Charleston vs. Alabama NCAA Tournament Round 1: How to watch, odds, and predictions for March Madness

March Madness is here and Alabama might need to be on upset alert even as a near double-digit favorite on Friday in Spokane Washington.

Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Nate Oats
Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Nate Oats / Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

In the 2023 season, Nate Oats led Alabama to a No. 1 seed, but Brandon Miller and the Crimson Tide flamed out in the Sweet 16. This year, with Miller in the NBA and Mark Sears as Oats’s leader on the floor, Alabama went 21-11 in the regular season, exited the SEC Tournament in the quarterfinals, earned the No. 4 seed in the West region, and drew the Colonial Athletic Association champs, the College of Charleston Cougars. 

The Cougars finished the year 27-7 and are a part of the madness for the second straight season under head coach Pat Kelsey. A season ago, Charleston won 31 games but exited the NCAA Tournament in Round 1 as a No. 12 seed. 

Charleston and Alabama both love to pull up from beyond the arc, shooting the 3rd and 4th most three-pointers per game respectively, so expect fireworks when they meet on Friday in Spokane Washington. 

How to watch Charleston vs. Alabama in the NCAA Tournament Round 1

  • Date: Friday, March 22
  • Time: 7:35 p.m. ET
  • Venue: Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena (Spokane)
  • How to watch: TruTV
  • How to stream: Fubo TV
  • Also: March Madness Live

Charleston vs. Alabama Round of 64 odds

Charleston vs. Alabama Round 1 prediction

The story of this game will be three-point variance. Charleston and Bama both average exactly 30.3 attempts from deep which ranks top 5 in the entire country. So, more than anything, this game will come down to who hits those shots. 

Charleston shoots 34.5% from deep while Bama hits 36.5% of their attempts this season. That may be the only thing that matters, and if Oats’s team, as a significant favorite, knocks down shots, they should win. However, when there is so much random variance in the equation, betting on the favorite is always a smart thing to do. 

Plus, Alabama should be on upset alert in the First Round of the tournament and beyond because of the lack of defense. The Crimson Tide allow 81.1 points a game (353rd in the country) and are 262nd in defensive efficiency. Meanwhile, Charleston ranks 151st in the same metric. This will be a high-scoring affair, but I’m taking the Cougars to cover, and to win outright. 

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