Purdue vs. Tennessee prediction: March Madness picks, odds

Here’s how we’re betting Sunday’s Elite Eight clash between No. 1 Purdue and No. 2 Tennessee for a trip to the Final Four.

Purdue (-3.5) vs. Tennessee 

I actually think Tennessee matches up best with Purdue among any team in this region.

The Vols have the big men to throw at Zach Edey to at least slow the big man down.

These two teams squared off earlier in the season and Purdue held on by four — but Edey had just 23 points and 10 rebounds. 

That may seem like a great game, but both of those are under his career averages.

Slowing down Edey without having to fully double leads to contested 3s and harder shots for players like Fletcher Loyer, Braden Smith and Co.


Braden Smith #3 and Fletcher Loyer #2 of the Purdue Boilermakers react after a play during the second half of a NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament - Midwest Regional game.
Braden Smith #3 and Fletcher Loyer #2 of the Purdue Boilermakers react after a play during the second half of a NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament – Midwest Regional game. Getty Images

There was also a quick whistle where Purdue ended up shooting 48 free throws. 

Plus, Tennessee has Dalton Knecht.

While I certainly lean toward Tennessee at +3.5, I would rather take a prop on Knecht’s over, so long as it sits under 22 points.

Betting on College Basketball?

I am not sure Purdue has any player who can match up well enough with the Vols superstar. 

We saw Creighton’s Baylor Scheierman face-guard Knecht all game in the Sweet 16 and it still wasn’t enough — he had 24 points.

In general, Knecht takes a third of all Vols shots while on the floor.

I expect that to even increase with a Final Four on the line. 

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