March Madness Betting Guide: Elite Eight, Monday

numberFire has built comprehensive algorithms to pinpoint the bets with the highest probability of returning money, whether you are betting on the total, the spread, or the moneyline. For those new to numberFire, we use a five-star system to show which bets you should be targeting for any given game. Stars represent how much you should risk on a wager relative to what you would normally bet.

For example, if you would normally bet $110 to win $100 on a -110 spread wager, if we give a three-star ranking, we suggest risking three times that amount: $330 to win $300. Here are the best bets for today's games with guidance from our model.

Please note that lines are subject to change throughout the day after this article is published. Please check here to make sure you're seeing the most updated information. You can also look at our oddsFire tool to get a feel for what the betting public is doing.

Oregon State vs. Houston

Over 130.5 Points: 5 Stars out of 5
Oregon State +295: 2 Stars out of 5

Oregon State is still riding high into the Sweet 16, as they earned another tournament victory on Saturday against Loyola. The Beavers have now won six straight games and 9 out of their last 10. During this run, they've defeated 5 teams in the top 21 of our nERD rankings, so they have been winning against high-level competition.

Oregon State is averaging 69.4 points per game this season, and they have been averaging even slightly more in the NCAA Tournament at 71.67. Our model projects the Beavers to score 69.51 points in this game, which alone would take us more than halfway to the over.

Houston ranks third in nERD (19.02), and we have them winning this game by a thin margin. We project Houston to score 72.86 points en route to their victory, putting us almost 12 points over the projected game total. We project a 73.16% likelihood for the over, making it a 5-star bet for Monday.

While we do also project a Houston victory, giving them a 63.1% chance to win, the Oregon State moneyline is a good play at +295. The 36.9% likelihood of Oregon State winning nets a 45.80% return on the wager, making this a 2-star bet to pair with the over.

Arkansas vs. Baylor

Arkansas +7.0: 2 Stars out of 5

Arkansas is coming off a thrilling win over Oral Roberts in their Sweet 16 matchup in what has possibly been the game of the tournament so far. The Razorbacks have been playing exceptional basketball the past two months, going 12-1 during that span. Overall, we rank them 14th (14.50 nERD) based on their 25-6 regular season, making them a difficult matchup for any opponent.

Baylor has had a dominant season, and they are now 25-2 including the NCAA Tournament. However, the Bears have been slightly more vulnerable recently and are “only” 7-2 since their 18-0 start. We rank Baylor second in nERD (19.74), so we have them as clearly being the better team, but the 7.0-point spread is daunting.

Our model projects a 76.17-72.10 Baylor victory, so we have this as about a 4.0-point game compared to a 7.0-point betting line. We give Arkansas a 58.89% chance to cover this spread, making this a 2-star bet for Monday night.