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No. 8 Boise State vs. No. 9 Memphis preview for March Madness first-round matchup

The No. 8 Broncos and No. 9 Tigers face off in the first round of the 2022 NCAA tournament. We’ve got an initial preview of what and how to watch following Selection Sunday.

NCAA Basketball: Boise State at Colorado State
Boise State Broncos forward Mladen Armus and Colorado State Rams forward James Moors during the second half at Moby Arena.
John Leyba-USA TODAY Sports

The NCAA Tournament begins on Tuesday, March 15th with the First Four, and then moves on to the first round on Thursday, March 17 and Friday, March 18. No. 8 seed Boise State will face No. 9 seed Memphis in the first round Thursday. Here’s an early look at what we can expect from the Broncos and Tigers in this year’s March Madness Tournament.

Once the odds from DraftKings Sportsbook are made available for this game, we’ll add that information below. We’ll also add the game time and TV channel once it’s settled.

Game date: Thursday, March 17
Game time: 1:45 p.m.
TV channel: TNT
Location: Portland, Oregon

Odds: Memphis -1.5

No. 8 Boise State

The Broncos are back in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since the 2014-15 season, thanks to their defensive effort that far outpaced their usual standing. Boise State has a Top 20 defense nationally according to KenPom’s adjusted efficiency numbers.

Boise State was knocked out of the First Four the last two times they made the field of 68, but they eliminated that possibility with a fantastic regular season. Their leading scorer is Abu Kigab, who started his college hoops career with the Oregon Ducks before making a name for himself with Boise State.

Record: 27-7, 15-3 MWC
KenPom adjusted offensive efficiency: 76
KenPom adjusted defensive efficiency: 17
Against The Spread: 18-15
Over Total: 16-17
Odds to win NCAA Championship: +15000

No. 9 Memphis

Memphis had some extremely high expectations heading into the season with the recruiting class they brought in. The beginning of the year was horrendous for the Tigers and everybody was counting them out. Memphis finished the season 10-1 in their final 11 games which was much needed. Freshmen Jalen Duren (11.9 ppg) and Emoni Bates (10.4) are two of the team’s leading scorers and they reclassified meaning they should be Seniors in high school right now.

The Tigers are not a very good 3-point shooting team, but they have a ton of success in the paint. Their best bet for an NCAA Tournament run is to keep getting the ball inside and letting Duren work.

Record: 21-9, 13-5 AAC
KenPom adjusted offensive efficiency: 43
KenPom adjusted defensive efficiency: 30
Against The Spread: 15-14-1
Over Total: 16-14
Odds to win NCAA Championship: +10000