HomeOhio Sports Betting News2023 NCAA Tournament East Regional Columbus Ohio Action

2023 NCAA Tournament East Regional Columbus Ohio Action

The East Region is on tap in Columbus, Ohio Friday, with four games being played at Nationwide Arena. This should be an exciting day of NCAA Tournament basketball, and we have eight teams hoping to begin a run that leads them to the National Title.

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The Purdue Boilermakers from the Big Ten Conference are the East Region top seed. The winners advance to play in Round 32 on Sunday at Nationwide Arena.

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USC Trojans vs. Michigan State Spartans 12:15pm

No. 10 seed USC Trojans are +2 underdogs with a 137.5 point total when they face No. 7 seed Michigan State Spartans at Nationwide Arena.

Phil’s Best Bet Michigan State -2 -110 Caesars

The opening game in the East Regional should be a slow-paced affair, and my best bet is Michigan State Under 137.5 -110 at DraftKings.

MSU is one of the slowest playing teams in the country–the Spartans rarely turn the ball over and is a terrible shooting team from inside the arc. They can knock down threes as well as anyone in the country and were the best free-throw shooting team in the conference. The Spartans were 4th in both opponents’ offensive caroms and effective field goal percentage.

The Trojans are decent perimeter defenders who rank 2nd in the country defending inside the arc and led the Pac-12 in opponents’ effective field goal percentage, 2-point percentage, and blocks. USC can score the basketball from inside and outside the arc but are average rebounders and above average assists to turnover ratio. USC topped the conference in turnover percentage and free-throw percentage this season.

MSU is going to cover the spread on Friday. Izzo is a legend and very good at preparing his teams for March Madness battle. The Spartans have the edge in assists to-turnover ratio and are the better shooting team from downtown. USC is a solid offensive unit, but its defense isn’t as good as the Spartans, and MSU will cover the -2 (-110) at Caesars.

Phil’s Best Bet Michigan State -2 (-110) Caesars

Vermont Catamounts vs. Marquette Golden Eagles 2:45 pm

Vermont is a +10.5 underdog with a 144.5 total when the two squads meet in game two of the East Region matchup.

Phil’s Best Bet: Vermont +10.5 -110 Caesars

Vermont and Marquette will battle Friday afternoon, ending with Marquette winning the game and covering the -10.5 spread.

Vermont has a 15-game winning streak on the line and has a tough opening round against a much better Marquette team from a bigger conference. They play sharp basketball with the nation’s 14th best assist to turnover ratio. Vermont is the more experienced team playing with a ton of confidence and led the American East Conference in many offensive and defensive categories but were terrible offensive rebounders, poor free-throw shooters, and didn’t defend the triple very well.

Marquette enters this contest on a nine-game winning streak and is a team that relies on its offense to win games. The Golden Eagles topped the Big East in all the scoring stats, except Marquette doesn’t get many attempts at the charity stripe. Defensively, the Golden Eagles were at the bottom of the conference table in many aspects of the game, but they forced the most turnovers and led the conference in steals.

Marquette should win the game but not by 11 points. Vermont is playing confidently and is a crisp team that moves the ball well and doesn’t make many silly mistakes. Marquette doesn’t make many mistakes either, but they don’t defend well enough to keep the Catamounts from scoring enough to cover the spread. Take Vermont to cover the +10.5.

Phil’s Best Bet: Vermont +10.5 -110 Caesars

Fairleigh Dickinson Knights vs. Purdue Boilermakers 6:50 pm

Fairleigh Dickenson is a +23 underdog with a 145.5-point total when the Knights play the Purdue Boilermakers.

Phil’s Best Bet: Purdue Boilermakers Under 145.5 (-110) Caesars

Fairleigh Dickinson is 4-1 over their last five games, and they didn’t win the Northeast Conference regular season or tournament. They’ve won four of their last five, but three of those victories were against the worst team in the country. According to Kenneth Pomeroy, the Knights score the 43rd most points in the nation but have the worst defense in the second-worst conference.

Purdue is the top seed in the East and won the Big Ten Conference regular season and tournament. The Boilermakers rarely turn the ball over and have a high assist-to-turnover margin with decent shooters. Purdue allows the 21st fewest points per game, fewest opponent rebounds per game, and first in the conference in opponents’ free-throw rate.

Purdue plays one of the slowest tempos in the nation, and there probably won’t be enough possessions for this game to exceed the total. Fairleigh Dickenson has the worst defense in the country, and the Boilermakers will have their way Friday. Purdue plays stingy defense and doesn’t allow many points–FDU can score points against some bad defenses, but Purdue isn’t one of those bad defenses, and the Boilermakers will lay it on the Knights, dominate both ends of the floor, and the game ends Under 145.5.

Phil’s Best Bet: Purdue Boilermakers Under 145.5 (-110) Caesars

Florida Atlantic vs Memphis Tigers 9:50 pm

Florida Atlantic is a +1.5 underdog with a 153-point total when they meet the Memphis Tigers Friday night in Columbus, Ohio.

Phil’s Best Bet: Memphis ML -130 Caesars

Florida Atlantic has won seven straight and the Conference USA regular season and postseason tournament. The Owls were the 28th-best scoring team in the country and led C-USA in multiple offensive statistics, but they are a mediocre free-throw shooting team that doesn’t get to the line often. FAU topped the conference in opponents’ offensive rebounding and effective field goal percentage but doesn’t pressure the ball and isn’t a team that forces many turnovers.

Memphis finished 2nd in the American Athletic Conference regular season table but won the conference tournament. The Tiger was 22nd in the country in scoring and finished 2nd on the stats table in several offensive categories–Memphis plays fast but does have a high turnover rate. Still, they did lead the conference in opponents turnover and steal percentages but allow too many offensive rebounds and commit too many silly fouls.

This will be a tight game between two teams who can score the basketball, but Memphis will win. Memphis has won six of its last seven, was 6-1 SU on a neutral court and scored 75+ in six. FAU is a good basketball team, but the faster Memphis pace and mediocre three-point shooting won’t get the job done Friday night. Take Memphis -130 to win this contest.

Phil’s Best Bet: Memphis ML -130 Caesars

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