Arizona (30-4) vs. North Dakota (22-9) Prediction & Game Preview
NCAA Tournament: Arizona vs. North Dakota fearless prediction and game preview.
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Date: Thursday, March 16
Game Time: 9:50 ET
Venue: Vivint Smart Home Arena, Salt Lake City, UT
All You Really Need To Know About Arizona
(Pac-12) RPI: 2, 15 seed
The Wildcats might have lost to Butler and Gonzaga back in the early part of the season, but they’ve been rolling ever since, with only a few Pac-12 blips to Oregon and UCLA since December 3rd. They eventually beat both of their league rivals to take the conference tournament championship.
The defense is among the best in the country, owning the boards and holding down everyone inside the three.
So where’s the weakness? This isn’t a three-point shooting team – but it’s good when it tries – and the offense is a bit spotty at times. Fortunately, the defense always seems to pick up the slack. It’ll choke the life out of a few teams in the opening weekend.
All You Really Need To Know About North Dakota
(Big Sky) RPI: 144, 2 seed
The Fighting Hawks pulled out the Big Sky championship in overtime, closing out a nice run of ten wins in the final 11 games to get into the fun.
Very, very active, they’ve got a high-octane offense that gets on the move, makes their threes, and forces a ton of turnovers. Just okay on the boards and with no blocked shots, there isn’t enough of an interior presence to battle up front against the bigger boys – although they can get big at times – but they’re plucky. It’s all about cranking up the offense with Quinton Hooker leading a speedy attack.
What’s Going To Happen
The Fighting Hawks will try to keep the tempo high, they’ll try to keep running and be active, and they’ll try to move the ball around enough to attack the glass and make plays on the inside. That’s just not going to work.
Arizona will match North Dakota three for three, and it’ll get on a run in the second half to pull away after the defense wakes up following a sleepy first half. The Cats aren’t going to be outrun by the Hawks.
Fearless Prediction & Line
Arizona 86, North Dakota 67
Line: Arizona -16.5
ATS Confidence: 2
5: Leave Vegas richer in body, mind & spirit
1: Leave the sportsbook, get tickets for Menopause The Musical or Puppetry of the Penis