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Seton Hall vs St John’s Odds and Picks (Jan. 22)

Blair Johnson

by Blair Johnson in College Basketball

Jan 22, 2022 · 12:01 AM PST

Seton Hall head coach
Seton Hall head coach Kevin Willard talks to his team during a timeout against Butler in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Indianapolis, Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2022. Seton Hall won 71-56. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)
  • Seton Hall takes on St. John’s on Saturday, January 22nd, at 12:00 pm ET in New York City
  • The Pirates are coming off a 73-72 road loss against Marquette on Saturday, while the Red Storm lost to Creighton 87-64 in Omaha Wednesday
  • See the current moneyline, point spread, and game total, plus predictions

The Seton Hall Pirates (11-5, 2-4 Big East) — who are unranked for the first time in two months — take on the St. John’s Red Storm (10-6, 2-3 Big East) Saturday at Madison Square Garden. Tip off is at 12:00 pm ET on FS1.

Seton Hall enters the contest as slight favorites according to oddsmakers and KenPom predicts the Pirates will win 81-77.

Seton Hall vs St. John’s Odds

Team Moneyline Spread Total
Seton Hall TBD -2.5 (-110) O 156 (-110)
St. John’s TBD +2.5 (-110) U 156 (-110)

Odds as of January 21st, 2022  at BetMGM

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Kevin Willard’s team had an overwhelming 47-26 rebounding advantage in the heartbreaking, one-point loss to the Golden Eagles — but couldn’t overcome 20 turnovers. The Bucs had a chance for a miraculous victory, but a late inbounds pass from Alexis Yetna went about 25 feet and slipped through the grasp of Tyrese Samuel before a Marquette player grabbed it and that was that.

Meantime, Mike Anderson’s club allowed the Bluejays to score a season-high 49 points in the first half of a 23-point blowout. Johnnies leading scorer Julian Champagnie was held four points below his average with17 points. Aaron Wheeler contributed 16, while Dylan Addae -Wusu finished with 10 points, eight assists and seven rebounds.

Bounce-Back Bucs

In the final seconds of the game against the Golden Eagles, senior guard Bryce Aiken was whistled for a foul on Marquette’s Greg Elliott — even though Elliott appeared to elbow Aiken in the nose on the play. Elliott made 1-of-2 free throws and Marquette escaped with the victory despite a season-high 28 points from Aiken. Now, can the Bucs bounce back against the Red Storm on the road?

Following the bitter defeat, Seton Hall fell out of the top-25 and has had essentially a bye week to regroup and get back into rhythm. Backcourt mates Jared Rhoden (16.6 ppg) and Aiken (14.5 ppg) lead the team in scoring, with no other players in double-figures.

Well-respected coaches like Rick Pitino and Chris Bears have said this Bucs team has Final Four potential. But after a 9-1 start, the Pirates have gone 2-4. They lost back-to-back games to Big East heavyweights Providence and Villanova, playing without big men Ike Obiagu and Tyrese Samuel. But last week’s pair of losses to DePaul and Marquette were with a full complement of players.

This team is balanced (29th in offensive adjusted efficiency and 43rd in defensive adjusted efficiency). But it needs to get back on track after losing four of its last six.

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I Saw Red

St. John’s reverted back to the poor play it demonstrated during the non-conference schedule against Creighton on Wednesday. Following the ugly loss — which saw Creighton go 14-of27 (51.9%) from distance and outrebound the Johnnies 50-31 —  the Red Storm dropped to 0-5 in Quad 1 games.

Like Seton Hall, St. John’s is in a position to rebound Saturday. Johnnies star Champagnie, who averages over 21 points a contest, missed 14-of-21 shots. He’s certainly capable of taking over a game (going for a season-high 34 in victory over DePaul and 32 in defeat against Indiana earlier this season). But a desperate Seton Hall crew figures to put the defensive clamps down on him, leaving it up to Anderson’s role players to come through.

The Red Storm are quick — possessing the 6th-rated adjusted tempo and 3rd-rated average possession length in college hoops. But whether or not that speed will translate to a win at MSG remains to be seen.

Seton Hall vs St John’s Pick

For a team with NCAA Tournament hopes entering the season,  it’s getting down to crunch time for the Johnnies. Opportunities like the one Saturday are becoming few and far between.

However, the same could be said for Seton Hall. I expect the Bucs to neutralize Champagnie and get the winning feeling back.

Pick: Seton Hall -2.5 (-110)

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