The upset-minded NC State Wolfpack look to continue their season tonight when they take on the Louisville Cardinals in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament. The game is scheduled for a 7:37 p.m. start time and it will be televised nationally on TBS. Currently the NCAA Tournament Betting Odds for the game have the Cardinals favored by a slim margin to advance to the weekend.
Louisville booted Chris Jones a couple of weeks back, but it hasn’t caused them to lose focus of the ultimate goal. The Cardinals survived a close game in the opening round against UC Irvine, and then beat up on Northern Iowa in the Round of 32 — shooting the basketball well, committing only seven turnovers and winning the rebounding battle.
NC State threw the first big punch in the tournament, knocking out top-seeded Villanova last weekend. The Wolfpack are definitely living on the edge, having trailed LSU 62-48 with less than nine minutes remaining in the game. NC State found a way to out-score the Tigers 18-3 down the stretch to secure an extra game.
The Wolfpack led the entire second half of the game against Villanova and the Wildcats only got it down to one point late, but it was too late. NC State absolutely dominated the game on the glass, hauling in 45 and sitting at plus-13 over the Wildcats.
Defensively NC State was great in that game as well, holding Villanova to just 31 percent shooting while the Wildcats had only five turnovers in the game.
In this game tonight Montrezl Harrell will look to clean up on the blocks with Wayne Blackshear and the duo of Chinanu Onuaku and Mangok Mathiang. The Cardinals have a lot of size and depth up front, which could be a big factor. NC State loves to play a lot of guys, with eight players averaging at least 19.5 minutes per game.
Trevor Lacey and Anthony Barber will have to play well at the guard positions tonight for the Wolfpack. Ralston Turner scored only four points against Villanova and the Wolfpack still won, but it’s hard to see that happening again. Turner has to be a big factor tonight if NC State is going to win.
Free Pick: Louisville 65, NC State 60
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