Iona at Alabama: 3/20/21 NCAA Tournament College Basketball Picks and Predictions
Photo by Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
Alabama Crimson Tide (24-6) vs Iona Gaels (12-5)
Game Info: Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 4:00 pm (Hinkle Fieldhouse)
Betting Odds: Alabama Crimson Tide -17 -- Over/Under: 143.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds
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The Iona Gaels and Alabama Crimson Tide face off on Saturday in an NCAA Tournament college basketball showdown at Hinkle Fieldhouse.
The Iona Gaels finished in 3rd place in the conference standings for the regular season, but they won the MAAC postseason tournament and that led to the victory. Iona sits with a 12-5 record overall and coming into this game they have won six games in a row. In the last game against Fairfield the defense was elite giving up only 51 points and that led to a nine point victory. This is a Rick Pitino led squad, and finding success early in this one will be important. Isaiah Ross has been the best player this season for Iona averaging 18.4 points while shooting 45.5 percent from the field and 39.1 percent from behind the three point line.
On the other side of this matchup is the Alabama Crimson Tide who sit with a 24-6 record overall and coming into this game they have won six games in a row. In the last game against LSU it was a competitive game, but they were able to win by a point. Alabama is averaging 79.6 points per game while their defense is giving up 69.8 points per game. Alabama is shooting 43.1 percent from the field and 35.1 percent from behind the three point line. Jaden Shackelford has been the best player for Alabama averaging 14.2 points while shooting 40.7 percent from the field and 33.7 percent from behind the three point line.
Iona is 5-0-1 against the spread in their last six games overall. Alabama is 4-1 against the spread in their last five games overall. The under is 5-2 in Alabama’s last seven games overall. Alabama is 4-1 against the spread in their last five games as a favorite.
Iona is hot at the right time and I expect their defense is going to step up. It might not be enough to win, but Iona is going to come away with a cover of the spread. In terms of the total it's a lean to the under, but the stronger play is with the side.