2021 NCAA Tournament Odds, Picks, Predictions: Colorado vs. Georgetown (March 20)
John McCoy/Getty Images. Pictured: Eli Parquet.
- Colorado is favored over Georgetown in Saturday's first NCAA Tournament game.
- The Hoyas went on an unexpected run to win the Big East Tournament and receive an automatic bid to the Big Dance, while Colorado quietly strung together a quality season in the Pac-12.
- Get our Georgetown vs. Colorado pick below -- a play on the total, as we have it projected about four points different.
Colorado vs. Georgetown Odds
|Moneyline||-250 / +205|
|Time||Saturday, 12:15 p.m. ET|
The hottest 12-seed in the tournament may be the Georgetown Hoyas.
With former superstar Patrick Ewing running the show, the Hoyas are looking to make John Thompson proud with an improbable March.
Hoya Mania started in the Big East Tournament with four consecutive victories that included Villanova and Creighton. Ewing led his squad to a 25-point demolition of the Bluejays in the conference championship game.
Throughout the tournament, Georgetown was hot from the perimeter and went a perfect 23-for-23 from the free-throw line in a one-point victory over Villanova. This will be Ewing’s first trip to the NCAA Tournament as a coach.
Colorado will look to avoid a punch-out by a 12-seed after a successful season in the Pac-12. The Buffaloes were victim to another hot-shooting team in Oregon State but had won six straight games leading up to that point.
Tad Boyle led Colorado to a top 30 ranking in defensive efficiency and the second-best offensive free-throw shooting in the nation. Boyle is no stranger to the dance, making the tournament with Colorado in four other seasons.
Kyle Remillard: The Buffaloes secured a 5-seed — their highest ever in the NCAA Tournament — after finishing the season at 22-8. They lost the Pac-12 Championship to Oregon State after just sneaking past both California and USC.
Overall, they’re a well-rounded team that focuses more on being efficient than flashy.
Head coach Tad Boyle has been preaching the “No Tomorrow” mantra to his team that features seven seniors.
Among them is star point-guard McKinley Wright IV, who averages 15.5 points, 5.6 assists and 4.3 rebounds. He’s the key component to the offense as everything runs through him, and when he’s playing aggressively downhill, they’re a tough offense to stop.
They score 114.5 points per every 100 possessions and connect on 52.0% of their field goal attempts. The Buffaloes take care of the basketball and are well documented as one of the best free-throws shooting teams in the country.
They have seven players who shoot above 30.0% from behind the arc, which is a huge complementary piece to McKinley’s game.
Defensively, they allowed just 64.9 points per game in PAC-12 matchups — that ranked second in the conference — though one of the biggest challenges for them in the first round will be how they can defend Georgetown’s Qudus Wahab down on the block as they don’t have much size to guard low post players.
Colorado will use its loss to Oregon State as fuel for the NCAA Tournament. If they can take care of business against Georgetown, they should have a date with Florida State in the second round.
I view Colorado as another sleeper team that will go as far as Wright IV can carry them. I’m buying low on the Buffs.
Kyle Remillard: Georgetown is one of the hottest teams in the country after running through the Big East Tournament to secure an NCAA Tournament bid.
It finished the regular season at 9-12 before ripping off four wins in a row over some of the top teams in the conference such as Villanova, Seton Hall, and Creighton.
The Hoyas have some senior leadership with this team, including Jahvon Blair and Jamorko Pickett, who were part of Patrick Ewing’s original recruiting class. Both of those players have eclipsed the 1,000-point mark during this season and are the team’s two leading scorers.
They also have a strong centerpiece in 6-foot-11 Qudus Wahab, who contributed 12.4 points and 8.0 rebounds per game. Ewing deserves a lot of credit as he has developed Wahab into one of the premier post players in the country.
Georgetown ran through the Big East Tournament in part because of the 3-point shot. The Hoyas connected on 36.7% of their 79 3-point attempts in the tournament. They have five players on their roster who convert from behind the arc at 35.0% or better.
Georgetown is vulnerable in the tournament because of an inability to take care of the basketball. It ranks 309th in the country, turning the ball over on 21.7% of its offensive possessions. On the defensive end, it ranks 313th in creating turnovers, according to KenPom.
Any team that can shoot lights out on any given night like the Hoyas is live in the tournament.
I’m concerned with the draw, having to play a complete Colorado team in the first round. Georgetown will need to clean up the turnovers and play a clean 40 minutes if it wants to make a run.
Matchup & Betting Analysis
Collin Wilson: Ball security is a large issue for Georgetown. The Hoyas rank outside the top 300 in both ball security and takeaways.
Colorado will dominate the possession of the ball, which should equate to quality shots.
The Buffaloes will need to play better perimeter defense than their season-long rank of 143rd. Colorado does not get to the foul line often at a rate of 216th, but with a late lead, it will be able to show the nation the second-best free-throw percentage in the country.
The handicap comes down to whether Georgetown can stay piping hot in scoring from the arc and the charity stripe.
In lieu of taking a Buffaloes spread that has moved, look to take the under. Georgetown’s recent scoring has inflated a line that is projected at 134.
If the Hoyas cannot take the ball away from the Buffaloes, the pace will dictate a low-scoring affair as Colorado is 280th in tempo.
Pick: Under 138.5.