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March Madness First Four game preview: No. 16 Texas Southern vs. No. 16. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

The Texas Southern Tigers and TAMU-CC Islanders meet at Dayton Arena for the First Four series in the 2022 NCAA Tournament. We’ve got everything you need on both teams ahead of the game here.

Texas Southern Tigers forward John Walker III and Texas Southern Tigers forward Joirdon Karl Nicholas celebrate after the game against the Florida Gators at Billy Donovan Court at Exactech Arena. Matt Pendleton-USA TODAY Sports

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: Tuesday, March 15
Game time: TBD
TV channel: TBD
Location: Dayton, Ohio

No. 16 Texas Southern: 18-12, 13-5 SWAC: Auto Bid

The SWAC conference tournament champions enter March Madness but are unlikely to make much noise. The Tigers don’t really excel on either end of the floor, and don’t have a true star on the team. There’s some balance, with four players averaging close to double figures scoring, but it’s hard to see how this team does any significant damage in the bracket.

Record: 18-12, 13-5 SWAC
KenPom adjusted offensive efficiency: 270
KenPom adjusted defensive efficiency: 107
Against The Spread: 16-13-1
Over Total: 13-17
Odds to win NCAA Championship: +100000

No. 16 Texas A&M Corpus Christi: 23-11, 7-7 Southland: Auto Bid

The Islanders rolled through the Southland conference tournament, taking down the top two seeds in the semifinal and final to secure the automatic bid to the field of 68. Look for Isaac Mushila and Trevian Tennyson to continue being the team’s top offensive options, although Texas A&M-Corpus Christi did get some contributions from others in the conference tournament. This team does have some three-point shooting, which is typically the formula to pulling an upset in March.

Record: 23-11, 7-7 Southland
KenPom adjusted offensive efficiency: 287
KenPom adjusted defensive efficiency: 181
Against The Spread: 20-10
Over Total: 17-12-1
Odds to win NCAA Championship: +100000

Odds from DraftKings Sportsbook

Point spread: Texas Southern -3.5
Point total: 135.5
Moneyline: Texas Southern -165, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi +145

These are two pretty bad offenses according to KenPom’s adjusted offensive efficiency, but pace of play can make up for that when looking at the total. The number of points will exceed 135.5 on Tuesday night because Texas A&M-Corpus Christi rank No. 40 in possessions per game, while Texas Southern is just outside the top 100. The number of possessions should be high, giving the edge toward the over on a low total.

Pick: Over 135.5

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