Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:45 AM

Drake vs. Wichita State Predictions, Odds, Preview

Mar. 18, 2021

NCAA BK Expert

Drake vs. Wichita State Predictions

Drake and Wichita State, two former conference rivals in the Missouri Valley Conference, will hook up at Mackey Arena in West Lafayette, Ind. at Purdue University at 6:27 p.m. on TBS. The Shockers are favored by 2.5 points with a total of 139.5.

The Bulldogs looked like a shoe-in for an at-large bid earlier in the season, as they were really rolling. Then they lost leading scorer ShanQuan Hemphill and Roman Penn to season-ending foot injuries, and production obviously went downhill in a hurry. Hemphill led the team with 14.1 PPG while adding 6.3 RPG, 1.5 APG and 1.3 SPG, while Penn registered 11.2 PPG with 5.5 APG to lead the team, and he added 3.3 RPG and 1.4 SPG, with the latter also leading the team.

The Shockers came up short in the AAC Tournament against Cincinnati, getting tripped up 60-59. They also barely got by South Florida in the opener, 68-67, despite being favored by 11 points. The UNDER hit in both of those games, as the offense really struggled on a neutral floor.

  • Score Prediction: Wichita State 76 Drake 65
  • Best Bets - Side: Wichita State -2.5
  • Best Bets - Total: OVER 139.5

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First Four Predictions

Thursday's Preview - Mar. 18, 2021

Drake vs. Wichita State Betting Odds

Line Movements

  • Spread: Wichita State -2.5
  • Total: 139.5
  • Money-Line: Drake -130 Wichita State +110

Odds to Win NCAA Tournament

Odds to Win West Regional

Odds Subject to Change

Handicapping Drake vs. Wichita State

Drake likely would have been favored over Wichita State if this game were played in January or early February, but without Penn and Hemphill this is a new team. They're just 2-2 SU/ATS and 1-2-1 ATS in the past four games.

Wichita State doesn't give bettors a lot of confidence after an ugly showing in the AAC tourney, as they were even in point differential while going 1-1 SU/0-2 ATS as the UNDER hit in each outing. The 59 points against Cincinnati were actually its lowest since posting just 52 in a 20-point loss at Memphis on Jan. 21.

These are two teams which were a little bit inconsistent down the stretch, which is a huge reason why they're in a play-in game. Their overall body of work at least helped them get here, and someone will move on to the Field of 64. I think it's Wichita State, mainly because of Drake's injury situation.

  • Region: West
  • Matchup: 11 vs. 11
  • Venue: Mackey Arena
  • Location: West Lafayette, Indiana
  • Date: Mar. 18, 2021
  • TV-Time: TBS - 6:27 p.m. (ET)

Handicapping Resources: March Madness Central | NCAA Consensus Picks

Betting Stats & Analysis - Drake Bulldogs

Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)

Drake is 20-6-1 ATS across the past 27 games overall, and they started the season a perfect 13-0 ATS until its first non-cover on Jan. 31. They're just 7-6-1 ATS across the past 14 games since the hot start against the number.

The OVER hit in each of Drake's two MVC games, including a 75-65 loss to Loyola Chicago. The OVER is also 6-1 across their past seven games overall, although they have scored 71 or fewer points in each of the past three, which is well below their 78.1 PPG season average. Again, the Penn and Hemphill injuries are a big reason.

Seed: 11
Conference: MVC
Bid: At-large

  • SU: 25-4
  • ATS: 21-6
  • O/U: 17-10
  • Current Form (Last 5): 3-2 SU, 3-2 ATS, 4-1 O/U
  • Notable Wins: Loyola-Chicago
  • PS/G: 77.4 (47th)
  • PA/G: 64.7 (44th)
  • Off Rtg: 114.9 (7th)
  • Def Rtg: 96 (72nd)

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Betting Stats & Analysis - Wichita State Shockers

Wichita State has cashed in just three of the past 10 games overall, and they're only 2-6 ATS across the past eight as a favorite. In addition, they are 1-4 ATS across the past five neutral-site games.

As far as the NCAA Tournament is concerned, the Shockers are 0-3-1 ATS in their past four appearances in the Big Dance, and 9-24 in the previous 33 neutral-site games as a favorite. The UNDER has also hit in six in a row in the NCAA Tournament, while going 4-1 in their past five neutral-site contests.

Seed: 11
Conference: AAC
Bid: At-large

  • SU: 16-5
  • ATS: 9-9-1
  • O/U: 9-10
  • Current Form (Last 5): 4-1 SU, 3-2 ATS, 2-3 O/U
  • Notable Wins: Ole Miss, Houston
  • PS/G: 72.4 (145th)
  • PA/G: 67.4 (95th)
  • Off Rtg: 104 (132nd)
  • Def Rtg: 96.9 (92nd)

Key Players to Watch

With Penn and Hemphill on the shelf for the Bulldogs, the two players who have really picked up the slack are Joseph Yesufu and Tremell Murphy. Murphy averaged 20.0 PPG with 6.0 RPG in the tournament, while Yesufu added 18.6 PPG. D.J. Wilkins also averaged 14.5 PPG in the tourney.

Tyson Etienne stepped up with 16.5 PPG in two conference games, while Alterique Gilbert ended up going for 13.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 3.5 APG and 1.5 SPG in his two conference tourney tilts. Those two were the best in the regular season, and they were the best in the tourney as well, and they will likely be the two biggest studs for the Shockers if they hope to move on.

  • DRKE - Joseph Yesufu (11.6 PPG, 1.8 APG)
  • DRKE - Tremell Murphy (10.2 PPG, 5.2 RPG)
  • WICH - Tyson Etienne (17 PPG)
  • WICH - Alterique Gilbert (10.3 PPG, 4.1 APG)

The Drake Bulldogs enter their First Four game against the Wichita State Shockers covering the spread in 21 of 27 games. (AP)

Head-to-Head - Drake vs. Wichita State

It's hard to believe, but the Shockers left the Missouri Valley Conference after the 2016-17, which is already five seasons ago. These teams last met Feb. 1, 2017, with the Shockers posting a 77-69 win at Drake as the Bulldogs covered a 17-point number as the UNDER (147) hit. Wichita State also hammered Drake at home that season by a 90-65 score, but they also failed to cover.

Wichita State has won 11 straight meetings with Drake dating back to Jan. 28, 2012, the last win in the series by the Bulldogs.

March Madness Records & Trends

Drake Bulldogs

  • All-Time Record: 5-4
  • Last Appearance: 2008
  • Deepest Run: Final Four (1969)

-- Drake has won at least one game in a NCAA Tournament in three of its last four NCAA Tournament appearances.
-- Drake has seen two overtime periods over its last three NCAA Tournament games.
-- Drake has covered the spread in 21 of its last 27 games.
-- Drake has gone OVER the point total in seven of its last nine games.

Wichita State Shockers

  • All-Time Record: 18-16
  • Last Appearance: 2018
  • Deepest Run: Final Four (2013)

-- Wichita State has won two or more games in a NCAA Tournament in three of its last six NCAA Tournament appearances.
-- Wichita State has been eliminated by a school seeded No. 3 or lower in three of its last four NCAA Tournament appearances.
-- Wichita State has failed to cover the spread in two straight games when playing on a neutral court.
-- Wichita State has failed to cover the spread in seven of its last 10 games.
-- Wichita State has gone UNDER the point total in five of its last seven games.

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