Purdue Boilermakers vs. Virginia Cavaliers Free Pick - Odds Analysis

March 30, 8:49 PM EDT

Betting Odds

Point Spread: 
Virginia -4

Purdue hasn't made the NCAA Final Four since 1980. Virginia hasn't done it since 1984. But they'll meet with a Final Four berth on the line in the NCAA tournament South regional final Saturday night in Louisville (8:49 pm ET, TBS). The Cavaliers are short favorites for this bout, but the Boilermaker just pulled one short upset. Who do we like for our free NCAA tournament pick here?

The Line

NCAA tournament betting odds opened Virginia at -4.5 over Purdue, with an over/under of 127. Early betting action dipped that total to 126.

Bettors thinking the Boilers might win this game outright could get around +165 on the college basketball betting money line.

Boilers-Cavs Betting Preview

No. 3 seed Purdue (26-9 SU, 20-14 ATS) reached this regional final by outlasting No. 2 seed Tennessee Thursday night 99-94 in overtime. The Boilers led that game by a dozen at the half and by 18 with 16 minutes to go, but blew that lead and trailed by a bucket with two seconds left. Purdue then got a fortunate foul call, hit two free throws to tie the game, then won it in OT.

On the night the Boilermakers shot a hot 54 percent from the floor, which included a 15-for-31 performance from 3-point land. But they also allowed Tennessee to shoot 50 percent from the floor.

Maybe that's why that game cruised over its total of 147.

Purdue is now 17-3 SU, 13-6-1 ATS over its last 20 games.

No. 1 seed Virginia (32-3 SU, 24-11 ATS) reached this regional final with a 53-49 victory over No. 12 seed Oregon Thursday. The Cavs led that game by eight at the half, fell down by three with five minutes to go but ended the game with an 11-4 run for the win.

Unfortunately, Virginia came up a couple buckets short of covering at -8.

On the night the Cavs shot just 36 percent from the floor but held the Ducks to 38 percent shooting.

So UVA is 12-1 SU, 8-5 ATS over its last 12 games.

These teams last met back in 2006, a 61-59 Purdue victory. But that's already a long time ago.

NCAA Tournament Betting Trends

  • Purdue is now 11-7 SU, 9-9 ATS this season against teams that made this NCAA tournament.
  • The Boilers are also 3-2 ATS this season as underdogs.
  • Virginia is now 13-3 SU, 10-6 ATS this season against teams that made this Big Dance.
  • The Cavaliers are also now 9-4 ATS this season when favored by single digits.
  • The Big Ten is now 10-5 both SU and ATS so far this NCAA tournament, excluding Michigan State's victory over Minnesota last weekend.
  • The ACC is now 11-3 SU but only 5-9 ATS so far in this NCAA tournament.

Totals Report

The overs are 19-16 in Boilers games this season, which are averaging 144 total points.

The unders are 20-15 in Cavaliers games this season, which are averaging 126 points.

Purdue vs. Virginia Prediction ATS

Purdue shot 54 percent Thursday night; we don't believe the Boilers will repeat that performance Saturday. Virginia, meanwhile, shot just 36 percent Thursday; we're betting the Wahoos shoot a little better than that Saturday. We like Virginia here, minus the points.   

Free Pick: 
Take Virginia -4