NCAA Tournament 2019: March Madness bracket picks, top predictions from advanced computer model The 2019 NCAA Tournament features one of the most memorable March Madness brackets in recent history.
The ACC became just the second conference ever to have three No. 1 seeds when Duke, Virginia and North Carolina all claimed the top spot in their region.
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Duke is the overall No. 1 seed in the entire NCAA Tournament for the 14th time and first in four years. Meanwhile, Gonzaga, the runner-up two years ago, was awarded the fourth No. 1 seed in the 2019 NCAA tournament, the first time the Bulldogs have sat atop their region since 2017. However, don’t expect all four No. 1 seeds to advance to the Final Four. In fact, all four top seeds have won their regions only once, and that was more than a decade ago in 2008. With so much uncertainty surrounding which teams will dish out NCAA Tournament upsets and which schools will turn heads, you’ll want to see what SportsLine’s advanced computer model has to say before locking in your 2019 March Madness picks.
Their proven projection model has simulated every game in the tournament 10,000 times. It absolutely crushed its March Madness picks last year, finishing in the top five percent of all CBS Sports brackets and calling Villanova to win it all.
It knows how to spot an upset as well. The same model has produced brackets that have nailed 12 of the 18 first-round upsets by double-digit seeds the last three years. It also nailed some massive upsets last year, including huge wins by No. 13 seed Buffalo over No. 4 seed Arizona, No. 11 seed Loyola-Chicago over No. 6 seed Miami, and No. 10 seed Butler over No. 7 seed Arkansas.
There’s simply no reason to rely on luck when there’s proven technology to help you dominate your 2019 NCAA Tournament pools. Now, the model has simulated every possible matchup in the 2019 NCAA Tournament and revealed its optimal bracket. You can only see it over at SportsLine.
If you’re looking for a pick that will give you a huge edge in your 2019 March Madness bracket, SportsLine’s model says you should back No. 5 Marquette with confidence. Look for the Golden Eagles to bounce back from a tough end of the season to make a Sweet 16 run.
The Golden Eagles are coming off a strong 24-9 season in which they finished second in the Big East and had several head-turning victories. They defeated Louisville, Kansas State, and Wisconsin during the non-conference slate and went 12-6 in the Big East even though they ended the season with a tough stretch.
The model projects that Marquette bounces back and makes a run to the Sweet 16 now that its offense has turned it around, scoring an average of 83 points in its last three games after failing to break 65 in its three previous contests. The Golden Eagles will start their tournament run with a highly-anticipated 5 vs. 12 matchup against Murray State that has many people calling an early March Madness upset.
That game will pit Big East Player of the Year Markus Howard against a future top-five pick in the NBA Draft, Murray State’s Ja Morant. Both guards are explosive scorers, but the model gives the edge to Howard and Marquette with the expectation that they’ll put their recent struggles behind them. Both teams can score, but Marquette is a much better three-point shooting team (39 percent to 34 percent), which is why you should lock in the Golden Eagles to the Sweet 16 as one of your top 2019 March Madness picks.
Another curveball: the No. 9 seed Baylor Bears win the always-tough-to-predict 8 vs. 9 matchup against Syracuse. Baylor stumbled down the stretch, losing four of its last five games entering March Madness 2019. However, the Bears will have a distinct advantage over Syracuse in the first round.
Baylor enters Thursday’s game ranked 11th in the nation in offensive rebounding at 13.39 per game, while Syracuse is just 273rd in defensive rebounding (24), making for a perfect storm. If the Bears are able to crash the glass and get plenty of second chance opportunities against the Orange, they’ll have a strong shot of advancing to the second round.
The Bears are also a strong defensive team, holding opponents to just 67.2 points per game. That bodes well for Baylor since Syracuse’s offense has struggled recently, scoring 55 points or fewer in two of its last four games. SportsLine’s optimal 2019 March Madness bracket says you can bank on the Bears to pull off the upset in over 50 percent of simulations and get a date in the Round of 32 with Gonzaga.