The first of two First Four NCAA Tournament games on Wednesday night’s slate pits the Colonial League Tournament champion James Madison Dukes against the Long Island Blackbirds, who earned their bid by winning the Northeast Conference Tournament.
The winner of this matchup will advance as the No. 16 seed in the East Region to play No. 1 seed Indiana. The Dukes went 20-14 SU this season and a profitable 21-10 ATS as a result of an 8-2 ATS record in their last 10 games. Long Island comes in at 20-13 SU and 4-0 ATS; the total went OVER in all four of those games.
The Dukes are 20-14 so far on the season, and 21-10 ATS vs. the number. The Blackbirds, meanwhile, are 20-13 and 4-0 ATS. OVER/UNDER bettors have seen James Madison go 10-15 and the Blackbirds go 4-0 on the totals.
Power Rankings / Prediction:
This game puts the Dukes, most recently No. 248 in the Odds Shark power rankings, up against the Blackbirds, who rate No. 262 in the latest survey. Meanwhile, math and computer-based handicapping simulations run on this game predict a potential 74-72 victory for the Blackbirds.
How They Match Up:
In the paint, the rebound battle will feature James Madison's No. 255-rated squad against Long Island's No. 135-rated roster. And in long-range shooting, James Madison rates No. 217 in the country with 5.7 per game, while their foes tonight rank No. 61 nationally with 7.4 per match.
Defensively, Long Island features the nation's No. 347-rated defense on the road, allowing 81.9 points per game. James Madison, meanwhile, comes in at No. 255 nationally in scoring at home.
Long Island was a 91-70 winner in their most recent outing at home against Mount St. Mary's. They covered the 3.5-point spread as favorites. The battle between the Blackbirds and Mountaineers didn’t turn out to be much of a battle at all as Mount St. Mary's was handed a 91-70 defeat on Tuesday at Wellness Center.
James Madison won its last outing, a 70-57 result against Northeastern on March 11. They covered in that game as a 2-point underdog. James Madison got 26 points from A.J. Davis en route to a 70-57 victory over Northeastern on Monday at Reynolds Center.
James Madison Dukes Trends:
When playing on Wednesday are 5-5
After playing Northeastern are 5-5
After a win are 7-3
A few Blackbirds at Dukes trends to consider:
James Madison is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games
The total has gone OVER in 6 of James Madison's last 8 games