Tennessee vs. Purdue odds: 2019 NCAA Tournament picks and top Sweet 16 predictions from model on 11-5 roll

Purdue, a 3-seed in the 2019 NCAA Tournament, is making its third straight Sweet 16 appearance and is seeking its first Final Four since 1980. Standing in its way on Thursday is 2-seed Tennessee, which held off a furious comeback from Iowa in the last round. The 13th-ranked Boilermakers (25-9) finished the regular season as co-champions of the Big Ten with Michigan State at 16-4, while the sixth-ranked Volunteers (31-5) tied Kentucky for second in the Southeastern Conference at 15-3. Tip-off from the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville is set for 7:29 p.m. ET, and the all-time series between the schools is tied at 2-2. The Volunteers are favored by 1.5 in the latest Purdue vs. Tennessee odds, while the over-under for total points scored is 147. Tennessee is -140 on the money line (risk $140 to win $100), while Purdue is +120 (risk $100 to win $120). Before making any Purdue vs. Tennessee picks of your own, see what the SportsLine Projection Model has to say.

This model, which simulates every game 10,000 times, has raked in the winnings for those following its picks. Over the past two years, the SportsLine Projection Model has returned over $4,000 to $100 players on its top-rated college basketball picks. It's also on fire in the 2019 NCAA Tournament, calling 14 of the Sweet 16 teams straight-up. Anyone who has followed it is way up.

Now the model has dialed in on Tennessee vs. Purdue. We can tell you it's leaning over, and it's also generated an against the spread pick that cashes in more than 50 percent of simulations. That one is only available at SportsLine.

The model knows the Volunteers have a rich tournament history, making their 22nd appearance in the Big Dance. Tennessee has been quite successful overall in recent years, finishing .500 or better in 13 of the last 14 seasons and earning an NCAA Tournament bid in nine of the last 14 years. Statistically, the Volunteers have the edge over the Boilermakers in several categories, including field goal percentage (sixth nationally at 49.6), scoring (ninth at 81.6 points per game) and free throw percentage (16th at 76.4).

Since the start of last season, Tennessee is 57-14, including a 78-75 win over the Boilermakers at the beginning of 2017-18. Junior forward Grant Williams leads the Volunteers in scoring at 19.3 points per game and has an uncanny ability to draw fouls, which could hurt the physical Boilermakers. Of his 675 points this season, 210 have come at the free-throw line, or 31 percent.

But just because the Vols are having one of their best seasons ever does not guarantee they'll cover the Tennessee vs. Purdue spread in the 2019 Sweet 16. 

Purdue, 16-3 in its last 19 games, is battle-tested. Of Purdue's nine losses this season, seven have come to NCAA Tournament participants and five were against Big Ten schools. One of the reasons for the Boilermakers' success has been its senior class. In fact, Purdue seniors Ryan Cline and Grady Eifert have compiled a 108-33 career record, most by a senior class in school history. Cline should give Tennessee fits from the outside after becoming just the third Purdue player ever with 100-plus 3-pointers in a season.

Defensively, the Boilermakers have cranked it up since mid-season. Through Jan. 31, Purdue was ranked 70th in defensive efficiency, according to KenPom. Now, the Northwest Indiana school ranks 26th. Tennessee will also have to keep junior guard Carson Edwards off of the free-throw line, as he's 38-of-39 (.974) from the charity stripe during the 2019 NCAA Tournament. 

So who wins Purdue vs. Tennessee? And which side of the spread hits in over 50 percent of simulations? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Purdue vs. Tennessee spread to jump on, all from the advanced model that is up more than $4,000 on its top-rated college basketball picks, and find out.

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