D Esler | CBB Sides – Thursday, Feb 4 2016 9:00PM
#760 Brigham Young -2.0(-120) vs #759 St. Mary’s (Cal.)
Analysis: I will pay for -2 now – because as usual I want these out as soon as possible for those that can/want to wait. Not sure what this line will do, and there’s always the ML later – here we go: BYU hasn’t lost at home this season and they’ve got revenge for a beating earlier this season at St. Marys. In that last game, St. Mary’s took them a bit by surprise, scoring inside almost at will – which is just something SMC doesn’t typically do. This time, they’ll be prepared, and I like Rose as a coach quite a bit. Let’s not forget that in spite of St. Marys’ record, they didn’t face very stiff competition before starting WCC play, and BYU did. There’s a huge advantage here for the home team in terms of pace – BYU plays about as fast as anyone in the nation, and St. Mary’s plays about as slow as anyone in the nation. Add that to the altitude and if not sooner, then later – the Cougars should just tire these guys out. Let’s also not forget that the Gaels area VERY young team and this is by far their biggest and most intense road test. BYU has played a little tougher WCC schedule – SMC is NOT a great offensive rebounding team (which could suck against a team that will run) and BYU IS a great (#1 in the Conference) offensive rebounding team, which is obviously great for second-chance points as well as free throws, where they are a 70% shooting team in WCC play. BYU’s defense is #1 in the Conference in both steals and blocks – and in doing my homework I noticed that fans were camping outside the Marriott Center YESTERDAY for this game. BYU avenged a loss at Pepperdine the other night, and they do the same to the Gaels tonight. Oh, almost forgot, if I KNEW that Seljaas was playing for the Cougars I’d bet this bigger. I suspect that he will, but have looked at worst case scenario – point being any late line movement may well be due to whether he’s in or out. The same can be said for the Northeastern game – if I knew Quincy Ford was playing I’d bet them right now – but we’ll wait.
8:45AM EST – Yes, it’s great that the line is headed in our favor – but there is no reason to not bet this at -4 – and quite frankly it’s early enough in the cycle that I do think it comes back later.