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How to bet the NIT Championship between UAB and North Texas

Jordan Walker

Jordan Walker

Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

Vaughn Dalzell breaks down how to bet the NIT Championship between the UAB Blazers and North Texas Mean Green.

North Texas vs. UAB (-2): O/U 127.5

This will be the fourth meeting between North Texas and UAB and winner is crowned NIT Champion after thrilling two-point wins for each squad in the Final Four.

In the three earlier meetings this season, the final combined scores were 115, 161 (2 OT) and 145 points between North Texas and UAB. North Texas won two of those meetings, at home and on the road, but lost the previous matchup in the C-USA Tournament to UAB.

The Mean Green play at the slowest offensive and overall tempo in the country (363th), while the Blazers are 31st and 36th in both categories. These two have a contrast of styles and that could force the Over yet again, especially after UAB witnessed Wisconsin score 41 first half points against North Texas.

Jordan Walker and Tylor Perry highlight the two best players and scorers in this matchup. Walker averages 22.3 points per game this season (5th) and 14.7 points per game in the NIT. Perry averages 17.2 points per game on the year and 20.7 points per game in the NIT. Perry has arguably played like the best player in the NIT thus far.

We don’t have to worry about UAB going scoreless for nine minutes like Wisconsin did, so give me the Over 127.5 (-110) up 130.0.

Both squads are moving to the AAC next season, so I expect this NIT Championship to go out with a bang. Both teams have three players that average at least 10 points per game and all three models I use have this game projected at 131, 137 and 137 points, all showing slight value to the Over.

Pick: Over 127.5 (0.5u)

Tylor Perry O/U 3.5 Rebounds vs. UAB

North Texas could still be without starting big man Abou Ousmane for the NIT Championship.

Ousmane is one of three players to average 10-plus points per game for the Mean Green (11.1 PPG) and leads the team in rebounds (6.0 RPG). If he is out, there is a lot of value on Tylor Perry to go Over 3.5 rebounds (-120).

Perry has grabbed five or more rebounds in all four NIT games and five-plus boards in five-straight. Perry averages 3.5 rebounds per game on the season but increased that to 5.7 rebounds per game in the NIT.

The Mean Green’s guard has played at least 34 minutes in five-straight games, plus 40 and 43 minutes in the last two without Ousmane. If Ousmane is out again, grab this quick because odds will change, but I think Perry can cash the Over with or without Ousmane.

UAB ranks 203rd in the nation for defensive rebounding percentage (28.9%) and allowed plenty of guards to hit four or more rebounds in the NIT, including Tyrin Lawrence (Vanderbilt), Drew Thelwell (Morehead State), Austin Crowley (Southern Miss), and three guards on Utah Valley (Harmon, Woodbury, Darthard).

I played Perry Over 3.5 Rebounds at -120 odds. Ousmane wasn’t listed in terms of player prop odds and there is no update on him, so there is current value on Perry’s rebound prop.

Pick: Perry Over 3.5 Rebounds (1u)

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