2023 NCAA Tournament: Final Four Prop Picks & Predictions

Mar 30, 2023 - 10:43 AM

The contrast in 2023 could not be more pronounced than when four conventional collegiate basketball powers met for the Final Four last year, each bringing its own group of previous top-100 prospects and at least one past McDonald’s All-American. There are no previous McDonald’s All-Americans who will be wearing uniforms in Houston this weekend for the national semifinals between No. 4 seed UConn, No. 5 seed Miami, No. 5 seed San Diego State, and No. 9 seed FAU.

It’s the first time that’s happened since the NCAA started seeding the tournament in 1979, and it’s just one way to describe the unsung group of athletes who will be vying for a national championship on the sport’s biggest stage. With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at some of my favorite prop bets for Saturday.

2023 March Madness: Final Four Prop Picks

(Odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook)

(5) San Diego State (-2) vs. (9) Florida Atlantic | Total 132

The fifth-seeded San Diego State Aztecs (-1.5) take on the ninth-seeded Florida Atlantic Owls in the opening game of Saturday’s Final Four doubleheader, with a trip to the National Championship on the line (6:09 p.m. ET, CBS).

It’s undoubtedly not a contest that many predicted at this point, but that’s the appeal of a competition where failure means elimination. The Aztecs put up another defensive masterclass against Creighton in the Elite Eight after defeating top-seeded Alabama in the Sweet 16. Due in part to their ability to keep the Bluejays off the three-point line and force one of the best perimeter shooting teams in the Big East to a season-low 11.8 percent shooting from beyond the arc, the Aztecs overcame a seven-point second-half deficit.

Even while the Owls contribute to the glass from all five positions, they won’t be able to outmuscle or outwork San Diego State. They will also have to cope with a defense that held Creighton, one of the best three-point shooting teams in the country, to 2-of-17 from beyond the arc during the tournament. Look for another stout defensive performance from the Aztecs.

Prop Pick: FAU Team Total Points – Under 65.5 (+110)

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

Yes, Gonzaga was the best team UConn faced outside of Miami to this point, and the trip to Houston wasn’t nearly as arduous as others, but no one is doing better this month.

Here, size will be important. A guard-focused club like Texas was the ideal match for Miami in many respects, but against  UConn, they have just too much bulk and size to overcome. The Huskies can continue to exert pressure inside and expect big man Adama Sanogo to lead that effort.

Prop Pick: Adama Sanogo Over 8.5 Rebounds (-105)

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

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