After failing to advance beyond the opening weekend in 15 straight seasons, Auburn is seeking a return to the Sweet 16 for the second time since 2019.
Standing in the Tigers’ way is Miami (FL), who’s seeking their first regional semifinal appearance since 2016. Here’s a look at the matchup with odds and predictions from the online sportsbook:
Game Details: No. 10 Miami (FL) vs. No. 2 Auburn
Miami (FL): 23-10 (14-6) | Auburn: 28-5 (15-3)
Date: 03/20/2022 | Time: 7:45 PM ET | TV: truTV
Location: Greenville, SC | Venue: Bon Secours Wellness Arena
Odds: Moneyline, Spread, & Total
Moneyline: Miami +260 | Auburn -350
Spread: Miami +7.5 (-110) | Auburn -7.5 (-110)
Total: 143.5 Over -110 | Under -110
Analysis & Prediction
I have counted on Auburn becoming one of the first top seeds slain in this year’s NCAA Tournament and this feels like the right spot.
Miami’s talented backcourt was on full display in their first-round win over USC and I see that as a serious advantage here for the Hurricanes. Guards Isaiah Wong, Kameron McGusty, and Charlie Moore combined for 50 of the team’s 68 points on Friday while Auburn saw just 26 points from their starting backcourt in their win over Jacksonville State.
Miami actually put up a solid performance on USC’s talented frontcourt and if that can translate into a decent enough effort against the Tigers, they could be set up for the upset.
Miami’s offense ranks higher than that of the Tigers, but they will need a solid effort from their shaky defense in order to emerge as a Cinderella in the Midwest Region. The Hurricanes rank 144th nationally in adjusted defensive efficiency per KenPom and 324th in effective field goal percentage. Some of this can be nullified by Auburn’s porous three-point shooting – just 32.2 percent – and that may be enough to keep them in this one. Grab a hefty spread and back the Hurricanes in this spot.
The Play: Miami +7.5 (-110)