Home » March Madness: FAU vs. Tennessee odds, picks and predictions

March Madness: FAU vs. Tennessee odds, picks and predictions

The 9th-seeded FAU Owls (33-3) and 4th-seeded Tennessee Volunteers (25-10) meet Thursday in the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA Tournament. Tip from Madison Square Garden in Manhattan is scheduled for 9 p.m. ET (TBS). Let’s analyze Tipico Sportsbook’s lines around the FAU vs. Tennessee odds as we make our expert college basketball picks, predictions and best bets.

The Owls play in Madison Square Garden for the 1st time in school history and it its 1st Sweet 16. In fact, prior to this season, Florida Atlantic was 0-1 straight-up (SU) and 1-0 against the spread (ATS) in its only tournament appearance, falling to Alabama in 2002.

FAU’s Johnell Davis scored 29 points with 12 rebounds, 5 assists and 5 steals to become the 1st player in men’s NCAA Tournament history to go for 20+ points, 10+ rebounds, 5+ assists and 5+ steals in a single game.

The Owls have rattled off 9 straight wins, and its 33 victories ties Houston for the most in college basketball this season. It is also 6-3 ATS during the 9-game run since Feb. 16, a loss at Middle Tennessee.

Tennessee returns to the Sweet 16 for the 1st time since 2019 when it lost to Purdue in overtime. The Vols are 1-7 SU all-time in the Sweet 16 round.

The Vols won 65-52 and covered against Duke as 3-point underdogs. The Under has cashed in both tournament games for Tennessee. The Vols limited Duke to 43% (21 of 49) from the field, and 27% (6 of 22) from downtown.

Tennessee’s defense ranked 3rd in the nation during the regular season  allowing just 57.8 points per game, while ranking 1st overall in defensive FG percentage (36.4%) and defensive 3-point percentage (25.5%).

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FAU vs. Tennessee odds

Provided by Tipico Sportsbook; access USA TODAY Sports Scores and Sports Betting Odds hub for a full list. Lines last updated at 1:28 a.m. ET.

  • Moneyline (ML): FAU +195 (bet $100 to win $195) | Tennessee -230 (bet $230 to win $100)
  • Against the spread (ATS): FAU +5.5 (-112) | Tennessee -5.5 (-108)
  • Over/Under (O/U): 129.5 (O: -110 | U: -110)

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FAU vs. Tennessee picks and predictions

Prediction

Tennessee 67, FAU 59

Moneyline

Tennessee (-230) will cost you nearly 2 1/2 times your potential return, and that’s just too expensive as a long-term betting strategy. Even including the Vols in a multi-team parlay sucks all of the value out of your ticket.

PASS, and look to the spread instead.

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Against the spread

TENNESSEE -5.5 (-108) is the much better play. In fact, it’s surprising that this line has remained so low.

FAU +5.5 (-112) is unproven, and while it has been a great story making the Sweet 16, the trip ends in MSG on Thursday. And there is no shame in that, as Tennessee is a good team. The experience of coach Rick Barnes, and the defensive tenacity of the Vols, wins out over the youth and exuberance of the Owls.

Over/Under

The UNDER 129.5 (-110) is the play.

At times, FAU had difficulty solving the press of Fairleigh Dickinson in the 2nd round. The Knights were the smallest team in the country, and pale in comparison to the type of pressure the Vols bring.

This team has made multiple teams look bad with a tenacious brand of defense. They’ll keep the Owls down, especially since FAU likes to shoot the triple, and the Tennessee perimeter defense is top notch.

For sports betting picks and tips, check out SportsbookWire.com and BetFTW. Plus, try out the USA TODAY Parlay Calculator and please gamble responsibly.

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