Sixty-eight teams began a trek to the NCAA National Championship game, and we are down to two teams and one game to decide which team will have its “One Shining Moment” at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas.
Will it be the No. 5 seed San Diego State Aztecs or the heavily favored N0. 4 seed UConn Huskies when the schools meet at 9:20 pm? Find out with our preview of Monday’s national championship game!
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Current form of San Diego State Aztecs
The Aztecs have the second-longest active win streak (9 games) and won both the Mountain West regular season and conference tournament titles. San Diego State was down by 14 points to Florida Atlantic on Saturday, but a Lamont Butler buzzer beater lifted SDSU to this opportunity to play for a national championship.
This team doesn’t quit.
— San Diego State Men's Basketball (@Aztec_MBB) April 2, 2023
Current form of UConn Huskies
UConn finished 4th in the Big East but won the season-ending tournament and has a +21.3 winning differential over their last three games. The Huskies went wire to wire in their victory over the Miami Hurricanes, shooting 49% from the field and 34% from downtown in their 13-point win over the Hurricanes.
— UConn Men's Basketball (@UConnMBB) April 2, 2023
Phil’s Best Side Bet: UConn -7.5 -110 Caesars
This game opened UConn -6 but instantly was bet up to -7.5. That’s okay because UConn is going to cover the -7.5.
This is a matchup nightmare for San Diego State. The Aztecs like to play physical, in-your-face defense, but they aren’t going to match the physicality of the UConn bigs or the wings.
In reality, the Huskies are a much bigger and better shooting version of the Aztecs–UConn will benefit from a distinct height advantage on Monday night and is the better shooting side from everywhere on the floor.
San Diego acquitted itself well during this event, but they were down at halftime in each of their last two and had to claw back and snuck out victories over Creighton and Florida Atlantic. UConn is a solid front-runner with shooters from inside and outside the arc that San Diego State doesn’t have, and UConn will cover the -7.5.
Phil’s Best Total Bet: UConn Under 132.5 -110 Caesars
The tempo of this game will be super-slow–both teams play at two of the slowest paces in the college game, and each team shoots the ball late into the clock.
SDSU is a physical defensive side–they are one of the best defensive teams in the country, and UConn won’t walk all over the Aztecs as they have against just about everyone else they’ve played during this tournament. SDSU will get stops against UConn, other teams won’t, and it has one of the country’s top 3-point shooting defenses.
The Aztecs will likely be playing from a deficit and forced to shoot the ball from downtown. SDSU doesn’t shoot the ball well from beyond the arc, they’ve had trouble on the offensive glass, and the Huskies are terrific perimeter defenders. SDSU won’t likely score more than 55 points Monday, and this game ends Under the number.