The fifth-seeded Utah Utes face the 12th-seeded Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks in the 2015 NCAA Tournament‘s south bracket. While the Lumberjacks are 6.5-point underdogs, many March Madness betting analysts feel that Stephen F. Austin is the most likely No. 12 seed to upset a No. 5 seed.
A Closer Look At the Stephen F. Austin V Utah March Madness Odds & My In Depth Betting Analysis
Matchup: (12) Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks vs (5) Utah Utes
Date: Mar. 19, 2015
Start Time: 7:27 p.m. ET
Location: Portland, Oregon
Stadium: Moda Center
TV Info: truTV
Stream: March Madness Live
Radio: Stephen F. Austin Vs Utah
Point Spread: Utes -6.5
Stephen F. Austin Will Cover the Spread If
The Lumberjacks’ pick a game plan and stick to it.
Stephen F. Austin is the 12 seed going up against a 5 seed on Thursday. That should sound alarms to basketball handicappers. 12 seeds have historically done very well facing 5 seeds in the NCAA Tournament. In this case, the powers that be decided to put Utah up against a team with an awesome offense.
Stephen F. Austin averages 79.5 points per game from 49.2% shooting from the floor and 38.6% shooting from behind the three-point line. The Lumberjacks scored 91 points in a 91 to 79 win over Northwestern State on March 13.
They scored 83 points in an 83 to 70 win over Sam Houston State on March 14. 6′ 4" guard Thomas Walkup might be one of the most talented players in the tournament. He averages 15.7 points 6.4 boards and 3.7 assists per game. If Walkup is playing well and the offense is clicking, Stephen F. Austin could beat Utah on the money line in addition to covering the spread.
Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks March Madness Starting Lineup
- G Thomas Walkup, 6-4, Jr., 15.7 ppg, 6.4 rpg
- G Trey Pinkney, 5-9, Jr., 3.5 ppg, 3.9 apg
- G Dallas Cameron, 6-3, So., 4.8 ppg, 1.5 apg
- G Ty Charles, 6-5, Fr., 8.4 ppg, 5.0 rpg
- F Jacob Parker, 6-6, Sr., 14.1 ppg, 5.5 rpg
- Coach: Brad Underwood (second season)
Utah Will Cover the Spread If
Utah can get their inside game going.
The biggest knock against Utah guard DelonWright is that he doesn’t shoot the three very well. Although his three-point field goal percentage is still below 40% at 37%, he has improved remarkably from behind the arc. Versus Stanford, Wright was 4 out of 4 from 3 point range and the Utes beat the Cardinal 80 to 56.
In this matchup against Stephen F. Austin, though, Wright’s ability to control a game will be countered by Thomas Walkup’s ability to control a game. If Utah hopes to stay away from the dreaded 5 versus 12 first round curse, they’re going to have to get their inside game going. Jordan Loveridge scored 0 points against Oregon in one of the Pac-12 semifinals. The 6’6" forward had scored in double-figures in 4 straight. He needs to at least get on the board in this game if Utah has any hopes of covering the spread. 7’0" Jakob Poeltl should look to get into double-figures as well. If neither player steps it up, Utah could lose straight up to the Panthers.
Utah Utes March Madness Starting Lineup
- G Delon Wright, 6-5, Sr., 14.7 ppg, 5.3 apg
- G Brandon Taylor, 5-10, Jr., 10.4 ppg, 3.4 apg
- F Jordan Loveridge, 6-6, Jr., 10.2 ppg, 3.7 rpg
- F Chris Reyes, 6-7 So., 4.7 ppg, 4.0 rpg
- F Jakob Poeltl, 7-0, Fr., 8.6 ppg, 6.9 rpg
- Coach: Larry Krystkowiak (fourth season)