Bakersfield vs. Georgia Tech Pick
In an improbable NIT Tournament semifinal, eighth-seeded CSU Bakersfield will face off with No. 6 Georgia Tech tonight at 7PM ET. Which team will come away with a win and cover?
According to oddsmakers at BetDSI, Georgia Tech is the slight favorite in this game, as the Yellow Jackets are getting odds of -2.5 points against Bakersfield. The over/under total for the game is listed at 124 points. This game will be played from Madison Square Garden in New York.
Bakersfield was an 8 seed to open this tournament and not expected to get far, yet the Roadrunners have beaten California (73-66), Colorado State (81-63) and Utah (80-76) to reach this semifinal. The Roadrunners have been an underdog in each game, with the spread getting smaller with each win. They are now 25-9 on the season with a 5-4 record against the spread. Over their last five games, Bakersfield is averaging 75 points per game on offense while allowing 71 on defense. Jaylin Airington is leading the team with 14.4 points and 4.7 rebounds per game while Damiyne Durham and Dedrick Basile also put up over 12 points per contest.
Georgia Tech is also somewhat of a longshot to get to this stage, but the Yellow Jackets have beaten Indiana (75-63), Belmont (71-57) and Ole Miss (74-66) to get to MSG. The Jackets are now 20-15 overall while going 19-11 against the spread. They have covered in four straight and six of their last seven. Over its last five, Tech is averaging 68 points per game on offense while allowing just 67.4 on defense. Josh Okogie is leading the team with 16.1 points and 5.3 rebounds per game while Ben Lammers adds 14.4 points and 9.3 rebounds per contest.
Things step up in the NIT Tournament now that the semifinals are upon us. Nerves amp up a little bit and this stage could be a little much for Bakersfield, which hasn’t had to play in a setting like this. Georgia Tech has a little experience in this nature with the ACC Tournament and its NIT opener with Indiana. On the court, rebounding will be a big issue. Tech is great on the glass, averaging 36 per game. Bakersfield has given up nearly 40 rebounds per game over their last five and that will bite them tonight. Look for the Jackets to stay strong on defense and crash the glass hard to pick up a win.
NIT TOURNAMENT PREDICTION: GEORGIA TECH -2.5