The Butler Bulldogs and Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders are playing tonight in college basketball action for the NCAA Tournament. The game is scheduled for a 7:10 p.m. start time and it will be televised nationally on TNT. The college basketball odds for the game have the Bulldogs favored by a couple of possessions.

College Basketball Odds
Butler -3.5
Total: 139.5 points

Middle Tennessee State was in this position last year, but after upsetting No. 2 Michigan State in the opening round, the 15th-seeded Blue Raiders were crushed by Syracuse 75-50.

This year’s team looks to be better prepared this time around. The Blue Raiders are playing a very good Butler team, but MTSU has pieced together 11 consecutive victories and looking to make it a dozen.

The gameplan is simple — don’t turn it over and come up with a ton of assists when they have the basketball. In the team’s win over Minnesota on Thursday, Middle Tennessee had assists on 19 of 28 made baskets while turning it over only eight times. That’s efficiency.

Butler is looking to get back to the Final Four like they were able to do a handful of years ago. Since those back-to-back runs in 2010 and 2011, the Bulldogs have failed to get out of the first round each year following.

They beat Winthrop in the opening round of the tournament a few days ago, shot 49 percent and connected on 20-of-30 free throws. 

Middle Tennessee has 31 wins and they aren’t afraid of anybody. Reggie Upshaw led them with 19 against Minnesota, Giddy Potts had 15 and the Blue Raiders never backed down.

Expect more of the same here. MTSU can make a statement by reaching the Sweet 16 and this team is good enough to win.

Free Pick: MTSU

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