The NCAA Tournament begins on Tuesday, March 14th with the First Four, and then moves on to the First Round on Thursday, March 16 and Friday, March 17. The No. 4 seed Virginia will face the No. 13 seed Furman on Thursday, March 16.
Here’s an early look at what we can expect from the matchup.
Once odds from DraftKings Sportsbook are made available for this game, we’ll add that information below. We’ll also add the game time and TV channel once it’s settled.
Game date: Thursday, March 16
Game time: 12:40 p.m. ET
TV channel: truTV
Location: Orlando, Florida
Odds: UVA -5.5
No. 4 Virginia
One of the best defensive teams in the country, the Cavaliers earned a share of the ACC regular season title with Miami. Reece Beekman serves as the heart and soul for Virginia’s team, as the ACC Defensive Player of the Year averaged 9.3 points per game and 5.3 assists per game this season.
The Cavaliers leading scorer is Armaan Franklin (12.6 points per game), a two-way guard who has some range in his game, while forward Jayden Gardner (11.8 PPG) and Kihei Clark (11.1 PPG) also average double figures. Clark joined Beekman on the ACC’s all-defensive team as well.
Record: 25-7, 15-5 ACC
Coach: Tony Bennett
KenPom overall: 34
KenPom adjusted offensive efficiency: 74
KenPom adjusted defensive efficiency: 25
PPP overall: 1.060
Leading scorer: Armaan Franklin
Quad 1 record: 5-5
Against The Spread: 12-18-2
Over Total: 16-16-0
Odds to win NCAA Championship: +4000
No. 13 Furman
The Paladins rolled through the Southern Conference Tournament and knocked off the Chattanooga Mocs, 88-79, in the title game to clinch a spot in the NCAA Tournament. Furman is back in the Big Dance for the first time since the 1979-80 season. The Paladins entered as the conference’s No. 1 seed and will head into March Madness on a six-game winning streak.
Furman is a dangerous offensive team, but defense is where the Paladins have issues. Mike Bothwell was the conference’s leading scorer with 18 points per game, and Furman led the conference with 82.1 points per game with the best field goal percentage (48.3%). Senior Jalen Slawson is a real threat on the boards with 7.1 rebounds per game to go along with 15.7 points and 1.6 blocks.
Record: 24-7, 15-3 SoCon
Coach: Bob Richey
KenPom overall: 89
KenPom adjusted offensive efficiency: 32
KenPom adjusted defensive efficiency: 183
PPP overall: 1.137
Leading scorer: Mike Bothwell
Quad 1 record: 0-2
Against The Spread: 18-13-0
Over Total: 17-14-0