We’re down to the final eight games you can bet on this college basketball season – and before you know it, that number will be cut in half once more.

Before the games tip off again, it’s time to help you make your picks this weekend. We already went through whether the Cinderellas can make even deeper runs (and which teams you should be backing for futures bets at this point).

But to get us totally set for Saturday, here are my three best bets on the round of 16, with all odds via FOX Bet.

Overall record this tournament: 6-3-1

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Syracuse (+6.5 at FOX Bet) to lose by fewer than 6.5 points vs. Houston

Make it 3-for-3 for me on ‘Cuse. I’ve been on ‘em since the Round of 64, and there’s absolutely no turning back now.

Buddy Boeheim is one of the shining stars of this tournament, and he’s the leader of an Orange offense that people are finally respecting. Syracuse is a top-20 team in offensive efficiency. The Orange executing at a very high level, as the shooters are shooting with lots of confidence (11-for-26 on 3s in a second-round win over West Virginia), and they’re amazing at the free-throw line, at 78%.

Then there’s the 2-3 zone – that boring ol’ scheme head coach Jim Boeheim has run for four decades. This Syracuse defense isn’t even close to being one of Boeheim’s best, but the size and rotational fundamentals still give opponents fits. You literally can’t prepare for it.

If Houston shows out and hits 13 3-pointers, you tip your cap and move on. But I’m betting on Buddy Boeheim getting it done one more time. Give me the hotter team and more experienced coach catching all those points. Pick: Syracuse +6.5 at FOX Bet

Villanova (+7 at FOX Bet) to lose by fewer than 7 points vs. Baylor

Speaking of points, we’ve got some extra wiggle room with Villanova.

Oddsmakers opened this game with Baylor favored by 6 points, and sharp and square action has moved it all the way up to 7.5. There will likely be buyback as we get closer to tip-off [Ed. note: At the time of publishing, the line had come back down to -7], so I would strike now while you still get an elevated number.

Villanova’s offense, efficient as ever, hasn’t really missed a beat without the injured Collin Gillespie. The Wildcats frequently have four players on the floor who can knock down a midrange jumper, which makes it impossible to double anybody. 

Jeremiah Robinson-Earl is the best player on the floor, and I’m not just saying that because he has a hyphen in his last name. He is smooth as butter from 15 feet and in, and his footwork has improved drastically over the course of the season.

Much like taking points with Boeheim, I love getting points with a coach such as Jay Wright. I trust him to make the necessary adjustments to ensure the Wildcats hang inside the number. Pick: Villanova +7 at FOX Bet

Arkansas (-11 at FOX Bet) to win by more than 11 points vs. Oral Roberts

Be wary of those big underdogs in the Sweet 16.

There’s a reason teams such as Oral Roberts and Creighton are catching double digits. The Golden Eagles have had a very nice tournament run, but this is likely a game in which they find themselves down 15 points and either sink or swim from there. I’ll side with the former.

Oral Roberts loves to run, but Arkansas is Oral Roberts on steroids. The Razorbacks play even faster and are very, very good at turning you over. I am a little nervous about how well the Eagles shoot the 3-ball; I’ll counter those nerves with the realization that the Hogs are top-10 in defensive efficiency. Plus, they pressure the hell out of the basketball.

When these two teams met back in December in Fayetteville, Arkansas was a 19-point favorite. Now the line is -11 or -11.5?! Obviously, you can’t make Arkansas -19 on a neutral court in March Madness, but home court ain’t that expensive. Not even close. Pick: Arkansas -11 at FOX Bet

Play the FOX Super 6 Tourney Challenge all tournament long for your chance to win thousands of dollars every round! Just download the FOX Super 6 app for free and make your picks now.

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