The Footprint Center in Phoenix hosts an intriguing, four-team event to showcase Historically Black Colleges and Universities. The event, officially named the 2021 Boost Mobile HBCU Challenge hosted by Chris Paul, features two days of action, and day two has a matchup between the Grambling Tigers and the Norfolk State Spartans. Grambling has won two straight to improve to 2-4 this season. Norfolk State is 7-1 following a win over Hampton on Sunday.
Tipoff is set for 6 p.m. ET. The latest Grambling vs. Norfolk State odds from Caesars Sportsbook list the Spartans as 4.5-point favorites. The over-under for total points is set at 138.5. Before making any Norfolk State vs. Grambling picks, check out the college basketball predictions from the SportsLine Projection Model.
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every Division I college basketball game 10,000 times. Over the past five-plus years, the proprietary computer model has generated an impressive profit of almost $2,100 for $100 players on its top-rated college basketball picks against the spread. Anyone who has followed it has seen huge returns.
- Norfolk State vs. Grambling spread: Norfolk State -4.5
- Norfolk State vs. Grambling over-under: 138.5 points
- Norfolk State: The Spartans are 4-1 against the spread in the last five games
- Grambling: The Tigers are 1-4 against the spread in the last five games
Why Norfolk State can cover
Norfolk State is playing well, and the Spartans have clear statistical advantages against Grambling. The Spartans are creating havoc on defense, forcing a turnover on 23.2 percent of possessions and generating a steal on 13.0 percent of trips. Both metrics rank near the top of the country, and Grambling is committing a giveaway on more than 27 percent of offensive possessions, ranking No. 355 in the country. Norfolk State should also have an edge on the glass, with the Spartans playing at an above-average level in defensive rebounding and Grambling currently posting a 59.2 percent defensive rebound rate that is one of the worst in the country.
On offense, the Spartans are highly adept at creating free throws and making 2-point shots, with senior guard Joe Bryant Jr. keying the attack with 15.8 points per game on 37.9 percent from 3-point range and 97.4 percent from the free-throw line. Grambling is allowing opponents to shoot 36.5 percent from 3-point distance, and Norfolk State should be able to establish an efficient baseline on offense.
Why Grambling can cover
The Tigers have the advantage in 3-point shooting in this matchup. Grambling is converting 40.8 percent of 3-point attempts, a top-20 mark in the country, and Norfolk State is shooting just 31.0 percent from deep. Norfolk State is outside the top 350 in 3-point attempt rate allowed, so Grambling should be able to produce quality looks from outside. The Tigers are also above-average in creating free-throw attempts, with Norfolk State currently ranking below the national average in free-throw prevention.
On defense, Grambling is forcing a turnover on 19.5 percent of possessions, a very strong mark, and opponents are shooting just 48.7 percent on 2-point attempts against the Tigers. Grambling also boasts a 9.1 percent block rate that is above the national average, and the Tigers contest shots at a high level.
How to make Grambling vs. Norfolk State picks
SportsLien's model is leaning under on the total, projecting 138 combined points. It also has generated an against-the-spread pick that cashes in over 60 percent of simulations. You can get the pick only at SportsLine.
So who wins Norfolk State vs. Grambling? And which side of the spread can you bank on in over 60 percent of simulations? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the spread to jump on, all from the advanced model that has returned almost $2,100 on its college basketball picks the last five-plus years, and find out.