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The 2024 NCAA Men’s Tournament has already seen 12 underdogs in the Round of 64 win outright, so it was fitting that the first round was also punctuated with an ultimate bad beat.

No. 1 Purdue handily defeated No. 16 Grambling by a score of 78-50. As the Boilermakers controlled the entire game, there was never any doubt that top-seed Purdue would walk away with the victory. 

However, with less than a minute to go, bettors who backed Grambling to cover the spread were sweating out the final seconds of the contest.

Let’s break down what happened that caused bettors who backed the Tigers to cover the 27-point spread to rip up their betting tickets in disgust while Purdue backers cashed in.

At the beginning of the second half, the score was Purdue 36, Grambling 27. 

It was at this point that the Tigers found it almost impossible to score. 

At the 11:45 mark, Grambling had only managed to put up four points while the Boilerkmakers lit up the board and had added to a commanding lead. 

Purdue 54, Grambling 33.

A host of missed Grambling free-throws, ill-timed jump shots and turnovers led to the Tigers digging their heels into an even larger deficit. 

However, with 90 seconds left in the game, 16-seed Grambling had somehow managed to still keep the matchup close enough to cover the spread.

As a matter of fact, even with about one minute to go — which was undeniably garbage time — Grambling was still covering the 27-point spread as it trailed 50-75.

And then, with 42 seconds left, things took a turn for the worst for bettors who had wagered on Grambling to cover.

Any bettor can imagine what that worst-case scenario ended up being.

The Tigers’ Kintavious Dozier turned the ball over, which was followed up by a three-pointer by Purdue’s Carson Barrett.

Purdue 78, Grambling 50.

Adding insult to injury, the Tigers had another opportunity to score and cover the spread, but with only nine seconds left on the clock, Tiger Tra’Michael Moton missed a three-point jumper. 

Obviously, Grambling would still have lost, but if he had sinked that shot, bettors who had backed the stripes against the spread (ATS) would have been jubilant.

Such was not the case. Instead, Boilermaker backers cashed in those betslips with Purdue covering and winning outright.

Not only did the Boilermakers punch their ticket to the next round with the straight-up win, but center Zach Edey became the first player in the tourney since 1995 to have a 30-point, 20-rebound game.

Regards to Tigers bettors, though. As we’ve already seen, any and everything can and does happen in March Madness!

Stay tuned to FOX Sports as the tournament unfolds!


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