Tennessee Basketball: Odds, Picks, Prediction vs. Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns

Today is Wednesday, March 15th, and officially “March Madness Eve” on Rocky Top.

Tennessee Basketball has finally landed in Orlando. They will look to knock off the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns in round one of the NCAA Tournament tomorrow at 9:40 pm. If the Volunteers win in round 1, they will take on the Duke and Oral Roberts winner. Let’s dive into the betting odds, picks, and my predictions for the game against Louisiana.

Tennessee Basketball Trends and Data Analysis

NCAA Tournament historical data of No. 4 seeds:

All historical data and information Is according to BracketResearch.com

The 4-seeds might be the trickiest to pick. One will likely lose in the first round, but 3 of the last 11 Final 4’s included a 4-seed.

Overall Performance:

117 (of 148) 4-seeds advanced to the Second round

Performance Over the Last 10 Tournaments

32 (of 40) went to the Second round

Bracket Performance History and Advice:

First Round: One of the 4-seeds will likely lose in the First Round. It’s not a foregone conclusion, however – all four 4-seeds have advanced to the Second Round 11 times (in 37 tournaments). 2014’s Tournament was the first to see all four 4-seeds reach the Sweet 16. They were UCLA, San Diego St, Michigan St, and Louisville.

Tennessee Basketball Round 1 History:

Round of 64: (17-7)

Tennessee basketball has won 17 and only lost 7 times in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. In the 7 games that they lost in the first round, the Vols were seeded as the following:

2020-2021: 5 seed

2008-2009: 9 seed

2000-2001: 8 seed

1997-1998: 8 seed

1988-1989: 10 seed

1975-1976: N/R

1976-1977: N/R

Data Analysis:

Vs. Louisiana: This matchup will be between similar offenses but drastically different defenses. Louisiana ranks 57th in AdjO (adjusted offensive efficiency), and Tennessee ranks 49th, according to KenPom. While this may seem similar, it’s not so similar on the defensive side. Tennessee basketball ranks 2nd in the country, and Louisiana ranks 146th according to KenPom’s AdjD (adjusted defensive efficiency). It’s also important to note that Louisiana’s strength of schedule was the polar opposite of the Volunteers’.

Tennessee basketball vs. Louisana betting prediction.

Pick(s): Tennessee Volunteers Alternate Spread: -14.5 (+135) on FanDuel. I would also take the original spread at -11.5 (-110) on FanDuel.

I predict that the Vols will win by 15 or more and welcome the Ragin’ Cajuns to what SEC basketball is. This game will get ugly quickly, and I think people seriously doubt the talent and coaching of this veteran Tennessee basketball team.