Louisiana vs Tennessee Odds & Tips (March 16)

Tennessee Volunteers guard Zakai Zeigler is helped off the field

February 28, 2023; Knoxville, Tennessee, United States; Tennessee Volunteers guard Zakai Zeigler (5) is sent off after suffering an injury in the first half against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Thompson-Boling Arena. Mandatory Credit: Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

  • No. 13 Louisiana collides with No. 4 Tennessee in the first round of the East Region on Thursday, March 16
  • Sportsbooks have Tennessee cemented as a big double-digit favorite despite missing out on Zakai Zeigler
  • Below are the full Tennessee vs. Louisiana odds and predictions

One of the nation’s best but most unpredictable teams takes the court at the Amway Center this season to begin its NCAA tournament schedule. The no. 4 Tennessee Volunteers (23-10, 17-16 ATS) will battle the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns (26-7, 16-13-1 ATS) on Thursday, March 16 at 9:40pm ET in the East Region. Orlando,FL.

Inconsistency has plagued this Tennessee team on the track as they have won just four of their last 10 games. For their tournament opener, they will have to contend with a Louisiana roster coming in with a head full of confidence after a Sun Belt Conference tournament title. You can watch this one on CBS.

Louisiana vs Tennessee Odds

team spread money line In total
Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns +11.5 (-117) +448 O 136.5(-117)
Tennessee volunteers -11.5 (-117) -854 U 136.5 (-117)

Not much love to be found here for Louisiana as Tennessee is moneyline favorites at -854 to take out the Ragin’ Cajuns and advance into the weekend. These odds give the volunteers a whopping 89.52% implied win probability.

Losing by a wide margin is something the Ragin’ Cajuns aren’t used to this campaign. They’re 11.5-point underdogs but have only been beaten by as many points three times this season and just once in the new year.

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Louisiana Ride 5-game winning streak in the big test against Tennessee

Last season, there wasn’t a single 13-seed flipping a 4-seed on its head, but Louisiana has set out to change that this time, which would see many tearing their March Madness staple in the process would.

For Louisiana to have a chance, they need to force their way to the line and get their shots out of the charity strip, which was a big theme this year. The Ragin’ Cajuns only make 68.5% of their attempts from the free throw line, and by gifting those buckets to a stronger Tennessee team, they can say goodbye to their upset odds.

Coupled with a highly competitive Tennessee defense, the Ragin’ Cajuns need to continue their effective play on offense. Jordan Brown has dominated at the low post for Louisiana this season, leading the team in both goals and rebounds. He hits the line seven times per game but only makes 61% of his free throws.

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Tennessee is hoping for a long tournament run despite significant injuries

At one point this season, Tennessee was among the strongest considerations in terms of chances of winning March Madness. Great wins have been washed away by terrible losses and they are now +3500 to win everything.

Another reason for their odds being extended is an injury to one of their key contributors. Point guard Zakai Zeigler is out after cruciate ligament surgery. He was the Vols’ second-best scorer and the facilitator on offense, dishing out a team-high 5.4 assists per game.

Since the sophomore year dropped, the Volunteers have lost two out of three and not scored more than 71 points on offense. That being said, Tennessee should still have more than enough to win here. According to KenPom, they are 5th in adjusted efficiency this season despite being seeded 4th.

Louisiana vs Tennessee selection and prediction

For the season, Louisiana is 5-0 in neutral games, an encouraging statistic that could give them a sense of confidence as they attempt to overcome a wide dispersion in college basketball odds.

Louisiana vs Tennessee head to head stats

79.1 (27th) points/game 71.9 (177th)
71.0 (208th) Points Allowed/Game 57.5 (4th)
48.5 (19th) FG% 43.5 (251st)
37.7 (27th) 3PT% 32.6 (271st)

One look at the stats above tells the story of a vastly superior Louisiana side on offense, but Tennessee struggled against some of the best in the country in the SEC and their defense was a force all year.

Here are some defense stats to chew on. Tennessee leads the nation in field goal defense percentage, keeping opponents off the field at just 36%. They keep enemies 25% from beyond the arc, the best in the land, and force turnover of 23% of opponents’ possessions.

Other than that, we don’t see a blowout as one of their key men on offense is out. Surprise isn’t realistic here, but our prediction is that the Ragin’ Cajuns will keep the score in the single digits.

Choice: Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns +11.5 (-117)

Other March Madness predictions for the first round:

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Georg Nassios

sports journalist

sports journalist


https://www.sportsbettingdime.com/news/ncaab/louisiana-vs-tennessee-odds-picks-march-16/ Louisiana vs Tennessee Odds & Tips (March 16)


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