Notre Dame Fighting Irish (22-10) vs. Rutgers Scarlet Knights (18-13)
March 16, 2022 9:10 pm EDT
The Line: Rutgers Scarlet Knights +1 ; Over/Under: 135.5
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The Rutgers Scarlet Knights and Notre Dame Fighting Irish square off Wednesday ngiht in NCAA Tournament First Four college basketball action from UD Arena. Rutgers is 18-13 on the season. The Knights fell to Iowa in conference tourney activity on Friday. As for Notre Dame, they’re currently 22-10 and coming off a tournament loss to Virginia Tech. Check back all season long for free college basketball picks at Sports Chat Place.
Rutgers has done pretty well overall this season, especially considering the amount of talent in the Big Ten. The Scarlet Knights had a recent three-game win streak going, but they bounced back to take out Indiana and Penn State before their tournament loss to Iowa.
On Friday versus the Hawkeyes, the Knights were outscored 32-41 in the first half. Rutgers got better from there on 42 points but still lost 84-74. Tops in scoring was Geo Baker with his 23 points, three rebounds and three steals in the defeat.
Over on the Notre Dame side, they were a sketchy 4-5 back in mid-December. The Irish haven’t lost consecutive games since then, however. Notre Dame went into postseason play with a loss to Florida State and a win over Pittsburgh, then fell to Virginia Tech during the tournament.
Matched up against the Hokies on Thursday, the Irish were down 11 points at the break. Notre Dame outscored Virginia Tech 49-45 from there on the way to an 87-80 loss. Prentiss Hubb led the team with 23 points and five assists.
PICK: I’m going to take a stab on Notre Dame. This one’s looking pretty tight, though; you could probably make a good case either way (hence the line). That said, the Irish offense has been working well lately. They’ve hit 68 or more points in 10 of their last 11 outings. That scoring output is going to clash with Rutgers’ defensive capabilities; the Scarlet Knights have allowed 66 or fewer points in three of their last four games. It’s tough telling how this one will shake out, but I feel slightly better about the Irish on a potential cover. Should be a fun one.