Tennessee Volunteers (7) vs. Missouri Tigers (12) Betting Odds, Picks, and Predictions

December 28, 2020

Date:Wednesday, December 30th
Time:9:00 PM ET
Network:SEC Network
Venue:Mizzou Arena
Spread:Tennessee -3.5
O/U:133

The 6-0 Tennessee Volunteers will go on the road Wednesday night to face off with the 6-0 Missouri Tigers at 9:00 PM ET in Mizzou Arena. Neither of these teams has lost a game to this point and only one can walk out untouched. The Vols enter as 3.5-point road favorites and we’re expecting a bit of a defensive battle with a 133 over/under. Let’s dive into how this game will go down and who will end up covering the spread. Make sure to check out the rest of our CBB Picks and Predictions as every big game will be covered.

Trends

  • Volunteers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games overall.
  • Volunteers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
  • Over is 4-1 in Volunteers last 5 road games following three or more consecutive home games.
  • Over is 10-4 in Tigers last 14 home games.

When The Tennessee Volunteers Have The Ball

The Vols have taken down each and every one of their opponents to this point and only one game has been closer than 18 points. Tennessee looks to be the real deal and they’ve moved up to seventh in the nation. They excel at taking care of the basketball, ranking 11th in the country with just 10.2 turnovers per game. They are uber-efficient from the FT line (79.7%) and play excellent defense.

This is a very balanced squad with four players averaging between 10 and 13 points. PF John Fulkerson has been in double-figures every game on top of 6.3 rebounds, 1.8 assists, and a steal. He’s the heart and soul of this team and one of the more savvy big men in the league. He’s the only true big man, but Josiah Jordan-James and Yves Pons help out in the paint and play bigger than their 6’6 frame.

On the perimeter, Victor Bailey Jr. (13.2 pts) and Jaden Springer (11.5 pts) lead the way. As I said, this is a balanced team and Santiago Vescovi is as important as anyone as the sixth-leading scorer. He does a little bit of everything for Tennessee and will play big minutes in the crucial game. Tennessee will play through John Fulkerson as usual, but don’t be surprised if one of the guards explodes for 20 in this matchup.

When The Missouri Tigers Have The Ball

The Tigers have their own impressive resume, including wins over sixth-ranked Illinois and 23rd-ranked Oregon. They’re 6-0 as well and while they don’t have as much balance as Tennessee, the Tigers have three guys that average more points than the Vols leading scorer. It starts with superstar PG Xavier Pinson, who’s averaging 14.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 3.7 assists per game. SG Dru Smith isn’t far behind with 13 PPG on top of three boards and three assists. Mark Smith adds his own 13.8 points, though he doesn’t contribute as many peripherals.

Forwards Jeremiah Tilmon and Kobe Brown might not score a ton down low, but they are bulldogs that play tough defense and know how to rebound. If Missouri wants success in this game, they must slow the Volunteers down. There is a ton of talent on the Tennessee side of the basketball and Missouri can’t contend if it’s a back and forth affair.

Spread Prediction

The Pick: Tennessee -3.5

There isn’t a single thing Missouri does better than Tennessee. The Volunteers average more rebounds, they shoot at a higher FG%, and shoot 8% higher from three. They also have a lot more depth with seven guys that can legitimately put up 15 points. The Tigers have three and you can expect Tennessee to hone in on them. I’m a huge fan of Tennessee this season and think they make a run at the National Championship in March. They just have every piece you want out of a contender.

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Total Prediction

The Pick: Over 133
Final Score Prediction: Tennessee 73, Missouri 65

This is a tough number and a very accurate one that I doubt will move much. I’ll take the over as I think Tennessee gets Missouri to pick up the pace, but these are two teams that play kind of the same. Vegas has a great idea where this number will end and I don’t have much interest in betting this. I love the Volunteers and won’t be messing with this total. With that being said, I would certainly take the over if I had to pick.

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