Florida Atlantic vs Tennessee: Betting preview, predictions & Game info for Elite Eight matchup

Olivier Nkamhoua
Tennessee forward Olivier Nkamhoua (13) celebrates after their win over Duke in a second-round college basketball game in the NCAA Tournament, Saturday, March 18, 2023, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

The Sweet 16 is here. March Madness has been nothing short of thrilling so far and Thursday will see the #9 seed Florida Atlantic looking to continue their impressive run by upsetting the #4 seeded Tennessee. Who will advance to the Elite Eight?

Florida Atlantic vs Tennessee Game Info

Who: Florida Atlantic vs Tennessee
Where: Madison Square Garden, New York
When: Thursday March 23rd, 9PM EST
How to watch: TBS

Florida Atlantic vs Tennessee betting info

  • Spread: Tennessee -5.5 | Florida Atlantic +5.5 (-115)
  • Moneyline: Tennessee -245 | Florida Atlantic +205
  • Over/Under: 130.5 (-115)
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Florida Atlantic vs Tennessee game preview

As far as Cinderella stories go, there is only really a couple of teams left who can really deliver some magic in March, with FAU being one of them. Their appearance in the Elite Eight marks the first ever time the Owls have ever reached this stage of the tournament after defeating another huge undedog in Farleigh Dickinson. Their next opponent is of a very different pedigree.

Tennessee was able to make light work of Duke in the Round of 32. The Vols defense was nothing short of dominant in that game and will be licking its lips over an FAU side that looked extremely vulnerable as a 15-point favorite against FDU.

Florida Atlantic vs Tennessee
Florida Atlantic guard Johnell Davis (1) heads up court after a steal in front of Fairleigh Dickinson guard Heru Bligen (3) in the second half of a second-round college basketball game in the men’s NCAA Tournament in Columbus, Ohio, Sunday, March 19, 2023. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

Rebounding may well be the name of the game here, with Tennessee ranking 7th in the nation. Second-chance buckets won’t come easy, which will put a focus on being clinical elsewhere. The Owls only converted on 61% of their free-throw chances last time out. Tennessee’s lengthy defense won’t give away as many opportunities which could lead to a scrappy affair as Florida Atlantic tries to consistently push the pace.

Florida Atlantic vs Tennessee prediction

Tennesee only surrendered 52 points against Duke and they know that FAU has a pair of efficient guards at its disposal. This total is either soaring over 130, or dipping closer to 120 depending on the pace of play. I like Tennessee to win this game comfortably, but a late rally out of pride could see that three-possession total become a backdoor cover spot for FAU. I’ll take the risk and back the better defense to keep this total from going over 130.

Betting pick: Total points under 130.5

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Mandatory Photo Credit: Philadelphia Union