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Southern Illinois vs. Kansas

March 22, 2007

NCAA Tournament - Southern Illinois vs. Kansas (-8½, 126) 7:10 PM EST

Brandon RushThe Sweet 16 round of the 2007 NCAA Tournament starts tonight with four games in two different locales. This year’s Bog Dance certainly has had a different flavor than some of the more recent ones with underdogs having just one winning day of the four played this year.

Another strange occurrence has no number ten or lower seed for the first time since 1995 in the Sweet Sixteen. This does make for potentially more compelling match-ups, with greater balance of the remaining teams. At half the remaining field is listed at 10-1 or less to win the tournament, showing how wide open this event remains. Get in on the action starting tonight.

One thing the country is finding out in the NCAA Tournament is Southern Illinois Salukis defense is harder to shake then Randy’s Quaid’s dog on Chevy Chase’s leg in the movie “Christmas Vacation”. SIU attacks offenses and much like a Cover 2 defense in football, strives diligently to keep everything in front of them. That will be a real challenge considering the style of play Kansas uses.

The Jayhawks have proven they can play the slowdown game as evidenced with wins over Oklahoma and Kansas State and should have beaten Texas A&M at home.

The one area to look at however is the spread situation. The magic number for Kansas is 70 points since they are 0-7 ATS when they failed to reach that number. Coincidently, Southern Illinois is just 3-5-1 ATS when they score more then seventy points.

The status of starting forward Matt Shaw will be even more important after the defense shutdown Virginia Tech without him. No matter how well the Salukis play on that end of the floor, they will need points to play with Kansas.

Southern Illinois will have great opportunity to cover if they keep the score down, as they are 16-4 ATS after 3 straight games where both teams score 70 points or less.

Discuss the Sweet 16 and post your picks in the college basketball betting forum.

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