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Northwestern vs Boise State Prediction and NCAA Tournament March Madness Expert Picks

In a First Round NCAA Tournament game, the 7-seed Northwestern Wildcats will face off with the 10-seed Boise State Broncos in the West Region. Let’s take a look at the top college basketball betting odds, March Madness expert picks, betting trends and KenPom Rankings, then share our official Northwestern vs Boise State prediction for the First Round matchup. 

Northwestern vs Boise State Prediction and March Madness Expert Picks

2023 NCAA Tournament First Round
No. 7 Northwestern Wildcats (21-11) vs. No. 10 Boise State Broncos (24-9)
Date: Thursday, March 16, 2023
Time: 4:30 PM EST
Venue: Golden 1 Center – Sacramento, CA
Coverage: truTV

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Northwestern vs Boise State March Madness Betting Odds

All college basketball betting odds for Northwestern vs Boise State can be found at BetUS Sportsbook.

Moneyline: NU: (N/A) | BSU: (N/A)
Point Spread: NU: -1.5 (-110) | BSU: +1.5 (-110)
Total: 128 — Over: (-110) | Under: (-110)

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KenPom Rankings | Bracketology

KenPom Rankings are from

TeamOverall AdjEM (Rk)AdjO (Rk)AdjD (Rk)AdjT (Rk)
Northwestern+14.83 (42)108.5 (109)93.7 (13)64.9 (305)
Boise State+17.13 (31)111.0 (78)93.8 (14)66.5 (219)
  • Wildcats are 7-3 ATS in their last ten games overall.
  • Nine of the Wildcats’ last 11 games overall have stayed UNDER the total.
  • The UNDER is 3-0-1 in the Wildcats’ last four games following an ATS loss.
  • Broncos are just 2-8-1 ATS in their last 11 games overall.
  • The total has gone OVER in four of the Broncos’ last six games overall.
  • Broncos are 0-7 straight up in their last seven games against Big Ten opponents.

Northwestern vs Boise State Prediction | March Madness Expert Picks and Bracketology

Oftentimes, the 7-10 matchups in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament provide some great games. Thursday’s duel between Northwestern and Boise State certainly has the potential to follow suit. The March Madness expert picks are split right down the middle on which side will emerge victorious. The Broncos actually opened as a 1.5-point favorite before the line moved through pick’em in the Wildcats’ favor.

When it comes to statistics, what jumps out for both teams is their prowess at the defensive end. Northwestern’s resurgence in the Big Ten this year was fueled by solid defense. The Wildcats allowed the second-fewest points per game (62.5) in the conference. Not to be outdone, Boise State also ranked second in the Mountain West in scoring defense (64.3 ppg).

Based on the numbers presented above, one can’t help but lean towards playing the Under in this NCAA Tournament matchup. The desire to do so only grows when one considers the slow pace that both teams like to play. The Broncos rank 219th in adjusted tempo according to KenPom, and that’s actually fast compared to what Northwestern averaged over the course of the season. Needless to say, this figures to be one of the slowest-paced games of the entire tournament.

Despite the presence of playmaking guards on both sides, defense is the bread and butter of both teams. It will take incredible shot-making on the part of Boo Buie and/or Marcus Shaver Jr. to push this game past the posted total. The line has come down a few points relative to opening, but Under remains the best way to bet on this matchup.

Our official college basketball betting Northwestern vs Boise State prediction will be UNDER 128 at BetUS

For what it’s worth, the ESPN Matchup Predictor gives Boise State a 51.5% chance to win.

Bet: UNDER 128 (-110 at BetUS Sportsbook)

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