In college basketball, you can find plenty of teams that like to run it up and down the floor, but when the best go up against the best, it’s a special treat when you can find a couple of squads who are among the best at flat-out stopping people. So it’s going to be particularly intriguing when the Texas Tech Red Raiders go up against the Michigan Wolverines on Thursday night at the Honda Center in Anaheim. With the game tipping off at 9:39 PM ET, VietBet customers can watch the game on CBS and place wagers while the contest is in progress, using the state-of-the-art software from Live Betting Ultra.
2019 March Madness Odds – Michigan vs Texas Tech:
In the 2019 March Madness Odds that have been posted on this game by the folks at VietBet, Michigan is the slight favorite here:
Michigan Wolverines -2
Texas Tech Red Raiders +2
Over 126 points -110
Under 126 points -110
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2019 March Madness Odds – CJ’s Take on Michigan vs Texas Tech in Sweet 16 Showdown:
Last season, Michigan was one of those teams that seemed to come together at just the right time, plowing their way through to the Big 10 title and then rolling all the way to the national championship game, where they lost to Villanova. In their last game against Florida, experienced some difficulties, but pulled away in the second half for a 64-49 victory. They are very used to the “slog,” playing the kind of defense that has required their opponents to take up an average of 18.6 seconds on the shot clock. Out of the 353 Division I teams in the nation, that is the 342nd “highest” figure.
Michigan’s defense is ranked second in the nation in Adjusted Efficiency by analytics expert Ken Pomeroy, and usually that might be an advantage for them, except that in this game, their opponent is #1 in that category, albeit at by a very small margin. Texas Tech is second-best in the country defending opponents inside the two-point arc (allowing just 41.4%) and they create a lot of opportunities for themselves, causing the 10th-highest turnover rate on the part of their opponents. Coach Chris Beard may not be a name that is familiar to a lot of casual basketball fans, but he made his mark at Arkansas-Little Rock and in his third season with the Red Raiders, has turned them into a national power.
When you are looking at a game like this, where both teams are among the top four in the nation in scoring defense, you know that every possession is going to mean just a bit more. So what rates one team the edge over the other? Well, Michigan does not necessarily have the better offense statistically, but the way that they take care of the basketball, averaging 8.8 turnovers per game, best in the country, can negate a lot of what Texas Tech likes to do on the stop and.
They have a great floor leader in Zavier Simpson, who is averaging 6.8 assists per game, and they got some nice balance in scoring, with Jordan Poole (12.8 PPG) and Charles Matthews (12.0 PPG) both having demonstrated the ability to perform under pressure. This season’s top freshman, however, might turn out to be the key player in this game for them. Ignas Bradzeikis led the team in scoring at 15.1 points per game, shot better than 40% from three-point range and is a guy who can make quite a few of plays through his passing at the forward spot. He has been, in the words of head coach John Neilein, “positionless,” and that is sort of a wild card that Michigan can throw at Texas Tech.
And let’s not underestimate the abilities of center Jon Teske, who can be a pain in the neck to deal with at 7-foot-1. The Wolverines are going to go into this game with a bit of a size advantage, and they should cause enough problems for Big 12 player of the year Jarrett Culver, as they have the length with Matthews and Poole to hassle him wherever he goes. You can’t deny the virtues of Texas Tech, but you have to respect Michigan’s versatility on offense and their experience in having come through on the biggest stage last year.
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