This is the matchup that busted everyone’s bracket in the office pool except for the folks at work who spent the winter huddled under their blankets on the sofa watching SEC and ACC basketball instead of binge-watching Netflix.

This is a No. 6 seed (Clemson) going against a No. 4 seed (Alabama), with both the Crimson Tide and the Tigers looking to enter uncharted territory for their basketball programs.

Generally, these schools are getting talked about every August as everyone who is packing up for college peruses the football schedule and wonders whether the Tide or the Tigers are going to ruin one of their Saturdays (with the exception of students from Auburn and South Carolina, who are each of these schools’ primary rivals).

But this year, it is the roundball rather than the spheroid that is making these schools relevant as March gets set to turn into April.

Clemson vs. Alabama, Spread, Moneyline, Over/Under – March Madness Elite Eight Betting Lines, Saturday, March 30, 2024

Moneyline: Clemson Tigers +135; Alabama Crimson Tide -163
Spread: Clemson +2.5 (+100); Alabama – 2.5 (-120).
Total: Over/Under 163.5 points 

Clemson vs Alabama Injury Report:

Both Teams emerged from Thursday night’s games without any injuries.

Clemson vs Alabama Game Prediction and Pick

The Crimson Tide ended up winning this one with a number of defensive stops, including a blocked full-court heave off a missed free throw with 1 second left by Grant Nelson, who had five of Alabama’s blocks to go along with his team-highs of 24 points and 12 rebounds.

Alabama’s starting five of Nelson, Nick Pringle, Mark Sears, Rylan Griffen and Aaron Estrada combined for 82 of Alabama’s 89 points. The Crimson Tide somehow managed to win despite allowing North Carolina to grab 22 offensive rebounds. Only 13 of Alabama’s 32 field goals came from an assist, a testament to how creative the Tide’s players can be offensively.

Clemson played from ahead for almost the entire second half (the game was tied twice in the final 20 minutes) against Arizona and got a huge three-point play from Chase Hunter with 25 seconds left to take a 75-70 lead that sealed it.

Hunter missed all five of his 3-point attempts yet still had 18 points, seven rebounds and five assists. The Tigers won despite making just eight of 25 3-pointers (it helped that Arizona went 5-for-28 from 3-point range, making alumnus Steve Kerr cringe before be smashed his remote control).

The winner of this Elite Eight game is probably going to have to go up against Connecticut in the Final Four, but that is getting one step ahead of ourselves. Still, the fact of the matter is that neither Alabama nor Clemson was regarded as Final Four material, yet one of them is getting on an airplane in one week and landing in Phoenix with a chance to be a national champion.

That is uncharted territory for both Alabama and Clemson. Neither school has ever made it to the Final Four, and one of them is going to have to be told, “We are not happy just to have made it this far.”

Also, one of them is going to be a massive underdog against UConn or Illinois, but in college basketball you just never know. That is why the San Diego State Aztecs have a runner-up finish on their resume despite entering last season’s tournament as a No. 5 seed, and why North Carolina has the same moniker after making the 2022 championship game as a No. 8 seed.

We haven’t seen two No. 1 seeds play for the title since Baylor defeated Gonzaga three years ago, and we will not see one this year unless Houston or Purdue make it out of the Elite Eight and the Final Four and go up against UConn, which certainly seems quite worthy of being a repeat champion.

Tipoff is at 8:49 p.m., and the game at Arena in Los Angeles will be televised by TBS.

The Pick: Alabama – 7.5 (+145)

Best March Madness Same Game Parlay Picks Today for Clemson vs Alabama: 3-Leg Parlay Picks (+1000)

The over/under for this game is exceptionally low when it comes to the Crimson Tide, who went over by a half-point against North Carolina when the number was 175, meaning they have now gone over in 12 of their last 14 games. One of the exceptions was their opening round victory over Grand Canyon when the teams finished 40 points under the number: 173.

SGP-Leg 1: Over 172.5 points (+200)

SGP-Leg 2: Alabama – 7.5 (+145)

SGP Leg 3: Alabama Even Team Points (-120)

Putting those three legs together produces a Same Game Parlay with odds of +1000, meaning a $10 wager would pay $110 and would allow you to purchase a nifty Bear Bryant replica hat that you can wear to the office and brag about, especially if you also won your office pool. Good luck!

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