St. John’s vs UConn Odds, Prediction: Why to Bet Red Storm

St. John’s vs UConn Odds, Prediction: Why to Bet Red Storm article feature image
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Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images. Pictured: Daniss Jenkins (St. John’s)

  • The St. John's Red Storm meet the UConn Huskies in the Big East Tournament on Friday.
  • The Huskies come into the game as a 9.5-point favorite, according to updated odds, but is that where the betting value lies?
  • Read on for our St. John's vs. UConn betting preview and pick for Friday's Big East Tournament clash.

St. John's Red Storm vs UConn Huskies Odds

Friday, March 15
5:30 p.m. ET
FOX
St. John's Odds
Point SpreadTotal PointsMoneyline
+9.5
-110
147
-110o / -110u
+390
UConn Odds
Point SpreadTotal PointsMoneyline
-9.5
-110
147
-110o / -110u
-525
Odds via bet365. Get up-to-the-minute NCAAB odds here.

Nothing is better than the atmosphere at Madison Square Garden during the Big East tournament. The stakes are amped up on Friday afternoon as the St. John's Red Storm take on the UConn Huskies in the semifinals.

Rick Pitino's team has played fantastic basketball lately, and the Johnnies are hitting their peak at the right time.

For Dan Hurley's Huskies, they continue to buzzsaw through the conference.

The Huskies got off to a sluggish start against Xavier on Thursday, but they quickly returned to form and won dominantly. They enter Friday afternoon's tilt as near-double-digit favorites.

It's not surprising to see the Huskies as a large favorite, as they swept the season series against the Johnnies. The Huskies are top-10 in Adjusted Efficiency on both sides of the floor, including notably second in offense.

However, despite their unbelievable talent, the market is overreacting the Huskies. Remember, the Johnnies were 2.5-point underdogs last month at MSG to the same Huskies team. Forward Alex Karaban didn't play in that game, but this number is still outrageous.

I predicted back in November that the Huskies would cut down the nets in Phoenix, but that's not stopping me from fading them here. The Huskies are easily the best team in the nation, but the Johnnies are playing way too well right now to swallow the points with the Huskies.

The Johnnies are 29th in Adjusted Offensive Efficiency, which is crucial against an elite Huskies defense.

The biggest difference as of late for the Johnnies has been their ability to protect the basketball. Their offense is far more lethal when they're not careless with the ball, and their offensive rebounding ability has correlated to a ton of extra buckets.

Both teams are elite on the offensive glass, so I expect the game to have a ton of extra possessions.

In their last matchup, the Johnnies went 4-of-14 from deep, which won't get the job done in the postseason. Forcing UConn off the perimeter and making its own 3s is the key to the game for St. John's

I typically like backing teams that can score without relying on the 3-ball, but against the Huskies, you're forced to attack them from deep. Not only is it because of their elite interior defensive presence, but it's because trading 2s for 3s is a horrific idea against the Huskies, who love to slow the game down.

The Johnnies find themselves inside the NCAA tournament field, but a win here will take matters out of the committee's hands. The Huskies' inability to force turnovers and slow tempo could force the game into a crawl, which correlates well with the underdog.

Call me a sucker, but I'm essentially getting 10 points as a 'dog in a home game with a team that's playing its best basketball of the season. The Huskies should pull away late, but I think Pitino will have his team ready to roll.

Pick: St. John's +9.5 (Play to +8)

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