NCAA Tournament Betting: Can Clemson Upset Alabama in the Elite Eight?

Gabriel Santiago
Gabriel Santiago@gps_onthemic
NCAA Tournament Betting: Can Clemson Upset Alabama in the Elite Eight?

Very few things on the sports calendar can match the excitement and unpredictability of the NCAA Tournament. So why not add betting to the mix via the college basketball odds at FanDuel Sportsbook?

The 2024 edition of the big dance is ramping up the intensity, and here at FanDuel Research, we'll have you covered with a betting guide for each game.

After both teams won as underdogs in the Sweet 16, the No. 6 Clemson Tigers and No. 4 Alabama Crimson Tide will clash this Saturday night in the West Region final. With Arena as the venue, expect Hollywood's stars to turn out.

On the gridiron, we have seen these same schools compete head-to-head for three CFP national titles over the past 10 years. Keeping that in mind, I'd imagine some of that history transfers into intensity on the basketball court come Saturday.

All signs point to a tight contest in Los Angeles. Entering the weekend, FanDuel Sportsbook has the Tide labeled as 2.5-point favorites. With the SEC and ACC both a long way from home, who will prevail?

All college basketball odds come from FanDuel Sportsbook, and lines may change after this article is published.

NCAA Tournament Betting Picks

Clemson vs. Alabama Betting Odds

Date and Time: Saturday, March 30th at 8:49 p.m. ET

Spread: Alabama -2.5 (-118)

Total: 164.5 (-110/-110)


  • Clemson: +126
  • Alabama: -152

Clemson vs. Alabama Statistical Breakdown

Advanced stats from KenPom, Bart Torvik and numberFire.


  • numberFire Ranking: 19th
  • Bart Torvik Ranking: 20th
  • KenPom Ranking: 19th
    • Adjusted Defensive Efficiency Ranking: 33rd
    • Adjusted Offensive Efficiency Ranking: 24th
    • Adjusted Tempo Ranking: 257th


  • numberFire Ranking: 11th
  • Bart Torvik Ranking: 14th
  • KenPom Ranking: 14th
    • Adjusted Defensive Efficiency Ranking: 104th
    • Adjusted Offensive Efficiency Ranking: 4th
    • Adjusted Tempo Ranking: 10th

Clemson vs. Alabama Best Bet

Under 164.5 (-110)

I'd like to preface the following by stating I completely respect that Alabama has been college basketball's top-scoring team in 2024. Still, going against Clemson and one of the highest totals (164.5 points) you'll see in March Madness, the wisest route appears to be under the bridge.

Head coach Nate Oats' Crimson Tide program did not win the SEC regular-season title nor conference tournament this season, but they were a fierce side on the hardwood nonetheless. As noted, they score fast and furiously, averaging 90.7 PPG behind the 10th-highest adjusted tempo rating. However, the Tide has not crossed over the 90-point threshold since the big dance's opening round. Also, they scored as low as 72 points versus Grand Canyon back in the Round of 32.

One of the lowest remaining seeds, No. 6 Clemson has been thoroughly impressive at the NCAA Tournament. Head coach Brad Brownell's group from Upstate South Carolina has been quite well-rounded. The Tigers surrendered only 70.7 PPG while playing in a tough ACC hoops circuit. Since the current big dance started, Clemson has tightened that defensive clip down to 64.0 PPG.

Earlier in the season (last November), the Tide and Tigers played a contest at Tuscaloosa's Coleman Coliseum. In that bid, Clemson won 85-77 despite entering as an eight-point road dog. Additionally, that combined total (162) falls under this Saturday's set number of 164.5.

I can absolutely see the Tigers (+126 moneyline at FanDuel Sportsbook) upsetting 'Bama for the second time this season, but I cannot say it is my most confident play. I like the under here -- as does numberFire's NCAAM game projections. We see an estimated score of 77.45-76.62 for Clemson, which presents a sum of just 154.07. Overall, numberFire suggests a 71.76% cover likelihood for the under.

The Tide operates with speed, but with Clemson's P.J. Hall clogging the middle at 6-foot-10, aspects could be slowed down in this game. In that same vein, the Tigers' adjusted tempo ranking comes in at 257th in Division I basketball.

Clemson vs. Alabama Prop Bet

P.J. Hall To Record 6+ Rebounds (-160)

The aforementioned Hall -- who is a South Carolina native -- has been one of Clemson's most consistent players over the past three seasons. In the current campaign, Hall is the Tigers' second-most productive rebounder (after Ian Schieffelin), bringing down 6.5 RPG heading into the Elite Eight.

Considering Alabama's run-and-gun style -- achieving the nation's seventh-highest clip at 64.7 field goals attempts per game -- on the hardwood, that could translate into increased rebounding opportunities for Clemson. In the scenario of an active game, I'd imagine Hall to be in the thick of it.

Over Thursday's victory versus Arizona, Hall brought down eight boards. When the Tigers and Tide most recently met, he hit that same number.

As the biggest player on either team here, Hall will at least have a natural physical advantage for this market. Crimson Tide guards Mark Sears and Aaron Estrada contribute a combined 25.2 shots per game, including 10.0 attempts from three-point range. Many of those will find the bottom of the net, but those that do not convert will make for favorable rebounding opportunities pertaining to Hall.

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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.