NCAA Tournament Round 2: Old Dominion Monarchs (27-8 SU 13-17-1 ATS) vs. Baylor Bears (26-7 SU 16-10 ATS) New Orleans Arena, New Orleans, LA 5:45 PM EST Saturday March 20, 2010 on CBS
by Jason Green at Predictem.com
Point Spread: Baylor -4 / Old Dominion +4
In a 2nd round match South Region match up on Saturday afternoon the 3rd seed Baylor Bears face the 11th seed Old Dominion Monarchs. The Monarchs scored a HUGE upset beating Big East power Notre Dame in their opening round game and Baylor won their first NCAA tournament game in 60 years with their opening win over Sam Houston State on Thursday.
Both teams have been playing well for a while, as Old Dominion won 9 of their last 10 games including their last 5 and even though Baylor lost in the semis of the Big 10 conference tournament they had won their previous 5.
The Monarchs have one of the best defensive teams in the Big Dance holding opponents to 56.9 ppg this season AND they played stellar D against Notre Dame in the 1st round. The Monarchs are from a smaller conference, but they did play a tough non-conference schedule in the regular season playing Missouri, Georgetown, and Mississippi State.
Old Dominion will need their defense in this game, as they only have one player that averages in double figures. Their perimeter D will have to step it up in this game, as Baylor has a solid backcourt with the guard duo of LaceDarius Dunn (19.2 ppg) and Tweety Carter (15.2 ppg). As a team the Bears can score averaging 77.3 ppg this season.
The Bears major guy in the paint is C Ekpe Udoh (14.1 ppg 9.9 rpg) and he had a big game in the opening round win and if he plays well, especially on the boards, against the Monarchs Baylor will be sitting pretty.
Baylor only hit on 25% of their 3-pointers in their 1st round win and they have to shoot better in this game in order to open up the lane for Udoh.
Baylor beat Sam Houston State 68-59 in the 1st round on Thursday. The high scorer for Baylor in the game was Ekpe Udoh going for 20 points and he also grabbed 13 boards. For the game the Bears shot 26/59 for a FG% of 44.1%. On defense the Bears were solid, as they held Sam Houston State to only 23/68 from the floor for a FG% of 33.8%.
Old Dominion upset Notre Dame 51-50 in a defensive battle in the 1st round on Thursday. The high scorer for Old Dominion Frank Hassell going for 15 points. For the game the Monarchs shot 20/48 for a FG% of 41.7%. The Monarchs won the game because of their defense, which held Notre Dame to 21/59 shooting for a FG% of 35.6%.
According to the Sagarin NCAA basketball ratings Baylor ranks 9th (88.73) and Old Dominion ranks 38th (84.41).
Old Dominion is 3-7 ATS in their last 10 non-conference games, 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games as an underdog, and 6-14 ATS in their last 20 games against teams with a winning record.
Old Dominion has an Under record of 5-1 in their last 6 non-conference games, an Under record of 4-0 in their last 4 neutral site games as an underdog, and an Under record of 9-3 in their last 12 games as an underdog.
Baylor is 6-1 ATS in their last 7 non-conference games, 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games as a favorite, and is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games as a favorite of 0.5-6.5.
Baylor has an Under record of 5-1 in their last 6 non-conference games, an Over record of 4-1 in their last 5 games, and an Over record of 13-3 in their last 16 games after a win.
Jason’s Pick: Old Dominion does have a great defensive team and held Notre Dame star Luke Harangody to only 4 points, but the Irish star is injured and Baylor star Ekpe Udoh is not. I think Udoh will have a big game and that will be the difference, as the Monarchs will not be able to stop him inside. Baylor will win this game convincingly and cover the spread on this game and advance to the Sweet 16.