Auburn has enjoyed a basketball renaissance that is among the most impressive in recent memory. Known purely as a football school there is no real history of success with hoops on the Plains. Enter head coach Bruce Pearl. Celebrated as a turnaround artist Pearl has pulled off a remarkable coaching job. Despite the cloud of a FBI scandal Auburn fans are ecstatic. Fresh off a SEC regular season co-championship the worry now is if the tank is empty. Auburn faded badly down the stretch as a public betting NCAA basketball value. All that being said the Tigers are the chalk for the San Diego bracket.
2018 Basketball Tournament from San Diego
Date and Time: March 16 and March 18, 2018
Location: Viejas Arena, San Diego, California
NCAA Betting Online Odds at SBG: Click here!
2018 Tournament TV Coverage: TNT and truTV
Matches and Schedules
Friday betting lines NCAA basketball action begins with #13 Marshall vs. #4 Wichita State at 12:30 p.m. Next will be #12 Murray State vs. #5 West Virginia at 3 p.m. Evening play starts at 6:27 p.m. with #13 Charleston vs. #4 Auburn. Following that is #12 New Mexico State vs. #5 Clemson. Saturday will find the winners matching up with two more games at San Diego.
Although Auburn paid in 19 of 30 games on the season they suffered a slump at the end. With just one cover in their last six games they became an online sportsbook overlay. Offensively the Tigers are one of the top teams in the country. Their 83 points per game ranked 17th nationally. Defensively Bruce Pearl’s team will take some possessions off. Overall Aubie ranked a subpar 200th in the country for points allowed.
Head coach Bob Huggins West Virginia Mountaineers could prove to be an excellent sleeper. Although not dominant the Mounties are solid. Most important they are tough and play a full court game. Jevon Carter is an asset with a team best 17 points and seven assists per game. Also important is that WVU is a March Madness regular. As a result, they will not be rattled or phased like other teams. Huggins is a top shelf coach that brings wagering value in his own right.
Wichita State does not get the notoriety of other better-known tournament commodities. Yet the Shockers have become a regular participant in their own right. Of concern is a record of 18 losses in 30 games with the line. Down the stretch WSU paid in just one of their last eight games. Although the ranked 20th best for scoring offense their defense was inconsistent. Clemson was quietly profitable with 17 payouts in 29 tries. Just as impressive was their 6-4 mark with the odds in their final ten games. Defensively the Tigers ranked a strong 29th in the nation.
Matchup to Watch
March Madness has a clean slate element to it. Handicapping betting lines NCAA basketball at tourney time is a different challenge. Most relevant is that Auburn has had time to catch their breath for the Big Dance.
NCAA Tournament from San Diego Betting Odds Picks
In conclusion Auburn can be expected to get back on track. As a high energy team a second wind is expected against Charleston.
NCAA Betting Online Pick: Auburn Tigers
NCAA Betting Online Score Prediction: Tigers 84, Cougars 67