NC State Wolfpack Eye Upset Against Texas Tech Red Raiders – CBB Prediction 3/21

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NC State vs. Texas Tech 1st Round March Madness Prediction
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The first round of the NCAA Tournament brings a clash of contrasting narratives. The NC State Wolfpack (11-seed), fresh off a Cinderella run in the ACC Tournament, seek to extend their magic against the experienced Texas Tech Red Raiders (6-seed).

Tip-off: Thursday, March 21st, 2024 | 9:40 PM EST | PPG Paints Arena, Pittsburgh

Storylines:

  • Wolfpack on a Tear: NC State shocked the nation, defeating powerhouses Duke and North Carolina to claim their first ACC title since 1987. Can they continue their giant-killing ways?
  • Red Raiders a Threat: Don’t underestimate Texas Tech. With a solid 23-10 record and a recent Big 12 finish, they have the experience and talent to make a deep run.

Matchup to Watch:

  • Backcourt Battle: NC State’s leading scorer, guard DJ Horne (16.9 ppg), will face a tough test against Texas Tech’s strong defense. Can Horne replicate his ACC heroics?
  • Free Throw Advantage: Texas Tech boasts an edge in free throw shooting where they rank 18th in the nation (77.5% vs. NC State’s 72.3%). Can they capitalize on this at the charity stripe?

Betting and Predictions:

  • Odds: Texas Tech is favored by 5 points at betonline and wagerweb sportsbooks. But don’t count out the Wolfpack. According to our model, this one could go down to the wire, with a predicted score of 76-76.

Key Stats:

  • 3-Point Shooting: Both teams are similar from beyond the arc (Texas Tech: 36.3%, NC State: 36.4%).

Our Pick 

We think our model has this one pegged right.  Current form is huge in college hoops and no team is hotter than NC State. Obviously if you take take down Duke and North Carolina in a matter of just a few days, you can obviously beat anyone. We’ll ride the hot hand here.

NC State +5

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