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Houston had a double-digit loss to Memphis in the AAC conference championship game after star player Marcus Sasser went down with an injury. Can Houston bounce back in the first round here? Let’s break it down

NCAA Tournament Best Bets: Houston vs. Northern Kentucky Expert Pick

Houston vs. NKU Start Time and Where to Watch

  • Date: Thursday, March 16
  • Time: 9:20 pm ET
  • Where to Watch: TNT

Houston vs. NKU Odds

  • Moneyline Odds: Houston (-2800)/Northern Kentucky (+1500)
  • Point Spread: Houston -18.5

Northern Kentucky vs. Houston odds can be found here

NCAA Tournament Best Bets

I have been very high on Houston all year, and when at full strength, I believe they are the best team, top to bottom, in the country. They are led by star guard Marcus Sasser, who is one of the best scorers and shooters in the nation. He’s dynamic with the ball in his hands and is a solid driver/passer, as he frequently creates passing lanes for his teammates. He is a deadly shooter, as he shoots over 38% from deep.

While Sasser and star freshman, Jarace Walker, lead a potent offensive attack, Houston asserts their dominance on the defensive end. Houston is ranked in the top five defensively in adjusted defensive efficiency, defensive effective FG%, defensive 2P & 3P%, and block percentage.

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Houston as a group is merciless on the defensive end, and they force turnovers at an alarming rate. They are also extremely tough and one of the best rebounding teams in the country. They destroy teams on the offensive glass and frequently gain second chance opportunities for open threes off of an offensive rebound. Houston open looks at the rim to draw fouls and get the other teams foul trouble.

Northern Kentucky has had a solid season, but they do not have the talent or athleticism to stick with the Cougars in this matchup. The one concern with Houston is the health of Marcus Sasser, as he did not play in the AAC conference championship loss to Memphis. Even if he doesn’t play or is limited, I do not see Northern Kentucky being able to score on Houston’s stifling defense, and the Cougars should be able to impose their will as the game goes on. With that being said, I am rolling with HOUSTON 1H -10.5 -115 and HOUSTON -18 -110 for 1U each.

NCAA Tournament Best Bets Houston vs. NKU

Article Author


Joey has spent the last 6+ years betting on sports with a focus on basketball and baseball. Basketball is his main focus, and not many people know more about mid-major basketball than him. Whether you need advice on a Saturday night primetime game or a Tuesday night back-alley SWAC/MEAC game, Joey is your man.


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