App State vs South Alabama Odds, Lines & Picks (Mar. 2)
- The Appalachian State vs South Alabama odds favor South Alabama by 3.5 points in the second round of the Sun Belt Tournament on Thursday
- The Jaguars crushed the Mountaineers 74-57 in their lone meeting this season
- Check out the Appalachian State vs South Alabama odds and predictions below
The Sun Belt Tournament continues on Thursday, as Appalachian State and South Alabama enter the mix. The two programs finished tied for seventh in the regular season standings, and while their 9-9 conference records were underwhelming, it was enough to earn a first round bye.
The Jaguars actually showed great form down the stretch and are drawing lots of action as a dark horse to win this tournament. Online sportsbooks are bullish on them to handle the Mountaineers in the second round, as they opened South Alabama as the chalk in Thursday’s college basketball odds.
Appalachian State vs South Alabama Odds
|App State Mountaineers||+3.5 (-110)||OFF||O 130 (-110)|
|South Alabama Jaguars||-3.5 (-110)||OFF||U 130 (-110)|
South Alabama is currently a 3.5-point favorite, in a contest with a total of 130. Tip-off is scheduled for 12:30 pm ET at the Pensacola Bay Center, in Pensacola, FL, with ESPN+ providing streaming coverage.
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Odds as of March 1 at DraftKings Sportsbook.
Appalachian State vs South Alabama Betting Trends
The Jaguars closed the regular season on fire. They won eight of their final 10 contests, racking up a plethora of double-digit wins along the way. Six of their final eight victories were by 17 or more points, including a 74-57 thumping of this same Mountaineers team back on February 11th.
South Alabama shot a blistering 59% from the field and 41% from three, while holding App State to a 37% field goal percentage. Strong offensive performances were a common trend for the Jags down the stretch, as they put up at least 74 points in seven of their last 10.
The Jags are on 🔥🔥 heading into tournament play😤#BurnTheBoats🔥🚤 pic.twitter.com/uBLxJvg6Bx
— South Alabama Basketball 🏀 (@SouthAlabamaMBB) March 1, 2023
They ranked third in the Sun Belt in field goal percentage and three-point efficiency this season. Isaiah Moore leads the offense with 18.5 points per game, while Kevin Samuel is an absolute force down low. The 7-footer averages 10 points and nine boards per outing, to go along with 2.5 blocks.
As good as their offense was over the final month, their defense was even better. South Alabama held six of its final 10 opponents, including the Mountaineers, below 63 points. They led the conference in scoring defense this season, while finishing fourth in opponent field goal percentage.
Appalachian State meanwhile, boasts the Sun Belt’s second best scoring defense. No wonder this game’s total is so low. Also contributing to that is the Mountaineer’s underwhelming offense.
Rocket block 🚀🖐️#TakeTheStairs pic.twitter.com/IZ3aWXkjhE
— App State Basketball (@AppStateMBB) February 25, 2023
Appalachian State ranked 10th in the conference this season in points per game, and ninth in field goal percentage. No player on the roster averages more than 12 points, while each of their top-five scorers shoot less than 47% from the field.
The poor offense led to a pretty inconsistent season for the Mountaineers, and rough finishing stretch. They dropped five of their final eight games overall, losing by 9 or more points on four separate occasions.
Appalachian State vs South Alabama Predictions
Appalachian State beat up on lesser teams this season and struggled nearly every time they played a higher ranked program. The Mountaineers beat just three teams all season with a better ranking. The Jaguars are by no means a contender in the NCAA Tournament odds, but they do grade out 75 spots higher than App State per KenPom’s efficiency metrics.
Speaking of KenPom, their simulation likes South Alabama to cover the spread on Thursday and I’m inclined to agree. The Jags covered in eight of their final 10 outings, including in all six games during that stretch where they were favored.
Appalachian State vs South Alabama Head-to-Head
|65.8||Points per Game||69.6|
|66.1||Points Against per Game||65.9|
|47.6%||Opponent Effective FG%||46.8%|
South Alabama had an average cover margin of 10.7 over their final six contests and has owned the head-to-head series with Appalachian State. The Jags are 13-5 all-time versus the Mountaineers since the two started playing regularly in 2015.
Pick: South Alabama -3.5 (-110)
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