Connecticut vs. Purdue Predictions, Odds: 2024 NCAAB National Championship Preview

Two teams that have spent the entire season in the top five of the AP poll meet on Monday night in the 2024 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship. The battle between 1-seeds Connecticut and Purdue gives fans of college hoops the first national title game between two top-seeded teams since 2021 (Baylor-Gonzaga).

Reigning champ UConn has been dominant throughout the tournament for the second year in a row. Despite facing an opponent with a 34-4 record and the national player of the year, Zach Edey, the Huskies are heavily favored in Monday night’s game, which tips off at 9:20 p.m. ET on TBS.

Here, we will break down the Connecticut vs. Purdue predictions and odds. Select the bet you like most at one of our top sportsbook apps and sign up to place your bet.


Read More: Best College Basketball Betting Sites | March Madness Odds

Connecticut faced a dangerous semifinal opponent in Alabama and had to withstand a hot shooting night from the Crimson Tide to reach the title game. Bama made eight of its 11 three-pointers before halftime in Saturday’s matchup, but the Huskies still led by four at the break and won going away, 86-72.

While Purdue has a two-time Wooden Award winner surrounded by complementary role players, UConn has five players who average double figures. All five Huskies starters (Cam Spencer, Tristen Newton, Alex Karaban, Donovan Clingan, and Stephon Castle) against Alabama had at least 12 points, with Castle leading the way with 21 on 7-for-13 shooting from the floor.

Edey has been the most dominant player in the country the last two seasons, but Purdue showed in its Final Four win over NC State that it can win even when he’s held relatively in check. The Wolfpack “limited” the Purdue big man — who averages nearly 25 points and 12 rebounds per game — to 20 points and forced him into five turnovers. But the Boilermakers stifled NC State to win by 13 points despite shooting just 40% from the field.

Let’s get into the matchup and give our best Connecticut vs. Purdue betting pick.

Connecticut Huskies Betting Preview

The Huskies lost three games this year, but they’re still one of the more dominant teams in recent memory. UConn has blown out one quality opponent after another in this year’s NCAA Tournament, including San Diego State (Sweet 16), Illinois (Elite 8), and Alabama (Final Four).

Clingan is the best interior defender in the country and a possible lottery pick, and he leads one of the toughest teams in the nation defensively. Connecticut defends so well that it can win comfortably, even on cold shooting nights (the Huskies beat Illinois by 25 while shooting 3-for-17 from 3-point land).

As disprespectful as it may sound to Boilermakers fans, the following is a credit to Dan Hurley’s team, not an indictment of Purdue. If the Huskies’ shots are falling, they’ll probably win this game by 15 or more. If they struggle to make shots, they’ll still have an excellent chance to win by 8-10 points.

UConn is just that deep, and that’s good defensively. Purdue’s biggest strength, Edey, is facing a post defender in 7-foot-2 Clingan who will challenge him in ways no one has all season.

Purdue Boilermakers Betting Preview

Few players in the history of college basketball have put up numbers like Edey’s throughout his time in West Lafayette, Indiana. He almost singlehandedly knocked Tennessee out of this tournament with 40 points and 16 rebounds in his team’s Elite 8 win over the Volunteers.

It’s telling that in his “worst” game of Purdue’s run to the national title game, Saturday’s Final Four matchup against NC State, he still finished with 20 points, 12 rebounds, and four assists.

Purdue’s problem a year ago was its lack of shooting around Edey. It’s been much better in that area this season, as guards Lance Jones, Fletcher Loyer, and Braden Smith have all consistently made opponents pay for doubling Edey in the paint. The Boilermakers managed to keep State at arm’s length in the Final Four despite a poor performance from Smith (three points, five turnovers), as Jones, Loyer, and backup forward Mason Gillis went a combined 9-for-19 from outside.

If Edey can have his way with Clingan inside — and/or get him in foul trouble — Purdue has the shooting around him to stun the Huskies. For that to happen, though, Edey would likely need the best night of his illustrious career, given the caliber of rim protection Clingan provides for Connecticut.

Connecticut vs. Purdue Betting Trends

Connecticut Huskies

  • Connecticut is 9-1 ATS in its last 10 games, including 5-0 ATS in the NCAA Tournament. The Huskies have beaten the spread by at least three in all five NCAAT games, including by at least 10 in three of those.
  • The total has gone OVER in 1 of Connecticut’s last 10 games, with the UNDER hitting in all five of UConn’s NCAAT games.

Purdue Boilermakers

  • Purdue is 6-4 ATS in its last 10 games. The Boilermakers have covered in all five of their NCAAT games.
  • The total has gone OVER in 4 of Purdue’s last 10 games. The Over is 1-4 in this team’s NCAAT games.

Related Pages: Implied Probability Calculator | Moneyline Calculator

Connecticut vs. Purdue Predictions & Betting Pick

Stranger things have happened, but it’s tough to see UConn losing this game for a number of reasons. For one, while Edey deserves a ton of credit for taking advantage of his size advantage in every matchup, carrying his team’s offense against a defender like Clingan will be a massive challenge.

As for plan B, Purdue’s guards, especially Smith, have played well this year. But Newton, Castle, and Karaban (as well as reserves Hassan Diarra and Samson Johnson) have the size, experience and athleticism to shut down the Boilermakers’ playmakers in the backcourt.

Edey is outstanding at getting his defenders in foul trouble, and if he can draw some early whistles on Clingan, Purdue has a chance to at least cover. What seems much more likely, though, is UConn locking up the Boilermakers. The latter played great defense but struggled offensively against NC State.

The most likely outcome on Monday night is yet another comfortable victory for UConn, which has won 11 NCAA Tournament games in the last two years by an average of over 22 points per game.

Prediction: UConn to cut down the nets

Connecticut vs Purdue Betting Pick: Connecticut (-6.5 at time of publishing)

How to Watch Connecticut vs Purdue

  • Date: Monday, April 8, 2024
  • Tip-Off: 9:20 p.m. ET
  • Location: State Farm Stadium — Phoenix
  • Where to Watch: TBS

About the Author
Tyler Everett

Tyler Everett

Tyler Everett has been a sports writer since joining the student newspaper at his alma mater, NC State, back in 2008. He has covered sports, sports betting, and the business of sports for several newspapers and websites, including the Denver Broncos, Charlotte Observer, High Press Soccer, and Sports Business Journal.

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