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2017 March Madness Sweet 16 – Florida Gators vs. Wisconsin Badgers Predictions, Picks and NCAA Basketball Betting Preview

2017 March Madness Sweet 16 – Florida Gators vs. Wisconsin Badgers Predictions, Picks and NCAA Basketball Betting Preview

No. 4 Florida vs. No. 8 Wisconsin Preview

Where: Madison Square Garden, New York

When: Friday, March 24, 9:59 PM ET

Line: Florida Gators (-2) vs. Wisconsin Badgers (+2); total: 131.5 – view all NCAAB lines

TV Broadcast: TBS

College Basketball News and Previews

Betting on the Florida Gators (-2)

Fresh off putting up a defensive clinic, the Gators head to Big Apple for the Sweet 16 round with boosted confidence.

Florida took down Virginia in the second round, where they taught the Hoos a couple of things about defense, limiting Tony Bennett’s squad to only 29.6 percent shooting from the field in a low-scoring but lopsided 65-39 victory on Saturday.

Teams in the SEC shouldn’t be surprised at how hard it was for Virginia to find the basket against Florida. After all, the Gators are 37th in the nation in scoring defense, allowing just 65.7 points per game, and third in KenPom’s adjusted defensive efficiency.

Wisconsin carries a bigger punch on offense than the Cavaliers, but the Gators have shown in the past that they could quiet a more offensive-centered team, when they beat Kentucky 88-66 back in the regular season.

Florida’s offense isn’t something to scoff at too. The Gators have shot at least 46% in their past two games of the tourney. They could also still be feeling it from the outside after going 8-for-21 from beyond the arc against Virginia.

Florida is 8-0 ATS in its last eight games when it was favored by two points or fewer.

Betting on the Wisconsin Badgers (+2)

It doesn’t make sense for Wisconsin not to live for the fun of March.

With Nigel Hayes spearheading the team, the eighth seed Badgers put an L on Villanova’s forehead in the second round, scoring 19 points—including the game winner—in a 65-62 victory.

Hayes has been the Badgers’ sharpest tool in the shed, as somebody must have told the senior to step it up in the postseason, where he is averaging 15.4 points, 9.6 rebounds and 1.8 assists in five games dating back to the Big Ten Tournament.

Prior to playing the hero in the Villanova game, Hayes churned out 16 points in Wisconsin’s 84-74 win over Virginia Tech in the first round.

The Sweet 16 round is a cool place but the Badgers know it’ll just get tougher moving forward, thus the increased pressure on Hayes. Hayes, however, could use a little fuel from his teammates like Ethan Happ and Bronson Koenig.

Happ needs to put up a good show, considering how much focus the Gators might spend on stopping Hayes. Happ had a solid all-around game against ‘Nova, posting 12 points, eight boards, three assists, two steals, and two blocks.

Koenig is shooting so well of late. He scored 28 points with eight threes against the Hokies and unloaded 17 point on 7-for-11 shooting from the floor against the Wildcats.

Wisconsin is 5-1 ATS in its last six games overall.

Writer’s Prediction

Wisconsin (+2) takes down Florida, 64-61.

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Written by Rex

Sports Betting Tips, News, and Analysis