College Basketball Odds & Picks for St. Bonaventure vs. Marquette: Can Shaka Smart’s Team Pull Another Upset?
Larry Radloff/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Justin Lewis and Shaka Smart.
St. Bonaventure vs. Marquette Odds
|St. Bonaventure Odds|
-110o / -110u
-110o / -110u
As expected, the St. Bonaventure Bonnies have made their way to the Shriners Children’s Charleston Classic Championship. Marquette has upset its way to the title, where it has won outright as underdogs against both Ole Miss and West Virginia.
Here is the prediction from the beginning of the tournament, where Marquette had some valuable spreads if it could make its way through this tournament It will once again be dogs in this matchup with the Bonnies, but Marquette has a smothering defense, which once again may provide an edge in this championship game.
St. Bonaventure is a solid team, led by Jaren Holmes and Kyle Lofton. Marquette has the antidote for both of these players. Justin Lewis, Tyler Kolek, Olivier-Maxence Prosper and Greg Elliott all average at least one steal per game. They could disrupt the St. Bonaventure offense, which is typically disciplined enough to not turn over the ball. If the Bonnies have a couple of early turnovers, Marquette’s defense is doing what it should.
The Bonnies have strength in their guards and an offensive advantage over Marquette. Holmes, Lofton and Jalen Adaway are their only three scorers with over 10 points or more per game just yet. Obviously, they are a strong team, but if Marquette negates any of those weapons, they are extremely top heavy. Sure, they came back against Clemson, but expect Marquette to play like Clemson did for the first three-quarters of that game.
Shaka Smart is going to run a similar defensive playbook as he has lately. The most concerning issue Marquette could see is Lofton with his ability to take over a game. He is a stud and could be the most underrated player in the country. He is the key piece in this game. If he has any scoring issues, Marquette will need to prolong that for the entire game because in this tournament alone, the Bonnies have looked clutch under stress.
The Marquette Golden Eagles are undefeated on the season and have built themselves quite a résumé with wins over Illinois, Ole Miss and West Virginia. They have a strong defense with Shaka Smart at the helm as head coach. They have limited opponents to utilizing the entire shot clock on an average of 18.5 seconds per possession. They also have not allowed more than 80 points yet this season. Outside of the Illini, St. Bonaventure has the best offense of the teams they have played, but Marquette has shown it can compete with top-tier teams.
The Golden Eagles have shown they struggle with crashing the glass, but St. Bonaventure has the same issue. Justin Lewis can match up with Osun Osunniyi down low. Darryl Morsell is the best defender on the squad and he can box out Jaren Holmes. The cherry on top is Oso Ighodaro and Kur Kuath. Both are tall bench pieces who can give the Eagles a slight advantage on the glass.
Finally, Marquette loves to push the pace on offense. They have a 51.9% effective field goal percentage, per KenPom, in this young season, so even with only averaging 13.7 seconds per possession, Marquette has been efficient with its possessions. The Golden Eagles also shoot almost exactly the same from behind the arc as the Bonnies. Given how the Bonnies are used to playing at a snail’s pace, the Eagles may be able to throw the Bonnie defense off balance.
St. Bonaventure vs. Marquette Betting Pick
The Marquette defense is the real deal. It will keep this game tight and should not collapse like Boise State or Clemson in the second half. Marquette has the defensive guards to limit the impact of Kyle Lofton and Jaren Holmes on this game. Take Marquette at +4.5 (-102) and play to +3.