March Madness Expert Picks: North Carolina Central vs. North Dakota State
Our March Madness Predictions continue with Wednesday night’s First Four games from the
University of Dayton Arena in Ohio. The first contest of the evening features a pair of #16 seeds
competing for the right to advance to a date with the #1 seed in the East bracket, the Duke Blue
The North Carolina Central Eagles will be facing off with the North Dakota Bison. Early NCAA
Basketball Betting Lines have the Bison installed as healthy 5.5-point favorites.Our series of NCAA
Tournament Picks continues as we take a look at this matchup in full detail.
Date/Time/TV: Weds. March 20, 6:40 PM EST, truTV
Spread: North Dakota State -5.5 (-110)
On Saturday, the Eagles squared off with Norfolk State in the MEAC tournament final. They were 4-
point underdogs at tip off, but they managed to pull out a 50-47 victory. On the year, North Carolina
Central is 18-15 (17-11-2 ATS).
North Dakota State checks in with a matching mark of 18-15 (14-15-2 ATS). They played Omaha in
last Tuesday’s Summit League championship game. Despite being 3.5-point underdogs, they rolled
to a 10-point win to advance.
North Carolina Central Eagles
North Carolina was only 10-6 in MEAC play this season, which left them four games back of 1st
place Norfolk State. The team lost its final game of the regular season to North Carolina A&T, but
they bounced back to win three straight in the conference tournament. Over the last 10, the Eagles are
8-2 (7-1-2 ATS).
Totals have been Under for the last six in a row and stand at 13-17 on the year. Raasean Davis leads
the team with 14.6 ppg and 8.9 boards. He had 8 points and 14 boards versus Norfolk State, but
Zacarry Douglas topped the team with 10 points and added on 12 boards.
North Dakota State Bison
North Dakota State was just 9-7 in Summit League play during the regular season, finishing up five
games behind 1st place South Dakota State. The team has won its last four in a row, including a
sweep of a trio of conference tournament games. Over the last 10, the Bison are 7-3 (7-3 ATS).
Totals have been Over for two of the last three, and they skew that way for the season at 19-11.
Vinnie Shahid is the team leader with 12.8 ppg and 2.7 dimes. Tyson Ward is next up with 12.3 ppg
and 6.3 boards. In the victory over Norfolk State, Shahid led the way with 22 points, and he
contributed 3 rebounds and 2 assists for good measure.
North Carolina Central vs. North Dakota State Prediction
These two programs last hooked up in 2007, a blowout win for North Dakota State. The Eagles were
in the First Four last year as well, dropping a 64-46 decision to Texas Southern. The Bison made it to
the 2nd round in 2015, falling to Gonzaga by a score of 86-76.
North Dakota State is the better team on offense, but North Carolina Central is stronger on defense.
We’ll look for the Eagles to keep it closer than expected as the Bison advance.
North Carolina Central Eagles vs. North Dakota State Bison Pick: North Carolina Central +5.5 (-