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March Madness

Betting odds suggest this USC basketball team is significantly worse than last year's

Evan Desai
Mar 30, 2021; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Evan Mobley, USC Basketball
Mar 30, 2021; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Evan Mobley, USC Basketball / Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports
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USC basketball is ranked as the 22nd best team in the nation (AP Poll), yet they apparently have the 26th best odds of making improvement over last year and getting to the Final Four. They're tied for 26th in the nation according to WynnBET, who gives them +2500 odds to make the Final Four.

Last year, USC entered the NCAA Tournament ranked 24th. They also certainly didn't have 26 wins entering the tournament. SC does now, and only nine Power 5 teams have more. That USC basketball team from last year made the Elite Eight. This team is better, yet apparently doesn't have any sort of chance to show that in the tournament according to these odds.

It's very understandable to bring up the fact that Evan Mobley is gone. USC currently does not have a top three NBA Draft pick anymore. That being said, they saw tremendous improvement from two of their best players this year in Drew Peterson and Isaiah Mobley, who were both awarded First-Team All-Pac 12 honors.

Isaiah Mobley is going to be a monster in the NCAA Tournament for USC basketball.

Sure, 2021 NCAA Tournament All-Region (West) selection Evan Mobley isn't around, but his brother Isaiah is, and he was also a NCAA Tournament All-Region selection last season too. He's gotten even better since then, putting up career-highs in points per game (14.3), rebounds per game (8.5), assists per game (3.2), and free throw percentage (69.1%).

He already has proven he can take his game to another level in the tournament before, and now he's a much better and well-rounded player than he even was then. We still have talent on this roster without Evan. And besides, look who's ahead of us.

Our first round matchup opponent, who is a 10 seed and had a disappointing 23-10 season in what was a bad ACC, is listed ahead of USC on the odds list. Miami didn't touch the ranking a single time this season, and will not be favored against us in that first round, but somehow has better odds. They're one of SEVEN teams either unranked or ranked below us that have better odds than SC to make the Final Four.

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I would buy that the oddsmakers just don't like our second round matchup against Auburn, but that's obviously not why they ranked the Trojans so low considering they have our first round matchup listed ahead of us. USC will just have to go out and prove the doubters wrong again. Andy Enfield has made a career off of doing that both at Florida Gulf Coast and USC. He'll be ready to prove that he's far too low on a list like this.

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