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Louisiana Tech Bulldogs vs. Iona Gaels NIT First Round Pick-Odds-Prediction 3/19/14

Iona Gaels (22-10) at Louisiana Tech Bulldogs (27-7)

College Basketball: Wednesday, March 19, 2014 at 7:30 pm (Thomas Center)

The Line: Louisiana Tech Bulldogs -7.5 -- Over/Under: 165.5 See the Latest Odds

TV: ESPN3

The Iona Gaels visit the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs for 3-6 NIT action Wednesday night at 7:30PM on ESPN3.

Iona was disappointed to miss out on the tournament after finishing 17-3 in conference play before falling to Manhattan in the conference final.  The Gaels have an impressive resume and are winners of 14 of 16 heading into the NIT.  On a national scale, the Gaels rank 4th in PPG with 83.5 and 3rd in assists with 17.4.  The Iona offense is paced by guards AJ English and Sean Armand.  The duo both average over 17 points and just under 5 assists and form one of the most efficient, effective backcourts in the nation.  The Gaels will find their hands full defensively with a Louisiana Tech team that is not far behind in the PPG category.

Louisiana Tech Bulldogs vs. Iona Gaels NIT First Round Pick-Odds-Prediction 3/19/14

Ivan Pierre Aguirre-USA TODAY Sp

Louisiana Tech lost to Tulsa in their conference final and hold a 13-3 record in Conference USA play.  The Bulldogs are solid at home and have not lost their since December.  Sophomore Alex Hamilton leads the way for the Bulldogs with 14.6 ppg and he averages 3.9 boards and 2.9 assists as well.  Guard Kenneth Smith gets the offense rolling for the Bulldogs -- the junior guard averages 7 points and just under 8 assists per game.  The Bulldogs finished the season ranked in the top 15 nationally in points (81.0), rebounds (39.4) and assists (15.9).

This game should be high scoring and the over is a solid play.  Both these teams do not hone in on defense all too much and I like a shootout to be the style of play here.   When two teams, capable of putting points on the board like this meet, I have to go with the home squad.  I like the Bulldogs experienced roster and deeper post play to be the difference as La Tech pulls away for the late win but the Gaels snag the cover in what should be a very entertaining contest.

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Iona +7.5

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