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2021 NCAA Tournament Odds: Tennessee vs. Oregon State Spread, Prediction

2021 NCAA Tournament Odds: Tennessee vs. Oregon State Spread, Prediction article feature image

Matthew Maxey/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Jaden Springer

  • Tennessee is a big favorite over Oregon State in the first round of the NCAA Tournament after the Beavers stole a bid by winning the Pac-12 Tournament.
  • The Vols have one of the nation's best defenses but can go shockingly cold on offense, so does OSU have a chance to hang?
  • Our staff breaks down the matchup and gives their early analysis for Tennessee vs. Oregon State.

#5 Tennessee vs. #12 Oregon St. Odds

Oregon St Odds +8
Tennessee Odds -8
Moneyline +300 / -385
Over/Under 133
Time Friday, 4:30 p.m. ET
Odds as of Sunday and via DraftKings

How Tennessee & Oregon St. Match Up

Oregon St.
All stats via KenPom.

Instant Analysis

A lot of people look for upsets in the 12-5 matchup. That won’t be the case in this game. Oregon State snuck into the field after winning the Pac-12 Tournament with upset wins over UCLA, Oregon and Colorado. Tennessee lost to Alabama in the semifinals of the SEC Tournament after leading most of the game. The Volunteers have the fourth-ranked defensive efficiency in the country, letting up just 87.0 points per every 100 possessions. They force turnovers on 22.9% of their defensive possessions and should be able to impose their will against the Beavers.

Oregon State has already had its Cinderella story by winning the Pac-12 Tournament. That fairytale should come to an end in the first round when the Beavers face a defense as strong as Tennessee. The Volunteers have a deep roster and share the basketball, with seven players who average eight points or more per game. I make the Volunteers close to a double-digit favorite and would be surprised if they lay an egg and get upset in the first round. — Kyle Remillard

What To Know About Tennessee

When it comes to Tennessee’s prospects of living up to its preseason expectations as a potential final 4 team, it will all come down to its ability to score. As expected, the defense is elite by almost every metric. The Vols feature one of the most suffocating on-ball defenses in all of college basketball led by Yves Pons, who seems to have a clone on the floor at all times. He is everywhere and is arguably the best defender in all of college basketball.

The problem for the Vols this year has been on the other side of the ball. Their offense is just way too stagnant in the half court and they suffer through devastating prolonged droughts.

They are actually fairly efficient in transition when they can leverage their elite athleticism. But when forced to execute in the half court, it just hasn’t worked consistently enough.

Can Rick Barnes come up with a solution? Can the freshman guards step up? If not, the Tennessee defense can only take them so far — Stuckey

What To Know About Oregon St.

The Beavers entered the Pac-12 Tournament as a 5-seed, winning three straight to become conference champions despite having some of the longest odds to do so. The Beavers beat UCLA, Oregon and Colorado to bring their combined Quadrant 1 and Quadrant 2 record to 7-9. Oregon State shot 29-of-66 from beyond the arc in the Pac-12 Tournament, a stark contrast from 33% in conference play for a rank of 10th in conference. This will be coach Wayne Tinkle’s second trip to the dance with Oregon State since taking over in 2015, as the coach had three other trips with Montana.

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Oregon State plays a unique shifting zone, giving opponents multiple looks and potential problems. One area the Beavers struggle is defensive free-throw rate with a national rank of 303rd. The Beavers do defend the perimeter with a defensive 3-point percentage that ranks 58th nationally, but a lack of presence in the paint could be problematic versus oppoenents that are dominant on the block. Still, this is a team with a decent offensive free-throw rate and has a top-40 free-throw shooting percentage. The Beavers are getting hot offensively during the right time of year. — Collin Wilson

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