The No. 10 Miami Hurricanes face off against the No. 2 Auburn Tigers in the second round of March Madness on Sunday afternoon.
The Hurricanes pulled off a minor upset in the first round when they pipped USC, but things get tougher for them on Sunday with March Madness odds opening with the Tigers as 7.5-point favorites for this Midwest Region clash.
Here are our best free Miami vs. Auburn March Madness picks and predictions for March 20.
Miami vs Auburn odds
This odds widget represents the best odds available for each betting market from regulated sportsbooks.
This line opened at Auburn -7 with the total at 143.5. Early money has come in on Auburn and the Over, shifting the line to -7.5 and ticking the total up to 144.5 as of 10 a.m. ET on Saturday morning.
Use the live odds widget above to track any future line movements right up until tip-off and be sure to check out the full college basketball odds before placing your bets.
Miami vs Auburn predictions
Predictions made on 3/20/2022 at 9:40 a.m. ET.
Click on each prediction to jump to the full analysis.
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Miami vs Auburn game info
• Location: Bon Secours Wellness Arena, Greenville, SC
• Date: Sunday, March 20, 2022
• Tip-off: 7:45 p.m. ET
• TV: truTV
Miami vs Auburn betting preview
Miami: Harlond Beverly G (Out).
Auburn: Jaylin Williams F (Questionable).
Find our latest NCAA basketball injury reports.
Betting trend to know
The Tigers are 0-7 ATS in their last seven games following a straight-up win. Find more NCAA betting trends for Miami vs. Auburn.
Miami vs Auburn picks and predictions
Our side and total predictions are based upon our analysis of the line and total in this game. Our best bet is our favorite pick across all markets.
Auburn coasted to a 19-point victory against 15-seed Jacksonville State in the opening round. The Tigers held the overmatched ASUN program to 61 points on 30.6% shooting from two-point range and had a 46-31 edge on the boards.
Miami had a much tougher time against No. 7 seed USC but edged the Trojans 68-66 despite predictably getting owned on the glass (minus-11 rebounding margin) by the much bigger team. The Canes also went just 1-14 from beyond the arc, a massive outlier for a team that had an impressive 35.3 3PT% prior to that contest. The reason they won was steady ball-handling and tenacious pressure, with the Canes turning the ball over just three times and forcing the Trojans into a whopping 18 turnovers.
While they might not enjoy that extreme turnover margin against Auburn on Sunday, they should see some regression to the mean when it comes to their 3-point shooting. Limiting turnovers and strong play from guards Kameron McGusty, Isaiah Wong, and Charlie Moore has been the key to Miami's success this season.
The Hurricanes' horrible rebounding and ugly defense (144th in the country in adjusted defensive efficiency according to KenPom) has been their biggest weakness.
Auburn's biggest strength lies in big men Jabari Smith (17.1 points and 7 rebounds per game) and Walker Kessler (11.7 ppg, 8.2 rpg, and 4.5 blocks per game). The Tigers defend very well, especially at the rim, and looked like the best team in the country until February.
However, their shaky guard play and tendency to struggle away from home caused problems down the stretch, with the Tigers going 6-4 SU and 2-8 ATS in their last 10 games leading up to the Tournament.
Despite their lack of size and rebounding, the Hurricanes have shown that they can still hang with bigger teams such as USC and Duke (splitting a pair of games and going 2-0 ATS against the Blue Devils). They should be able to do enough on the perimeter to stick around against Auburn.
With the Canes going 23-8-1 ATS in their last 32 games as underdogs, we're backing them with the points.
Prediction: Miami +7.5 (-110)
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The Hurricanes average 74.6 ppg on a sizzling 47.7 FG% which is good for 20th in the country. Miami has four players averaging double-digits, led by McGusty (17.4 ppg on 47/37/82 shooting splits) and Wong (15.4 ppg on 46/31/75 shooting), while Moore pulls the strings with 4.5 assists per game.
The Tigers are an excellent defensive team, especially close to the basket, where Kessler patrols, but Miami's guards are a mismatch on the outside. And Auburn's biggest weakness on the defensive end of the floor is fouling, with the Tigers sitting outside the Top 300 in opponent free throw attempts. The Canes did an excellent job of getting to the line on Friday, taking 25 attempts at the charity stripe against the Trojans.
While the Hurricanes should have some offensive success against Auburn, they will struggle on the defensive end of the floor. The Canes don't have the length to match up with Smith and Kessler and, while they are among the top teams in the nation when it comes to steals, they also rank a woeful 299th in the country in opponent FG% (46.1%).
Prediction: Over 144.5 (-110)
The way these teams match up against each other, we're expecting a high-scoring game. The Canes can get buckets and managed to win on Friday, even though they had an off night in terms of outside shooting. But Miami also has the lowest adjusted defensive efficiency of any team left in the tourney and is facing a diverse Tigers attack that puts up 78.8 ppg and plays at a quick tempo.
The trends also support this play with the Over 6-1 in Miami's last seven neutral-site games and the Tigers 9-4 O/U in their previous 13 contests against teams with a winning percentage above .600.
Pick: Over 144.5 (-110)
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