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2023 March Madness Bracket: Who Has the Toughest Path to the Final Four?

It's time to start filling out those March Madness brackets as the NCAA Tournament is about to begin! Who has the toughest path to the Final Four? Johnny Covers is here to break it down.
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2023 March Madness Bracket: Who Has the Toughest Path to the Final Four?

Selection Sunday is now officially history, and the field of 68 competitors is now determined. Now that the games for the First Four have been scheduled for Tuesday, sports bettors are in a race against the clock to secure their placement in the market before the first tip-off of the Madness of the next two weeks.

Let's take a look at the five teams who have the toughest roads to go in order to make it to the Final Four as the odds market continues to evolve right in front of our eyes. The odds that are listed below are for each region's "Team to Win" category.

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5 Toughest Paths to the Final Four

5. Duke Blue Devils (+1000) Bet $100 to collect $1100. DraftKings has the best odds, click here

In the first game of the NCAA tournament, Duke will face Oral Roberts in Orlando, a team that had an outstanding season in 2021-22, when they made it all the way to the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Tournament. Suppose they can beat Tennesee, who they should be a slight underdog to. In that case, it’s possible that Duke will make it all the way to the regional finals, where they will almost certainly face Purdue, who some may recall defeated the Blue Devils early in the season convincingly. 

4. Gonzaga Bulldogs (+425) Bet $100 to collect $525. DraftKings has the best odds, click here

The Bulldogs' season may be described as having had its fair share of highs and lows. Gonzaga was ranked No. two in the AP Top 25 preseason poll when the regular season began, but the Bulldogs fell as far as 18 in the rankings before they began to climb back up. This Gonzaga team finished the regular season on a nine-game winning streak, including two wins against a ranked Saint Mary's team that were decided by a wide margin of victory.

Even still, the road will be difficult for a team used to having a No. 1 seed and who will likely run into UCLA in the Sweet 16 before a potential showdown with Kansas. 

3. Indiana Hoosiers (+1200) Bet $100 to collect $1300. DraftKings has the best odds, click here

The Hoosiers were a team I was high on all season and looking forward to betting on in March, but they were done zero favors with this regional positioning. Easily the most daunting regional of the four, the Hoosiers will draw Miami in round two before running into the Houston Cougars in a potential Sweet 16 matchup. 

2. Virginia Cavaliers (+1500) Bet $100 to collect $1600. DraftKings has the best odds, click here

Losing to Duke on Saturday in the ACC Championship game, the Cavaliers were clearly dinged by the committee as they got an absolutely miserable draw to try and advance through. After getting Furman in the Round of 64, UVA will have to face a dangerous SDSU team before potentially advancing to take on the No. one team in the tournament, Alabama. 

1. Xavier Musketeers( +700) Bet $100 to collect $800. DraftKings has the best odds, click here

Xavier was another team I was looking forward to betting on in this tournament, but after seeing their path revealed today, the chances may be few and far between. After beating Kennesaw State in the first round, they likely get an Iowa State team that could be a matchup nightmare. If they can advance, they should draw one of the hottest teams in the country in Texas.

An otherwise talented team that pressed for the Big East title, the road doesn’t get more difficult to the Final Four. 

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Johnny has been covering the sports betting markets and handicapping games for the better part of the past decade. Along the way, he has written for publications such as All-In Magazine, Blitz Predict, FantasyPros, Betting Pros, Sportsbook Review, and most recently, OddsChecker. In addition to giving out picks on Twitter, Johnny is the host of the podcast The Daily Sports Bet -- a 10 minute or less listen with actionable insights and no fluff or BS. Starting the podcast in June, he closed out 2021 up 26 units with a winning percentage of 55%.

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