The Southeastern Conference Tourney showdown between the Tennessee Volunteers (17-14, 9-9 SEC) and the Alabama Crimson Tide (16-15, 8-10 SEC) will be played at Bridgestone Arena. Neither team is favored and the Over/Under (O/U) for the game opened at 148.5 points. Tip-off is set for 1 p.m. ET on Thursday, March 12, 2020, and it can be seen on SEC Network.
Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Tennessee Volunteers Odds Preview
In the Crimson Tide’s last contest, they lost big to the Missouri Tigers, 69-50. They failed to cover as 2-point underdogs. Alabama’s Jaden Shackelford put together a solid game, finishing with 13 points and five rebounds. Missouri had an offensive rebounding percentage of 46.9 (above their season average of 30.9). Alabama, meanwhile, had a free throw rate of 0.391 (above their season average of 0.252). The two teams combined to score 119 points, which finished well under the O/U total of 151.5.
The Volunteers were unable to cover as 3-point favorites in their 85-63 loss to the No. 17 Auburn Tigers in their last game. John Fulkerson led Tennessee in scoring with 19 points on 5-for-10 shooting. Auburn had an offensive rebounding percentage of 41.4 (above their season average of 35.1). Tennessee, meanwhile, did a great job of making free throws (19-24; 79.2 percent). Combined, the two clubs scored 148 points, which finished over the O/U total of 135.
The aggressive Tennessee offense could be getting to the charity stripe a lot in this battle. The Volunteers currently rank 28th in the NCAA with a free throw attempt (FTA) rate of 0.279, while Alabama ranks 293rd in FTA rate allowed (0.266). Conflicting paces will be on display in this contest. The up-tempo Crimson Tide rank fifth in possessions per game, while the more methodical Volunteers rank 324th.
Of Alabama’s 31 games, 20 have finished over the projected point total, while 16 of Tennessee’s 31 games have finished over the O/U total. Both teams have respectable straight up (SU) records (16-15 for Alabama; 17-14 for Tennessee), but the Crimson Tide have the edge against the spread (ATS). Alabama is 19-12 ATS, while the Volunteers are 14-17.
Both teams have had a player trending in the right direction over their last five games. For the Crimson Tide, it’s been Kira Lewis Jr., who has averaged 23 points,6.4 assists,1.4 steals, while the Volunteers have received solid contributions from Jordan Bowden (17 points,4.0 assists).
Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Tennessee Volunteers Prediction
Basketball Prediction: SU Winner – Alabama, ATS Winner – Alabama, O/U – Over
Tennessee ranks eighth in blocks per game (5.6) while Alabama ranks 172nd in blocks allowed per game (4.0).
Tennessee is 6-11 ATS at home, while Alabama is 11-5 ATS on the road.
Tennessee is 2-3 ATS with 4 overs and 1 under in its last five games.
Across its past five games, Alabama is 1-4 ATS with 3 overs and 2 unders.
The Volunteers have been outscored by an average of 6.6 points in their last five games. For the season, Tennessee has defeated opponents by an average of 2.9 points.
During their last five games, the Crimson Tide have scored an average of 79.0 points per game (3.0 below their season average) and allowed an average of 80.0 points per game (1.0 above their season average).