NCAA Championship Game 2019: Virginia vs. Texas Tech Final Score Predictions

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistApril 8, 2019

MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA - APRIL 06: Ty Jerome #11 of the Virginia Cavaliers dribbles against Bryce Brown #2 of the Auburn Tigers in the second half during the 2019 NCAA Final Four semifinal at U.S. Bank Stadium on April 6, 2019 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

No one expects the 2019 NCAA men's basketball national championship to be aesthetically pleasing.

Both Virginia and Texas Tech are known for their defense and slow pace on offense, which means we'll be lucky if both teams reach 60 points. 

Virginia has allowed two NCAA tournament opponents to score over 60 points, while Texas Tech has held four of its five foes under 60.

Since both programs are so stout on the defensive side of the ball, we're likely going to see one of the most low-scoring championship games in March Madness history. 

                       

Final Score Prediction

Virginia 57, Texas Tech 53

Virginia and Texas Tech's combined margin of victory in the last two rounds is 22 points. 

Both programs have been involved in tight affairs in the Elite Eight and Final Four, and Monday's national championship won't be any different. 

MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA - APRIL 06: De'Andre Hunter #12 of the Virginia Cavaliers drives to the basket against Horace Spencer #0 and Austin Wiley #50 of the Auburn Tigers in the second half during the 2019 NCAA Final Four semifinal at U.S. Bank Stadium on
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Not only are both teams strong on the defensive end, but they don't mind eating up clock when the ball is in their possession. 

By taking a cautious approach on offense in the first half, both teams will struggle to eclipse the 30-point mark before halftime.

On Saturday, the Cavaliers scored 28 first-half points, while the Red Raiders entered halftime with 23 points on the scoreboard. 

The deliberately slow pace won't be easy on the eye, but if you pay close attention to each possession, you'll be able to see how each team slowly breaks down the opponent in their offensive sets.

Virginia will turn to Kyle Guy, Ty Jerome and De'Andre Hunter to score the majority of its points after they combined for 50 of its 63 points against Auburn.

Texas Tech also relies on its backcourt to do the majority of the scoring, as Jarrett Culver, Matt Mooney and Davide Moretti produced 37 of its 61 points versus Michigan State. 

MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA - APRIL 06: Matt Mooney #13 of the Texas Tech Red Raiders reacts in the second half against the Michigan State Spartans during the 2019 NCAA Final Four semifinal at U.S. Bank Stadium on April 6, 2019 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Phot
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Since both teams are expected to receive strong guard play, they'll have to turn to the paint for offensive difference-makers.

Virginia's Mamadi Diakite only scored two points Saturday, but he's scored 14 or more points on three occasions in the NCAA tournament. 

Conversely, Texas Tech hasn't gotten a double-digit point performance out of Tariq Owens or Norense Odiase since the second-round win over Buffalo. 

Unless the Red Raiders receive an uptick in production from their frontcourt players, it's hard to see them overwhelming Virginia for long stretches on offense. 

With Virginia holding a slight offensive edge in the paint, it will break out to a small advantage in the second half and force Texas Tech to play from behind.

But even in the final minutes, we shouldn't see many rushed possessions since the Red Raiders will only be a score or two away from flipping the momentum in their favor. 

In the final minutes, Virginia holds on because of its perimeter defense and a few baskets from its top players. 

But even with a good amount of drama keeping our attention at the end of the second half, we'll still see the lowest-scoring national championship since UConn beat Butler 53-41 in 2011. 

                   

Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90

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