Current Sportsbook.com Odds to Win the 2011 National Championship:
VCU: 4/1 (+400)
Butler: 3/1 (+300)
UCONN: 2/1 (+200)
Kentucky: 3/2 (+150)
Semi-Final Game Lines:
Butler (-2.5) vs. Virginia Commonwealth (+125 to win) (O/U 133.5)
The Butler Bulldogs are back in the Final Four for the second year in a row. Butler will face off against another Cinderella story in the Virginia Commonwealth Rams, who were an upset to even get into the tournament. The 11th seeded VCU Rams are the biggest underdog to make the Final Four since George Mason back in 2006. VCU has gone through USC, Georgetown, Purdue, Florida State, and Kansas and in an impressive fashion. Butler has also had a tough road to the Final Four by beating Old Dominion, Pittsburgh, Wisconsin, and Florida. Butler has prevailed in closer games while VCU has dismantled almost all of their opponents including the best team that either team has had to play in Kansas. I am taking Jamie Skeen and the VCU Rams to beat Butler and advance to the National Championship game.
Prediction: VCU 68, Butler 62 (VCU +2.5, UNDER 133.5)
Kentucky (-2) vs. UCONN (+110 to win) (O/U 140
The University of Connecticut is the hottest team left in the tournament. Winning five games in five days in the Big East Conference Tournament against tough opponents is just as impressive as defeating Arizona, San Diego State, and Cincinnati in their last three tournament games. UCONN is the slight underdog to a Kentucky team that has beaten North Carolina, Ohio State, and West Virginia, holding all three teams to under 70 points. The winner of this game will be the team with the most opportunities due to the level of defense on both sides. Both teams average 11 turnovers per game, but UCONN is the better rebounding team, averaging 39.6 rebounds per contest. I like Kemba Walker and UCONN to move on to the National Championship in a very exciting and competitive game.
Prediction: UCONN 71, Kentucky 68 (UCONN +2, UNDER 140)
National Championship Game: UCONN vs. VCU
It is hard to bet against a team like VCU that has been a constant underdog and has demolished every team in their path. UCONN is the team that finally stops the Rams from winning the most unlikely National Championship in NCAA history. UCONN has the better rebounding team, the better player in Kemba Walker, and has beaten better opponents throughout the season.
Prediction: UCONN 72, VCU 70