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Brunson The Slight Fave To Win Most Outstanding Player

Jalen Brunson of the Villanova Wildcats takes a shot during quarterfinals of the Big East Basketball Tournament

Trying to predict who will win Most Outstanding Player is just as hard as predicting the NCAAB tournament winner. Every winner of the MOP since 1983 has come from the team that ended up cutting down the nets; Hakeem Olajuwon was the last player to win the award despite being on the losing team.

So, if you’re looking to bet MOP, you’re best to double down with whichever team you have winning the whole damn thing. Of course, with the field as competitive as ever this season, neither of those bets is easy.

Jalen Brunson of Villanova has opened as the +700 favorite to win the MOP. Brunson is basically the equivalent of the old guy at the gym who schools every pickup game he plays in. The junior is a pitbull of a point guard who can drive to the net and score when needed (he scored 25-plus points eight times this season), knows when to simply run the offense and competes hard on defense. There is little doubt that Brunson was the best all-around point guard in college basketball this season.

Close behind Brunson is Marvin Bagley III (+800). The Duke freshman may get docked by some NBA scouts for his defensive effort but his presence on the offensive end is more than enough to propel Duke throughout the NCAA Tournament. Bagley averaged 21.2 points and 11.5 rebounds per game while demonstrating the ability to shoot over smaller defenders or blow past bigger opponents.

The guy who jumps out at me is Mikal Bridges (+1400) of Villanova. Though Brunson is the straw that stirs the drink, Bridges is easily the most gifted player on Jay Wright’s team. No doubt, Bridges is the best two-way wing in college basketball with the growth of his three-point shot this season. The junior doubled the amount of threes he was taking compared to last year while shooting four percentage points higher as well.

2018 NCAA Tournament – Most Outstanding Player Award Odds

Odds as of March 14 at Bovada

  • Jalen Brunson (Villanova) +700
  • Marvin Bagley III (Duke) +800
  • Miles Bridges (Michigan State) +900
  • Kyle Guy (Virginia) +1000
  • Grayson Allen (Duke) +1200
  • Mikal Bridges (Villanova) +1400
  • Joel Berry II (UNC) +1500
  • Deandre Ayton (Arizona) +1500
  • Devonte’ Graham (Kansas) +1800
  • Trevon Bluiett (Xavier) +2000
  • Wendell Carter Jr. (Duke) +2000
  • Luke Maye (UNC) +2000
  • Allonzo Trier (Arizona) +2500
  • Kevin Knox (Kentucky) +3000
  • Jaren Jackson Jr. (Michigan State) +3000
  • Carsen Edwards (Purdue) +3500
  • Jevon Carter (West Virginia) +4500
  • Moritz Wagner (Michigan) +4500
  • Mohamed Bamba (Texas) +5000
  • Jonathan Williams (Gonzaga) +5000
  • Keenan Evans (Texas Tech) +6000
  • Michael Porter Jr. (Mizzou) +6000
  • Gary Clark (Cincinnati) +6000
  • Landry Shamet (Wichita State) +7500
  • Admiral Schofield (Tennessee) +8000
  • Trae Young (Oklahoma) +15000
  • Collin Sexton (Alabama) +15000