four debuts. The Owls (35-3, 18-2 Conference USA), who are competing in the NCAA Tournament for just the second time in program history and for the first time since 2002, have won 11 straight games and 14 of 15 overall.  The Aztecs (31-6, 15-3 Mountain West), who are making their third consecutive participation in the NCAA Tournament, have won eight straight games and 14 of their previous 15 as well.

Three Owls players have averaged double-digit scoring every game in this tournament.  The team’s top scorer and rebounder is sophomore guard Johnell Davis, who averages 13.1 points, 5.5 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 1.5 steals per game.

The Elite Eight victory over Kansas State included a strong performance from sophomore guard Alijah Martin. He had a total of 17 points, four rebounds, two assists, two blocks, and two steals in that contest. Before they even got here, in the Conference-USA Championship Game victory over UAB, he had a double-double, tallying 30 points and 11 rebounds. Martin is averaging 13.1 points, 5.2 rebounds, 1.5 assists, and one steal over 35 games, including 20 starts.

While FAU will need all 7 guys in their rotation to play well, I think these two set them apart.

Pick: FAU (+110)

(4) UConn (-5.5) vs. (5) Miami | Total 149.5

The NCAA Tournament match between the UConn Huskies and Miami (Fla.) Hurricanes will take place on Saturday at NRG Stadium in Houston, and the winner will play in the 2023 Final Four. In 1979, UConn was a founding member of the Big East Conference, which later changed its name to the American Athletic Conference in 2013 before the program became a member of the new Big East in 2020. The Huskies (29-8) this year finished the regular season tied for fourth, playing hard all season but never really turning that corner until March. Miami, meanwhile, joined the ACC in 2004 after spending 21 years as a Big East member. The Hurricanes (29-7) this year finished the regular season tied for the top.

With Adama Sanogo, UConn has power in the paint. Sanogo, a junior from Mali who is 6-foot-9 and 245 pounds, ranks fifth in rebounding and is the conference’s top scorer (17.1 points per game). He was selected to the all-Big East first team for his efforts this season, and his impact has been evident over the past few weeks.

The Huskies are also adept at stopping 3-point shots, as well. UConn is 12th in the nation and leads the conference in allowing opponents to shoot only 29.7% from beyond the arc. Saturday’s game against Miami, which is the ACC’s top 3-point shooting team, will require that defense (36.9), which I think they get.

Pick: UConn -5.5 (-110)

Parlay Odds (+300)

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