SMU Mustangs vs Clemson Tigers odds: NIT semifinal betting preview

Joe Murphy

SMU is favored against Clemson as NIT betting odds take priority with March Madness in a lull.

The Southern Methodist Mustangs have seen the total go UNDER in eight of their last 10 games, allowing under 70 points in each of their last five.

SMU will try to stay strong on defense and advance to the NIT championship game as a 3-point favorite against the Clemson Tigers on Tuesday at Madison Square Garden.

Southern Methodist was on a 7-1 SU and 6-2 ATS run before going 0-3 SU and ATS over their last three games of the regular season.

It was the first time that the Mustangs had lost three straight games all season, but it was enough for the NCAA Tournament committee to snub the Mustangs despite a 23-9 SU and 17-10-1 ATS regular season.

SMU has made the most of its NIT Tournament bid so far with a 3-0 SU and 2-1 ATS record to advance into the semifinals.

Clemson's offensive struggles led the Tigers to finish the regular season mired in a 7-8 SU and 5-9-1 ATS slump. But after averaging just over 60 points per game during the regular season, Clemson has scored over 70 points twice so far in the NIT Tournament including in a come-from-behind win over Belmont to advance to the semifinals.

The Tigers are 1-2 ATS in the NIT Tournament so far.

The total could be hard to gauge in this matchup. While the total has gone UNDER in eight of SMU's last 10 games, it has gone OVER in 10 of Clemson's last 13 games. But with two Top-25 defenses in the nation going at it, points will likely be hard to come by in this matchup.

Clemson's defense ranks fourth in the nation allowing 58.2 points per game while SMU's ranks 21st allowing 62.3 PPG. The Mustangs have a more balanced scoring attack led by Nic Moore and Markus Kennedy, but Clemson's K.J. McDaniels is arguably the most dangerous player on the floor averaging 17.2 PPG this season.

Both teams play so well on defense and are fairly close in rebounding, making this an interesting matchup that will likely just come down to execution.

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