Valparaiso vs. Belmont Prediction, Odds and Key Players for Missouri Valley Conference First Round

College basketball betting preview, prediction and best bet for Valparaiso-Belmont. 

Nov 17, 2023; Champaign, Illinois, USA; Valparaiso Beacons guard Isaiah Stafford (19) reacts after a call.
Nov 17, 2023; Champaign, Illinois, USA; Valparaiso Beacons guard Isaiah Stafford (19) reacts after a call. / Ron Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

The Missouri Valley Conference Tournament tips off Thursday afternoon across four different locations. Belmont is a double-digit favorite in a matinee matchup with Valparaiso at Enterprise Center after finishing the regular season on a tear. The Bruins were 5-7 in league play a month ago, but ended the regular season by winning seven of their last eight games. 

Valparaiso went in a different direction, going winless in February, losing 11 in a row overall before a win over Illinois State in the regular-season finale. Can they hang as big underdogs? Here’s the betting breakdown of Thursday’s tilt with a best bet. 

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Valparaiso vs. Belmont Odds, Spread and Total

Valparaiso vs. Belmont Betting Trends

  • Valparaiso is 18-12 ATS this season
  • Belmont is 15-15 ATS this season
  • Valparaiso is 15-9 ATS as an underdog this season
  • Belmont is 9-5 ATS as a favorite this season
  • The OVER is 16-14 in Valparaiso games this season
  • The OVER is 12-18 in Belmont games this season 

Valparaiso vs. Belmont How to Watch

  • Date: Thursday, March 7
  • Game time: 3:30 p.m. EST
  • Venue: Enterprise Center
  • How to watch (TV): ESPN+
  • Valparaiso record: 7-24
  • Belmont record: 19-12 

Valparaiso vs. Belmont Key Players to Watch


Cooper Schwieger: The 6-foot-9 freshman forward is averaging 13.2 points per game and leads the team in rebounding (5) while shooting 51% from the field. He’s shot 21-of-33 from the field over the last two games, scoring 54 points. He had 28 points in Sunday’s win over Illinois State to snap the Beacons’ 11-game losing streak. 


Cade Tyson: The sophomore guard is one of three different leading scorers for Belmont over the last three contests. Tyson had 25 points on 8-of-14 shooting in a win over Missouri State Feb. 24. Over the last three games, he’s scored 61 points on 21-of-34 shooting and had a double-double (19 points, 10 rebounds) in a win over Murray State Feb. 28. 

Valparaiso vs. Belmont Prediction and Pick 

Belmont is one of the best shooting teams in the country, clocking in at No. 22 in KenPom in effective field goal percentage and No. 19 in 3-point shooting. Valparaiso is the No. 303 team in the nation defending the perimeter and Belmont racked up 20 triples in two previous wins over the Beacons during the regular season. 

Belmont has the offense to pull away from opponents, but not the defense. Belmont is last in the MVC in scoring defense, giving up 76.3 points per game while allowing opponents to shoot 45.3% from the field. Belmont’s defense is No. 285 in effective field goal percentage and struggles inside the arc, ranking No. 313 in defending shots from 2-point range. 

Both teams have been great in this spot with Valparaiso going 15-9 ATS as an underdog and Belmont going 9-5 ATS as a favorite. The Belmont defense, though, makes it extremely hard to lay double figures and Valparaiso already has a cover as a double-digit underdog against Belmont on its resume this season.

The Beacons have covered four of their last five games, including a 3-1 mark in that stretch as a dog of 10-plus points. They add to that ATS mark Thursday afternoon. 

Game odds update periodically and are subject to change.