Memphis-Saint Louis Preview: Analysis, Prediction, Date and TV Tip Time, Point Spread, and Tickets

There are 32 games on Thursday and Friday, one of the most exciting 48-hour segments on the sports calendar.

We won’t be able to get individual previews up for every game, but we’ll cherry pick some of the more compelling matchups during the tournament’s “second” round.

In this post, we preview the 8-9 matchup in the West Region between a Memphis team that everyone thinks was under-seeded and a Saint Louis team lead by Rick Majerus that few folks know much about.

Memphis-Saint Louis Game Info

  • Seeds & Region: #8 Memphis v #9 Saint Louis in West Region
  • Memphis-Saint Louis Date: Friday, March 16th
  • Memphis-Saint Louis Tip Time: 6:50 ET
  • Memphis-Saint Louis Location: Columbus
  • Memphis-Saint Louis TV: TBS
  • Memphis-Saint Louis Announcers: Tim Brando and Mike Gminski
  • Memphis-Saint Louis Point Spread: Memphis -3
  • Tickets: Memphis-Saint Louis Tickets
  • Tickets: All Columbus Sessions
  • Tickets: West Regional Tickets in Phoenix

Memphis-Saint Louis Analysis and Prediction

I felt the Tigers were under-seeded based on how well they have played of late, but that doesn’t necessarily mean this will be a blowout either.

The Billikens are one of the most efficient defensive teams in the country, with Top 50 rankings in multiple statistical categories.  However, Memphis appears to have a distinct advantage in free throw rate, where they rank among the Top 50 nationally compared to Saint Louis’ ranking just inside the Top 200.  Memphis sophomore Will Barton has been fantastic this season and will create matchup problems for Saint Louis as well.

On defense, the Tigers boast the 11th-best effective field goal percentage defense in the country, which should neutralize some of Saint Louis’ shooting ability.  The game will provide an interesting contrast in tempos, as the Billikens want to slow the game down and limit possessions, while Memphis wants to get out and run to take advantage of their superior athleticism.

In the end, I like the Tigers’ chances to advance and set up a terrific second round matchup against top-seeded Michigan State.

Predicted Winner: Memphis

will-barton-memphis-saint-louis-preview-prediction-point-spread-tv-tip-time-tickets

Will Barton has been terrific this year. Can he lead Memphis to a first round victory over Saint Louis? (Photo by Mark Weber via CommercialAppeal.com)

Memphis Tigers Team Capsule

  • Conference: Conference USA
  • Record: 26-8 (13-3 conf)
  • Last 10 Games: 9-1
  • Record vs. Tournament Teams: 3-6
  • Wins vs. Tournament Teams: Belmont, Southern Mississippi, Xavier
  • Losses vs. Tournament Teams: Georgetown (2), Louisville, Michigan, Murray State, Southern Mississippi
  • Player to Watch: Will Barton (6’6” G, So.) – 18.1 ppg, 8.1 rpg, 3.0 apg, 1.4 spg, 51.1 FG%

Memphis Bottoms Line:

The Tigers are playing as well as any team in the country heading into the Big Dance, as they steamrolled the competition in the conference tournament.  Their last 10 wins have all come by double-digits, and this is a team no one wants to see in their portion of the bracket.  Memphis ranks in the Top 20 in offensive and defensive efficiency, and they rate out well in multiple statistical categories, including block and steal percentage.

Will Barton has had a phenomenal season, hitting 56.6 percent of his two-pointers, grabbing nearly 20 percent of available defensive rebounds, and posting a strong free throw rate.  His length and versatility make him a matchup nightmare for virtually any opponent.

Big man Tarik Black makes 68.3 percent from the field and is expected to be ok after suffering an arm injury in the C-USA Championship.  Guards Joe Jackson and Chris Crawford both score at least nine points and dish out nearly four assists per game, with Crawford doubling as the team’s top three-point shooter.  Freshman Adonis Thomas returned from a knee injury to play in the Conference USA Tournament, so he would add even more depth to Josh Pastner’s already deep bench.

Saint Louis Billikens Team Capsule

  • Conference: Atlantic 10
  • Record: 25-7 (12-4 conf)
  • Last 10 Games: 8-2
  • Record vs. Tournament Teams: 4-3
  • Wins vs. Tournament Teams: Saint Bonaventure, Vermont, Xavier (2)
  • Losses vs. Tournament Teams: New Mexico, Temple, Xavier
  • Player to Watch: Kwamain Mitchell (G, Sr.) – 12.1 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 3.8 apg, 1.3 spg

Saint Louis Bottoms Line:

Rick Majerus is going back to the Big Dance with the Billikens, who finished just behind for the A-10 Title.  Saint Louis is particularly strong on the defensive end, where they rank in the Top 15 in adjusted efficiency.  They rank in the Top 50 in effective field goal percentage defense, turnover rate, and defensive rebounding percentage, and the only area where they struggle is their opponents’ free throw rate.

The Billikens aren’t too shabby on offense either, as they rank in the Top 40 for efficiency there as well.  They take great care of the basketball and shoot well as a team, which helps make up for the fact that they struggle to get to the line and corral offensive rebounds.

Forward Brian Conklin leads the team in scoring at 13.9 points per game and makes over 53 percent from the field, while also posting a strong free throw rate.  In the backcourt, Kwamain Mitchell averages over 12 points and leads the team in assists, and Mike McCall Jr. and Jordair Jett both score at least six points per game.  Forward Cody Ellis is the third double-digit scorer and can step out and knock down three-pointers to give the Billikens another offensive threat.

**********

Related: Jump to our West Region Bracket Breakdown.

See our other individual game previews and predictions:



About Andy Bottoms

While Andy was born and raised in Indiana, he would like to point out that he grew up shooting hoops in his driveway and not against the side of a barn like you see in all the March Madness promos or in the middle of a field like Jimmy Chitwood. Andy ranks among the top bracketologists according to the Bracket Matrix and has provided his projections to Fox Sports for the past three seasons. When not compiling excuses for missing work during the NCAA Tournament, Andy enjoys spending time with his wife and two daughters. He is a proud IU graduate and co-hosts The Assembly Call postgame show following every IU game. Twitter: @AndyBottoms

Comments

  1. Hello Web Admin, I noticed that your On-Page SEO is is missing a few factors, for one you do not use all three H tags in your post, also I notice that you are not using bold or italics properly in your SEO optimization. On-Page SEO means more now than ever since the new Google update: Panda. No longer are backlinks and simply pinging or sending out a RSS feed the key to getting Google PageRank or Alexa Rankings, You now NEED On-Page SEO. So what is good On-Page SEO?First your keyword must appear in the title.Then it must appear in the URL.You have to optimize your keyword and make sure that it has a nice keyword density of 3-5% in your article with relevant LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing). Then you should spread all H1,H2,H3 tags in your article.Your Keyword should appear in your first paragraph and in the last sentence of the page. You should have relevant usage of Bold and italics of your keyword.There should be one internal link to a page on your blog and you should have one image with an alt tag that has your keyword….wait there’s even more Now what if i told you there was a simple WordPress plugin that does all the On-Page SEO, and automatically for you? That’s right AUTOMATICALLY, just watch this 4minute video for more information at. Seo Plugin

  2. Woah! I’m really enjoying the template/theme of this website.
    It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s tough to
    get that “perfect balance” between superb usability and visual appeal.
    I must say you’ve done a very good job with this.
    In addition, the blog loads very quick for me on Chrome.
    Exceptional Blog!

  3. My spouse and I stumbled over here coming from a different website
    and thought I might as well check things out.
    I like what I see so now i’m following you.
    Look forward to going over your web page yet again.

  4. I was suggested this web site through my cousin. I am not certain whether
    or not this publish is written by means of him as nobody else
    recognise such distinctive about my problem. You’re wonderful!
    Thanks!

  5. I know this site presents quality based articles
    and other stuff, is there any other website which gives
    such things in quality?

  6. Hi there, for all time i used to check blog posts here early in the dawn, since
    i like to gain knowledge of more and more.

  7. I have been browsing on-line greater than 3 hours nowadays, but I never
    discovered any attention-grabbing article like yours. It’s
    pretty worth enough for me. In my view, if all website owners and bloggers made excellent content material as you probably did,
    the net shall be much more helpful than ever before.

  8. It’s really a great and helpful piece of information.
    I’m satisfied that you just shared this useful information with us.
    Please stay us informed like this. Thank you for sharing.

  9. I am genuinely thankful to the holder of this website who has shared this impressive piece of writing at at this
    place.

  10. Hello, yeah this article is truly pleasant and I have learned lot of things from it about blogging.
    thanks.

  11. Thanks , I have recently been looking for information approximately this topic for a long time and yours is the best I
    have found out so far. However, what about the conclusion? Are you certain in regards to
    the source? Gamefly 3 month free trial

  12. I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here.
    The sketch is tasteful, your authored material stylish.
    nonetheless, you command get got an nervousness over that you
    wish be delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come more formerly again since
    exactly the same nearly very often inside case you shield this hike.
    Gamefly 3 month free trial

  13. Yes! Finally someone writes about quest bar protein bars.

  14. Thank you for the good writeup. It in fact was a amusement account it.
    Look advanced to far added agreeable from you! By the way, how could we communicate?

  15. Pretty! This was an incredibly wonderful article.
    Many thanks for providing this info.

  16. I love your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you create this website yourself or did
    you hire someone to do it for you? Plz respond as I’m looking to design my own blog and
    would like to know where u got this from. thank you

Speak Your Mind