College Basketball Odds & Preview -- Seattle is back - Saturday in the CBI

  • In Charles Jay
  • Sat, Mar 23rd, 2024 1:45:02 pm
  • By Charles Jay - Exclusive to OSGA

The Seattle Redhawks take to the floor in the College Basketball Invitational against the Delaware State Hornets.

The basketball program that is now known as the Seattle Redhawks has a proud past. The problem is, it is well back in the past. They have made it to the NCAA Tournament eleven times. But they haven't been there since 1969. They have gone as far as the championship game. But that was back in 1958, when they had a star you may have heard of - a guy by the name of Elgin Baylor.

So they are back - in a sense - as they compete as the #3 overall seed in the College Basketball Invitational (CBI), which is played at the Ocean Center in Daytona Beach. Their opponent in Saturday's opening game is the Delaware State Hornets, who wqere the runners-up in the Mid-Eastern Conference.

At BetOnline, Seattle is a considerable favorite:

Seattle Redhawks -12.5
Delaware State Hornets +12.5

Over 137 points -110
'Under 137 points -110

Chris Victor has compiled 62 wins in three seasons as Seattle's coach. His squad has been competitive against some better teams; for example, they were beaten by four by VCU, three by San Francisco, and came within one point of crosstown rival Washington, in what was a pretty intense bloodmatch.

They have also had a trio of games against Western Athletic Conference rival Grand Canyon,. which just beat Saint Mary's on Friday night. They chalked up a victory over GCU, lost in overtime, and then lost to them again in the WAC tournament. So they can play a little.

Seattle lives and dies by its defense. They are sixth best in the nation in three-point defense, allowing just 29.7%. They are also 14th in Effective Field Goal Percentage defense. They just don't shoot very well. Their best hope from long range is Cameron Tyson, who is a more-then-solid 38.3%, and reserve guard John Christofilis (41.4%). Alex Schumacher is 20th in the nation in assist rate, but he can be turnover-prone.

That is music to Delaware State's ears, because the Hornets live and die by the turnover. That means they are pretty damn bad about coughing it up (345th out of 365 teams) but force plenty of their own (11th-best in the country).

Only a handful of teams shoot three-pointers less frequently than DSU, so that kind of mitigates the effect of Seattle's ability to get out to the perimeter. But Delaware State doesn't generate a lot of offense at all. They are outside the top 300, whether it's inside or outside the arc, and they are 335th in Adjusted Offensive Efficiency. You have to wonder how teams like this get to the postseason.

The truth is, the Hornets actually have some good results. They lost to Longwood, an NCAA tournament team , by one points and also two points in two OT's. They beat Grambling, which went to the Big Dance, and they made it to the finals of the MEAC tourney, losing 70-67 to Howard.

They have a freshman who's coming on in Deywilk Tavarez, who scored 29 and 20 points in the first two MEAC tournament games; Alston Andrews, an Illinois State transfer, has had 13 steals in his last six games. They just don't want Martaz Robinson shooting behind the arc (one of last 11 made).

The bottom line here is that Delaware State's offense is way too spotty. And they are going to give up a lot of second shots. Consequently, that kind of cancels out what they may get in turnovers. Even though Seattle's had to travel about as far as they possibly could, let's lay the points in a small recommendation.

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