Final Four Player Prop Picks: 3 Bets for Eric Dixon, Jalen Wilson & Brady Manek
Tom Pennington/Getty Images. Pictured: Brady Manek.
- Eric Dixon, Jalen Wilson and Brady Manek offer value in tonight's Final Four matchups.
- With Justin Moore out for Villanova, Dixon should be able to find more opportunities through the pick-and-roll.
- Our staff offers up three total player props to get you through the night.
The Final Four is upon us.
Because college basketball games are winding down in general, there are fewer bets available across the board. But these are the most important games of the season, so we still have player props.
Our staff has come through with three of its favorite player props for Saturday’s two Final Four games — one for Villanova’s Eric Dixon, one for Kansas’ Jalen Wilson and a final one for North Carolina’s Brady Manek.
And don’t forget to use Action Network’s Player Prop Tool, which compares our projections to lines across a number of books.
Eric Dixon Over 8.5 Points (+100)
A lot of our staff is on this prop, and for good reason.
This game is all about Justin Moore being out. So, who is going to step up for the Wildcats?
Amazingly, Moore has missed just one game in his three-year stint with Villanova. He’s basically Cal Ripken Jr.
But that game was earlier this season against Connecticut. Eric Dixon stepped up by scoring 24 points on 10-for-14 from 2-point range to carry the ‘Cats to a nine-point win.
It makes sense. Villanova uses a ton of pick-and-roll and tries to find open 3-point shooters. But when the Cats can’t, Dixon is the primary roll man and the heaviest used post-up player.
The latter is important. Villanova posts up about 11% of the time, which is top-50 nationally. Dixon gets 40% of those opportunities.
But you know who gets the second-most? Moore.
So, with Justin sidelined, Dixon is going to all the extra volume in those two sets.
Furthermore, there’s a good matchup here. David McCormack leads a solid post-up defense, but McCormack and the Jayhawks regressed in that area as the season progressed. Kansas finished just sixth in post-up defensive efficiency in the Big 12 during conference play, per ShotQuality.
Dixon will get the volume and has the skills to take advantage of the matchup. But, perhaps most importantly, The Action Network’s Player Prop Tool projects Dixon for 9.5 points Saturday evening, giving us an 8% edge over the market.
I’ll happily target him to go over 8.5 or 9 points as long as we’re getting EV or better.
Jalen Wilson Under 0.5 3-Pointers (+185)
By Doug Ziefel
The odds may seem long for this selection, but the value is tremendous once you dive into the numbers.
Wilson is by no means a sharpshooter. He has made only 26% of his attempts from beyond the arc this season and has actually been worse than that during the tournament.
Wilson has gone 2-of-14 from deep through four games while averaging three attempts per game. Now, he’ll be opposed by a Villanova team that does a great job of limiting opponents’ 3-point makes.
The Wildcats rank 27th in opponent 3-point percentage allowed, holding their teams to just above 30%, but we have seen that number fall in March. They most recently held Houston to 5% and kept Delaware at 15% before that.
Lastly, Wilson’s poor shooting has turned this prop into more of a coin flip. Despite his struggles, he has managed to go over this in two of his four tournament games.
However, considering the matchup and the potential for his volume to be even lower, this number is too juicy to pass up.
Brady Manek Over 2.5 3-Pointers (-125)
By Alex Hinton
Brady Manek has been excellent in UNC’s run to the Final Four. The stretch forward has averaged 23 points per game in the Tar Heels’ first four NCAA Tournament games.
Manek has done the bulk of his damage from beyond the arc. He has made 16 3s in the last four games and has least three triples in each of those games. If that trend continues, he’ll cash this over with ease.
While the makes are what we want, the volume is important too. Manek is averaging 8.5 3-point attempts in the last four games, and he has taken at least six in each of those games.
Manek has also enjoyed some big games against Duke this season. In the first meeting, Manek had 21 points on 6-of-10 shooting from deep. In the second meeting, he had 20 points on 5-of-10 shooting from beyond the arc.
North Carolina will need another big performance from Manek if it’s going to deny Coach K an opportunity to play for the national title in his final season.
This should be a fast-paced and high-scoring game in which I also like the over. That will give Manek every opportunity to cash this over.
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