North Texas Mean Green vs Purdue Boilermakers Betting Picks, Odds & Predictions
One of the potential Final Four sleepers, Purdue, will kick off their March Madness campaign against North Texas on Friday night. The matchup in Indianapolis will be the first one ever between the two. The Boilermakers have, of course, much more history in the tournament. They’ve made Sweet 16 appearances in the last three years. Purdue was knocked out from the Big Ten tournament after losing in overtime to Ohio State. Still, they’ve managed to earn an at-large bid after going 18-9 over the season. The Boilermakers are entering the tournament as the No. 4 seed.
For the Mean Green, this tournament will be their first in more than 10 years. Three previous trips to March Madness all ended in the first round. Each time, they were the No.15 seed. This year, though, they’re seeded at No. 13. North Texas made an improbable run to win the Conference USA after losing three final regular-season games.
North Texas Mean Green vs Purdue Boilermakers Betting Line Movement
Purdue is the clear favorite here and the oddsmakers seem to agree. The Boilermakers are favored by -7.5 and the line hasn’t fluctuated much over the week. The total did bounce around a bit. It opened at 127 before dropping to 125 and rising back again. Currently, it stands at 126.5 with most bookies.
Notes On The North Texas Mean Green
North Texas regular season play saw them finish only sixth in the Conference USA. However, they pulled together to bang out four consecutive wins in CUSA Tournament to earn a trip to March Madness. The Mean Green are known for their slow pace ranking 21st in the country in that department. Their offensive schemes usually use almost every second of the shot clock. Playing at a slower pace may help them keep up with the superior talent on the Purdue squad. They don’t score much, but their deliberate style of play results in decent office efficiency. This season they shot 48.4% from the floor. North Texas also boasts a solid and aggressive defense which ranked 42nd in adjusted defensive efficiency per KenPom. Over the season, they held their opponents to 62.5 ppg.
Javion Hamlet, a two-time All CUSA guard, is the team leader in both points (15.0) and assists (4.5). The 6’4″ sophomore was named the MVP of the conference tournament.
Notes On The Purdue Boilermakers
The Boilermakers notched a winning record for the seventh straight year. This season, it was quite an accomplishment as they had the 11th toughest schedule in the country playing in the incredibly strong Big Ten. They built their identity as a tough defensive team running their offense mostly through big men. Adjusted for the opponent, their defense ranks 23rd in the nation. On Friday, Purdue will have a clear size advantage should easily outrebound North Texas. Expect their bigs to wreak havoc in the post.
The Boilermakers squad includes a top-10 player in the big man Trevion Williams. The talented junior averages 15.6 points and 9.0 rebounds per game. His substitute of the bench, Zach Edey, is also having a decent season with 9.0 ppg and 4.5 rpg.
North Texas Mean Green vs Purdue Boilermakers Betting Pick: Under 126.5
Both teams feature a stingy defense and like to slow things down. The line may be low, but expect most of the offensive sets on both sides to go deep into the shot clock.