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Odds taken from DraftKings Sportsbook
|Arkansas Razorbacks||+6.5||O 139.5|
|Tennessee Volunteers||-6.5||U 139.5|
The Arkansas Razorbacks will face the Tennessee Volunteers for the second time this season. Arkansas beat Tennessee 58-48 in a low-scoring battle in February. Both of these teams are looking to end the regular season on a strong note before the SEC Tournament.
The Arkansas Razorbacks are having an impressive season in the tough SEC. They have won their last five games and are coming off a 77-76 thriller against unranked LSU. JD Notae leads Arkansas. Notae is the leading scorer in the SEC and averages 18.8 points per game. I would not be surprised to see the senior guard in the NBA next year. Notae is complemented by Stanley Umude in the backcourt. Umude is a tall guard that shoots well from the field. As good as those two guards are, the Razorbacks would not be as successful if they did not have forward Jaylin Williams grabbing rebounds. Williams can score too, but his real prowess comes with rebounding. He averages 9.7 boards a game. The Razorbacks are a pretty veteran squad with three seniors in the starting lineup, so they will have to depend on them to win this game.
The Tennessee Volunteers had a mediocre season last year. They finished conference play with a 10-7 record and had a first round exit in March Madness. They have rebounded this season and only lost four conference games. Their success this season has come behind strong defense and good team basketball. The Tennessee defense only allows 63 points per game, making them the best defense in the SEC. The Volunteers do not have one star on their team. In fact, they only have two players (Kennedy Chandler and Santiago Vescovi) scoring over ten points a game. This will be a close game, but Tennessee will edge Arkansas; They are playing at home and have a stronger defense.
Tennessee beats Arkansas 75-69. Arkansas cover, Over 139.5 points
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|Eric Musselman||Head Coach||Rick Barnes|
|24-6 (13-4, 3rd in SEC)||Standing||22-7 (13-4, 4th in SEC)|
|Leader (Per Game)|
|JD Notae (18.8)||PPG||Kennedy Chandler (13.6)|
|Jaylin Williams (9.7)||RPG||Josiah-Jordan James (5.8)|
|JD Notae (3.6)||APG||Kennedy Chandler (4.6)|
|JD Notae (2.1)||SPG||Kennedy Chandler (2.3)|
|Jaylin Williams (1.2)||BPG||Olivier Nkamhoua (1.1)|
|Kamani Robinson (.680)||FG%||Uros Plavsic (.561)|
|Trey Wade (.381)||3P%||Olivier Nkamhoua (.448)|
The Arkansas Razorbacks are having an excellent season, but they will have a very difficult matchup in the Tennessee Volunteers. Arkansas has to protect the ball and hit their outside shots if they want to win.
Tennessee is a strong defensive team that creates a lot of turnovers. The Volunteers average 9.6 steals a game, almost two more than the Razorbacks. Since Tennessee is always creating turnovers, the Razorbacks have to protect the ball. If Arkansas keeps on giving up the ball, they will limit their scoring opportunities.
Arkansas does not shoot very well from behind the three-point line. They only hit 30.9% of their three-point attempts. Arkansas is very guard-heavy and needs to hit more outside shots. They are a smaller team and may be forced to depend on outside shots, so they need to hit them.
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The Tennessee Volunteers are one of the surprise teams this year. They will face a Razorbacks squad with the same conference record as them. Since Arkansas is a similarly good team, the Volunteers need to play to their strengths. Tennessee needs to focus on team rebounding and making the extra pass.
The Volunteers are not a big team. They do not have one seven-footer in their rotation, and, as a result, they do not have one great rebounder. They do, however, have a bunch of players who grab their fair share of rebounds. Tennessee needs to continue rebounding as a team and win the rebounding battle.
Tennessee does not have one great passer, but they pass well as a team. Even though no player averages over five assists per game, the Volunteers average 16 team assists per game. They need to continue passing the ball well and make the extra pass. They will create better shot for themselves that way.
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JD Notae is having an excellent season as the leader of this Razorbacks team. He averages 18.8 points, 4.4 rebounds, 3.6 assists, and 2.1 steals.
Notae’s impact on his team goes beyond his stats. He is the starting point guard and runs the offense. He has done an outstanding job running the offense, as they score over 77 points a game.
Defensively, Tennessee may have to double-team him and force him to give up the ball.
Unlike Arkansas, Tennessee does not have a star player. They do, however, have Kennedy Chandler, a freshman point guard that does a little bit of everything.
Kennedy Chandler’s stats are good but not great. He averages 13.6 points, 3.3 rebounds, 4.6 assists, and 2.3 steals. But, since Chandler is a jack of all trades and productive on both sides of the floor, he is very valuable.
Arkansas has to be aware of Kennedy on offense and defense. He can pick your pocket or score on you.
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|Arkansas Razorbacks vs Tennessee Volunteers Information|
|What||Arkansas Razorbacks vs Tennessee Volunteers|
|Where||Thompson-Boling Arena, Knoxville, Tennessee|
|When||Saturday, March 5, 12:00 PM EST|
|How to Watch||ESPN|
Max Heering graduated from the University of Kansas Sport Management program in May 2020. Max follows and writes about the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, MLS, college football, and college basketball. In his free time, you can catch Max draining threes on the basketball court. Email: [email protected]More info on Max Heering
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