March 20, 2021
The second round of the NCAA Tournament, typically, is a lot more tame than the wild first two days.
In contrast to an average of 12.7 upsets per first round per year (40%), second rounds have seen 3.6 upsets per tournament, dating back 35 years (22%). The two most frequent underdogs that beat the odds to advance in Round 2 are 6 seeds vs 3 seeds, and 7 seeds vs. 2 seeds.
As we did prior to each day of first round action, we've singled out five of the eight games airing Sunday that are ripe for an upset. Whether you are betting the games, closely following your own bracket or looking to cash in with Unibet's Bettor Bracket — which allows you to pick games against the spread and re-do your bracket after each round — we know you'll be scoreboard watching all weekend.
They already shocked the world to defeat Ohio State. So why not Florida? Oral Roberts, a private Christian school in Oklahoma, has become tournament darlings after ousting the No. 2 seeded Buckeyes, a team many had advancing all the way to the Final 4. Few would argue that Florida, an at-large entrant in the big dance, would be more intimidating to the Golden Eagles, though the SEC's fifth ranked team this season does boast one of the best individual players in the tournament in Tre Mann. Oral Roberts will look to repeat history Sunday, trying to become the first 15 seed to advance to the Sweet 16 since Florida Golf Coast did it in 2013 — and just the second ever.
Before action tipped off Friday night, many thought that the Wildcats were one of the NCAA Tournament's prime teams to falter in an upset. And while they did let Winthrop stay in the game, the return of Justin Moore and solid play from NBA hopeful Jeremiah Robinson-Earl helped Villanova survive and advance. North Texas, on paper, is a team that Nova should feel confident about besting in Round 2. They had really no business being in the March Madness field to begin with, finishing third in C-USA and needing a run through the weak field of their conference tournament to get a seat at the table. But people still don't seem to be sold on Villanova. The Wildcats, as you can see from Pa.Unibet.com, are only 6.5-point favorites over the 13 seed. This one may be a stay-away as far as betting on the spread goes, but it could be a fun upset pick if you are a non-believer in Jay Wright's squad.
In a battle between two Power 5 conference at-large teams, really anything is possible. Oregon State was the fourth best team in the Pac 12, and boasts the better defense while Oklahoma State finished fourth in the Big 12 and is a much better scoring squad. In the first round, the Beavers pulled off a bracket-busting upset over the SEC's Tennessee, while Oklahoma State struggled with 13-seeded Liberty early before pulling away a little bit late. It might be a bit on the risky side to pick against top seeds like Baylor or Illinois to go down on Sunday — but picking OSU over OSU (ha) in this one is a much more measured and likely leap of faith.
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