March Madness Betting Guide: Elite Eight, Tuesday

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.

USC vs. Gonzaga

Under 153.5: 3 Stars out of 5
USC +9: 3 Stars out of 5

Gonzaga has been steamrolling foes the entire season, and that has continued three games into their NCAA Tournament run. The Zags are now 29-0 on the season, including three tourney wins by at least 16 points against Norfolk State, Oklahoma and Creighton.

Gonzaga has scored at least 80 points in all but three of their games this season, but they will face a tough challenge against a USC team that boasts the fourth-best adjusted defense, per KenPom.

Our model does project USC to hold Gonzaga below 80 points, and if the Trojans can succeed there, the under becomes extremely likely. We project a a 75.66-71.80 victory for the Zags, which would put the game total at 147.46, about six points under this betting line.

We like USC’s defense enough to believe they will make this a close and relatively low-scoring game compared to what Gonzaga is used to. We project a 62.69% likelihood of the under hitting, and we forecast USC to cover 9.0 points 64.79% of the time. We have both marked as three-star bets for Tuesday.

UCLA vs Michigan

Over 136: 2 Stars out of 5
UCLA +7: 3 Stars out of 5

UCLA has won four straight tournament games, including an impressive win over Alabama, a team we have ranked 8th by nERD (16.82). The Bruins have moved up to 16th in our rankings (14.06 nERD), but the betting line is still not showing them much respect as they are 7.0-point underdogs.

Michigan ranks third in nERD (19.43) and fourth by KenPom, but much of that is based on their incredible 18-1 start to the season. The Wolverines lost three out of their last five games before the NCAA Tournament. They have won three straight on their NCAA Tournament run, of course, but they are running into a UCLA team that is red-hot right now.

Our model projects a 72.31-69.89 Michigan victory, which would give the Wolverines a 2.42-point win and would put the game total at 142.17. We give UCLA a 63.35% chance to cover the 7.0-point spread, and we think the over hits 61.81% of the time. We have the over and UCLA to cover tagged as two- and three-star bets, respectively.