The 2023 NCAA Tournament First Round begins on Thursday, March 16 with an interesting 8 vs. 9 seed matchup between the Maryland Terrapins and West Virginia Mountaineers. Tip-off from Birmingham, Alabama is scheduled for 12:15 p.m. ET, and it airs on CBS.
Let’s break down the Maryland vs. West Virginia picks and predictions while looking at the odds at DraftKings Sportsbook.
No. 8 Maryland vs. No. 9 West Virginia picks
Spread: West Virginia -2
Moneyline: WVU -130/Maryland +110
These are two evenly-matched teams on paper, which is what you’d expect from a No. 8 vs. No. 9 game in the NCAA Tournament. However, a closer look reveals a potential weakness on the Maryland side: the Terrapins were 16-1 at home and 5-11 away from College Park (road and neutral) this season. Three of those wins came against some of the worst Power 5 teams in college basketball — Louisville and Minnesota.
Meanwhile, West Virginia is heating up at the right time with five wins in its last seven tries. That includes a narrow 76-74 loss at Kansas that the Mountaineers could’ve won. West Virginia is a long team that could give Maryland problems, and those woes away from College Park could rear their ugly head.
Pick: West Virginia -2