College Basketball Odds, Expert Picks & Predictions for Seton Hall vs. Rutgers (Sunday, Dec. 11)
Via Icon Sportswire/Getty Images. Pictured: Rutgers Scarlet Knights center Clifford Omoruyi (11) during the second half in a game between the Rutgers Scarlet Knights and the Ohio State University Buckeyes, December 8, 2022 at Value City Arena in Columbus, Ohio.
- Rutgers is a 7.5-point home favorite on Sunday in an in-state battle with Seton Hall.
- The Pirates won this matchup by double digits last year, but can the Scarlet Knights bounce back in this spot after a close loss on the road to Ohio State earlier this week?
- Anthony Dabbundo breaks down the matchup and shares his best bet below.
Seton Hall vs. Rutgers Odds
|Seton Hall Odds|
-110o / -110u
-110o / -110u
Two local New Jersey foes renew their rivalry on Sunday in the Garden State as Seton Hall travels to Piscataway to take on Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights have once again been dominant on their home court this season with a 6-0 record and five wins by 15+ points.
Rutgers lost this meeting in Newark last season by double digits, but the Scarlet Knights sit as solid 7.5-point home favorites on Sunday. Their dominance starts at the defensive end, where the Knights boast a top-five defense by KenPom.
It’s a new era in Newark under head coach Shaheen Holloway, and the results have been mixed in his first year with the program thus far. A neutral court victory against Memphis was an excellent building block and resumé building triumph, but the Pirates have looked largely uncompetitive in games against Iowa, Oklahoma and Kansas. Throw in a loss to Siena on a neutral court, and the Pirates need one more nonconference quality win for their resumé.
The main issue for Seton Hall has been inefficiency on offense. The Pirates have suffered from way too many turnovers this season. They went from solidly above average in Turnover Rate nationally last season to currently in the bottom 20. They will now face off against the elite Rutgers ball pressure that ranks inside the top 15 in Turnover Rate nationally.
The backcourt features Clemson transfer Al-Amir Dawes, who has seen his Turnover Rate spike this season after it was already a mediocre part of his game in years past. He’s turning the ball over on 23% of possessions, and fellow lead guard Kadary Richmond has had similar issues with ball security.
A lot of the problems for Seton Hall come down to injuries too. The Pirates have a really deep roster, but they’ve had a series of injuries to Tray Jackson, Dre Davis Alexis Yetna and even Richmond now. Jackson and Richmond practiced after the Kansas loss and are expected to be fine for Sunday, but Davis has missed multiple games now, and his status is more uncertain at this point.
The offense is built around getting the ball to the rim as much as possible, as the Pirates haven’t had much success consistently scoring from the perimeter. Synergy grades them out as one of the least efficient offenses on jump shots and they rank pretty low in frequency there. They rank in the ninth percentile in efficiency on unguarded jumpers.
Given how difficult it is to get into the paint and score against Rutgers, it’s hard to see Seton Hall sustaining real offense in this game. Add in all the uncertainty with players coming off of illness, and the Pirates may struggle once again offensively.
Offensive rebounding is a major advantage for the Scarlet Knights in this matchup. Rutgers is one of the best offensive rebounding teams in the entire country, and it’s how this team makes up for shooting inefficiency otherwise. Adding extra attempts at the rim by being top 25 in offensive rebounding nationally has been a big boost for the Scarlet Knights, led by junior Clifford Omoruyi’s 11% Offensive Rebounding Rate.
The Scarlet Knights love to run their offense out of the low post, and they’ve had varying degrees of success with that. At home against Indiana, they dominated in the frontcourt. But in the last second controversial loss at Ohio State, Rutgers had major issues coping with the Buckeye frontcourt.
There’s not a ton of data on Seton Hall’s frontcourt post defense at this point, but it grades out really poorly, per Synergy. Rutgers should have major advantages scoring on the interior, even against KC Ndefo and Tyrese Samuel.
Seton Hall vs. Rutgers Betting Pick
Seton Hall’s offense is at its best when the Pirates get out in transition and create easy buckets. However, that’s also the strength of the Rutgers defense though; Synergy grades the Rutgers transition defense in the 99th percentile nationally.
Even though this could be seen as a good buy-low spot on the Pirates, the statistical matchup profile is brutal for Seton Hall. The Pirates should struggle to protect the ball against the Scarlet Knights ball pressure, they’ll struggle to stop Rutgers’ low-post offense, and Seton Hall doesn’t make enough open jump shots to spread out the Scarlet Knights defense.
I don’t bet favorites often in college basketball, but this is an excellent Rutgers spot at home. After the brutal loss to Ohio State late and with revenge on their minds from last year, Rutgers rolls at home.