Marshall vs. Wichita State 2018 March Madness Betting Analysis

Marshall vs. Wichita State 2018 March Madness Betting Analysis

Written by on March 15, 2018

The fourth-seeded Wichita State Shockers will kick off their 2018 NCAA Tournament by looking to avoid the upset against the high-scoring Marshall Thundering Herd when they take on their 13th-seeded opponents in the first round of action in the East Region on Friday. If you’re wondering whether the Shockers can both, avoid what would amount to a huge loss, while also covering the March Madness betting spread as a double-digit favorite, let’s find out now!

Thundering Herd vs. Shockers 2018 March Madness Betting Analysis

  • When: Friday, March 16, 2018, 1:30 PM ET
  • Where: Viejas Arena, San Diego, California
  • TV: TNT
  • Radio: TuneIn
  • Live Stream: MM Live
  • March Madness Betting Odds: Wichita State Shockers -12 (Over/Under at 166 points)

Can Cincinnati Cover the NCAA Basketball Spread vs. Georgia State?

Team Records

  • All: Marshall Thundering Herd 24-10 / Wichita State Shockers 25-7
  • Home: Marshall Thundering Herd 17-2 / Wichita State Shockers 15-4
  • Away: Marshall Thundering Herd 7-8 / Wichita State Shockers 10-3
  • ATS: Marshall Thundering Herd 19-12 / Wichita State Shockers 12-18
  • Over/Under: Marshall Thundering Herd 16-15 / Wichita State Shockers 20-10

Why Consider Betting on Marshall at +12?

Why should you consider betting on Marshall to at least cover the chalk in their opener? There are a couple of good reasons. First, the Thundering Herd hit March Madness on a pretty nice roll, having won four consecutive games including their 67-66 upset over Western Kentucky in the Conference USA championship on Saturday. Next, Marshall can apparently score the ball with the best teams in the country. “I’m happy for these kids and I’m happy for the school,” Marshall coach Dan D’Antoni, brother of Houston Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni, told reporters. “It’s been a long time coming and Marshall basketball kind of fell off.” The Thundering Herd averaged a fantastic 84.3 points per game to rank a 12th-nationally – and they’ve got a pair of players that both average over 20 points per game. Junior guard Jon Elmore led Conference USA in scoring by averaging 22.8 points and an impressive 6.9 assists per game prompting D’Antoni to tell reporters after Saturday’s conference title win, “He’s a complete ballplayer. I thought he did a great job.” Junior guard C.J. Burks averaged a stellar 20.5 points while junior forward Ajdin Penava is the team’s third and final double-digit scorer at 15.5 points per contest and 8.6 rebounds. Penava was named C-USA Tournament MVP after averaging 17 points and 8.3 rebounds in the three games. The bad news is that the Thundering Herd aren’t very good defensively, as they allowed a whopping 78.8 points per contest defensively to finish 321st in points allowed nationally.

Why Consider Betting on Wichita State at -12?

Why consider betting on fourth-seeded Wichita State in their opener as a double-digit favorite? Well, there’s the fact that the Shockers are an elite scoring team as well, plus they’ve got plenty of postseason experience and one of the game’s best head coaches. Last but not least, they should be highly motivated after losing two heart-breakers in their last three games. Wichita State averages a healthy 83.0 points per game to rank 20th nationally. The Shockers were on the wrong end of a 77-74 loss to Houston in the AAC Tournament semifinals this past Saturday after losing their regular-season finale against Cincinnati 62-61 on Feb. 4. Offensively, Wichita State has four double-digit scorers. The Shockers are led by sophomore guard Landry Shamet, who averages a team-best 15.0 points and an AAC-most 5.1 assists per game. Wichita State also has a very effective big man in center Shaquille Morris who averages 14.0 points and 5.5 rebounds – both career highs this season. Morris has actually put up 16.8 points per game over his last nine games. Landry Shamet is one of the reasons for Wichita State to be considered the March Madness Betting favorite. Senior forward Darral Willis Jr. (10.4 points, 6.0 rebounds) and senior guard Conner Frankamp (10.1 points) also average double figures for the Shockers and have plenty of postseason experience as they play in their final NCAA Tournaments. Defensively, the Shockers are solid in limiting the opposition to 71.3 points per contest (152nd). Wichita State also has an elite head coach in Gregg Marshall and just so you know, this game marks the first time in NCAA Tournament history that a school’s name matches the opposing coach’s last name.

Latest March Madness Betting Trends

  • Marshall is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games
  • Marshall is 9-2 SU in its last 11 games
  • The total has gone OVER in 5 of Marshall’s last 6 games
  • Wichita State is 0-5 ATS in its last 5 games
  • Wichita State is 8-1 SU in its last 9 games
  • The total has gone OVER in 11 of Wichita State’s last 12 games

Expert March Madness Betting Pick

While 62 percent of public bettors are rolling with Marshall to cover the chalk in this contest, I think Wichita State will narrowly cover the chalk by getting the big double-digit win in this contest. Marshall’s lack of defense bothers me, particularly when combined with what I believe will be some ‘semi-desperation’ from the Shockers in this contest. Wichita State is very balanced offensively and they’ve got one of the deepest benches of any team in this year’s NCAA Tournament. Marshall has gone 6-1 ATS in their last seven neutral site games and 10-4 ATS in their last 14 games against a team with a winning record, but I like a focused Wichita State has gone 4-1 ATS mark in their last five games against teams from Conference USA. More importantly, I’m thinking Shaquille Morris will mostly dominate down low in this one while Landry Shamet gives Marshall’s high-scoring backcourt a tough way to go in this contest. Wichita State wins and narrowly covers everyone! Pick: Wichita State -11.5