Coming off a close shave against 15th ranked Colgate, the Tennessee Volunteers do battle with the Iowa Hawkeyes, who come fresh off their first upset of the tournament over Cincinnati. Tennessee struggled early against Colgate and was never able to truly open up the game, showing off a chink in their armor. Meanwhile, Iowa posted an extremely well-rounded performance against a very underrated Cincinnati team to pull off their first upset of the tournament. Cincinnati was essentially playing a home game just an hour from their campus, so the Iowa win becomes even more impressive factoring that in.
The two programs have only met twice in the past two decades with Tennessee coming out ahead in both contests. However, the last time the two teams played against one another was in 2014, meaning that the rosters are both entirely different from the last meeting.
#2 Tennessee Volunteers vs #10 Iowa Hawkeyes Betting Line
(Betting Line and Total courtesy of Oddsshark.com)
- Tennessee Volunteers vs Iowa Hawkeyes
- Sunday, March 24th – 12:10 pm ET
- Point Spread: Tennessee Volunteers (-7.5)
- Point Total: 155
Tennessee vs Iowa March Madness Bracket Projection & Picks
Off the back of a poor showing in their opening matchup against 15th seeded Colgate, Tennessee gets a still jump up in competition as they face the under-seeded Iowa Hawkeyes in the round of 32. At one point opening up a 16 point lead towards the end of the first half, the Volunteers were unable to stem the Colgate push and ended up allowing the game to get much closer than a matchup between an elite second seed and lowly 15th seed should be.
On the other hand, Iowa is coming off an extremely impressive victory against seventh seed Cincinnati. Cincinnati got a very favorable draw playing in their own backyard and essentially were gifted home games in their first two games of the tournament. The Bearcats were also one of the most underrated teams in the nation and have built a reputation as an experienced and dangerous defensive-minded team.
Iowa shot a blistering 50% from deep against Cincinnati and while that is an incredibly impressive feat, it simply is not sustainable for a team that collectively shot 36% from deep on the year. Expect a bit of regression towards the mean here and for Iowa to not post as efficient of an outing against the Volunteers. Tyler Cook was uncharacteristically off in their first affair and while it is likely he performs a bit better, players like Luka Garza and Joe Weiskamp likely won’t shoot with the same efficiency as they did against Cincinnati.
On the other hand, the Volunteers played an atrocious game but still figured out a way to come out on top. Tennessee is prone to bad games here and there, but have yet to go on a cold streak of any kind and do a great job of bouncing back. The Tennessee offense was efficient as always, however, the defense struggled mightily to slow down a Colgate attack that shot over 50% from deep. Unlike Iowa, Colgate is a team that lives and dies with the three and this type of performance is a bit more typical.
If Iowa wants to pull off their second upset, they will need to continue their hot hand from deep. Unfortunately, this is not a team that consistently can knock down shots from deep and despite Tennessee’s close shave, much of that was due to Colgate hitting impossible three after impossible three. Expect things to play out a bit more normal in the matchup with Tennessee showing better effort on the defensive end to close out on shots and limit Iowa’s effectiveness from the perimeter.
Expect a double-digit Tennessee win as they punch their ticket to the Sweet 16.