Picks Of The Day: Tuesday, March 21st

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets player in action

Mark Lathrop

Tuesday, March 21, 2017 2:12 PM UTC

Tuesday, Mar. 21, 2017 2:12 PM UTC

As we get ready for the Sweet 16 as March Madness continues there is some sweet NIT action that is presenting value while we wait. Read on our expert handicapper breaks down this interesting ACC vs. SEC matchup.

   Georgia Tech Yellow vs Ole Miss


In what has been a crazy NIT bracket so far this year, the 6th seeded Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets take on the 5th seeded Ole Miss Rebels on Wednesday night at Ole Miss in the quarterfinals. Maybe the tournament selection committee should have taken Georgia Tech instead of the other 6 ACC teams that lost in the first two rounds of the NCAA tournament, as they’ve cruised so far in the NIT. The SEC, on the other hand, has shown to be a strong tournament conference this year, with 3 teams cashing tickets to the Sweet 16, and Ole Miss holding its own in the NIT. The opening NCAA basketball odds has Ole Miss as 5.5-point listed favorites at home over Georgia Tech in this game, while the O/U total has settled in at 144.

Georgia Tech is coming off of a 71-57 win over Belmont as a 4-point favorite on the closing line.  6’ 9” forward, Quinton Stephens, led the Yellow Jackets with 23 points. This was Stephens highest output of the year as the Georgia Tech frontcourt exploited a mismatch with the Bruins. Georgia Tech led by as many as 23 points in the 2nd half before cruising to victory, while the total fell well short of 138.5. The usual leading scorer for Georgia Tech, 6’ 4” guard Josh Okogie, put up 15 points in the game – right at his season average. But Okogie filled up the stat sheet otherwise with 8 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals, 2 blocks, and zero turnovers. The dynamic freshman has been a force for Georgia Tech all season and has scored 12 points or more in 13 games straight.

As a team, Ole Miss ranks 271st in college basketball in field goal percentage from the floor. Their leading scorer, 6’ 2” guard Deandre Burnett, only shoots 34.3% from the floor in putting up 16.5 points per game. Luckily his frontcourt counterpart, 6’ 9” guard Sebastian Saiz, scores 15.1 points per game on 47.7% shooting and adds 10.9 rebounds per game to boot. After Saiz, there is 6’ 4” sophomore guard, Terence Davis, who scores 14 points per game. No other player averages in double-digits for Ole Miss on the season. Davis didn’t seem to mind in Ole Miss’s 85-80 win against Syracuse though, as he dropped 30 points including hitting 6 of 7 from beyond the arc.

That performance by Ole Miss against Syracuse was so off the charts that I believe we are seeing some blind backers of the Rebels here against a formidable defensive squad in Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets have cashed 6 of 7 tickets Under coming into this game, and have allowed a team to score more than 71 points in only one of their last ten games. Georgia Tech has covered in 5 of their last 6 games as an underdog as well, the same as Ole Miss. In what should be an entertaining game I will back the defensive-minded squad. Take the underdog, Georgia Tech at +5.5 at Pinnacle for your Tuesday college basketball picks.

 Free NCAAB Pick: Georgia Tech +5.5Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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