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Submitted by Richie Baccellieri on Tuesday, March 17, 2015 at 1:00 PM

A busy week of market coverage begins today with my look at how sharps have been betting the “First Four” games Tuesday and Wednesday night in the NCAA Tournament. Something pretty amazing happened in Tuesday’s NIT games…so I decided to mention that as well.

The offshores forgot about the 30-second clock in the NIT! If you’ve been monitoring today’s line movements, you probably noticed that all the NIT Over/Unders had huge jumps off the openers. That wasn’t because sharps were Over-crazy. It’s because the first numbers up forgot that the NIT is experimenting with a 30-second shot clock this year to see if it’s something that would make the college game more fast-paced and entertaining.

So, we had THIS happen:

George Washington/Pittsburgh opened at 127.5, but is now 136 (as I post this)

NC Central/Miami opened at 118, but is now 130.5

Iona/Rhode Island opened at 143.5, but is now 151

Central Michigan/Louisiana Tech opened at 143, but is now 152.5

William & Mary/Tulsa opened at 132, but is now 139.5

Illinois/Alabama opened at 126.5, but is now 136

UTEP/Murray State opened at 144, but is now 152

Montana/Texas A&M opened at 125, but is now 134.5

Cal-Davis/Stanford opened at 139.5, but is now 149.5

Typically about a 7% adjustment with the new shot clock, which tells you what the market expects in terms of impact. Let’s hope it creates some better basketball!

Now, here’s how sharps have been betting the early Dance card…

Hampton vs. Manhattan (Tuesday): Manhattan was pounded at the opener of -7. We’re now seeing the favorite -9….which is very high on a neutral court, particularly for a game matching two teams on the same seedings ladder! This is because Hampton is a losing team that happened to get hot in its conference tournament…and because Manhattan is rated by the computers to be more like a #14 seed. Sharps loved the favorite at the early price. There’s been no sign of a buy-back on the dog yet. It might take +10 for that to happen. Not much interest in the total of 140.

BYU vs. Ole Miss (Tuesday): BYU drew a ton of early money at the opener of -1.5. As of last night, we were seeing as high as BYU -4 all over the market. There was a buyback on the SEC dog at that price. As I post this article, the current number is BYU -3. So, sharps LOVE the favorite at -1.5 and -2, and still like them at -2.5. But, the tide turns toward the dog at +3.5 and +4. Sportsbooks will get middle if the game lands on the three. The total has come down from an opener of 159 to 157.5, as sharps thought the projected track meet overshot the mark a bit too much on the opener. Of course, 157.5 is still a very high total for this season.

North Florida vs. Robert Morris (Wednesday): North Florida was bet up from -2 to -3. There may still be some residual respect for this conference because of what Florida-Gulf Coast did two years ago. The computers also have North Florida as the better side. Though, the game hasn’t moved past the three (yet), so the early action wasn’t particularly passionate. No interest yet on the total.

Boise State at Dayton (Wednesday): Note that the traditional site of the “First Four” games happens to be the home court of one of the competitors this year. Lucky break for the Dayton Flyers to enjoy that benefit in this play-in game. An opener of Dayton -3.5 has nudged upward to -4. Sharps who live in Nevada got to see a lot of Boise State, and that may be holding potential public interest on a home team in check. Sharps who wanted the favorite got in early. The fact that the home team didn’t move past the four is telling about a potential tug-of-war before tipoff between squares on the favorite and remaining sharps on the dog. The Over/Under is down from 128 to 126.5, as the quants are expecting more of a halfcourt game here than in the other matchups.

I’ll be back with you late Wednesday afternoon to run through all 16 of Thursday’s NCAA matchups. Then, we’ll do the same thing late Thursday afternoon to see how sharps have been betting the 16-game Friday ticket. Then, it’s on to the Round of 32 this weekend. A late Friday report will cover Saturday’s eight games. A late Saturday report will do the same for Sunday.

I told you these market reports would explode once the NCAA Tournament arrived! I’m personally looking very forward to this huge event. It’s hard to explain how exciting it is to be located in Las Vegas for MARCH MADNESS. I hope all of you will find a way to experience it at least once in your lifetime.

I can at least give you a taste with my personal selections through the month. You can purchase those right here at the website with your credit card. If you have any questions about extended service, call the VSM office at 1-888-777-4155 during normal business hours today or Wednesday.

Thanks for reading. A huge week is just starting. See you again tomorrow to discuss all the great Thursday action. See you then.

 

Be sure to follow:

Richie B. on twitter @vsm_baccellieri

Vegas-Sports-Masters on twitter @vsmasters

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