Norfolk State Spartans (24-6) vs Baylor Bears (26-6)
March 17, 2022 2:00 pm EDT
The Line: Baylor Bears -20.5 / Norfolk State Spartans +20.5; Over/Under: +138
(Get latest betting odds)
The Baylor Bears and Norfolk State Spartans do battle Thursday afternoon in the college basketball NCAA Tournament First Round at the Dickies Arena. The Norfolk State Spartans look to build on their six-game winning streak. The Baylor Bears look for a win after winning seven of their last nine games.
The Norfolk State Spartans are averaging 75.4 points on 46.5 percent shooting and allowing 63.9 points on 37.4 percent shooting. Joe Bryant Jr. is averaging 16.8 points and 5.1 rebounds, while Jalen Hawkins is averaging 13.4 points and 3.8 rebounds. Kris Bankston is the third double-digit scorer and Christian Ings is grabbing 2.4 rebounds. The Norfolk State Spartans are shooting 34.4 percent from beyond the arc and 68.7 percent from the free throw line. The Norfolk State Spartans are allowing 29.1 percent shooting from deep and are grabbing 36.1 rebounds per game.
The Baylor Bears are averaging 76.8 points on 46.6 percent shooting and allowing 63.4 points on 42.2 percent shooting. LJ Cryer is averaging 13.5 points and 1.5 rebounds, while James Akinjo is averaging 13.4 points and 2.8 rebounds. Adam Flagler is the third double-digit scorer and Kendall Brown is grabbing 4.9 rebounds. The Baylor Bears are shooting 35.2 percent from beyond the arc and 69.3 percent from the free throw line. The Baylor Bears are allowing 29.2 percent shooting from deep and are grabbing 33.8 rebounds per game.
The Spartans are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 Thursday games and 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall. The Bears are 6-2-1 ATS in their last 9 neutral site games and 0-4 ATS in their last 4 Thursday games. The under is 19-7 in Spartans last 26 neutral site games. The over is 4-0 in Bears last 4 Thursday games.
The Norfolk State Spartans are playing well at the moment and blowing teams out, but it’s important to remember the competition in the MEAC isn’t anything to write home about. We saw Norfolk State get the breaks blown off back in November against Xavier. The Baylor Bears are head and shoulders the best team the Spartans will play this season, and that defense isn’t giving up anything easy. We’re used to seeing lines between the one and 16 a lot steeper. I’ll lay the chalk.