NIT Semifinals: #2 Stanford Cardinal vs #1 Old Dominion Monarchs

2015 NIT Semifinals
#1 Old Dominion Monarchs vs #2 Stanford Cardinal
Madison Square Garden – New York City, New York
Tuesday, March 31, 2015, 9:30 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN
Opening Line: Stanford -2
Current Line: Stanford -2 1/2
Opening Total: 135
Current Total: 134 1/2
Opening Money Line: Stanford -140 / Old Dominion +120
Current Money Line: Stanford -140 / Old Dominion +120

Stanford is a slight favorite against Old Dominion in the NIT semifinals Tuesday.
Stanford is a slight favorite against Old Dominion in the NIT semifinals Tuesday.

The 22-13 Stanford Cardinal and 27-7 Old Dominion Monarchs meet in the second semifinal of the NIT Tuesday in New York. The winner will face either Temple or Miami in the Championship game Thursday. Stanford won the only previous meeting against ODU in 2000 in a tournament in Puerto Rico.

Stanford went 9-9 in the Pac 12 and finished tied for fifth with Arizona. Stanford lost to Utah in the Pac 12 quarterfinals. The Cardinal were given a #2 seed in the NIT. Stanford beat UC-Davis 77-64 in the first round and Rhode Island 74-65 in the second round, both at home. Stanford beat Vanderbilt 78-75 in the quarterfinals last Tuesday also at home. Stanford is playing in their 8th NIT and won it in 1991 and 2012.

Old Dominion finished tied for second with UTEP at 13-5 in Conference USA two games behind Louisiana Tech. The Monarchs were upset by Middle Tennessee in the Conference USA quarterfinals. Old Dominion beat Charleston Southern 65-56 in the first round of the NIT and Illinois State 50-49 in the second round. The Monarchs beat Murray State 72-69 in the quarterfinals last Wednesday. Old Dominion is making their 11th appearance in the NIT and made the semifinals in 2006.

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Stanford is coached by Johnny Dawkins. The Cardinal have road losses at DePaul, BYU, UCLA, Washington State, Utah, Colorado, Arizona State and Arizona, plus neutral site losses to Duke in Brooklyn and Utah in the Pac 12 Tournament, and home losses to Arizona, UCLA and Oregon. The Cardinal have home wins over Delaware, Denver, Loyola Marymount, Washington State, Washington, Connecticut, Arizona State, USC, California and Oregon State. Stanford also has neutral site wins over UNLV in Brooklyn and Washington in the Pac 12 Tournament, plus road wins at Texas, USC, California and Washington. The Cardinal are 15-19-1 ATS and the total is 17-17-1 this season. Stanford was a 4.5 point favorite against Vanderbilt  and the total was 146.

Old Dominion is coached by Jeff Jones The Monarchs have neutral site losses to Illinois State in the Virgin Islands, and Middle Tennessee in the C-USA Tournament, road losses to Western Kentucky, Middle Tennessee, UAB, UTSA, and UTEP. The Monarchs are undefeated at home this season. ODU has won 9 of their last 10 games. Old Dominion has a neutral site win over LSU in the Virgin Islands, home wins over Richmond, VCU, Georgia State, William & Mary, Louisiana Tech, and Western Kentucky, plus a  road win over George Mason. The Monarchs are 17-14 ATS and the total is 8-17 this season. ODU was a 1.5 point favorite against Murray State and the total was 139.5.

Stanford is outscoring teams 73-67 this season. Stanford is #53 nationally in scoring. The Cardinal are shooting 43.5% from the field including 38% from 3 point range. The Cardinal are #48 nationally in 3 point shooting. Stanford makes 72.4% of their free throws. Opponents are shooting 42.8% from the field and 37.7% from 3 point range. Stanford averages 36.7 rebounds per game and opponents average 29.1. The Cardinal average 12.9 assists, 10.5 turnovers, 5.9 steals and 3.1 blocks per game. Opponents average 12.2 assists, 12 turnovers, 4.3 steals and 3.3 blocks per game.

Guard Chasson Randle averages 20.3 points, 3.3 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.5 steals per game. Anthony Brown averages 15.8 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.9 assists. Stefan Nastic averages 13.8 points, 6.9 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.2 blocks per game. Rosco Allen averages 8.8 points, 5 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game. Reid Travis averages 6.7 points, 6 assists and 1.1 steals per game.  Center Grant Verhoeven is questionable with a hip injury. Michael Humphrey is also questionable with an ankle injury.

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Old Dominion is outscoring teams 65-57 this season. The Monarchs are #8 in points allowed nationally. ODU is shooting 43.2% from the field and 32.8% from 3 point range. The Monarchs make 66.9% of their free throws. Opponents are shooting 39.9% from the field and 31% from 3 point range. ODU is #46 or better in both categories.  The Monarchs average 36.3 rebounds per game and opponents average 27.5 per game. ODU is #35 nationally in rebounds allowed. The Monarchs average 13.5 rebounds, 10.8 turnovers, 6.3 steals and 3.3 blocks per game. Opponents average 9.6 assists, 13 turnovers, 4.6 steals and 2.8 blocks per game.

Trey Freeman averages 16.8 points, 4.4 rebounds, 3.6 assists, and 1.4 steals per game. He is probable with an ankle injury. Aaron Bacote averages 10.2 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game. Jonathan Arledge averages 8.8 points and 4.9 rebounds. Richard Ross averages 8.1 points, 5.6 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 1.7 blocks per game. Ambrose Mosley averages 6.8 points and 2.2 rebounds per game. Four other players average at least 10 minutes per game.

Stanford is 6-1 ATS in non-conference games, 2-5 after a straight up win, 2-6 overall and against teams with winning records, 2-8 after failing to cover, and 1-4 in neutral site games.

Old Dominion is 5-1 ATS after a cover, 6-2 after a win, 12-4 in non-conference games,  7-3 overall, and 1-4 in Tuesday games.

Old Dominion has a top ten defense and wants to keep this game in the low 60’s or even the 50’s. Stanford wants to play at a higher tempo. I think the Monarchs control the tempo and win a close game.

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