NCAA Championship Betting Preview: Butler vs. UConn

Butler UConn logosThe Butler Bulldogs are back in the National Championship Game for the second straight season as they take on Connecticut on Monday night (9:20 p.m. ET, CBS).

The Bulldogs nearly pulled off the upset last season but fell just short against Duke losing 61-59 as 7-point underdogs. They get another chance on Monday, this time against the Huskies, and will once again be dogs.

Connecticut is listed as a 3.5-point favorite at On the moneyline, the Huskies are -170 and the Bulldogs are +150. The total for the game is set at 129.5.

Butler was seeded 8th in this year’s tournament and that makes them the lowest seed to play for a national title since No. 8 Villanova won it all in 1985. They will be facing No. 3 Connecticut who will be gunning for its third national title.

Butler has now won 14 straight games and continues to make the big plays when needed. On Saturday, it was G Shelvin Mack scoring 24 points as the Bulldogs got past VCU 70-62 as 3.5-point favorites.

Despite getting in a little foul trouble, F Matt Howard was strong on the boards notching eight rebounds and made 11 of 12 free throws. Even reserve guard Zach Hahn made some big plays as he scored eight points including two three-pointers.

Connecticut has won 10 straight games overall. The Huskies are led by Kemba Walker who did a little bit of everything on Saturday in the win over Kentucky. He had 18 points, seven assists, six rebounds and two steals in the 56-55 win over Kentucky as 2.5-point dogs.

The Huskies got some strong play from their big men in the win over the Wildcats: 6-foot-9 F-C Alex Oriakhi had 10 boards and eight points, and 6-foot-8 F Roscoe Smith had eight boards. UConn also got some help from the Wildcats, who shot the ball very poorly from both the field (.339) and the free throw line (.333).

Here are some key NCAA betting stats for Monday’s game:

The Bulldogs are 7-0 ATS in their last seven NCAA Tournament games as an underdog. The Bulldogs are 41-16-2 ATS in their last 59 non-conference games. The Bulldogs are 27-11 ATS in their last 38 neutral site games.

The Huskies are 10-1 ATS in their last 11 non-conference games. The Huskies are 4-1 ATS in their last five games as a favorite. The Huskies are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 NCAA Tournament games.

The over is 4-1 in the Bulldogs’ last five vs. the Big East. The over is 5-2 in the Bulldogs’ last seven non-conference games.

The under is 7-3 in the Bulldogs’ last 10 NCAA Tournament games. The under is 5-1 in the Huskies’ last six overall. The under is 22-10-1 in the Huskies’ last 33 games as a favorite.

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