Mar. 20 4:30 p.m. ET – West Region
No. 11 Drake vs. No. 6 USC (-6) O/U: 135½
|Teams||Spread||Money Line||Total Points|
|Drake||+6 (-110)||+215||O 135½ (-110)|
|USC||-6 (-110)||-265||U 135½ (-110)|
The 26-4 Bulldogs take on the 22-7 Trojans on Saturday afternoon at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. Drake overcame a double-digit second-half deficit on Tuesday night against Wichita State in the First Four to squeak out a 53-52 win and advance into the round of 64. The Trojans lost by two to Colorado in the Pac-12 semifinals last week.
The Bulldogs’ best player for the first half of the season was forward ShanQuan Hemphill, who broke his foot on Feb. 10 and returned for the first time on Tuesday night, logging only 10 minutes and scoring just three points. Based on his limited return, it is safe to assume that he is far from 100 percent, so a large portion of the workload will fall on guard Joseph Yesufu, who scored 21 points against the Shockers in the First Four contest. Yesufu has been fantastic in the second half of the year after Drake lost starting point guard Roman Penn for the season.
The best player on the floor in this one will be forward Evan Mobley in the cardinal and gold for USC. Mobley is the best NBA prospect in the entire country not named Cade Cunningham. Mobley leads the Trojans with 16.8 points and 8.6 rebounds per game. The Bulldogs have no one to match up with Mobley, especially if Hemphill is still operating below 100 percent in limited minutes. The USC forward averaged 26 points and nine rebounds in the Pac-12 tournament and is ready to show the entire country how dominant he has been on the West Coast this season.
*Odds courtesy of MyBookie