Creighton vs. St. John's - 3/12/20 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Creighton vs. St. John's - 3/12/20 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction Photo by Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

St. John's Red Storm (17-15) at Creighton Bluejays (24-7)

College Basketball: Thursday, March 12, 2020 at 12:00 pm (Madison Square Garden)

The Line: St. John's Red Storm +2.5 -- Over/Under: 153

TV: FS1

The St. John’s Red Storm and the Creighton Bluejays meet in a Big East conference tournament quarter-final matchup from Madison Square Garden on Thursday afternoon.

The St. John’s Red Storm booked their ticket to the quarter-finals thanks to a 75-62 win over Georgetown in their last outing. LJ Figueroa leads the Red Storm in scoring with 14.3 PPG while Mustapha Heron has 13.8 PPG and Rasheem Dunn has 12 PPG and a team-high 3.4 APG this season. Julian Champagnie also has 10 PPG and a team-high 6.5 RPG this season. As a team, St. John’s is averaging 74.6 points on 41% shooting from the field, 32.1% from 3-point range and 70% from the foul line while allowing opposing teams to average 71.9 points on 41.4% shooting from the field and 31.9% from 3-point range this season.

The Creighton Bluejays enter the conference tournament as the top seed, finishing the year with a 13-5 mark in conference play as part of their 24-7 overall record this season, winning out on the top seed over Villanova and Seton Hall in a tiebreaker. Ty-Shon Alexander leads Creighton in scoring with an average of 16.9 PPG while Marcus Zegarowski has 16.1 PPG and a team-high 5 APG (but is going to miss this contest after having a minor knee surgery). Denzel Mahoney has 12 PPG and Mitch Ballock is right behind with 11.9 PPG while Damien Jefferson has 9.4 PPG and a team-high 5.5 RPG this season. As a team, Creighton is averaging 78.3 points on 47.1% shooting from the field, 38.6% from 3-point range and 73.9% from the foul line while allowing opposing teams to average 69.7 points on 42% shooting from the field and 31.4% from 3-point range this season.

I considered St. John's and the free bucket as we've seen the lower seeds that have had a game to shake off the rust take it to the rested higher seeds, along with the fact that playing at MSG is nothing new for the Johnnies and I think not having Zegarowski is going to hurt the Bluejays a bit. However, Creighton is still a really deep team with a bunch of talented scorers and in the end I still think they end up being too much for St. John's here. I'll lay the points with Creighton in this spot. 

Chris’s Pick Creighton -2.5

The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a Sports Chat Place site consensus.