St. John's vs. UConn Prediction, Odds and Key Players for Big East Tournament Semifinal (Back Underdogs)

Mar 9, 2024; New York, New York, USA; St. John's Red Storm guard Daniss Jenkins (5) drives past
Mar 9, 2024; New York, New York, USA; St. John's Red Storm guard Daniss Jenkins (5) drives past / Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

St. John's likely secured an NCAA Tournament berth with a second round win against Seton Hall, but now face the reigning National Champion Connecticut Huskies in the semifinals.

The Huskies are viewed as the favorites to win it all again, but St. John's has competed with them on both occasions. Can the Red Storm make some noise on its semi home floor of Madison Square Garden and make it tough for UConn yet again?

Here's our full betting preview for Friday's semifinals showdown:

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St. John's vs. UConn Odds, Spread and Total

UConn vs. St. John's Betting Trends

  • UConn is 21-11 against the spread (ATS) this season
  • St. John's is 16-16 ATS this season
  • St. John's has gone OVER in six of 10 games as an underdog

St. John's vs. UConn How to Watch

  • Date: Friday, March 15th
  • Game Time: 5:30 PM EST
  • Venue: Madison Square Garden
  • How to Watch (TV): Fox Sports 1
  • St. John's Record: 20-12
  • UConn Record: 29-3

St. John's vs. UConn Key Players to Watch

St. John's

Daniss Jenkins: For St. John's to keep up, the team's ball pressure is going to have cause some havoc and get the Red Storm some extra possessions. A lot of that will fall on Jenkins, the man likely tasked with slowing down Tristen Newton and the potent UConn offense. He has at least one steal in every game since January 24th.


Tristen Newton: In the meeting at MSG on February 3rd, UConn got a monster contribution from Newton, who scored 18 points with 10 rebounds and seven assists, but did have six turnovers. Can he clean it up and help put the Red Storm away?

St. John's vs. UConn Prediction and Pick

From today's Daily Dunk:

The Johnnies have played the Huskies tough this season, losing by four at UConn (Huskies big man Donovan Clingan didn't play) and then squandering a one-point halftime lead at Madison Square Garden en route to a 13-point defeat.

The Red Storm have been playing its best ball at the right time, 21st in adjusted efficiency according to Bart Torvik. Rick Pitino's bunch has been upping its intensity by turning foes over at the 54th-highest percentage in the nation and 19th in offensive rebounding rate. Of course, UConn is a cut above the rest, but keep an eye on an off-night coming from the Huskies.

ShotQuaity deems that the team is owed a six percent rise in three-point field goal percentage and the team has eased off its ball pressure of late, 242nd in turnover rate since February 1st. Further, the team is right at the league average in terms of coughing the ball up through Big East play.

This spread at MSG closed UConn -3.5 in early February. While there is no denying that the Huskies are the best team in the country, I'll take the Red Storm to keep up its fine form and keep this game competitive on its pseudo-home court with some looming regression for the defending champs.

I also don't hate a look at the first-half spread if St. John's jumps out to a hot start similar to have Xavier did in the first half.

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.

Track Reed's bets here!