Notre Dame, the upstart number 11 seed from the West Region, will try to claim its third straight tournament win against third-seeded Texas Tech.
The Red Raiders rolled to a 35-point win over 14th-seeded Montana State by putting the clamps down on the high-flying Bobcats. Texas Tech built a 27-point halftime advantage and never looked back, claiming its largest NCAA tournament win in school history, 97-62.
The Fighting Irish, who survived double overtime in their First Four matchup against Rutgers before cruising to a 14-point win over No. 6 Alabama on Friday, have not advanced to the tournament’s second weekend since reaching the Elite 8 as a No. 6 seed in 2016.
Texas Tech vs. Notre Dame Odds
Texas Tech vs. Notre Dame odds are provided by Caesars and current as of 1 p.m. ET on Saturday, March 19.
- Moneyline: Texas Tech (-330) vs Notre Dame (+260)
- Spread: Texas Tech -8 (-110) vs Alabama/Notre Dame +8 (-110#)
- Over/Under: Over 133 (-110) / Under 133 (-110)
- Implied Score: Texas Tech 70.5, Notre Dame 62.5
Texas Tech vs. Notre Dame Prediction
The Red Raiders have been a defensive juggernaut all season, allowing the 11th-fewest points per game (60.4) in the country. That defense turned up the heat in their opening game against Montana State, plus six Texas Tech players scored in double figures led by Bryson Williams and Terrance Shannon Jr., who each had 20.
Texas Tech should have a tougher time defensively against Notre Dame, a team that is averaging more than 83 points per game in its two wins.
The Fighting Irish benefitted from Alabama losing their star guard Jahvon Quinerly early in the game to injury.
And Notre Dame had a huge game from junior guard Cormac Ryan, who averaged just 9.2 points per game during the regular season, scored in double figures for the fourth straight game with a game-high 29 in Notre Dame’s victory.
Texas Tech vs. Notre Dame Score Pick
Texas Tech 70, Notre Dame 59
Texas Tech may be a dominant defensive team that generates a lot of offense off its aggressiveness, but Notre Dame is no slouch defensively either, surrendering just 67.4 points against per game.
Offense should be less easy to come by for the Red Raiders, and the Fighting Irish should be able to hang tough before fatigue finally sets in.
The Irish played into double overtime in their First Four win in Dayton, Ohio before flying across the country Friday to play Alabama. Adrenaline undoubtedly carried them through that game, but how long can that last?
Texas Tech vs. Notre Dame Best Bets
Under 133 points (-110) at Caesars Sportsbook
WAGER: 1 unit
As we mentioned above, these are two strong defensive teams, and Fighting Irish are more on the Red Raiders’ level. There have been fewer than 130 points in five of Texas Tech’s past nine games, including three of the past four against Power 5 conference teams.
The Irish have been scoring up a storm, they’ve topped 70 points in each of their past 10 games.
But Notre Dame is still waiting for marquee contributions from their two leading scorers Blake Wesley (regular season avg: 14.5ppg, tournament: 13) and Dane Goodwin (regular season 13.6ppg, tournament: 7.5), who have scored below their season averages through two tournament games.
Again, we also expect fatigue to factor in in the end for Notre Dame’s third game in less than five days in two time zones.
Texas Tech -8 (-110) at Caesars Sportsbook
WAGER: 1 unit
Again, Notre Dame should be a tougher test for Texas Tech after the Red Raiders breezed through their first-round game, and the game should be tight through the first half and even into the second.
But Texas Tech ranked 16th in the country in turnovers forced per game (16.1), and although Notre Dame only averaged 10 turnovers per game during the regular season, it won despite turning the ball over 18 times against Alabama. The Red Raiders should be able to capitalize on some errors and pull away late.