March Madness betting doesn’t get any better than it will when the fourth-seeded – and favored – Michigan State Spartans take on top-seeded Virginia in one of the most intriguing NCAA Tournament matchups this postseason.
Both teams will look to take the next step to advancing to the Final Four when they square off on Friday night.
Why Virginia Will Win This Regional Final
The Virginia Cavaliers will win this matchup because they have the No.1 ranked defense in the nation, allowing a paltry 55.5 points pr game. The Cavs also ranked ninth in field goal percentage defense (38.7) and first in defensive rebounding (25.8).
Over their last 10 games, Virginia has limited elite teams like Memphis (60), Duke (63), Pittsburgh (48), Syracuse (56) and Notre Dame (49) to less than 63 points while accomplishing this feat nine times in their L/10 games overall.
Now, whether the Cavs have enough scoring (they have just two double-digit scorers) or not will be a big question, but defensively, they’re as good as it gets.
Could the Cavaliers Go…All the Way?
With an overwhelming defense like the one they’ve displayed all season long, Virginia certainly could take out any team that stands in its way, even if they aren’t one of the elite contenders in the hearts and minds of many collegiate hoops fans and gamblers.
Why Michigan State Will Win This Regional Final
The Spartans may be a No. 4 seed, but the fact of the matter is that they have been picked by a multitude of college hoops lovers to win it all this postseason. The Spartans have a productive offense that averaged 76.5 points per game this season (47th) while also finishing 17th in three-point field goal percentage (39.3).
With a defense that also ranked in the top 100 in both points allowed and field goal percentage, clearly, Michigan State is very well-balanced offensively with four double-digit scorers and one blossoming star in sophomore shooting guard Gary Harris.
Could the Spartans Go…All the Way?
Of course they can. The Spartans are as balanced as any team in the NCAA Tournament and when it comes to coaching, how many college coaches would you pick over Michigan State ‘s Tom Izzo?
And the Winner Is…
Virginia gets my vote to win and cover the spread in this matchup despite what most people believe. Michigan State was held to 67 points or less in five of their eight losses this season and I believe it is going take a similar defensive type of effort from Virginia to pull off an ‘upset’ over the lower seeded Spartans.
I’m really bothered by Michigan State ‘s late-season losses to Ohio State , Illinois , Michigan and Nebraska and I believe the cavaliers have a huge chip on their collective shoulders.
Sure, the Spartans are 5-1-1 ATS in their last 7 games, but Virginia has posted a robust 15-4-2 ATS mark in their last 21 games against a team with a winning SU record while also going 4-1-1 ATS in their last half-dozen neutral site games.
You heard it here first… Virginia gets the outright win and accompanying ATS cover.