The last two times a No. 11 seed faced a No. 1 seed, the No. 11 seed won—Virginia Commonwealth upset Kansas in 2011, and George Mason beat Connecticut in 2006.
This year, the Dayton Flyers and the Florida Gators meet in the South Region final, with the winner advancing to next Saturday’s national semifinals.
Can Cinderella dance all the way? Oddsmakers are giving them 10 points here.
Spread and total points scored betting line
The Gators opened as 10-point favorites; the total was 133.5. (Compare lines and consensus on the Odds Shark matchup report)
Odds Shark computer pick
Why pick Dayton to cover the spread
Dayton, despite being a No. 11 seed, happens to be one of the more balanced teams remaining in the dance. The Flyers don’t rely on one superstar, and they know how to share the wealth with whatever rotation is on the floor.
Too many teams and oddsmakers underestimate how good this team is, which is probably why it is on a 9-3 against the spread run as an underdog this season.
Why pick Florida to cover the spread
The tournament’s No. 1 overall seed might be the best overall assembly of talent coach Billy Donovan has ever had during his tenure.
The gritty Gators spare no expense when it comes to their defensive effort and, while they’ve lost three straight in the Elite Eight, they’re also in on a 4-1 winning run against No. 11 seeds, both straight-up and against the spread, since 1999.
Smart betting pick
It’s always hard to argue against a No. 1 seed, and it’s even more difficult when that No. 1 seed is the top team in the nation and overall top seed in the event.
But Dayton is not just any Cinderella story. The Flyers play with the type of swagger we saw out of those George Mason and VCU teams that made it to the Final Four.
There are no heroic stories, either, as the Flyers win impressively. Dayton has covered seven of its last eight overall and should have at least one more ATS cover left.
Dayton Flyers: No. 48
Florida Gators: No. 7 (per Odds Shark power ranks)
March Madness betting trends
- Florida 4-1 SU and ATS versus 11 seeds since 1999
- Dayton 7-1 ATS past seven games
- Florida has lost three straight Elite Eight games
- Dayton 9-3 ATS in 12 games as dog this season
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