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Friday, April 20, 2018

Louisville favored over every team in Midwest Region

Rick Pitino Louisville tattoo

Louisville as a four seed may be the biggest joke of the NCAA Tournament.

Prior to the 2014 NCAA Tournament draw being announced, Louisville coach Rick Pitino said his team looked like a No. 1 seed, even though he knew his Cardinals wouldn’t end up seeded so highly.

He was right — they weren’t a No. 1 seed — but few envisioned them being seeded as lowly as a number four. That was just one part of a grander decision by the selection committee to rank American Athletic Conference teams lowly in the tournament. Besides Louisville, Cincinnati got a 5, UConn a 7, Memphis an 8, and SMU was left out of the dance entirely. Not exactly a show of respect for the AAC.

Anyway, the tournament selection committee may not have given high seeds to the AAC, but the real people who matter — the oddsmakers — know how good Louisville is.

Despite being the fourth-seeded team in the Midwest, Louisville is projected to be favored over any team they play in their region, sports betting insider RJ Bell said on Sunday.

Louisville has gone 12-1 since February, and they really didn’t even have to sweat in their last five wins, which included taking the AAC tournament.

Senior Russ Smith looks good after pouring in 42 against Houston on Friday, and forward Montrezl Harrell hasn’t shot below 50 percent in a game since Feb. 16.

They may not repeat as champions, but the Cardinals certainly have the makings of a Final Four team.

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