NCAA Tournament Betting Free Pick: Montana Grizzlies vs. Michigan Wolverines
FREE PICK: Montana Grizzlies vs. Michigan Wolverines
#779 Montana +9 First Half (Thursday, March 21 @ 9:20 pm EST)
Unique situation with Montana and Michigan hooking up for a second straight NCAA Tournament first round matchup. The Wolverines won 61-47 as -10 favorites. There are a few factors however that suggest Thursday’s meeting will be more competitive. For starters, Montana is getting 5.5 extra points compared to last year’s point spread. The Grizzlies also returned five of the seven players that saw action in last year’s meeting. Michigan runs a unique system on both ends of the floor so the experience will undoubtedly help underdog Montana.
We could also see Michigan come out a bit sluggish. In the first meeting, the Wolverines were just removed from a brutal four games in four days stretch including a win over Purdue in the Big Ten title game which took place on Sunday. They drew a Thursday game vs. Montana and found themselves down 10-0 and with a modest 31-28 lead at halftime. After the break, Michigan flexed its muscle and eventually pulled away with an ugly 61-47 win. Similar situation here as the Wolverines played three games in three days and lost on Sunday to rival Michigan State in the Big Ten championship. And once again, they draw a Thursday game. Montana meanwhile will be rested and ready having won the Big Sky back on March 10. Given the low total and unique “familiarity”, I expect this to be a slow paced and defensive-minded game. I also look for Montana to come out strong early on against a potentially weary foe.