We’re all set to go with the third set of our NCAA Tournament picks here at Cappers Info, and we are going to try to get the job done against the March Madness odds on Friday to start the night off right!
NCAA Tournament Matchup: #9 Saint Louis Billikens vs. #8 Memphis Tigers
Date: Friday, March 16th, 6:50 ET
Location: Nationwide Arena, Columbus, OH
March Madness Odds: Memphis -3.5
NCAA Tournament TV Schedule: TBS
The Tigers are a team that is hot as could be right now, and there are a lot of pundits that think they are on their way to the Sweet 16 after a big weekend. However, we think that Memphis could be in for a shock in this one. The Billikens play nasty defense, and they shoot the ball incredibly well when they do let it fly. The Atlantic 10 isn’t traditionally a conference that has a ton of teams hanging around into the second weekend of the dance, but there are usually a few, and this is the consummate pain in the neck team that could be a real difference making team in this bracket. Memphis’ young team might have a lot of depth, but it is clearly going to be frustrated against a defense that is stingy and an offense that can put you to sleep. Head Coach Rick Majerus is going to get the job done with yet another team and get the Billikens moving forward in the dance.
NCAA Tournament Free Pick: Saint Louis +3.5
NCAA Tournament Matchup: #15 Lehigh Mountain Hawks vs. #2 Duke Blue Devils
Date: Friday, March 16th, 7:15 ET
Location: Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, NC
March Madness Odds: Duke -12
NCAA Tournament TV Schedule: CBS
Could this have set up any better for Duke? We really hate the fact that A) this team is a No. 2 seed when we think that it should clearly be a No. 3, B) it gets to take on a No. 15 seed that probably should have been in Dayton for the First Four and C) gets to do so in a de facto home game in Greensboro. It’s just disgusting. There’s some good news here for Duke haters, though. The bottom line is that the Blue Devils just aren’t all that good. We’re not saying that Lehigh is going to be able to get rid of the Dookies, but we do think that they can make it a game. Remember that these are the same Blue Devils that should have been beaten by Belmont and were beaten by Florida State, Miami, and North Carolina at home. The Dookies are there for a challenge.
NCAA Tournament Free Pick: Lehigh +12
NCAA Tournament Matchup: #13 Ohio Bobcats vs. #4 Michigan Wolverines
Date: Friday, March 16th, 7:20 ET
Location: Bridgestone Arena, Nashville, TN
March Madness Odds: Michigan -5.5
NCAA Tournament TV Schedule: TNT
We are a tad spooked by this line, knowing that it feels like the Wolverines should be favored by a heck of a lot more than this. These Bobcats have a history in the dance, as it was only two years ago that they knocked off a Georgetown team that looked awfully similar to this Michigan team that could be ripe for the taking. Though Ohio wasn’t the top seed in the MAC this year, it was probably the conference’s best team and the team most likely to pull off an upset. In the NIT, we saw Akron nearly take down Northwestern, and now, we are issuing that same warning to the Wolverines that there could be a big time challenge coming from a team out of the MAC.
NCAA Tournament Free Pick: Ohio +5.5
NCAA Tournament Matchup: #10 Purdue Boilermakers vs. #7 St. Mary’s Gaels
Date: Friday, March 16th, 7:25 ET
Location: Century Link Center, Omaha, NE
March Madness Odds: St. Mary’s -1.5
NCAA Tournament TV Schedule: truTV
Of all of the games in the first round of the dance, this is the one that we are really looking forward to the most. The Boilermakers have a true assassin in Robbie Hummel that can knock down shots from anywhere on the court, but for as good as he is, Matthew Dellavedova can do the exact same thing for the Gaels. St. Mary’s is probably the more complete team in this one, but in the end, these are two teams that we see that are pretty much dead level with one another. That being said, we could see this one coming down to a final possession one way or the other, and if that ends up being the case, we have to take the point and a half, knowing that that could really make all of the difference to us when push comes to shove.
NCAA Tournament Free Pick: Purdue +1.5