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Southland Conference Tournament Schedule, Odds and Picks 2023

Jack Magruder

by Jack Magruder in College Basketball

Mar 4, 2023 · 3:54 AM PST

Northwestern State Demons guard Demarcus Sharp
Nov 14, 2022; Fort Worth, Texas, USA; Northwestern State Demons guard Demarcus Sharp (0) celebrates after the win against the TCU Horned Frogs at Ed and Rae Schollmaier Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
  • The Southland Conference Tournament will be played March 5-8 at the Legacy Center in Lake Charles, Louisiana
  • The top eight teams in the 10-team league qualified, and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and Northwestern State received double byes into the semifinals
  • Read below for the Southland Conference Tournament odds, bracket, schedule, and picks

The Southland Conference tournament will be played March 5-8 at the Legacy Center in Lake Charles, La. after a 15-year run at the  Merrill Center in Katy, Texas. The championship game will be televised at 5 pm ET March 8 on ESPN2.

Here are the opening odds from FanDuel.

2023 Southland Conference Tournament Odds

Team Odds
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Islanders +125
Northwestern State Demons +175
Nicholls State Colonels +600
Southeastern Louisiana Lions +650
McNeese State Cowboys +3100
Texas A&M-Commerce Lions +5000
New Orleans Privateers +7500
Houston Christian Huskies +9500

Top two regular-season finishers Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and Northwestern State are the top choices to win the Southland tournament. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi won the only meeting between the two this season, an 83-75 home victory Feb. 25 that all but clinched the regular-season title.


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Odds from FanDuel Sportsbook on March 3.

In the Southland’s tiered tournament format, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and Northwestern State received double-byes into the semifinals and third- and fourth-place finishers Northeastern Louisiana and Nicholls received byes into the quarterfinals. Eight of the league’s 10 teams qualified. The tournament winner will receive an automatic berth in the NCAA Tournament in a league that will not get an at-large bid.

Southland Tournament Schedule

No. 5 seed Texas A&M-Commerce will play No. 8 seed McNeese State and No. 6 seed Houston Christian will play No. 7 seed New Orleans in opening-round games Sunday night. Both will be televised by ESPN+. McNeese State, which won a tiebreaker with Incarnate Word to make the tournament field, plays its home game at the Legacy Center.

No. 4 seed Nicholls State will play the winner of the McNeese State-Texas A&M Commerce game and No. 3 seed Northeastern Louisiana will play the winner of the New Orleans-Houston Christian game in the  quarterfinals Monday night, both games again on ESPN+.

No. 1 seed Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and No. 2 seed Northwestern State will play their first games in the semifinals Tuesday night. The Islanders’ game will be televised on ESPN2 at 7:30 pm ET, and the Northwestern State game will be on ESPN+ at approximately 10 pm. The championship game is Wednesday at 5 pm ET on ESPN2.

Defending Champs Back in Full

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi returned all five starters from a group that won the 2022 tournament as the fourth seed The Islanders beat No. 1 seed Nicholls State 71-64 in the semifinals and No. 2 seed Southeastern Louisiana 73-65 in the finals. The Islanders are 10-1 SU and 8-2-1 ATS since losing three of their first four league games.

Senior point guard Terrion Murdix, who is averaging 13.7 points and 5.6 assists this season, had 26 points, 14 rebounds and two assists in the Islanders’ victories the 2022 tournament semifinals and finals. Guard Trey Tennyson (15.8 points) and 6’5″ forward Isaac Mushila (14.9 points, 9.8 rebounds) are the other double-digit scorers.

Northwestern State Plays Up

The Demons played the most aggressive nonconference schedule and have the league’s best victory this season, a 64-63 win at TCU on Nov. 14, the Southland’s only Quad 1 win. Senior guard 6’3″ Demarcus Sharp had 19 points and the winning basket when the Demons overcame a 12-point deficit to beat TCU. Sharp (18.7 points) leads the Southland in scoring and has had games of 40, 35 and 34 points.

The rest of the league was 0-14 against the AP Top 25. Northwestern State and Texas A&M-Commerce have the league’s only Quad 2 wins.

2023 Southland Tournament Prediction

Northwestern State is 18-11-1 ATS this season, second-best in the league, although linemakers adjusted during the Demons’ current 11-2 run, in which they are 6-6-1 ATS. The Islanders are 15-12 ATS. No 3 seed Southeastern Louisiana split with the Islanders but lost both games against likely semifinal opponent Northwestern State.

The tiered bracket makes it easier for Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and Northwestern to meet in the championship game so soon after their  regular-season meeting in Corpus Christi, since each needs only one victory for the rematch. That sets up a nice revenge scenario for the Demons, who were with one point with under four minutes remaining the first time. Sharp had 40 points in that one and Mushila had 28/8. The difference was distance shooting — Corpus Christi was 8 of 18 from deep, Northwestern was 2 of 15.

  • Pick: Northwestern State +175


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