Picks for Best Games on Thursday, March 21st
While the First Four is nice, the real NCAA Tournament starts today with the Thursday games, which promise to be wild, crazy and full of upsets. I’m sure many of you will be making sure to watch all of this as I will be, so if you are wanting to tune in for a live blog to follow along, that will be going on here at MakingtheMadness.com. Until then, I will leave you with my against the spread picks for all of today’s NCAA Tournament games.
Minnesota vs. Louisville
12:15 PM ET on CBS
Line: Louisville -5
Against the Spread: Louisville
Final Score Prediction: Louisville 72 Minnesota 63
Why this pick? The coaching matchup heavily favors Louisville, I think they should win this game.
Yale vs. LSU
12:40 PM ET on TruTV
Line: LSU -7.5
Against the Spread: LSU
Final Score Prediction: LSU 88 Yale 72
Why this pick? I know this will be a trendy upset pick but I’ll take LSU to at least win this game.
New Mexico State vs. Auburn
1:30 PM ET on TNT
Line: Auburn -5.5
Against the Spread: Auburn
Final Score Prediction: Auburn 78 New Mexico State 66
Why this pick? I think the Tigers end up just running away from the Aggies, too much shooting.
Vermont vs. Florida State
2 PM ET on TBS
Line: Florida State -9
Pick: Florida State
Against the Spread: Vermont
Final Score Prediction: Florida State 62 Vermont 56
Why this pick? This will be a low-scoring grind it out game, I’ll take the points for Vermont.
Bradley vs. Michigan State
2:45 PM ET on CBS
Line: Michigan State -18.5
Pick: Michigan State
Against the Spread: Michigan State
Final Score Prediction: Michigan State 83 Bradley 57
Why this pick? I don’t think the Spartans mess around, I’ll take them in this one.
Belmont vs. Maryland
3:10 PM ET on TruTV
Line: Maryland -3
Against the Spread: Belmont
Final Score Prediction: Belmont 79 Maryland 73
Why this pick? I don’t like this matchup for Maryland, Rick Byrd’s offense is great. Plus a play-in winner has always won a game in the First Round.
Northeastern vs. Kansas
4 PM ET on TNT
Line: Kansas -6.5
Against the Spread: Northeastern
Final Score Prediction: Kansas 67 Northeastern 64
Why this pick? This will be a survive and advance game for the Jayhawks, they win but not by much.
Murray State vs. Marquette
4:30 PM ET on TBS
Line: Marquette -3.5
Pick: Murray State
Against the Spread: Murray State
Final Score Prediction: Murray State 72 Marquette 65
Why this pick? Marquette hasn’t been good as of late, I’ll take an energized Murray State to win this one.
Florida vs. Nevada
6:30 PM ET on TNT
Line: Nevada -2.5
Against the Spread: Florida
Final Score Prediction: Florida 76 Nevada 72
Why this pick? If you can’t beat San Diego State, you probably won’t beat Florida either, give me the Gators.
Abilene Christian vs. Kentucky
7:10 PM ET on CBS
Line: Kentucky -22
Against the Spread: Abilene Christian
Final Score Prediction: Kentucky 74 Abilene Christian 60
Why this pick? I assume PJ Washington won’t be in action, I don’t like Kentucky to win by 23 without him in the lineup.
St. Mary’s vs. Villanova
7:20 PM ET on TBS
Line: Villanova -4.5
Against the Spread: Villanova
Final Score Prediction: Villanova 66 St. Mary’s 55
Why this pick? Villanova will get the tempo how they want it, plus their experience should prevail late.
Fairleigh Dickinson vs. Gonzaga
7:27 PM ET on TruTV
Line: Gonzaga -27.5
Against the Spread: Gonzaga
Final Score Prediction: Gonzaga 76 Fairleigh Dickinson 46
Why this pick? Gonzaga has been winning games by 30 all year long, this should continue here.
Montana vs. Michigan
9:20 PM ET on TNT
Line: Michigan -15
Against the Spread: Montana
Final Score Prediction: Michigan 66 Montana 53
Why this pick? Will Michigan lock down Montana? Yes but they won’t score enough to win by 16.
Seton Hall vs. Wofford
9:40 PM ET on CBS
Line: Wofford -2.5
Against the Spread: Wofford
Final Score Prediction: Wofford 73 Seton Hall 66
Why this pick? This will be a slow tempo game but I think the team with better playmakers wins this game.
Old Dominion vs. Purdue
9:50 PM ET on TBS
Line: Purdue -12.5
Against the Spread: Old Dominion
Final Score Prediction: Purdue 66 Old Dominion 58
Why this pick? The Boilermakers haven’t played great as of late, I’ll take the points with an inspired Old Dominion team.
Baylor vs. Syracuse
9:57 PM ET on TruTV
Line: Syracuse -1.5
Against the Spread: Syracuse
Final Score Prediction: Syracuse 65 Baylor 60
Why this pick? Death. Taxes. Jim Boeheim in the NCAA Tournament.
Yesterday’s Picks: 1-1
Year to date: 395-330-17