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Big East Conference Tournament Betting Preview: Butler vs. Seton Hall

Seton Hall takes the court in the first round of the Big East Conference Tournament looking to avenge an embarrassing 71-54 loss to Butler in its regular season finale.  The revenge angle is particularly significant in this game as the Pirates are a perfect 6-0 ATS on the road with revenge and 13-4 ATS on the road following a loss by fifteen or more points.  Seton Hall’s point spread struggles also work in our favor as the Pirates are 10-2 ATS after failing to cover the Vegas number and 9-2 ATS after failing to cover the spread in three of their last four games.

Fundamental Analysis: Seton Hall

Offense:

Seton Hall is averaging 72.7 points per game against teams that would combine to allow 70.5 points per game, thereby making the Pirates 2.2 points per game better than average offensively this season.  However, the Pirates will have to work hard in order to exploit a Butler defense that is 4.3 points per game better than average (67.1 points per game to teams that would combine to average 71.4 points per game).  Overall,  Butler possesses a nominal a 2.1 points per game advantage defensively over the Pirates’ attack.

Defense:

On the defensive end of the floor, Seton Hall is allowing 70.4 points per game to teams that would combine to average 72.7 points per game, thereby making the Pirates 2.3 points per game better than average defensively.  The better news for Seton Hall investors is the fact that the Pirates are limiting opponents to a mere 68.8 points over the last five games.  Seton Hall should have success shutting down an anemic Butler attack that is 1.2 points per game worse than average (69.2 points per game against teams that would combine to allow 70.4 points per game).  More importantly, Butler is averaging a woeful 64.4 points per game on the road (40.0% FG), 65.1 points per game versus conference opponents and 66.2 points over its last five games (41.7% FG).

For added technical support, let’s note that Seton Hall head coach Kevin Willard is a profitable 31-16 ATS on the road when his team is playing with revenge, including 15-5 ATS with double-revenge. Butler swept the regular season series (64-57; 71-54) and the knee-jerk reaction would be to take the Bulldogs, but that reaction would be a mistake in that my math model favors Seton Hall by 3.5-points and the Pirates apply to a very good 27-4-1 ATS postseason situation of mine.  Take the Pirates and invest with confidence.

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