AAC Tournament Odds: It is Houston’s Title to Lose

Memphis, Cincinnati Stand As Biggest Threats to Heavily Favored Houston

The American Athletic Conference Tournament is Houston’s to lose. There’s no debate. With AAC Tournament odds of -325, the top-ranked Cougars are heavily favored to capture their third straight championship before setting their sights on an NCAAB title run.

Memphis currently stands the biggest threat to Houston in the AAC, with odds of +450. The top five seeds, which also include Tulane, Cincinnati and Temple, will receive byes to the tournament quarterfinals.

The first round tips off Thursday at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth, Texas, and the final is slated for Sunday at 3:15 p.m. It will be televised by ESPN. Here’s a closer look at the teams with the best odds.



HOUHouston Cougars (-325)

At 29-2, the Cougars have separated themselves as the favorites to win not just the American Athletic Conference Tournament, but the NCAA Tournament as well, per NCAAB betting odds. Outside of a bizarre home loss to Temple — their only blemish in AAC play — the Cougars’ resume in nearly impeccable. They’re 5-1 in Quad 1 games and are No. 1 in both the AP poll and NET. At KenPom, Houston is the only team ranked inside the top 10 in both offensive and defensive efficiency.

The Cougars have everything you’d want in a title contender: elite guard play — led by Marcus Sasser and Jamal Shead — size, experience, and proven coaching. Keep that in mind when filling out your March Madness contest bracket.


MEMMemphis Tigers (+450)

Despite falling at the buzzer on Sunday, Memphis stands the best — and maybe, only? — chance of dethroning the top-seeded Cougars in the AAC. The Tigers have an elite scorer in SMU transfer Kendric Davis, shoot well and play extremely fast. They average the 13th most possessions per game in the country.

Obviously, that comes with a high variance, but if they get hot, anything’s possible. If you’re looking for an upset pick, it’s Memphis at plus AAC Tournament odds.



CINCincinnati Bearcats (+1200)

Cincinnati has a few capable scorers, led by the well-traveled Landers Nolley II. The 6-foot-7 senior, now with his third different school in four years, is averaging 16.5 points on 46.4% shooting. He poured in a team-high 24 points last time against Houston before hurting his knee, per the NCAAB injury report. With a steady point guard in David DeJulius alongside him, this team’s in good hands. As a whole, the fourth-seeded Bearcats rank top 50 in the country in scoring.

But can they beat Houston, or even Memphis, for that matter? Odds are, the Bearcats — who will face No. 5 seed Temple in Friday’s quarterfinals — will have to get past at least one of them to capture their first AAC Tournament title since 2019. They were 0-4 against the top two seeds during the regular season.


TULNTulane (+2000)

Despite being the No. 3 seed, Tulane isn’t being given much of a chance. Part of that, of course, speaks to Houston’s dominance. The Cougars were 17-1 in AAC play, including a pair of lopsided victories over Tulane (80-60 and 89-59).

Still, we can’t rule out Tulane at least getting to Sunday’s final. Keep in mind, the Green Wave did beat Memphis twice.

They’ll need big contributions from Jalen Cook, Kevin Cross and Jaylen Forbes. The trio has accounted for 61.6% of the team’s scoring. Anything less won’t cut it.


TEMTemple (+2800)

Nah, no chance. Temple couldn’t possibly beat Houston again, right? That 56-55 stunner in January, it had to have been some type of fluke, no?

Whatever it was, we’re not counting on it happening again. The fifth-seeded Owls — one of three schools with AAC Tournament odds of +2800, along with UCF and Wichita State — are a longshot at best.


Houston vs. Memphis: Barring a shocking upset, Houston will at least get to the final. It should win it too, though Memphis has proven it can hang with the Cougars for 40 minutes. There’s plenty of motivation for Kelvin Sampson’s team, as the Cougars have a shot at the NCAA Tournament’s No. 1 overall seed.

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