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NCAA March Madness betting: Oregon, Dana Altman have been a bettor's dream in tournament play

Sam Cooper
·3 min read
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If you want to make money betting on the NCAA tournament, the simplest formula in recent years has been betting on Dana Altman and Oregon.

And now that trend has continued in 2021.

Oregon, the No. 7 seed in the West Region, blasted No. 2 Iowa in the second round on Monday. The Ducks were five-point underdogs at BetMGM, but cruised past the Hawkeyes in the second half in an impressive 95-80 victory. Oregon shot 55.9% from the field and saw four of its starters score at least 17 points in the win.

The Ducks are now 14-6 in 20 NCAA tournament games under Altman and are headed to the Sweet 16 for the fifth time in his tenure. Before Altman arrived on campus ahead of the 2010-11 season, Oregon had just three Sweet 16 appearances in program history.

The team’s NCAA tournament record has been even better against the spread. Monday’s win gave Oregon a blistering 16-4 against the spread mark under Altman. That includes a 9-1 record as an underdog with five outright wins.

On top of that, the Ducks currently are on a seven-game ATS winning streak dating back to the 2017 NCAA tournament — when the Ducks advanced to the Final Four.

Oregon’s seed line has varied under Altman, too. It’s not like the Ducks are a perennial No. 1 seed. Just once, in 2016, has Oregon been a No. 1 seed under Altman. The other years have ranged from a run to the Final Four as a No. 3 seed in 2017 to Sweet 16 trips as a No. 12 seed in both 2013 and 2019.

No matter the seed, Oregon has consistently outperformed its expectations from the oddsmakers. And cognizant bettors have been cashing in. One BetMGM customer locked in a $165,000 bet on Oregon and the points ahead of Monday’s matchup against Iowa. The Ducks, like usual, came through, and the bettor took home $150,000.

Oregon head coach Dana Altman talks during a timeout the first half of a men's college basketball game against Iowa in the second round of the NCAA tournament at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Monday, March 22, 2021. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
Oregon head coach Dana Altman talks during a timeout the first half of a men's college basketball game against Iowa in the second round of the NCAA tournament at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Monday, March 22, 2021. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

Oregon NCAA tournament betting history under Dana Altman

Season: 2013

Seed: 12

Round 1 point spread: +2

Round 1 result: Oregon 68, Oklahoma State 55

Round 2 point spread: +5

Round 2 result: Oregon 74, Saint Louis 57

Sweet 16 point spread: +10.5

Sweet 16 result: Louisville 77, Oregon 69

Tournament ATS: 3-0

Season: 2014

Seed: 7

Round 1 point spread: -5

Round 1 result: Oregon 87, BYU 68

Round 2 point spread: +6

Round 2 result: Wisconsin 85, Oregon 77

Tournament ATS: 1-1

Season: 2015

Seed: 8

Round 1 point spread: Pick ‘em

Round 1 result: Oregon 79, Oklahoma State 73

Round 2 point spread: +12.5

Round 2 result: Wisconsin 72, Oregon 65

Tournament ATS: 1-1

Season: 2016

Seed: 1

Round 1 point spread: -22.5

Round 1 result: Oregon 91, Holy Cross 52

Round 2 point spread: -7

Round 2 result: Oregon 69, St. Joe’s 64

Sweet 16 point spread: -3

Sweet 16 result: Oregon 82, Duke 68

Elite Eight point spread: -1

Elite Eight result: Oklahoma 80, Oregon 68

Tournament ATS: 2-2

Season: 2017

Seed: 3

Round 1 point spread: -15.5

Round 1 result: Oregon 93, Iona 77

Round 2 point spread: -4.5

Round 2 result: Oregon 75, Rhode Island 72

Sweet 16 point spread: Pick ‘em

Sweet 16 result: Oregon 69, Michigan 68

Elite Eight point spread: +6.5

Elite Eight result: Oregon 74, Kansas 60

Final Four point spread: +4.5

Final Four result: North Carolina 77, Oregon 76

Tournament ATS: 4-1

Season: 2019

Seed: 12

Round 1 point spread: +1.5

Round 1 result: Oregon 72, Wisconsin 54

Round 2 point spread: -4.5

Round 2 result: Oregon 73, UC Irvine 54

Sweet 16 point spread: +8.5

Sweet 16 result: Virginia 53, Oregon 49

Tournament ATS: 3-0

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