NCAA March Madness: Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Islanders vs. Southeast Missouri State Redhawks betting preview, odds and predictions
In a First Four matchup in the South region of the NCAA Tournament, the Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Islanders take on the Southeast Missouri State Redhawks to find out who will face the top-seeded Alabama Crimson Tide on Thursday, March 16th. All tournament long, VSiN will be providing you with March Madness betting odds, in-depth team analysis and expert college basketball picks. Make us your one-stop shop for all of your betting needs.
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How to watch Texas A&M-Corpus Christi vs. Southeast Missouri State
When: Tuesday, 6:40 p.m. ET
Where: Dayton, Ohio
Odds for Texas A&M-Corpus Christi vs. Southeast Missouri State
Spread: Texas A&M-Corpus Christi -4
(Odds accurate as of Sunday, March 12th at 11:00 p.m. ET)
Real-time betting splits at DraftKings Sportsbook
South Region No. 16 Seed Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Islanders
The Islanders head into March Madness after having won 12 of their last 13 games, so this will be a confident bunch. Trevian Tennyson is the player to keep an eye on here, as he’s a deadeye shooter and can get hot in a hurry — he had 28 points in a win on January 14th, which shows how electric he is. Tennyson is, however, the only truly dangerous player on this team, which could make Texas A&M-Corpus Christi somewhat easy to defend. And this team doesn’t exactly have an impressive statistical profile, so the Islanders will be exploitable on both ends of the floor.
South Region No. 16 Seed Southeast Missouri State Redhawks
This is the first time the Redhawks have been in the NCAA Tournament since back in 2000. This season has, however, signaled a change in culture for Southeast Missouri State, as it’s the first winning season in head coach Brad Korn’s three years with the program. Korn played under Bruce Weber and Matt Painter in his playing career at Southern Illinois, so this is a guy that has had good principles hammered into his mind for quite some time. The Redhawks aren’t particularly strong on either end of the floor, but they do play at an extremely fast pace. And Phillip Russell had a very good year as a scorer in the Ohio Valley Conference.
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi vs. Southeast Missouri State Matchup Analysis
It may help Texas A&M-CC that they just played in Dayton last year, so this format and the pressure of the First Four game will be familiar territory. For the Redhawks, this season marked just the second time since 2012 they had a winning record in conference play and a lot of it had to do with the OVC losing Belmont and Murray State.
Willis Wilson’s Islanders played in one of the 16 vs. 16 play-in games last season and lost 76-67 to Texas Southern, but this is clearly a much better team. Last year’s bunch only shot 31.8% from 3, while this year’s version is a 36.9% team on triple tries. This is also one of the nation’s top free throw shooting teams, which could be very important if this game plays according to expectation, since Texas A&M Corpus Christi is favored by 4 at most shops.
Southeast Missouri State’s run through the OVC Tournament was thoroughly impressive, especially when you consider that the Redhawks lost five of their final seven regular season games. When you’re running hot, you’d like to keep playing, but SEMO State will have gone 10 days between games when this play-in game tips off.
As much as the layoff might hurt the underdog, it probably won’t hurt as much as the loss of Terrion Murdix for Texas A&M-CC. Murdix led the team with 5.6 assists per game and chipped in 13.4 points per contest. Not only was he the floor general, but he was also the team’s leading theft man with 2.3 steals per game.
Without Murdix, the task becomes harder for the Islanders, but his absence has already been priced into the line. They’ll just need more from double-double machine Isaac Mushila and leading scorer Trevian Tennyson. Meanwhile, SEMO State needs to keep up their recent offensive surge, as they scored at least 1.008 points per possession in each of their last eight games.
Watch for the Redhawks to push the pace in this game. They’ve played at a top-15 tempo most of the season and it would make sense for them to speed up the Islanders with Murdix out of the lineup. Also watch for SEMO State to fire up a lot of 3s. Nearly 40% of their shots were 3-point attempts and over 41% of the shots against Texas A&M-CC were 3s.
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