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Vermont Catamounts vs Arkansas Razorbacks Betting Preview

The West Region concludes an exciting day of basketball with a matchup that pits the No. 13 Vermont Catamounts (28-5) against the No. 4 Arkansas Razorbacks (25-8). This game will be played at KeyBank Center, with tipoff scheduled for 9:20 pm ET.

The winner of this game will square off with the winner of Connecticut and New Mexico State on Saturday.

Vermont comes into this one, having won eight games in a row, including steamrolling through the America East conference tournament. In the championship, they took down No. 2 UMBC 82-43.

In the win, Ryan Davis scored a game-high 20 points. Finn Sullivan added 14 points for the Catamounts.

Arkansas is trying to bounce back from an SEC tournament upset when they were bounced by No. 8 Texas A&M 82-64 last Saturday.

In the loss, Stanley Umude and Au’Diese Toney combined for 38 points, but it still wasn’t enough to take down the Aggies. Overall, Arkansas has played well, winning six of their last eight games entering the tournament.

Arkansas is the favorite in this one. They are -215 to win while the Catamounts’ moneyline sits at +176. The spread features Vermont +5 (-110), and the over/under for total points is 139.

More Odds

In terms of winning the West Region, Arkansas has the fifth-best odds at +2000. Vermont is +12000 to win the region.

The Razorbacks are +6500 to win the National Championship, while Vermont is +40000 to win it all.

By The Numbers

Arkansas has the stronger of the two offenses. They rank 27th in the nation in scoring, averaging 76.9 points per game. The Catamounts rank 58th averaging 74.8 points.

Defensively, it is Vermont with the advantage. They rank eighth in the nation in scoring defense allowing opponents an average of just 60.7 points per game. Arkansas ranks 148th, averaging 68.5 points.

Vermont Trying To Prove It Can Run With The Big Boys

At 28-5 overall and 17-1 in the conference, Vermont had a sensational season this year. Still playing in the America East, they aren’t quite as tested with as tough of a schedule as Arkansas, who plays in the SEC. On Thursday, Vermont will try to prove they can run with the big boys.

Vermont has a two-headed monster on offense in forward Ryan Davis and guard Ben Shungu. Davis is averaging 17.2 points this season on 59% shooting. He is also contributing 5.7 rebounds and 1.3 assists per game.

Shungu has also been solid, averaging 16.1 points on 52.5% shooting. This to go along with 4.5 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 1.2 steals.

There is a big drop-off after that, though, as the next leading scorer is Isaiah Powell, who is averaging 8.4 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 2.9 assists.

Arkansas Wants To Build Off Last Year

Last season, the Razorbacks had a great showing in the NCAA tournament, making it to the Elite Eight before losing to Baylor, who eventually won it all. With that experience now underneath their belts, the Razorbacks look to make it even further this season.

Leading head coach Eric Musselman’s squad is senior guard J.D. Notae. This season, he is averaging 18.4 points per game on 40.8% shooting. He is also adding 4.5 rebounds, 3.7 assists, and 2.2 steals per game.

Arkansas has three others averaging double digits in guard Stanley Umude (11.8 points, 4.6 rebounds, 1.1 steals), Au’Diese Toney (11 points, 5.3 rebounds), and Jaylin Williams (10.5 points, 9.6 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 1.4 steals, 1.2 blocks)

Take The Razorbacks To Win And Cover

While Vermont has the hotter team coming in, this one boils down to experience. Arkansas can feed not only off of the experience of last year’s tournament run, but they also have the experience of playing in a much tougher conference to prepare them for this.

That is not to say that Vermont can be taken lightly because they are solid. However, expect Arkansas to eventually pull away in this game.

Take the Razorbacks to both win and to cover the five-point spread.

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