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Liberty vs. Virginia Tech - 3/24/19 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Game
Liberty vs. Virginia Tech
Date & Time Sunday March 24, 2019, 7:10 PM (EDT)
Location
SAP Center
San Jose, California
The Line
The Line: Virginia Tech -8.5 -- Over/Under: 126
TV Channel
TBS
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Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The Liberty Flames and Virginia Tech Hokies meet Sunday in the second round of the college basketball NCAA Tournament at the SAP Center.

The Liberty Flames look to pull off another upset after beating Mississippi State in the first round of the tournament. The Liberty Flames are averaging 72.4 points on 48.3 percent shooting and allowing 62.7 points on 42.8 percent shooting. Scottie James is averaging 12.9 points and 8.7 rebounds while Caleb Homesley is averaging 12.5 points and 2.7 assists. Lovell Cabbil Jr. is the third double-digit scorer and Darius McGhee is grabbing 2.7 rebounds. The Liberty Flames are shooting 37.1 percent from beyond the arc and 78 percent from the free throw line. The Liberty Flames are allowing 33 percent shooting from deep and are grabbing 28.9 rebounds per game. The Liberty Flames have won 10 of their last 11 non-home games.

The Virginia Tech Hokies look to advance to the Sweet 16 after defeating Saint Louis rather easily in the first round. The Virginia Tech Hokies are averaging 73.8 points on 47.4 percent shooting and allowing 61.8 points on 40.4 percent shooting. Nickeil Alexander-Walker is averaging 16.7 points and 3.9 assists while Kerry Blackshear Jr. is averaging 14.7 points and 7.2 rebounds. Justin Robinson is the third double-digit scorer and Ahmed Hill is grabbing 3.8 rebounds. The Virginia Tech Hokies are shooting 39.4 percent from beyond the arc and 76 percent from the free throw line. The Virginia Tech Hokies are allowing 32.8 percent shooting from deep and are grabbing 29.5 rebounds per game. The Virginia Tech Hokies have won four of their last six non-home games.

The Flames are 9-4 ATS in their last 13 non-conference games, 3-9 ATS in their last 12 neutral site games and 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall. The Hokies are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 neutral site games, 20-8 ATS in their last 28 non-conference games and 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games overall. The under is 4-0-1 in Hokies last 5 non-conference games. The under is 7-3 in Flames last 10 neutral site games.

When the Virginia Tech Hokies play to their ability for 40 minutes, they're a really good basketball team capable of a deep tournament run. The problem is the Hokies can be a bit hit or miss at times and haven't been knocking down shots lately the way we're used to seeing. The Liberty Flames just beat a talented Mississippi State squad, and despite the Bulldogs being in control for majority of the game, Liberty kept answering until eventually winning the game late. That's a key trait to keep an eye on, as Liberty has clear mental toughness and isn't afraid of the moment. A balanced, well coached team in Liberty, I'm going to take the points, as this has the feel of a nail biter. 

Pick:
Liberty +8.5

Randy Chambers has been with Sports Chat Place since 2014 and covers everything from the NFL to WNBA and tennis. Nobody works harder in this business in terms of content produced and amount of sports covered. Formerly a lead college football writer with Bleacher Report and has had his work featured at Fox Sports, CBS Sports and various other outlets.

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