Perfect Bracket Remains in NCAA March Madness, Derek Stevens More Conservative in Betting This Year
Posted on: March 27, 2019, 12:36h.
Last updated on: March 27, 2019, 12:36h.
The 2019 NCAA March Madness men’s college basketball tournament has featured several upsets, but one person has been able to correctly predict each and every game so far to the Sweet 16.
40-year-old neuropsychologist Gregg Nigl has correctly picked each of the 48 games through the first two rounds of the tourney. He owns the only remaining perfect bracket in 2019.
“This is my friend’s bracket group that he invited me to, and I almost didn’t fill it out because we were just doing it for fun and I’m in a couple other ones at work and stuff. Almost didn’t even fill it out,” Nigl told NCAA.
The Ohioan says he pays attention to the experts prior to making his picks, but adds: “Honestly, sometimes it’s which teams I like better. Some cities I like better, some teams I like better, some coaches I like better. I do look at the rankings too. It’s a combination of things.”
He admits, however, that “a bunch of this is luck. I know that.” The odds of filling out a perfect bracket aren’t exactly known, but if every game was determined by a coin flip, the odds would be one in 9.2 quintillion.
Fifteen games remain. Duke is the favorite at 3/1. Gonzaga is next at 4/1, followed by Virginia (5/1) and North Carolina (6/1).
Stevens Bets Again
Derek Stevens, owner of the downtown Las Vegas D Casino, has become known for his extravagant sports betting on March Madness.
In 2017 and 2018, he bet $11,000 on each of the first 32 First Round games ($363,000 total). Last year, he also put $25,000 on his beloved Michigan Wolverines to win the National Championship. They lost in the final game to Villanova, otherwise he would have won $1 million on the 40/1 odds.
Stevens is again placing large wagers, albeit not at the same exorbitant rate.
Stevens says he wagered $100,000 on a four-team prop bet involving Michigan, Duke, Gonzaga, and Kansas. If any of the three remaining teams in the Sweet 16 win the title – the Wolverines, Blue Devils, and Bulldogs – the bet will net $105,000.
Stevens also put $8,000 on Michigan State at 12/1. That gamble would net $96,000 should the Spartans emerge victorious.
In Need of Madness
Three No. 12 seeds upset their No. 5 opponents in the First Round of the NCAA tournament. But in the Second Round, all 16 betting favorites won to advance to the Sweet 16. It was the first time that’s ever happened since the NCAA expanded the tournament to 64 teams in 1985.
The Sweet 16 will likely feature at least an upset or two. No. 2 seeds Tennessee and Michigan are both spotting their respective No. 3 seed opponents (Purdue and Texas Tech) just 1.5 points. Another game oddsmakers believe will be close is No. 2 Kentucky spotting No. 3 Houston three points.
Overall No. 1 seed Duke – who barely survived the Second Round with last-second heroics – is seven-point favorites over Virginia Tech.