CAA Championship Odds, Picks, Predictions: Delaware vs. UNC Wilmington Betting Preview (March 8)

CAA Championship Odds, Picks, Predictions: Delaware vs. UNC Wilmington Betting Preview (March 8) article feature image

Mitchell Layton/Getty Images. Pictured: Ebby Asomoah.

  • The Delaward Fightin' Blue Hens meet the UNC Wilmington Seahawks in the CAA Tournament title game on Tuesday.
  • The Blue Hens enter this one as a short favorite, and Doug Ziefel thinks the third time is the charm for them.
  • Read on for Ziefel's full betting breakdown and top pick.

Updated Delaware vs. UNC Wilmington Odds

Tuesday, March 8
7 p.m. ET
CBS Sports Network
Delaware Odds
-110o / -110u
UNC Wilmington Odds
-110o / -110u
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute college basketball odds here.

The time has come for a CAA ticket to the Big Dance to be punched, as the Delaware Blue Hens square off against the UNC Wilmington Seahawks with the season hanging in the balance.

Delaware Fightin' Blue Hens

Expect 3s to Rain for Delaware

The Blue Hens have looked very solid through their first two games of the tournament as they dispatched Drexel easily before knocking off the regular-season champion Towson.

It should not be that much of a shock that Delaware has made it this far, as it was arguably the best offensive team in the  CAA this season. It ranked first in effective field goal percentage and second in both 2- and 3-point percentages.

However, what has been outstanding to this point in the postseason has been the Blue Hens defense. They've held both of their opponents to less than 60 points.

Delaware has done a fantastic job of closing out on shooters, particularly from behind the arc, as Drexel and Towson combined to go just 8-for-46 from deep.

Though it's not just 3s it's defended well — it's been every shot. In the semifinals, the Hens held Towson to a season-low 34.5 effective field goal percentage.

However, the Seahawks are a nut that Delaware has yet to crack this year, as the Blue Hens dropped both games to them in the regular season.

The key for the Hens to punch their ticket will be to continue to shoot well from the outside. UNCW is last in the CAA in 3-point percentage allowed. Kevin Anderson went 4-for-6 from downtown in the semifinals and should be joined by Jameer Nelson Jr. and Ryan Allen, who are good 3-point shooters as well.

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UNC Wilmington Seahawks

Look For Sims to Lead Seahawks to Victory

UNCW was the 2-seed entering this tournament, but it's very fortunate to be in the final. A red-hot Charleston team gave the Seahawks all they could handle, and then they were helped out by a questionable late charge call.

However, their defensive effort can't be discounted as they held Charleston to a 41.7 effective field goal percentage.

Moving to the championship matchup, UNCW may have won both meetings against Delaware, and it's because of one man: Jaylen Sims.

The senior guard is the Seahawks' leading scorer and has been on a mission throughout this tournament. He had 16 points, six rebounds and four blocks against Elon and followed that up with a 26-point, 11-rebound performance against Charleston.

Sims is a player who can score from anywhere on the court and should have plenty of openings, as Delaware ranked seventh in the conference in adjusted defensive efficiency and eighth in 3-point percentage allowed.

Delaware vs. UNC Wilmington Betting Pick

Both of these programs may be surging at the right time. However, when you look back at the two meetings during the regular season, you can see just how lucky UNCW was to win those games.

In terms of effective field goal percentage, Delaware outshot UNCW, 52.8-47.4, in the first game and 50-41.8 in the second.

However, with the Blue Hens seemingly turning the defense up a notch, I think the third time is the charm here. Their shooting should prevail as they punch their tickets to the NCAA. Tournament.

Pick: Delaware -3 or better

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Doug Ziefel
Jun 13, 2024 UTC