We're back with another installment of our March Madness Elite Eight odds and pick series, with this game coming in the South Region. The 6-seed Creighton Blue Jays (24-12) will take on the 5-seed San Diego State Aztecs (30-6). Don't miss this crucial tournament game as both teams come off of huge Sweet Sixteen wins. Check out our March Madness odds series for our Creighton-San Diego State prediction and pick.
The Creighton Blue Jays find themselves in the Elite Eight after beating NC State, Baylor, and Princeton. They'll have a huge task ahead of them as their opponents are coming off an upset over 1-seed Alabama. If the Blue Jays can get this win, they'll advance to the Final Four as solid candidates to make the championship game. They're in peak form right now and have won all their tournament games by at least nine points. Look for them to be hungry against the Aztecs.
The San Diego State Aztecs are in this game after advancing against Charleston, Furman, and 1-see Alabama. The Aztecs are one of the older, more experienced teams of the tournament and have been getting it done behind the inspired play of their defense. They were able to comeback in the second half to beat Alabama and have played with a ton of resolve in tough situations this year. Look for them to lock up defensively against the Blue Jays as they try to punch their ticket to the Final Four.
Here are the Creighton-San Diego State March Madness odds, courtesy of FanDuel.
March Madness Odds: Creighton-San Diego State Elite Eight Odds
Creighton: -2.5 (-115)
San Diego State: +2.5 (-105)
Over: 134.5 (-112)
Under: 134.5 (-108)
How To Watch Creighton vs. San Diego State
Stream: March Madness Live, fuboTV
Time: 2:20 p.m. ET/11:20 a.m. PT
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Why Creighton Could Cover The Spread
Creighton has been getting it done during this tournament behind their high percentage shots and ability to get hot from shooting range. Ryan Kalkbrenner shined down low with his mismatch against Princeton and managed 22 points on 9/12 shooting. The Blue Jays managed to shoot over 58% from the field while turning the ball over 13 times. Moving forward, they can't afford to have as many turnovers against the Aztecs, as SDSU plays very well in transition and can capitalize off of missed shots. If the Blue Jays can get out to a short lead in this one, they'll have a great chance to finish the game as they haven't allowed teams to get back into games.
They'll be able to win this game if they can stick to their fundamentals and play their game. They'll have to be the better rebounding team in this one as they're bound to miss some shots against this San Diego State defense. If the Blue Jays can continue to work their offense down low through Kalkbrenner, they should be able to pick up some fouls down low and get big opportunities from the charity stripe. With a spread this close, made free throws could be the difference as Creighton shoots 76% from the line as a team.
Why San Diego State Could Cover The Spread
San Diego State made a huge impression on people after beating No. 1 Alabama. The Crimson Tide looked like favorites to win the entire tournament and being the last 1-seed left, may have overlooked how tough this Aztecs team is. In that game, the Aztecs shined with their defense as they created 14 turnovers for Alabama and held them to just 11% shooting from beyond the arc. Following a nine-point lead by the Crimson Tide with 11:30 left in the game, the Aztecs dug deep and returned to their style of play. They were able to turn the tide and flip the momentum in the closing 10 minutes of the game. Their coach Brian Dutcher believes if his Aztecs can block out the noise and play their style of ball, they can beat any team in the country.
To win this game, San Diego State will once again have to play as a unit defensively and cause the Creighton shooters to become frustrated. Since the Aztecs are so good defensively along the perimeter, they have a real good shot to hold the Blue Jays to a bad shooting performance. If they find themselves out in front early, it could force the Blue Jays to abandon their game plan and begin hoisting threes to try and keep it close. The Aztecs will have to work together to box out Ryan Kalkbrenner and will win this game if they can dominate the glass.
Final Creighton-San Diego State Prediction & Pick
Many believe that the Blue Jays are one of the more complete teams of this tourney and have a real shot to win the whole thing. Their win against Alabama was perhaps the most impressive in the tournament, but the Aztecs won't be able to rely on another terrible shooting night from their opponents. I think the shooting will be the difference here as Creighton continues to find their stroke. This game should be a staunch defensive battle, but for the prediction, let's go with the Creighton Blue Jays to cover the short spread in a thrilling Final Four tilt.
Final Creighton-San Diego State Prediction & Pick: Creighton Blue Jays -2.5 (-115)