Arizona State vs. Texas Betting Line, Midwest Region Pick, Analysis

OddsShark.comFeatured ColumnistMarch 18, 2014

Mar 14, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; The Texas Longhorns mascot entertains the crowd during the second half against the Baylor Bears in the semifinals of the Big 12 Conference college basketball tournament at Sprint Center. Baylor won 86 - 69. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The Texas Longhorns have lost five of their last eight games and the Arizona State Sun Devils have lost five of their last seven contests.

Two teams that are limping into the NCAA Tournament bracket will hit the hardwood together in Midwest Region action on Thursday night.

The trends show an ASU team that fails to cover as an underdog and a Texas team that manages to squeeze out wins when favored.


Spread and total points scored betting line

The Longhorns opened as 2.5-point favorites but the line has been bet down to -1.5 as of Tuesday afternoon. The total opened at 145, but was 142 on Tuesday. (Compare lines and consensus on the Odds Shark matchup report)


Odds Shark computer pick

78.3-76.4 Sun Devils


Why pick Arizona State to cover the spread

The No. 10 Sun Devils made the NCAA Tournament after going 10-8 in a Pac-12 conference that received six invitations to the Big Dance. ASU started 13-3 this season and later pulled off victories over Oregon, Arizona and Stanford.

The Sun Devils start three seniors, including 7'2" C Jordan Bachynski, and they're one of the better three-point shooting teams around, hitting at a 39 percent clip from beyond the arc this season.


Why pick Texas to cover the spread

The No. 7 Longhorns are also in the NCAA Tournament, courtesy of an at-large bid, after going 11-7 in a Big 12 conference that earned seven berths. Texas owns victories over North Carolina, Iowa State, Kansas State, Kansas, Oklahoma State and two over Baylor, and just one of their losses came against a team that didn't make the tournament.

The 'Horns are young but deep, and like to play defense, holding foes to under 40 percent from the floor this season. They also have a knack for winning when laying points as their 14-2 SU mark indicates. The Sun Devils struggled down the stretch in the role of underdog.


Smart betting pick

Texas is favored by about a basket for this coaching matchup between Rick Barnes and Herb Sendek, who together are closing in on 1,000 career victories. Both teams struggled down the stretch a bit, but the 'Horns are a little deeper and tougher on defense.

Give the points and take Texas in this one.


Power rankings

Arizona State Sun Devils: No. 210

Texas Longhorns: No. 176 (per Odds Shark power ranks)


March Madness betting trends

  • Arizona State is 3-7-1 ATS in its last 11 games
  • Texas 2-6 ATS past eight games
  • Texas 14-2 SU this season when favored
  • Texas 0-4 ATS past four tournament games
  • Arizona State is 2-8-1 ATS past 11 games as underdogs


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