An intriguing Northeast battle hits the West Region when the NCAA Tournament rolls along Friday afternoon. Iona, the MAAC champs and 13 seed, will look to knock off the four seed UConn Huskies. The winner of this game will get the winner of #5 Saint Mary’s vs #12 VCU. Below is our pick for the Iona vs UConn game in the first round from Albany, NY.
Iona vs UConn Betting Pick
|ℹ️ The Pick:||UConn -9|
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This game will be played at MVP Arena at 4:30 p.m. ET on Friday, March 17, 2023.
✅ UConn has rounded back into to form and are 8-2 in their last 10 games played.
✅ The Huskies are scoring 121.6 points per 100 possessions, which is eighth in the nation.
✅ Iona is 0-3 in games against opponents in the first two quads.
Iona Gaels – Pitino’s Farewell Game?
The Iona Gaels are a staple of the NCAA Tournament and they are back after winning the MAAC Championship Game, 76-55, over Marist. Iona is a power house in this conference but they have yet to transfer that to any NCAA Tournament success.
Since February 1st, the Gaels are ranked the 40th best team in the country and are a perfect 13-0 in that timeframe. Iona’s adjusted offense is averaging 113.6 points per 100 possessions, while they are allowing 97.0.
Iona is back in the NCAA Tournament for the third time in the past four seasons, but the Gaels are still waiting to win their first ever NCAA Tournament game. Technically, the Gaels won a game in 1980, but that win was later vacated, so Iona is considered 0-15 in their school’s history.
UConn Huskies – Hitting Their Stride
UConn made a run to Big East Semifinals, for the third straight season, and, for the third straight season, were beaten. Marquette got the better of the Huskies in the semifinal, by just two points, and went on to win the title.
The Huskies, since February 1st, UConn is the second-best team in the nation and are 8-2 in that time span.
UConn is in the tournament for the third straight season and are looking for their first NCAA Tournament win since 2016.