#10 Maryland vs. #2 Alabama NCAA Tournament Round of 32

#10 Maryland vs. #2 Alabama NCAA Tournament Round of 32 | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

Written by on March 22, 2021

The Big Ten has had a largely disappointing tournament overall, but No. 10 seed Maryland was an upset winner in Round 1 and the Terps’ reward is red-hot No. 2 seed and SEC champion Alabama in second-round East Region action Monday. The Tide are favored on the NCAAB odds.

How to Bet Maryland vs. Alabama NCAA Basketball Odds & TV Info

  • When: Monday, 8:45 PM ET
  • Where: Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis
  • TV: TNT
  • Stream: https://www.ncaa.com/march-madness-live
  • Radio: Tunein.com
  • Opening NCAAB Lines: Alabama -5.5 (total 138.5)

Last Meeting

Monday marks the first NCAA Tournament meeting in history between Maryland and Alabama. Overall, the Terps have defeated the Crimson Tide in 4-of-5 meetings. The teams last met in 2013, when Maryland claimed a 58-57 victory in the NIT quarterfinals.

Why Bet on Maryland? | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

The Terps (17-13) knocked off No. 7 UConn 63-54 in Round 1. Eric Ayala led the way with 23 points. The 10th-seeded Terrapins held UConn to 32% shooting to overcome the Huskies’ strong physical game. Maryland was outrebounded 40-29 but its defense carried the Terps to a second round matchup against No. 2 Alabama.

Maryland shot 51% for the game and converted 9 of 18 from behind the arc. The Terps built a 14-point cushion that UConn cut to 53-48 with 2:53 remaining. Ayala and Darryl Morsell each made a pair of three throws to push the lead back to nine. Ayala was 8 of 14 shooting, including 3 of 5 from deep, and was among three Terps with five assists. Aaron Wiggins had 14 points and Donta Scott 12 for Maryland.

UConn’s 54-point total was the fewest in the NCAA Tournament for a Maryland opponent since it held Indiana to 52 points in the 2002 NCAA Championship. Additionally, the Terps held the Huskies to .323 shooting – the lowest mark since holding Georgetown to .308 in the 2001 Sweet 16. Maryland advanced to 26-3 all-time in NCAA opening round games.

The Terrapins’ success in the latter half of the season has come largely in part to its commitment on the defensive end, holding opponents to just 37.7-percent shooting (.318 3-pt) over its last 15 games. The defense is led by Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year in Morsell.

Ayala is averaging 21.0 points (.455 FG) and 6.3 rebounds over the last three games. He is averaging 15.2 points on the season – nearly seven points more than last year (8.5/g). He needs 19 points to become the 58th player in Maryland history to reach 1,000 career points. He would be the third active Terrapin to join the club, as teammates Morsell and Wiggins both eclipsed the mark earlier this season.

Why Bet on Alabama? | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

The Tide (25-6) beat No. 15 Iona in Round 1, 68-55, their seventh straight win and 10th victory in its last 11 games. Bama held a one-point advantage at intermission, 33-32, in a contest that featured 12 ties and two lead changes. However, with Alabama trailing 42-40 at the 12:13 mark, a Juwan Gary layup followed by an Alex Reese three-pointer put UA up for good and jump started the game-changing run.

Senior forward and SEC Player of the Year Herbert Jones led all scorers with 20 points, his third 20-point game of the season, and six rebounds, while SEC Tournament MVP Jahvon Quinerly ended with 11 off the bench. Guards John Petty Jr. and Jaden Shackelford each contributed 10 points in the victory.

The victory gave Alabama its 25th win on the season, which are the most since the 2010-11 squad finished 25-12 overall. The school record for wins in a season is 27, set by the 2001-02 team.

With the win, the Crimson Tide improved to 20-20 (.500) overall in what is the 21st NCAA Tournament appearance in program history. Alabama has advanced to the Sweet 16 seven times and the Elite Eight once (2004). A win Monday would send the Tide to its first Sweet 16 since 2004.

UA has made an NCAA-leading 325 threes this season and is just 10 made treys away from breaking the school record of 334 three-pointers in a season, which was set just a year ago. The Tide are also third nationally in average possession length on offense (14.1) and ninth in the nation in adjusted tempo (73.5 possessions per game).

The Tide have gone 19-3 over its last 22 games, with all three losses coming on the road to teams ranked in the top 25. Two of those three defeats were by a combined eight points, falling at then-No. 24 Oklahoma by five (66-61) and at then-No. 18 Missouri by three (68-65).

Game Trends

  • Terrapins are 11-4 ATS in their last 15 neutral site games as an underdog.
  • Terrapins are 3-7 ATS in their last 10 games following a straight up win.
  • Terrapins are 3-7 ATS in their last 10 NCAA Tournament games.
  • Crimson Tide are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 Monday games.
  • Crimson Tide are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 NCAA Tournament games as a favorite.

Expert NBA Prediction

Alabama 77, Maryland 70


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