Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio hosts a second round matchup between intriguing mid-major teams on Sunday evening. The No. 9 seed Florida Atlantic Owls face the No. 16 seed Fairleigh Dickinson Knights in the East Region of the 2023 NCAA Tournament. FAU upended No. 8 seed Memphis in the first round, improving to 32-3 overall with an eighth consecutive victory. Fairleigh Dickinson executed a monumental upset win over No. 1 seed Purdue to advance with a 21-15 overall record.

Tipoff is at 7:45 p.m. ET in Columbus. The Owls are 15.5-point favorites, while the over/under, or total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, is 148.5 in the latest Fairleigh Dickinson vs. FAU odds. Before making any FAU vs. Fairleigh Dickinson picks, be sure to check out the college basketball predictions and betting advice from SportsLine's Matt Severance

Severance is a well-connected writer and handicapper who has worked in the industry since 2005. He is SportsLine's top college basketball expert and is on a sizzling 159-99-1 (+2157) roll on his picks. Anyone following him is way up.

Now, he has set his sights on FAU vs. FDU and revealed his coveted picks and predictions for the NCAA Tournament 2023. You can head to SportsLine to see the picks. Here are several college basketball odds and trends for FDU vs. FAU:

  • Fairleigh Dickinson vs. Florida Atlantic spread: FAU -15.5
  • Fairleigh Dickinson vs. Florida Atlantic over/under: 148.5 points
  • Fairleigh Dickinson vs. Florida Atlantic money line: FAU -1100, FDU +700
  • FDU: The Knights are 6-4 against the spread in the last 10 games
  • FAU: The Owls are 6-4 against the spread in the last 10 games
  • Fairleigh Dickinson vs. Florida Atlantic picks: See picks at SportsLine

Why Fairleigh Dickinson can cover

Fairleigh Dickinson had an excellent defensive game in the win over Purdue. The Knights held Purdue to 58 points, including 36% from the field and 5-26 from 3-point range. Fairleigh Dickinson also forced 16 turnovers, including 11 steals, and the Knights create a giveaway on 21.5% of defensive possessions this season. On offense, Demetre Roberts leads the way for Fairleigh Dickinson, and the senior guard is leading the team with 16.5 points and 4.3 assists per game. 

The Knights had the best offense in the Northeast Conference this season, and FDU is shooting 75.8% from the free throw line this season. FDU averages 14.8 assists per game while giving the ball away on only 16.4% of possessions, and the Knights have a sparkling 31.0% offensive rebound rate. FAU is near the bottom of the country with a 6.6% block rate, and Fairleigh Dickinson is shooting 51.3% inside the arc in 2022-23.

Why Florida Atlantic can cover 

Florida Atlantic's offense is keyed by sophomore guard Johnell Davis, who leads the team with 13.5 points per game while adding 5.2 rebounds per contest. Davis is shooting 39.3% from 3-point range, with double-figures in scoring in seven straight games. The Owls led Conference USA in offensive efficiency this season, and FAU is very strong in shooting metrics, including 37.0% from 3-point range and 54.0% inside the arc. FAU is above-average in turnover prevention and offensive rebound rate, with Fairleigh Dickinson ranking in the bottom 10 of the nation in adjusted defensive efficiency. FDU gives up 56% 2-point shooting, one of the worst marks in the country, and the Knights yield 14.8 assists per game. 

On the other end, FAU is strongly above-average in overall efficiency, and the Owls give up only 45% shooting on 2-point attempts. FAU also projects to have a considerable advantage on the defensive glass, securing more than 75% of missed shots this season, and the Owls give up fewer than eight assists per game to opponents.

How to make FAU vs. Fairleigh Dickinson picks

Severance has analyzed this matchup and while we can tell you he's leaning Under the point total, he has discovered a critical X-factor that has him jumping all over one side of the spread. He's only sharing what it is, and which side to back, at SportsLine.

Who wins Fairleigh Dickinson vs. Florida Atlantic? And which critical X-factor makes one side of the spread a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to see Severance's Fairleigh Dickinson vs. Florida Atlantic picks, all from the expert who is crushing college basketball, and find out.