We return with our second installment of today's March Madness Elite Eight odds, prediction, and pick series from the NCAA Tournament's West Region. The 5-seed Miami Hurricanes (28-7) will square off against the 2-seed Texas Longhorns (29-8). With a short spread, this is shaping up to be an instant classic! Check out our March Madness odds series for our Miami-Texas prediction and pick.
The Miami Hurricanes have advanced to the Elite Eight after having toppled Drake, Indiana, and the top seed in their region, Houston. Riding a huge wave of momentum for both the men's and women's basketball teams, the Hurricanes have found their confidence in this tournament and are ready to prove a lot of critics wrong. They were a darkhorse team to make it to this point and will be trying to advance to their first Final Four in school history.
The Texas Longhorns have a chance to advance to the Final Four after tournament wins against Colgate, Penn State, and Xavier. Ranked a 2-seed, the Longhorns are the highest-seeded team remaining in this tournament and have the second-highest odds to win the championship at +400 behind UConn (+100). They've been able to overcome adversity all year and will hope to lead their interim head coach, Rodney Terry, to his first Final Four appearance and the school's first berth in 20 years. They'll be met by a fearless Miami team as the slight favorites.
Here are the Miami-Texas March Madness odds, courtesy of FanDuel.
March Madness Odds: Miami-Texas Odds
Miami: +3.5 (-104)
Texas: -3.5 (-118)
Over: 149.5 (-105)
Under: 149.5 (-115)
How To Watch Miami vs. Texas
Stream: March Madness Live, fuboTV
Time: 5:05 p.m. ET / 2:05 p.m. PT
*Watch college basketball LIVE with fuboTV (click for a free trial)*
Why Miami Could Cover The Spread
Miami has been able to find success in this tournament with their endless scoring options on the offensive end. They overcame a halftime deficit against Drake with 24 points from Nijel Pack. In their game against Indiana, Miami pulled off the upset behind Isaiah Wong's 27 points. In their last game against tournament-favorite Houston, all five of the Miami starters scored in double-digits as Pack led the way with 26 en route to a 14-point win. In a tight contest early, the Hurricanes took the lead late in the first half and didn't look back. They were able to fend off the second-half runs by the Cougars and find the three ball in the closing minutes. If they can have another balanced, yet dangerous scoring attack, they should be able to find some holes in this Texas defense.
Miami will win this game by being the more energetic team on the offensive end. While Texas may have the more NBA-ready talent, Miami plays better as a unit and have been extremely dialed in. Out of all the teams left in this tournament, Miami has had the hardest schedule in facing a 12-seed, 4-seed, and 1-seed. They're the most battled-tested team left in the field and have won their last two games over higher seeds by double-digits. Look for Miami to get out in transition and continue their hot shooting from last game where they shot 44% from three.
Why Texas Could Cover The Spread
The Longhorns had to overcome a scandal and coaching change in the middle of the season when Rodney Terry was appointed the interim head coach. A tight-knit group, these Texas players rallied behind their new coach and found themselves in a position to establish a new identity as a team. They lean on each other greatly and are unselfish with the ball when searching for the hot hand. They showed a ton of resolve in fending off a Penn State team that came in as one of the hotter teams of the tournament. In their last game against Xavier, the Longhorns scored the first basket of the game and didn't give up to lead until the final whistle blew. They made it look easy against a serious contender and will have to play soundly once more to advance to the Final Four.
The Longhorns will be hurt by the potential loss of Dylan Disu for this one as he exited last game and was seen wearing a walking boot. He's listed as “day-to-day”, but would add a huge boost for them inside if he's able to suit up. The Longhorns will otherwise enjoy a steady diet of scoring from their bench as Sir'Jabari Rice and Marcus Carr continue to lead the way for them. To win this game, the Longhorns will have to lean on their defensive efforts and frustrate the Hurricanes with active hands in the passing lanes. Miami plays smart with the ball, so causing turnovers will be crucial for the Longhorns in stopping the scoring attack.
Final Miami-Texas Prediction & Pick
This game will be extremely exciting as both teams have high-powered offenses backed by active defenses. If Miami can stun Texas early and get out to a run, there's a huge chance they won't give up the lead for the rest of the game. However, this Texas team has overcome so much this season and will be no strangers to the big moment. In another complete performance, let's side with the Texas Longhorns to win this game and advance to play in a home-state Final Four.
Final Miami-Texas Prediction & Pick: Texas Longhorns ML (-184)