VCU coach Mike Rhoades talks with an official during the first half of a first-round game against Central Florida in the NCAA men’s college basketball tournament Friday, March 22, 2019, in Columbia, S.C. (AP Photo/Sean Rayford)
- VCU (19-6, 10-4 Atlantic 10) battles St. Bonaventure (15-4, 11-4 Atlantic 10) on Sunday, March 14th, at 1:00 pm ET, in the final of the Atlantic 10 tournament
- The Bonnies and Rams split their season series in 2020-21
- The odds for the game, as well as matchup analysis and pick, can be found in the article below
One positive about Sunday’s Atlantic 10 tournament final between 1st-seeded St. Bonaventure and 2nd-seeded VCU is that both teams are probably safe bets to make the NCAA tournament.
Still, there is conference pride on the line. And we couldn’t be primed for a better A-10 finale than this one, with a pair of strong, interesting teams. Here’s a look at the odds:
VCU vs St. Bonaventure Odds
|VCU||+2 (-109)||+112||Over 128.0 (-108)|
|St. Bonaventure||-2 (-112)||-136||Under 128.0 (-113)|
Odds as of March 11th at DraftKings.
How They’ve Fared Recently
From Jan. 23 onward, VCU is 9-2 and looking every bit as impressive as that record. The Rams have compiled seven wins against KenPom top-100 teams in that span and earned four of their victories by double digits. The only setbacks came in overtime against George Mason and an eight-point loss to a respectable Davidson bunch (58th in KenPom).
— VCU Basketball (@VCU_Hoops) March 5, 2021
There isn’t much to say, good or bad, about VCU’s offense — it’s pretty average. The defense, though, is a different story. The Rams rank ninth in NCAA Division I in adjusted defensive efficiency. They’re also third in the nation in block rate (15.1%) and second in steal rate (13.3%). So if you manage to not get the ball swiped, it’s probably getting swatted.
A couple of concerns for the Rams through two A-10 tournament games: they’re shooting just 10-of-33 from three (30.3%) and have committed 29 turnovers.
What might also be concerning is how hot their opponent is right now. St. Bonaventure has won six of eight, with the losses coming by a combined six points against a pair of KenPom top-100 foes.
There’s no doubt – Kyle Lofton is ELITE 🌟 pic.twitter.com/YjdAPW8h7y
— Bonnies Men’s Basketball (@BonniesMBB) March 10, 2021
Otherwise, the Bonnies have steamrolled their way through other recent opponents, with five double-digit wins recently. Like VCU, St. Bonaventure’s defense is strong (19th in adjusted efficiency), but they’re a bit more balanced on the offensive side (45th in adjusted offensive efficiency).
VCU is 14-11 against the spread this season, while St. Bonaventure is 13-5-1 ATS.
2-0 in Richmond ✅
On to Dayton ✅
— Bonnies Men’s Basketball (@BonniesMBB) March 7, 2021
The Rams have covered in both prior matchups of this A-10 tournament, and they’ve seen the under hit in five of their past seven games. The Bonnies have also covered in both A-10 games — part of a 6-1-1 ATS run right now — and they’ve seen the under hit in six of their past seven games.
VCU and St. Bonaventure both came away with a straight up win against each other this season, but the Bonnies emerged on the winning side of both spreads. They covered as 2.5-point favorites on Jan. 20 in a 70-59 victory, then again as 3.5-point underdogs in a 67-64 loss on Feb. 12. It’s also worth noting that both games hit the under.
Simply put, St. Bonaventure has been a great team ATS this year. Unfortunately, with a spread this tight, money line is always a better bang for one’s buck.
So we’ll put our faith in the Bonnies, on the money line, as well as a third consecutive “under” for this matchup.
Pick: St. Bonaventure Off (Off); Under Off
Jordan Horrobin is a sports journalist whose MLB, NHL, NFL and NCAA work has appeared in outlets such as The Athletic, MLB.com, the Detroit Free Press and more. He is currently based in Toronto, also working as a contributor for Forbes.com and a freelance editor for Sportsnet.