The college basketball season gets underway Wednesday. That means if you're looking to drop some cheddar on futures bets before the season starts -- and before results start to pour in -- now's the time to get ahead of the curve. In two weeks, those trendy long shots may well emerge as contenders, and any lucrative potential payout may drop considerably as odds shorten. 

Shoot your shot if you have convictions checking out the odds below from William Hill Sportsbook, and I'll walk you through some of my favorite national championship gambles and the reasoning behind each. (Disclaimer: I made my own rules on who I consider sleepers and long shots using the criteria that 25-1 or longer odds are sleepers and any team with 75-1 odds or longer are considered long shots.)


Gonzaga (10-1): Preseason No. 1 team getting 10-1 odds, and behind preseason No. 3 Villanova? Give me some Zags stock! Mark Few has arguably his most talented roster ever, and his first preseason No. 1 team. Between returning pieces like Corey Kispert, Joel Ayayi, Drew Timme -- along with the addition of five-star guard Jalen Suggs and Florida transfer Andrew Nembhard -- this team is deep with an incredible blend of blue-chip talent and experience. 

Illinois (15-1): Brad Underwood's Illini are a trendy pick amongst our staff to make the Final Four, so by extension, they are one of my darling picks here at 15-1 to win the whole thing. Underwood returns stars Ayo Dosunmu and Kofi Cockburn and has a top-20 recruiting class in tow led by combo guard Adam Miller. Underwood hasn't had a backcourt this talented since his one-and-done season at Oklahoma State, when the Cowboys boasted the No. 1-rated offense nationally in adjusted efficiency. 

Wisconsin (20-1): The Badgers might have the best bunch in the Big Ten this season, led by Micah Potter and Nate Reuvers. And after winning eight of their last nine to close last season, this team has the makings of one on the rise yet still being undervalued. There is no reason for Wisconsin to have longer odds than Michigan State (16-1), other than brand power. 


Tennessee (30-1): Rick Barnes and Co. are flying under the radar headed into the season, but with John Fulkerson, Yves Pons and Santiago Vescovi returning, this core group has continuity on its side. Oh, and by the way, five-star guards Jaden Springer and Keon Johnson are joining the mix. Huzzah. Vols have enough scoring punch to challenge for the SEC and beyond. 

Texas (40-1): Texas is … back? Possibly. I'm not ruling it out. The Longhorns return every starter on a young team that went 19-12 and add in five-star high-flying big man Greg Brown. If ever there was a time for Shaka Smart to catch lightning in a bottle, it's this year. 

Stanford (50-1): Losing Tyrell Terry to the NBA Draft was a huge loss for the Cardinal, but Jerod Haase still has one of the Pac-12's most interesting rosters. They'll be led by leading returning scorer Oscar da Silva as well as one-and-done prospect Ziaire Williams, the highest-rated hoops recruit in program history. 

Long shots

Alabama (75-1): Nate Oats is tasked with the unenviable objective of replacing first-rounder Kira Lewis Jr., the team's leading scorer and assist man. But at the very least he'll have options, with enough offensive firepower between Jaden Shackelford and John Petty Jr. to stay afloat. The big piece that could elevate this team from good to great is freshman combo guard Josh Primo, a potential one-and-done guard with great size who can make plays on and off the ball. 

Memphis (75-1): A year ago at this time, Penny Hardaway's Tigers -- with No. 1 recruit James Wiseman -- were the talk of town in college hoops. Now look at them, off the radar and free of expectations. It sets up for a spot where Memphis should have a chance to exceed expectations. Virginia Tech transfer Landers Nolley should be a difference-maker from day one as should five-star recruit Moussa Cisse. 

Saint Louis (125-1): Travis Ford brings back his top four scorers from last season -- including Jordan Goodwin and Javonte Perkins, who averaged a combined 30.5 points per game -- to step into a role as one of the potential favorites in the A-10. Coming off a 23-win campaign in which it pushed the likes of Dayton and Auburn in close contests and toppled the likes of Richmond, Kansas State and VCU, this team has the goods to be one of the best at the mid-major level.

Odds to win 2020 NCAA Tournament

-- Courtesy William Hill Sportsbook

Villanova Wildcats+900
Gonzaga Bulldogs+1000
Baylor Bears+1000
Virginia Cavaliers+1000
Iowa Hawkeyes+1200
Kentucky Wildcats+1200
Kansas Jayhawks+1200
Duke Blue Devils+1400
Illinois Fighting Illini+1500
Michigan State Spartans+1600
West Virginia Mountaineers+1800
Wisconsin Badgers+2000
Creighton Bluejays+2500
North Carolina Tar Heels+2500
Florida State Seminoles+2500
Tennessee Volunteers+3000
Ohio State Buckeyes+3000
Houston Cougars+3000
Texas Tech Red Raiders+3000
Oregon Ducks+3000
Arizona State Sun Devils+3000
Michigan Wolverines+4000
Maryland Terrapins+4000
Texas Longhorns+4000
Florida Gators+4000
UCLA Bruins+4000
San Diego State Aztecs+4000
Louisville Cardinals+4000
Arizona Wildcats+5000
Stanford Cardinal+5000
LSU Tigers+5000
Richmond Spiders+5000
Indiana Hoosiers+5000
Purdue Boilermakers+6000
Connecticut Huskies+6000
Alabama Crimson Tide+7500
Colorado Buffaloes+7500
Dayton Flyers+7500
Arkansas Razorbacks+7500
USC Trojans+7500
Memphis Tigers+7500
Northern Iowa Panthers+10000
Oklahoma Sooners+10000
Xavier Musketeers+10000
Miami FL Hurricanes+10000
Seton Hall Pirates+10000
Rutgers Scarlet Knights+10000
Syracuse Orange+10000
Notre Dame Fighting Irish+10000
Mississippi State Bulldogs+10000
Butler Bulldogs+10000
Ole Miss Rebels+12500
St Louis Billikens+12500
Penn State Nittany Lions+12500
South Carolina Gamecocks+12500
Marquette Golden Eagles+12500
Iowa State Cyclones+15000
Clemson Tigers+15000
Wichita State Shockers+15000
Minnesota Golden Gophers+15000
Texas A&M Aggies+15000
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets+15000
Utah Utes+15000
Cincinnati Bearcats+15000
BYU Cougars+15000
Rhode Island Rams+20000
North Carolina State Wolf Pack+20000
Providence Friars+20000
Pittsburgh Panthers+20000
Virginia Tech Hokies+20000
St Marys Gaels+20000
TCU Horned Frogs+25000
Oregon State Beavers+30000
Tulsa Golden Hurricanes+30000
Washington Huskies+30000
SMU Mustangs+30000
Missouri Tigers+30000
St Johns Red Storm+30000
UNLV Rebels+50000
Kansas State Wildcats+50000
Nebraska Cornhuskers+50000
Temple Owls+50000
Georgetown Hoyas+50000
California Golden Bears+50000
Davidson Wildcats+50000
Georgia Bulldogs+50000
VCU Rams+75000
St Bonaventure Bonnies+75000
Yale Bulldogs+75000
Washington State Cougars+75000
Boston College Eagles+75000
New Mexico State Aggies+75000
Central Florida Knights+75000
South Florida Bulls+75000
Utah State Aggies+75000
Wake Forest Demon Deacons+75000
Duquesne Dukes+75000
DePaul Blue Demons+75000
Nevada Wolf Pack+100000
Iona Gaels+100000
Liberty Flames+100000
Northwestern Wildcats+150000
Loyola Chicago Ramblers+150000
Akron Zips+150000
Boise State Broncos+150000
Belmont Bruins+150000
Vermont Catamounts+150000
Cal Irvine Anteaters+150000
Stephen F Austin Lumberjacks+150000
Vanderbilt Commodores+150000
Hofstra Pride+150000
North Texas Mean Green+200000
Pacific Tigers+200000
Bowling Green Falcons+200000
UMass Minutemen+250000
San Francisco Dons+250000
Little Rock Trojans+250000
Tulane Green Wave+250000
Winthrop Eagles+250000
George Mason Patriots+250000
East Tennessee State Buccaneers+250000
New Mexico Lobos+250000
Bradley Braves+250000
Bradley Braves+250000