Tennessee vs. Mississippi State - 3/9/18 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Mississippi State Bulldogs (21-10) at Tennessee Volunteers (23-7)
College Basketball: Friday, March 9, 2018 at 7:00 pm (Scottrade Center)
The Line: Tennessee Volunteers -8 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
We have some SEC tournament quarterfinals action on Friday as the #7 seed Mississippi State Bulldogs take on the #2 seed Tennessee Volunteers in a college basketball matchup.
The Mississippi State Bulldogs reached the second round thanks to an 80-77 victory over LSU in the 2nd round on Thursday. Lamar Peters led the Bulldogs with 24 points on 8 of 11 shooting with 5 threes along with a share of the team-high with 6 assists. Quinndary and Nick Weatherspoon tied with 15 points each, with Quinndary shooting 6 of 14 with 6 assists of his own and 3 steals while Nick shot 6 of 8. Aric Holman added 11 points and 12 rebounds along with 4 blocks for the double-double to round out the scoring in double figures for Mississippi State in the winning effort. Quinndary Weatherspoon leads Mississippi State in scoring with 14.7 points per game while Abdul Ado leads the Bulldogs in rebounding with 6.5 rebounds per game and the aforementioned Peters is the Bulldogs’ top assist man with 4 assists per game this season. As a team, Mississippi State is scoring 74 points per game on 46.6% shooting from the field, 30.7% from behind the 3-point line and 68.5% from the foul line this season.
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The Tennessee Volunteers got a bye through the first two rounds of the tournament after locking up the #2 seed with a 13-5 conference record, missing out on the top-seed by losing a tiebreaker with Auburn. The Vols compiled a 23-7 overall record, including a 10-2 mark out of conference. The Volunteers recorded some strong wins, including a road victory over a top-10 team in Purdue in addition to Wake Forest, Georgia Tech and NC State. Tennessee dropped their opening pair of conference games, but followed that up with wins in 9 of their next 10 and 13 of 16, closing the regular season out with a 4 game winning streak. Grant Williams led Tennessee in scoring with 15.6 points per game while Admiral Schofield led the Vols on the glass with 6.1 rebounds per game and Jordan Bone led Tennessee in assists with 3.6 assists per game this season. As a team, Tennessee is scoring 74.4 points per game on 44.1% shooting from the field, 38.1% from behind the 3-point line and 75.8% from the foul line this season.
Mississippi State is 0-3-1 ATS in their last 4 games overall and 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 neutral site games while the under is 5-2 in their last 7 games against a team with a winning record. Tennessee is 8-3 ATS in their last 11 neutral site games and 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games against a team with a winning percentage above .600 while the under is 4-0 in their last 4 games overall. Mississippi State is 3-7 ATS in the last 10 meetings between these two teams.
Mississippi State looked dominant at times against LSU, leading by double digits on multiple occasions for extended periods of time. However, the Tigers got it down to a one point game late, and while the Bulldogs were dominant at home, Mississippi State wasn’t as potent away from the confines of their home gym. Tennessee was the surprise team in the SEC this season in my opinion and after how the Bulldogs took their foot off the gas against LSU, I think the Vols take advantage of their double bye and take down Mississippi State by double digits here.