NIT Quarterfinals Free Picks, Predictions for Wednesday, 3/21/12

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Four more teams are going to try to punch their tickets to Madison Square Garden on Wednesday night for what should be a great set of NIT quarterfinals picks. We’re offering up our NIT predictions in the clashes between four very different teams for Wednesday night!

NIT Matchup: #6 Minnesota Golden Gophers @ #4 Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders
Date: Wednesday, March 21st, 7:00 ET
Location: Murphy Center, Murfreesboro, TN
NIT Odds: Middle Tennessee State -3.5
NIT TV Schedule: ESPN2, ESPN3.com

The Blue Raiders have been very interesting all season long. They really didn’t play a heck of a lot of great teams this year, and the ones that they ran into tended to beat them up. They were knocked off in the last game of the regular season by the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers and then dismissed in their first game in the Sun Belt Tournament against the Arkansas State Red Wolves. Now though, they have two straight wins under their belt, including a tremendous 71-64 win over the Tennessee Volunteers on the road in one of the biggest victories that the school has ever had. Bruce Massey, a man that averaged right around six points per game on the season, had 20 against the Vols, and he has been huge in this tournament for his team and is making the big difference. Minnesota didn’t look like a team that was going to go anywhere in the NIT, and that changed quickly with a pair of road win. This theoretically is the easiest of the three games that the Gophers have had to date, and we think that they are going to get the job done by beating the Blue Raiders on their home court to move on MSG.

NIT Free Pick: Minnesota +3.5

NIT Matchup: #5 Nevada Wolf Pack vs. #3 Stanford Cardinal
Date: Wednesday, March 21st, 9:00 ET
Location: Maples Pavilion, Palo Alto, CA
NIT Odds: Stanford -6.5
NIT TV Schedule: ESPN2, ESPN3.com

Stanford is a team that has taken care of business left and right in the NIT. The Cleveland State Vikings never really had a shot, and now most recently, the Illinois State Redbirds finally went down in a wild overtime clash here at Maples Pavilion. Chasson Randle has been the start of this tournament for the Cardinal, averaging 14.0 PPG. He has now had at least 17 points in six of his last seven games, and if he can keep that up when push comes to shove, this is going to be a tough team to beat. We think that Nevada has more or less reached this point on a bit of luck, knowing that it should have been going against a No. 1 seed and not a No. 8 in the second round of this tournament. We think that the luck of the Wolf Pack is going to run dry on Wednesday night, and in the end, that is going to second Stanford, the second team from the Pac-12, to Madison Square Garden for the NIT Final Four.

NIT Free Pick: Stanford -6.5

Lou Palumbo is the founder and part owner of the Cappersinfo.com Sports Handicapping Community. He's been writing and posting free picks and sports handicapping strategies on the Cappersinfo forums and website for 15 years now. He enjoys handicapping just as much as he did from the very first day he built the original Cappersinfo website.