Jacksonville vs. Bellarmine Odds, Picks, Predictions: How to Bet the Atlantic Sun Championship (March 8)
John Byrum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Jacksonville forward Bryce Workman
- There's a lot on the line when the Jacksonville Dolphins meet the Bellarmine Knights in the Atlantic Sun Championship on Tuesday.
- Jacksonville secures a NCAA Tournament bid with a win, though Bellarmine secures only the conference title since the program is still in transition to Division I.
- With the stakes in mind, find out how our college basketball betting analyst is finding potential value on this showdown for the ASUN title.
Bellarmine vs. Jacksonville Odds
-110o / -110u
-110o / -110u
After a wild weekend of upsets, we are left with one more game to decide the Atlantic Sun championship.
Bellarmine came out of the gate hot against the three-time defending champs Liberty. And even though both teams had double-digit leads at one point, it came down to the final shot: A desperate three-pointer from Darius McGhee that didn’t find the net, giving Bellarmine the 53-50 win.
Jacksonville had a similar game in which it established a lead early against Jacksonville State, but the result also came down to the final shot. In the end, the Dolphins defense displayed their ability as they have all season, preventing the Gamecocks from even attempting a final shot to tie the game. Jacksonville held the regular-season champion Jacksonville State — the best three-point shooting team in the ASUN — to only 22% from deep in the 54-51 win.
The Dolphins return to the conference final for the first time since 2009. A win would earn their first appearance in the NCAA Tournament since 1986.
A win for Bellarmine would secure its first-ever Division I conference title in just the program’s second season. However, should the Knights win, they will not earn a bid to the NCAA Tournament since they’re still in the four-year transition process from Division II. Rather, a win would mean the regular-season champion Jacksonville State would be awarded the bid.
Jacksonville was +950 to win the tournament before it began, while Bellarmine was +1200. And though they are both 2-seeds, Bellarmine beat Jacksonville 76-73 in overtime earlier this season and will host the championship game.
The Knights have been one of the best offensive teams in conference play this season, led by Dylan Penn, who ranks third in ASUN scoring at 16.4 points per game. Penn led the team in scoring against Liberty and has scored 36 across two tournament games.
Bellarmine ranks first in conference two-point scoring. However, there are some areas the Knights will struggle against the Dolphins — the biggest being rebounding. Jacksonville has been dominant at both ends of the court while Bellarmine has struggled to get rebounds and prevent opponents from earning second-chance opportunities.
Before this year, the Dolphins had not won a conference tournament game since 2018. But first-year head coach Jordan Mincy has prioritized defense, and their success has followed.
The Dolphins are ninth in the country in scoring defense, holding teams to just 60.5 points per game. They haven’t been great on the offensive end, but a lacking Knights defense is something the Dolphins can take advantage of. The Knights are 339th nationally in effective field goal percentage on defense.
ASUN Championship Betting Pick
Both teams rank in the bottom 10 of college basketball when it comes to tempo. And with Bellarmine leading the conference in offensive efficiency and Jacksonville leading it in defensive efficiency, this will be a true test of strength versus strength.
Bellarmine and Jacksonville each won games to get here by just three points. Their previous meeting this season was also decided by only three points. The Knights playing on their home court will be a factor, but not as much as this spread indicates.
Along with that, Jacksonville is 10-5 against the spread (ATS) this season on the road, while Bellarmine has gone just 4-6 ATS at home. I was able to bet Jacksonville at +3, but wouldn’t take the Dolphins any lower than that.
Should the line drop, I suggest playing the under at 123 or better. It is a low total, but these are not only two of the slowest-paced teams in the country — they both have been profitable to the under with a combined 22-33 record on over/unders this season.