NCAA March Madness: Arizona State vs. Nevada First Four betting preview, odds and predictions


NCAA March Madness: Arizona State Sun Devils vs. Nevada Wolf Pack betting preview, odds and predictions

In a First Four matchup in the West region of the NCAA Tournament, the Arizona State Sun Devils take on the Nevada Wolf Pack to find out who will face the sixth-seeded TCU Horned Frogs on Friday, March 17th. All tournament long, VSiN will be providing you with March Madness betting odds, in-depth team analysis and expert college basketball picks. Make us your one-stop shop for all of your betting needs. 


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How to watch Arizona State vs. Nevada

When: Wednesday, 9:10 p.m. ET

Where: Dayton, Ohio

Watch: truTV

Odds for Arizona State vs. Nevada

Spread: Arizona State -1.5

Total: 134 

(Odds accurate as of Sunday, March 12th at 11:00 p.m. ET)

Real-time betting splits at DraftKings Sportsbook

West Region No. 11 Seed Arizona State Sun Devils

This has been a tale of two seasons for the Sun Devils. Arizona State opened the year with an 11-1 record, earning wins over the VCU Rams, Michigan Wolverines and Creighton Bluejays in that stretch. The Sun Devils then went just 11-11 the rest of the way, which put the team firmly on the bubble heading into March Madness. But this is a very dangerous team, as Bobby Hurley’s squad can really defend. The Sun Devils also have a decent amount of talent offensively, with Desmond Cambridge Jr. and DJ Horne being two guys that can swing games with their shotmaking. It wouldn’t be surprising if Arizona State won this one and then a few after, but it also wouldn’t be shocking if it all ends here. That’s the type of season it has been.

West Region No. 11 Seed Nevada Wolf Pack 

It looked as though being in the Mountain West would keep Nevada from making the tournament, but luckily the committee came to its senses. This Wolf Pack team was fantastic this season, playing well on both ends of the floor and consistently picking up big wins in the most underrated conference in the country. The trio of Jarod Lucas, Kenan Blackshear and Will Baker is as good as any in the country, so Nevada does have firepower at the top. The question is whether some of the Wolf Pack’s role players can rise to the occasion in the Big Dance. This team lost three big games to end the season, which doesn’t bode well for Nevada’s chances of winning when the pressure is on.

Arizona State vs. Nevada Matchup Analysis

Does either one of these teams deserve to be in the NCAA Tournament? They were the last two granted access to the field by the selection committee and have a chance to state their respective cases in Dayton in the last of the four play-in games. Arizona State got really fortunate against USC to go 14-of-32 from 3 and get into the Pac-12 Tournament semifinals, otherwise, we’d be talking about somebody else in this game.

The Sun Devils certainly have a lot of talent, but this has been a limited offensive team all season. Defensively, the Sun Devils stack up well alongside the profiles of other tourney teams, but this offense is downright offensive. Arizona State ranks 311th in eFG% offense, 312th in 3P% and 271st in 2P%, per Bart Torvik. The Sun Devils are objectively bad with the basketball, but tied their season high in made 3s to pick up the Quadrant I win over USC that made all the difference.

Then you look at the Wolf Pack and wonder what they’re doing in the field. Nevada rides a three-game losing streak into the Big Dance, including a quick exit against San Jose State in the Mountain West Tournament. The Jan. 1 win over San Diego State and the Jan. 13 win over Utah State did a lot of heavy lifting in a season with a remarkably weak bubble. Statistically, there isn’t much to get excited about with Nevada, other than a low TO% on offense.

I’m not sure you’ll find a lot of people making cases to bet on either of these teams. You also have two western teams flying to Dayton for the First Four game and then flying to Denver to square off with the TCU Horned Frogs. Whichever team emerges victorious from UD Arena probably loses in the next game, but which team will it be? Arizona State’s defense is clearly the best unit in this game, but the Sun Devils are going to have to find offense from somewhere in order to score enough points to win. The under might be a good bet here.

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