This season for the UConn Huskies women’s basketball team was unlike any of recent vintage. They lost five games; that’s fine for most teams, but considering UConn lost only 11 times in the previous eight seasons, that qualifies as a tough year. However, the Huskies were an injury-ravaged squad for the bulk of the season. Most of their key players missed multiple games, and no injury carried a greater impact than Paige Bueckers’ knee ailment. The reigning national player of the year missed nearly three months and returned to the court just a few weeks ago. She hasn’t played more than 18 minutes in any of her five games since coming back, including just nine minutes in the Big East Tournament final against Villanova.
Although she may not be 100%, the Huskies are as healthy now as they have been in a while, and they are absolutely rolling. They enter the NCAA Tournament as winners of 10 consecutive games and on the heels of winning their three conference tournament matchups by an average margin of 32 points.
The selection committee assigned the Huskies a No. 2 seed, but by putting them in the Bridgeport Region, UConn will play in front of decidedly favorable crowds throughout their run to the Final Four in Minneapolis. As such, the Huskies (-220) have the second-best odds of any team in the tournament to reach the Final Four, according to DraftKings Sportsbook. Only the No. 1 overall seed, South Carolina, has better odds (-350).
Does that make UConn a Final Four lock? Nothing is certain in the NCAA Tournament, but coach Geno Auriemma’s crew will have health and a home-court advantage on their side when they begin their tourney journey Saturday versus Mercer. That will make them very hard to beat.
UConn women’s basketball odds
Win the tournament: +350
Make the Final Four: -220