The Duel

March Madness: 3 Dark Horse Picks to Win the 2021 NCAA Tournament from FanDuel Sportsbook

Big 12 Basketball Tournament - Semifinals
Big 12 Basketball Tournament - Semifinals / Jamie Squire/Getty Images

The 2021 NCAA Tournament is generating even more interest this year, and FanDuel Sportsbook has you covered with odds to win the NCAA Tournament. The No. 1 seeds are taking the most bets, and Michigan, Illinois, Gonzaga and Baylor have the most money bet in that order, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.

Also, odds to make the Final Four are popular bets. But looking down the odds board for longshots to win the NCAA Tournament is fun, and offers a bigger payoff and reward.

With that in mind, here are 3 darkhorse teams that could make a run to the Final Four and potentially win the NCAA Tournament.

1. Oklahoma State (+3500) - No. 4 Seed Midwest Region

Oklahoma State had odds of +20000 to win the NCAA Tournament less than three weeks ago. Now the Cowboys are hot and a No. 4 seed that is a trendy pick to make a deep run at odds of +3500. The Cowboys have a star player and difference maker in versatile 6-foot 8 freshman and Big 12 Player of the Year Cade Cunningham - a projected No. 1 or 2 pick in the NBA draft. But beyond Cunningham and his 20 points per game, Oklahoma State has leading rebounder Isaac Likekele and a balanced group of players that have a solid overall shooting profile (46.8% FG) and can defend (41.2% FG). The Cowboys led the tough Big 12 in blocked shots, and Oklahoma State beat every team in the Big 12 that is seeded higher than them in the NCAA Tournament - Kansas, Texas, West Virginia and No. 1 Baylor, who they beat in the Big 12 Tournament. Add in 10 Quadrant 1 wins against the stronger teams in the country, and the Cowboys can compete and beat any team when they're on.

2. UConn (+5500) - No. 7 Seed East Region

In 2014, Connecticut was the first 7 seed ever to reach and win the championship game. Now the Huskies (15-7) are back as a 7-seed again, and this team is underrated. It's proven in their 16-5 record against the spread (ATS) as well. UConn ranks top-25 in KenPom's adjusted offense and defense efficiency ratings. The Huskies are patient and play well in the half-court, are relentless on the offensive glass and are highly-ranked in rebounding. Connecticut has a star guard in 19-point-per-game scorer James Bouknight to lead the Huskies on a potential deep run.

3. North Carolina (+8000) - No. 8 Seed South Region

If there is a vulnerable No. 1 seed, it's Baylor in the South Region. That's who surging North Carolina would play if they beat Wisconsin in the opening Round. The Tar Heels (18-10) were 8-5 two months ago finding their way with a young nucleus led by star freshman guard Caleb Love. Now they are surging and scoring with six games of 80+ points since February, including four wins with at least 90 points. The Tar Heels have depth in the front court and led the nation in rebounding margin at better than plus-10 per game. They also block shots at a high rate, and have improved their effort and play on defense, which now shows them holding opponents to 42.1% field goals. If the young guys can do better in taking care of the basketball, North Carolina could pull a few upsets and start their run to the Final Four.

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