Purdue vs NC State Predictions & Best Bets

Last Updated: Apr 2, 2024

In a Final Four matchup that few could have anticipated, No. 1 Purdue (33-4) will aim to put an end to this year’s Cinderella story and defeat No. 11 NC State (26-14).

The Boilermakers evaded another early upset en route to their first Final Four since 1980. On the other hand, the Wolfpack have won nine games in a row and knocked off several top contenders amid their quest for a national title.

History will be made no matter which side prevails. Here are our best bets and predictions for Purdue vs NC State.

Purdue vs NC State Odds

Per the latest NCAAB odds, NC State can be had as either an 8.5- or 9.5-point favorite, depending on where you look. Considering what the Wolfpack have accomplished so far, this seems like a pretty significant margin — even if Purdue is their most difficult opponent yet.

The projected total ranges from 145.5 to 146.5 points, so oddsmakers are expecting an average-scoring game. The Boilermakers rank No. 2 in KenPom’s adjusted offensive efficiency metric, but NC State sits just outside the top 40 in defensive efficiency.

Purdue vs NC State Prediction

Purdue 75, NC State 68

As far as superstar matchups go, this is the one everybody has been waiting for. Purdue’s Zach Edey and NC State’s DJ Burns Jr. have stood out as two of the NCAA Tournament’s must-watch players, and they’ll finally meet this Saturday to determine who gets to play for a championship.

While their battle will surely be one to remember, it’s important to recognize that while each team would not be here without their respective stars, the same can be said of the other starters and role players.

The Boilermakers have terrific complementary pieces in Braden Smith and Fletcher Loyer, who have been vital to the group’s success. Smith, in particular, has flourished as Purdue’s primary playmaker, averaging 9.5 assists per game throughout the tourney.

As for the Wolfpack, DJ Horne has been productive as a primary scoring option, averaging 17.1 points per game since the ACC Tournament. NC State has also gotten valuable contributions from other upperclassmen, including Mohamed Diarra, Casey Morsell, and Michael O’Connell.

The Boilermakers have superior depth and a more talented roster overall, and while that’s also been the case for the Wolfpack’s last few opponents, this feels like the end of the line. I don’t expect NC State to go down without a fight, but I’d be stunned if they manage an upset.

Purdue vs NC State Best Bets

NC State +9.5 (-114) vs Purdue

FanDuel Sportsbook • WAGER: 1 Unit

The Wolfpack have established an identity as giant slayers. Whether they can bring down Edey and Purdue remains to be seen, but considering their recent body of work, they have what it takes to at least keep things competitive.

For NC State to hang with the Boilermakers, they must continue to limit turnovers and make their presence felt on the glass. Purdue is one of the nation’s best rebounding teams, but the Wolfpack have some guys who can battle in the paint.

Assuming it can continue playing with confidence, there’s no reason why NC State can’t cover this 9.5-point spread. Back the Wolfpack with your best college basketball bet today.

Under 146.5 Points (-110)

FanDuel Sportsbook • WAGER: 1 Unit

Purdue and NC State have each had two games surpass this total and two fall short during the NCAA Tournament. A few of those misses were slim, though, and with the competition ramping up, I tend to favor the Under.

Neither of these teams plays at a particularly fast pace, either. The Wolfpack and Boilermakers rank No. 144 and 205, respectively, per KenPom’s adjusted tempo rating, so we shouldn’t expect a ton of buckets in transition.

It’ll be close, but the Under provides a better value.


Garrett Chorpenning

Garrett Chorpenning is the Lead NBA Editor for The Game Day. His previous work includes covering the LA Clippers for Sports Illustrated and FanSided. He graduated from Ball State University in 2021.

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