Midwest Region First Round Prediction & Free Pick: #7 Wofford vs. #10 Seton Hall

Date | AuthorAllen Moody

Last Updated: 2019-03-21

Things will wrap-up at Veterans Memorial Arena on Thursday night when No. 7 Wofford and No. 10 Seton Hall square off in what could be a pretty decent game. The Terriers breezed though the Southern Conference Tournament, while the Pirates received at at-large birth after a strong showing down the stretch that saw them defeat Villanova, Georgetown and Marquette twice before falling to Villanova 74-72 in the Big East Tournament.

Wofford opened as 3.5-point favorites and the line has dipped to 2.5 even with the Terriers getting a little more than 50% of the wagers. The total has moved from 142.5 to its current 144.5 with nearly 70% of the wagers coming in on the over.

Wofford should have the crowd advantage, as Spartansburg, S.C., is just a 5.5-hour trip to Jacksonville, while the Pirates will have to come from New Jersey.

Seton Hall: The NCAA Tournament Selection Committee did choose Seton Hall over some other teams that were more deserving, but there’s nothing that can be done about that now. The Pirates gave themselves a chance to make the field by picking up their 20th win in the conference tournament and three wins over top 30 teams certainly didn’t hurt their case.

The Pirates are good, but not great offensively, and the same can probably be said of their defense, which appears to be the stronger of the two. Seton Hall does have some impressive wins on the season, defeating Kentucky and Maryland in non-conference play, but also has a few bad losses, including losing to DePaul twice.

Wofford: The Terriers aren’t going to be intimidated by Seton Hall, as Wofford played some pretty tough teams during the year, including North Carolina, Kansas, Oklahoma and Mississippi State. The only problem is the Terriers lost to each of those teams and their biggest wins have come against the likes of Furman, South Carolina and Greensboro.

Wofford shoots the ball well, averaging 49.3% from the field and over 40% from 3-point range, and are better than average on defense, holding foes to 42.7% from the field and 32.2% from 3-point range.

Game: This one is going to be determined by how well Wofford fares against Seton Hall’s defense, which is going to be one of the toughest the Terriers have seen all season. Kansas held the Terriers to 47 points and UNC and Oklahoma held them to 67 and 64 points, respectively, although all three are better on the defensive end than Seton Hall.

The Pirates are 11-5 ATS as an underdog this year and 7-0 ATS on neutral courts, while Wofford brings a 14-7 ATS mark into this one as a favorite and are 3-0 in neutral court games.

Pick: Seton Hall +2.5

I really wanted to take Wofford in this one but can’t go against a team playing as well as Seton Hall right now. While the Terriers have played some good teams, the Pirates have beaten them, which is more than can be said for Wofford. The Pirates are the better team defensively and the Terriers have struggled some against the tougher defenses they’ve played. Wofford’s weakest link could well be their foul shooting, as they’re below 70% as a team and that could come into play down the stretch.

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