Arizona State vs. Syracuse odds: 2018 NCAA Tournament First Four picks from Sun Devils expert

Arizona State and Syracuse, two teams at the center of this year's "why are they in the NCAA Tournament" argument, face off Wednesday night in Dayton in a First Four game at 9:10 p.m. ET. The line has flipped since the opening line of Syracuse -1.5. Now, Arizona State is favored by 1.5. The over-under, or total points Vegas thinks will be scored, is 142.5.

Before picking a side to this clash of 11-seeds, you need to see what SportsLine handicapper Mike Tierney has to say. The West Coast-based sportswriter and veteran SportsLine analyst is an expert when it comes to the Pac-12, and he's been other-worldly when it comes to games involving the Sun Devils. Tierney has hit on nine of his last 10 Arizona State picks for a ridiculous 90 percent win rate.

Tierney has now examined every matchup, every player and every trend for Arizona State-Syracuse and locked in a strong against-the-spread pick.

Tierney knows Arizona State had a start to the season to remember, going 12-0 with wins over Xavier and Kansas -- two eventual 1-seeds in the Big Dance.

But the Devils didn't keep up the momentum. After the hot beginning, they went 9-11 the rest of the way, finishing in eighth in the Pac-10 (8-10) before getting bounced in the opening round of the conference tournament.

Syracuse, meanwhile, finished 8-10 in the ACC and was 4-9 against tournament teams.

If experience wins in March, give the edge to ASU. It top-three scorers -- Tra Holder (18.4 ppg), Shannon Evans (16.6) and Kodi Justice (12.6) -- are all seniors.

Syracuse has no seniors in its rotation, but certainly has skill in sophomore Tyus Battle (19.8), junior Frank Howard (15.0) and freshman Oshae Brissett (14.7).

This will also be a great contrast of styles. Arizona State ranks 14th in the nation in scoring at 83.5 points per game, but Syracuse, led by its 2-3 zone, is 15th in points allowed (64.5).

Tierney has found a critical reason to back a side, and it's something you're not even thinking of. Visit SportsLine now to see the strong point-spread pick for ASU-Syracuse, and see which key trend determines the outcome, all from the expert riding a 9-1 streak on Sun Devils games.

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