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March Madness Betting Frenzy Kicks Off Thursday

Written by:
Ean Lamb
Published on:
Mar/17/2021

March Madness 2021 will be in full swing tipping off a bit later than in years past.  Thursday's action starts at 5:10 pm with Texas Southern vs. Mount St. Mary's.  Only four games will be played Thursday.  The brunt of the games begin Friday and those begin around Noon Eastern Standard Time.

By The Numbers

According to the AGA:

36.7 million Americans will fill out a bracket, down 8% from 2019.

30.6 million Americans will place more traditional bets on this year’s tournament, up from 17.8 million in 2019.

17.8 million will place a bet online, up 206% from 5.8 million in 2019.

8.3 million will place a bet at a physical sportsbook, up 79% from 2019.

Gonzaga University is the betting public’s favorite to win the tournament (17%), followed by Florida State University (11%) and Baylor University (8%).

Why 2021 Will be Different

“I think it’s going to be very heavily bet,” said Joe Asher, CEO of William Hill US. “Just look at how much betting is up as a general matter, and layer on top of that the fact that we didn’t have it last year. There’s unquestionably a lot of pent-up demand. In many ways it’s a signal that America is coming back. Beyond the sports betting aspect, it flows into the whole COVID recovery story.”

Tracking The Big Bets

Courtesy of SportsBettingDime

Bet Odds Amount Wagered Potential Profit
West Virginia to Win NCAA Tournament +2500 $20,000 $500,000
Creighton to Win NCAA Tournament +2000 $10,000 $200,000
Missouri to Win NCAA Tournament +5000 $2,000 $100,000
Michigan to Win NCAA Tournament +700 $2,000 $14,000
Winthrop to Win NCAA Tournament +25000 $500 $125,000

- Ean Lamb, Gambling911.com

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