NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament 2021: Sunday Sweet 16 Bracket Odds, Picks

Jake RillFeatured Columnist IMarch 28, 2021

NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament 2021: Sunday Sweet 16 Bracket Odds, Picks

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    Stephen Spillman/Associated Press

    There was some exciting action in the 2021 NCAA women's basketball tournament Saturday, when four teams advanced to the Elite Eight with victories. Four more teams will join them Sunday, with the rest of the Sweet 16 round taking place.

    While No. 1 UConn and No. 3 Arizona rolled big to move on, Saturday's other two games were more competitive. No. 2 Baylor held on in overtime against No. 6 Michigan, while No. 4 Indiana knocked off No. 1 NC State in a close contest. The Wolfpack became the first No. 1 seed to be eliminated.

    The rest of the Sweet 16 games also have the potential to be exciting. Although there are two No. 1 seeds and No. 2 seeds in action across the four games, it's possible that one or two of the lower-seeded teams could advance.

    Here's a look at Sunday's Sweet 16 schedule, along with odds and picks for the games.

Sunday Schedule, Odds, Picks

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    Eric Gay/Associated Press

    No. 1 South Carolina (-12) vs. No. 5 Georgia Tech, 1 p.m. ET, ABC

    No. 1 Stanford (-14.5) vs. No. 5 Missouri State, 3 p.m. ET, ABC

    No. 2 Louisville vs. No. 6 Oregon (-1), 7 p.m. ET, ESPN

    No. 2 Maryland (-13) vs. No. 6 Texas, 9 p.m. ET, ESPN

    Picks in bold against the spread. Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook.

Stanford, South Carolina Will Both Advance to Elite Eight

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    Stephen Spillman/Associated Press

    While NC State couldn't make it past the Sweet 16, the other No. 1 seeds aren't going to have trouble. UConn has already secured its spot in the Elite Eight, and Stanford and South Carolina will soon be joining it.

    Stanford is on a 16-game winning streak after opening the NCAA tournament with wins over No. 16 Utah Valley and No. 8 Oklahoma State. On Sunday, the Cardinal are taking on No. 5 Missouri State. And while the Lady Bears could keep things close for a bit, Stanford should have no trouble pulling away.

    South Carolina has yet to be tested in the tournament, as it cruised past No. 16 Mercer and No. 8 Oregon State in the first two rounds. The Gamecocks will now take on Georgia Tech, which is capable of playing a competitive game. However, South Carolina's defense will likely prove to be the difference, as it should get stops when it needs to down the stretch.

    As No. 1 seeds, Stanford (14.5-point favorite) and South Carolina (12-point favorite) are both expected to win big. And that's what is going to happen. Feel confident in betting on both of these teams to cover their respective spreads in victories.

Oregon Will Edge Louisville in Close Game

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    Eric Gay/Associated Press

    Oregon did not enter the NCAA tournament with much momentum. After opening the season with 12 wins in 15 games, the Ducks sputtered down the stretch, losing five of their final six games, which included falling to Oregon State in the quarterfinals of the Pac-12 tournament.

    But Oregon has been playing better of late, leading to victories over No. 11 South Dakota and No. 3 Georgia. On Sunday, the No. 6 Ducks will face another challenge when they take on No. 2 Louisville.

    Despite being the lower seed, Oregon is favored by one point for this Sweet 16 matchup. The Ducks had never reached the Elite Eight before 2017, but they have reached it in each of the previous three NCAA tournaments, and they will be looking to keep that streak going.

    While this year's team isn't as strong offensively, Oregon has been relying on its solid defensive play. Because of that, don't be surprised if it limits Louisville's production and finds a way to pull out a close win to once again advance past the Sweet 16.

Maryland Will Stay on Roll with Big Win

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    Eric Gay/Associated Press

    Maryland may not have gotten a No. 1 seed for the NCAA tournament, but it's still been one of the strongest teams in the country in recent months. The Terrapins, who have lost only two games this season, are on a 15-game winning streak after defeating No. 15 Mount St. Mary's and No. 7 Alabama in the first two rounds.

    After winning each of those games by at least 36 points, Maryland will look to keep its momentum going when it faces No. 6 Texas on Sunday. And if the Terrapins are victorious, they'll be back in the Elite Eight for the first time since 2015.

    "I think this team has given a lot of our Maryland fans and...the people that are supporting us just a lot of joy to be able to see this team and how far they've gone," Terps coach Brenda Frese said, per Lauren Rosh of Testudo Times.

    Averaging 91.8 points per game (which ranks first in the nation), Maryland's offense is going to be too good for Texas to stop. The Terps will roll to another big win, continuing their march into the later rounds of the NCAA tournament with an impressive showing.


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