March Madness Round 1 Bets Arkansas To Go Hog Wild Thursday

Chris Wassel
By , Updated on: Mar 14, 2023 08:00 PM
March Madness Round 1 Bets Arkansas To Go Hog Wild Thursday

March Madness is finally here! When it comes to wagering, this is one of the biggest two weeks in sports. With 32 games going on this Thursday and Friday, there are lots of contests to choose from. So many games seemingly could create a March Madness Betting overload. At Online Sports Betting, we look at one of these enticing matchups. Now, let's take a look at March Madness Round 1 bets featuring the Purdue Boilermakers. They tangle with Rutgers, a team with a solid record in the early going.

  • WHAT: Illinois Fighting Illini versus Arkansas Razorbacks
  • WHEN: Thursday, March 16th, 2023, 4:30 pm ET on TBS 
  • WHERE: Wells Fargo Arena, Des Moines, Iowa
  • WHY: March Madness Round 1 - West Region

Bettors love the 8-9 matchups for good reason. The March Madness Round One Bets spotlight two teams that are struggling a little over their previous ten games. Now, NCAA College Men's basketball futures feature a couple of quirks. After all, Illinois comes in at +10000 while Arkansas is currently +8000. Here is a quick table for the Boilermakers tonight, courtesy of Bovada Online Sportsbook.

March Madness Round 1 NumbersBovadaMyBookieBetUS
Oral Roberts-110-110-110
Duke (-6.5)-110-110-110

March Madness Round 1 Bets Deal Tough Love

March Madness Round 1 Bets deal tough love. So, what happened with Illinois and Arkansas? These were two teams that carried some loftier expectations into the 2022-23 season. Now, that did not quite pan out for either school. Illinois and Arkansas struggled to 20 wins and both barely made the NCAA Tournament. Neither school helped their cause over the final ten games either.

Illinois went 4-6 over their final ten games of the season. Terrance Shannon and Matthew Mayer have been a nice 1-2 punch but the Fighting Illini lacks something late in games. Then, there is Arkansas. The Razorbacks show some nice guard play, but again went 4-6 over their last ten contests. Worse, Arkansas has great metrics but bad results (plus went 8-10 in the SEC). When healthy, the Razorbacks are a dangerous team. The same can be countered with Illinois which is what makes the matchup.

Let's do this Thursday afternoon college basketball. Also, we take a look at what might happen in this tilt.

Did Arkansas Draw A Fortunate Matchup?

March Madness Round 1 wonder did Arkansas draw a fortunate matchup. Throw the temper tantrums out from the Razorbacks, this is a better team than their record. Also, some believe Illinois got worse as the year went on. Their loss in the conference tournament to Penn State added to that opinion. Late in games, the Fighting Illini throw up too many long shots and seem to not value the basketball.

The other thing Arkansas has going for them is balance with five players averaging double figures per contest. Furthermore, any one of them can go for 20+ points on any given night. That is partly why their SRS (simple rating score) comes in 15th. Also, the Razorbacks had a top-15 schedule in terms of difficulty. Alas, these are things which set up quite well for Arkansas. Execution down the stretch for this team is vital to any potential NCAA Tournament run.

With three Top 20 GSCI players, the time may be now for the Razorbacks. Their pace of play can confound a team. Playing in the SEC conference with all the adversity may be the best thing for Arkansas. The key will be causing turnovers and getting Illinois into foul trouble along with bad situations.

Again, Arkansas needs to allow their players to simply play. If there is one matchup which looms big in this game, it is Coleman Hawkins versus the defense of the Razorbacks. If Arkansas can create havoc and make Illinois force up shots, there is a possibility that this game could get away from the Fighting Illini.

March Madness Round 1 Bets Laying A Couple Points?

So, what about March Madness Round 1 Bets laying a couple points? Again, most 8-9 matchups dictate a closer spread. That makes sense and look at the record. Illinois and Arkansas have the same number of wins. The overall points for and against are right around a +7 differential for both too. However, at some point, the similarities end. Again, the Razorbacks played Alabama, Texas A&M, and Tennessee tough (all were healthy then too). It is an Arkansas team with potential.

The Arkansas team plays looser and faster than they lead on. Losing to Penn State for Illinois made a world of difference. They drew one of the worst matchups in Round 1. With almost a week of rest, that is the best thing which could have occurred for the Razorbacks. Figure on the first half being pretty close. Arkansas may be able to pull away in the second half.

Can Illinois keep this closer than expected or win? Now, Meyer and Shannon will need the games of their lives. On the other hand, Arkansas again has to let their players play. Arkansas giving two points means so little. Take the points here anyway. the Razorbacks are an angry team and could make some waves in the West region.

Arkansas Razorbacks To beat the Illinois Fighting Illini by more than two points

Let's Get Over It!

Finally, March Madness Round 1 Bets considers the over for Thursday afternoon. This game saw plenty of shifts as the numbers began to unravel. Both teams like to play at a higher pace. Illinois gets a few of those extra three-point shots to drop and this game could easily come close or pass 150 points combined. These two teams should get to that 145 mark at least on Thursday.

Illinois and Arkansas To score more than 145 points

Online Sportsbook Reviews Are At The Ready

There are always online sportsbook reviews which are at the ready for all those betting needs. It is one of the business wagering weeks of the year. Make a bet today!

Meet the author

Chris Wassel

Chris Wassel is a veteran sports writer with over 20 years of experience publishing thoughtful analysis and insightful perspectives on everything from hockey to basketball, football, and more. As a seasoned journalist, Chris has established himself as a leading voice o...

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