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CBB • Saturday Service Plays • 1/23/16

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    NCAA Basketball Betting 3-Point Play: Three Interesting Jan. 23 Opening Lines
    by Alan Matthews

    I mentioned earlier this week that I felt obligated to preview every game played by No. 8 SMU going forward as the Mustangs are college basketball’s only unbeaten left. And I actually think Coach Larry Brown’s team had a good shot of falling Saturday evening at Temple. Alas, that game was postponed by that winter storm crushing the Northeast — as have some others, including No. 16 Providence at No. 4 Villanova — so it will now be played Sunday. I believe that increases Temple’s chances even more, by the way. But since I can’t look at that game for a busy Saturday, here are three others.

    No. 20 Duke at NC State (+2.5)

    A 2 p.m. ET start on CBS — assuming the game is played as the Carolinas are being blasted by the winter storm too. Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski might want the game postponed to get his guys more practice time as the Blue Devils (14-5, 3-3) have stunningly lost three in a row for the first time since the 2006-07 team dropped its final four games. That was also the last time Duke fell out of the Top 25, and that will happen for sure with another loss here; it might even with a close win. Duke, which hadn’t lost three straight to unranked teams since the 1968-69 season, was beaten 64-62 at home by Syracuse on Monday. There’s still a ton of talent on this team, but it’s a very thin group since losing big man Amile Jefferson to a foot injury. He remains out indefinitely. Monday’s loss to the Orange was already Duke’s fifth, on Jan. 18. The last time a Blue Devils team had five losses on Jan. 18 was in 1995-96. The post-game news conference of the year was when Coach K addressed the media following that loss as he kept saying the word “amazing” instead of criticizing the refs for what he thought was blown call in the final seconds. Well-played, Coach K!

    NC State (11-8, 1-5 ACC) has way too much talent to be 1-5 in the ACC, but maybe the Wolfpack are about to turn things around following a 78-61 win Tuesday at Pittsburgh, which is never an easy place to win. ACC leading scorer Anthony “Cat” Barber had 31 points for NCSU. He just hasn’t been getting much support. Barber did vs. Pitt as Abdul-Malik Abu had 16 points and 10 rebounds. The Wolfpack have beaten the Blue Devils in Raleigh in three of the last four meetings, including when Duke was ranked No. 2 last season, 87-75.

    Key trends:
    NC State is 2-5 ATS in its past seven following a win. It is 1-4 ATS in its past five at home. The home team is 5-1 ATS in the past six meetings.

    I’m leaning:
    Just can’t see the Blue Devils dropping four straight. Take Duke.

    No. 7 Maryland at No. 11 Michigan State (-3.5)

    Big Ten game at 6:30 p.m. ET on ESPN. And I’m sticking with a theme here of a potential national title contender on a shocking three-game losing streak as that’s also the case with former No. 1 team Michigan State (16-4, 3-4), although I always thought Sparty was a tad overrated. This team wasn’t supposed to be as good as last year’s that surprisingly reached the Final Four. Denzel Valentine was the national player of the year favorite before he went down with an injury that cost him four games. He hasn’t been quite as good since returning. You can understand Sparty losing at home to a good Iowa team and even last Sunday at Wisconsin by just a point. But falling in East Lansing to Nebraska on Wednesday shouldn’t happen. That was also a one-point loss, and for the second straight game Valentine couldn’t deliver a potential winning shot. The Spartans also miss point guard Tum Tum Nair, who has missed the past two due a foot injury and is out indefinitely. His injury has forced Valentine into almost a full-time point guard role.

    Maryland (17-2, 6-1) is clearly the Big Ten’s most talented team with likely 2016 lottery picks in freshman Diamond Stone and sophomore Melo Trimble. The Terps have won two straight since a close loss at Michigan, but they were lucky to escape at home against Northwestern on Tuesday, winning 62-56 in OT. Stone made a pivotal three-point play with 1:13 left in OT and Maryland won despite scoring only 17 points in the second half. It had 14 in the five-minute overtime. Northwestern took 17 more shots than Maryland and made two more baskets (23-21), but the Terps scored 16 points from the free-throw line compared to five for Northwestern. In conference play, Stone is averaging 17.6 points per game while shooting 65.0 percent from the field. Maryland won both regular-season meetings with MSU last year, but the Spartans won in the Big Ten Tournament.

    Key trends:
    The Terps are 7-2 ATS in their past nine road games. They are 10-3 ATS in their past 13 vs. the Big Ten. MSU is 2-7 ATS in its past nine Big Ten games.

    I’m leaning:

    No. 12 Arizona at California (+2)

    Pac-12 matchup at 8:30 pm. ET on ESPN. Arizona (16-3, 4-2) has bounced back from being swept in the Los Angeles swing — by a combined five points — with three straight blowout wins. The Wildcats won 71-57 at Stanford on Thursday, their 12th straight victory in the series. Arizona, which entered averaging 93.6 points in Pac-12 games, got 19 points from Gabe York and held Stanford to just 30.6 percent from the field. The Cats remain without two players in Allonzo Trier and Elliott Pitts. Trier was lost for 4-6 weeks recently to a broken right hand. He has missed the past three games. The freshman was averaging 14.8 points and 3.5 assists. Pitts, a reserve, has been out weeks for mysterious reasons.

    California (13-6, 3-3) began life without one of its best players on Thursday but beat Arizona State 75-70 to end a three-game losing streak. That player would be senior guard Tyrone Wallace, who will miss 4-6 weeks with broken bone in his hand. He leads the Bears with 15.4 points, 4.6 assists and 1.1 steals per game and is third with 5.1 rebounds per game. The earliest he could return would be Feb. 18 at Washington. Seldom-used Sam Singer moved into the starting lineup vs. ASU and played quite well with six points, six rebounds and eight assists in 35 minutes. Cal is 12-0 at home this season. The Bears were blown out by Arizona three times last year.

    Key trends:
    Wildcats are 8-2 ATS in their past 10 after a win. They are 7-3 ATS in their past 10 on the road. Cal is 1-7 ATS in its past 11 following an ATS loss. Arizona is 4-0 ATS in the past four meetings.

    I’m leaning:


    NEWSLETTER College Basketball Prediction From Robert Ferringo

    Take Seton Hall (+11) over Xavier (2 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 23)
    Very quietly Seton Hall has started to play some very good basketball, and they are a team that will at least make a push for an NCAA Tournament berth over the last month-plus of the season. There isn’t nearly the drop-off from the top tier in the Big East to the second tier this season, and teams like Creighton and Seton Hall have already proven they can play with the big boys in the league. Seton Hall only lost by nine at Villanova and they beat Providence badly on the road last Saturday. Kevin Willard seems to have harnessed some of his good young talent, and guard Isaiah Whitehead is one of the best players that no one talks about. I think Seton Hall matches up really well with Xavier. And the X-Men, who were just slaughtering people early in the season, are due to have the books catch up with them. They are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 games and 12-5 ATS on the season. Eventually they are going to get priced out of the market, and this could be a perfect example. The Pirates are 5-1 ATS in their last six games against a team with a winning record, and I think that Seton Hall makes this one a game. I’d take it at anything over 10.


    NEWSLETTER College Basketball Prediction From Strike Point Sports

    Take Kentucky over Vanderbilt (4 p.m., Saturday, January 23)
    The Wildcats have disappointed this year relative to their lofty expectations. But at home following a road loss at Auburn last weekend, UK needs a response. Just the same, Vanderbilt has been pretty poor away from its Nashville home-court advantage. The Commodores have lost all four road games this year, while Kentucky have maintained a perfect 10-0 record in Lexington. Even UK’s last home win against Mississippi State over a week ago was an underwhelming result (six-point win), so I expect a renewed sense of interest from this young team that can’t afford many more slip ups if they want to maintain a high seed for the NCAA Tournament.
    Go with the home chalk and Kentucky in this one.


    Hot & Not Report
    By Joe Williams

    ‘Who’s Hot’

    It’s late January, and many bettors and casual fans are well versed in the big-name teams, but there is nothing wrong with going with the little schools. Winners are winners, and the money is just as green. Let’s touch on a few unheralded teams making the grade against the number, as well as some lesser schools struggling against the spread (ATS).

    IUPU-Fort Wayne Mastodons (14-2 ATS L/16)
    – Have you ever had that out-of-the-way restaurant you only tell your really, really good friends about, because you don’t want the place to get overhyped and prices to go up? I consider the Mastodons of the Summit League my private little getaway. They consistently cash winners, covering 14 of their 16 games this season, including a perfect 5-0 ATS mark in their five games with a spread at home this season. That’s where they’ll be Saturday when rival IUPUI pays a visit to Fort Wayne. The Mastodons have covered 35 of their past 51 league games, and tney’re 25-9-2 ATS in their past 36 at home, so this isn’t new that they’re covering numbers. And the favorite has hit in four of the past five meetings in this series, with the Mastodons 4-1 ATS in the past five meetings. IUPUFW will get a stern test Thursday at Oral Roberts, but they might be a good value, too.

    North Dakota Fighting Hawks (8-1-1 ATS L/10)
    – On the surface, a 9-9 straight-up record doesn’t instill a lot of confidence for North Dakota bettors, but a 5-0-1 ATS mark over their past six, and 8-1-1 ATS over the past 10, is sure to get people excited. Most of UND’s struggles against the spread came in a week-long stretch against some stiffer competition, including a blowout loss vs. Northern Iowa Nov. 28. That bad loss seemed to galvanize the team. That coupled with stepping into conference play has been the perfect storm, and UND is playing much better basketball as a result. They have won three of their past four straight up, and they’re 3-1-1 ATS in their past five at home. UND can score, too. They hung 101 on Northern Arizona Thursday night, have hit 84 or more in three of the past four, and the ‘over’ has hit in five of their past seven if you like totals.

    UCF Golden Knights (12-2 ATS L/14)
    – The Knights have won four of their past five straight up, and covered the spread in each, and they’re an impressive 12-2 ATS overall this season. They hit the road for Tulsa Sunday afternoon looking to improve on their 5-1 ATS mark in six road outing this season. The Golden Hurricane is just 3-3-1 ATS in its past seven home games, so UCF is a good value play based on their overall success against the number this season. We’ll get a much better idea of just how improved this Knights team is when Memphis and UConn visit next week.

    ‘Who’s Not’

    Cal Poly SLO Mustangs (2-6 ATS L/8)
    – If you’re an east coast bettor and love to stay up late and make money, the Big West Conference has a pair of teams to roll against. Cal Poly has been a dominant team in the past, but they’re in a major rebuilding phase and really struggling straight up and against the number. They shocked a previously dependable Long Beach State team Jan. 16 with an overtime win, but they’re just 2-6 ATS in their past eight outings overall. They’ve been especially bad on the road or on neutral courts, going 1-6 ATS in their past seven. Remember that when they head to Cal State Fullerton Saturday evening, as the Titans are 3-1 ATS in their past four games overall.

    Southern Utah Thunderbirds (2-11 ATS L/13)
    – The Thunderbirds of SUU probably shouldn’t be at the Division I level, as they have really struggled year in and year out since their lone NCAA Tournament appearance in 2001. They have been a bettors friend while fading them on a regular basis lately, and they haven’t protected their home court well. The T-Birds are 1-5 ATS in their past six in Cedar City, and they host North Dakota Saturday before heading out to Idaho State Thursday. We discussed UND’s success above, and Idaho State is 9-4 ATS in their past 13. It looks like another long week for SUU, but a successful week for bettors going against them.

    UC Davis Aggies (2-9 ATS L/11)
    – The Aggies of the Big West Conference snapped a three-game non-cover skid Thursday with a win over UC Riverside despite being short dogs at home. Still, UC Davis has been a good team to pick on, as they have failed to cover in nine of their past 11 games overall, including a 1-5 ATS mark in their past six road games. They play a strong Hawaii (15-2 SU, 6-5 ATS) team which has been dominant at home with a 12-1 SU mark. Davis also faces Cal State Fullerton Wednesday, and the Titans are 3-1 ATS in their past four.

    Total Notes

    — Drexel has hit the ‘under’ in five straight, and 13 of their past 14 games overall. They host UNC Wilmington Saturday, and Towson Thursday in Colonial Athletic Association play.

    — Long Beach State has had a nice ‘over’ streak lately, especially on the road. The ‘over’ has connected in 14 of their past 17 games overall, and all 12 of their outings on the road or on a neutral court.

    — Tennessee State is on a 1-5-1 ‘under’ streak in OVC play. They travel to Belmont Saturday to face a Bruins team which has hit the under in three of the past four.

    — UC Davis heads Hawaii at 11:59pm ET Saturday. If you like ‘under’ plays, you love the Aggies lately. The ‘under’ has cashed in three straight, and seven of their past eight.


    Saturday’s Big 12 Tip Sheet
    By David Schwab

    The Big 12 currently boasts three teams in the first six spots of the AP’s latest Top 25, but that should change following a costly loss earlier this week by all three of these national powers. Turning to this Saturday’s early afternoon college hoops slate, all three teams will get a chance to get back to their winning ways.

    No. 1 Oklahoma Sooners at No. 13 Baylor Bears
    (12 p.m. ESPN2)

    Betting Point-spread: PICK

    Betting Matchup

    Oklahoma’s stay at the top spot in the national polls should be brief following this past Monday’s 82-77 loss to Iowa State as a two-point road underdog. It was the seventh time the Sooners failed to cover against the spread in their last eight games. It was also the third-straight game in which they failed to score more than 80 points as opposed to a season-average of 85.7 points per game that is ranked fourth in the nation. Oklahoma is also one of the top rebounding teams in the country with 42.9 a game.

    The Bears could make a major jump in the polls with a win on Saturday after going 5-0 SU and 4-1 ATS in their last five games. They did fail to cover their last time out in a 79-72 win against Kansas State as 8 ½-point home favorites and the total went OVER the closing 139 ½-point line. It has now gone OVER in four of six conference games this year. Baylor matches-up well against the Sooners with an average of 80.7 points and 39.9 rebounds a game. It has the third-best shooting percentage (48.1) from the field in the Big 12.

    Betting Trends

    The Sooners are just 2-12 ATS in their last 14 conference games and they have failed to cover in their last four games played on Saturday. The total has stayed UNDER in 10 of their last 14 road games.

    The Bears are 3-8 ATS in their last 11 games following a SU win, but they are 4-1 ATS in their last five games against a team with a SU winning record. The total has gone OVER in four of their last five Saturday games.

    Head-to-head in this Big 12 tilt, Oklahoma has gone 12-3-2 ATS in its last 17 road games against Baylor and the total has UNDER in three of the last five meetings.

    No. 6 West Virginia Mountaineers at Texas Tech Red Raiders
    (1 p.m. ESPNEWS)

    Betting Point-spread: West Virginia -2 ½

    Betting Matchup

    West Virginia is another Big 12 team that should take a tumble in the national rankings after suffering a stunning 56-49 loss to Texas this past Wednesday as a heavy 12-point home favorite. The total stayed well UNDER the 146-point closing line and it has now stayed UNDER in its last four games. This followed a big 74-63 victory over Kansas as a one-point home underdog and a tight 70-68 loss to Oklahoma as a 4 ½-point underdog on the road. Despite this major letdown against the Longhorns, the Mountaineers are still a solid scoring team with 82.3 PPG.

    The Red Raiders snapped a SU four-game skid with Monday’s 76-69 victory against TCU as four-point road favorites. They are now 2-4 SU and 3-3 ATS in conference play with the total going 3-3 in the six games. Both sophomore forward Justin Gray and junior forward Aaron Ross came off the bench in Monday’s win to combine for 30 points. The entire starting five for Texas Tech in that game combined for a total of 30 points. The bad news is that starting center Norense Odiase broke a bone in his foot and is out indefinitely.

    Betting Trends

    The Mountaineers are 5-1 ATS in their last six games following a SU loss and they are 6-2 ATS in their last eight games after failing to cover in their previous game. The total has gone OVER in 15 of their last 22 Saturday games.

    The Red Raiders are 7-2 ATS in their last nine home games and they have covered ATS in five of their last seven games played on a Saturday. The total has gone OVER in seven of their last 10 games following an ATS win.

    The road team in this conference matchup is 7-1 ATS in the last eight meetings and the total has gone OVER in four of the last five games between these two. West Virginia is 4-0 SU in the last four meetings with a 3-1 record ATS.

    Texas Longhorns at No. 3 Kansas Jayhawks
    (2 p.m. ESPN)

    Betting Point-spread: Kansas -9

    Betting Matchup

    Wednesday’s upset against West Virginia raised the Longhorns’ Big 12 record to 4-2 SU, but they are still just 2-4 ATS in those six games. The total has stayed UNDER in three of their last five games. Despite the big win, Texas still lacks consistency from one game to the next as far as putting points on the board. After scoring just 57 points in a one-point loss to TCU, it went on to put-up 94 points in an upset over Iowa State and 74 points in a win against Oklahoma State in these three previous outings. Junior guard Isaiah Taylor is the team’s leading scorer with 16.4 PPG.

    Kansas fell from the top spot in the national rankings with the loss to West Virginia on Jan. 12 and it should slide again following Tuesday’s stunning 89-67 loss to Oklahoma State as a nine-point road favorite. The Jayhawks are now 4-2 SU in conference play with a 2-4 record ATS. The total went OVER 142 against the Cowboys after staying UNDER in their previous three contests. Kansas is averaging 84.8 PPG this season, but this number has dropped dramatically to just 67.3 points over its last four games. Leading scorer Perry Ellis (15.8 PPG) has just 23 combined points in his last two starts.

    Betting Trends

    The Longhorns have failed to cover in five of their last seven road games and they are 2-5 ATS in their last seven games against a team with a SU winning record. The total has stayed UNDER in nine of their last 12 conference games.

    The Jayhawks are 12-5 ATS in their last 17 games following a SU loss and they are 4-1 ATS in their last five Saturday games. The total has stayed UNDER in five of their last seven games played on Saturday.

    Kansas has won four of the last five meetings SU with a slight 3-2 edge ATS. The total has stayed UNDER in six of the last eight meetings.


    Saturday’s Night Tip Sheet
    By Brian Edwards

    **Maryland at Michigan State**

    — Michigan State (16-4 straight up, 10-9 against the spread) will try to avoid an unfathomable four-game losing streak Saturday night when it takes on Maryland at Breslin Center. As of Friday afternoon, one offshore shop had opened the Spartans as 3.5-point favorites.

    — Tom Izzo’s team lost its third consecutive game Wednesday at home when Nebraska came into East Lansing and won a 72-71 decision as a 14-point road underdog. In his postgame presser, Izzo described his team’s situation as a “mid-life crisis.” Fortunately for the Spartans, they are accustomed to Izzo fixing flaws and getting his team ready to play its best basketball in March.

    — Denzel Valentine produced 24 points, six assists and six rebounds in the losing effort against the Cornhuskers. Eron Harris had 14 points in 22 minutes of playing time, draining all four of his attempts from 3-point range. The Spartans hit 11-of-18 shots (61.1%) from downtown and enjoyed the rebounding advantage (35-31). However, just as Izzo noted in his postgame presser, Nebraska shot at a 50.0 percent clip (29-of-58) from the field.

    — Since returning from an injury that kept him out for four games, Valentine is scoring at a 17.8 points-per-game clip. For the season, the senior slasher is averaging 18.3 points, 7.5 rebounds, 6.6 assists and 1.1 steals per game.

    — Maryland (17-2 SU, 9-10 ATS) is one-half game back of the Big Ten co-leaders, Indiana and Iowa, both of whom remain undefeated in league play. The Terrapins improved to 6-1 in Big Ten action with Tuesday’s 62-56 win over Northwestern in overtime. They failed to cover the number as 12-point home ‘chalk.’ Melo Trimble scored 18 points and dished out six assists, while Robert Carter tallied 10 points, 14 rebounds, three blocked shots, two assists and one steal. Diamond Stone was also in double figures with 11 points in only 15 minutes of playing time.

    — Like Valentine, Trimble is a likely All-American selection. The sophomore guard is averaging 13.9 points, 5.7 assists and 1.4 steals per game. Stone is averaging 13.5 points and 5.5 rebounds per game, while Carter is scoring at a 13.2 PPG clip and pulling down a team-best 7.0 RPG.

    — Michigan State has won eight of its 10 home games, posting a 5-4 spread record.

    — If the line holds and Maryland is an underdog, it’ll be just its second such spot this year. The Terps lost 89-81 at North Carolina as 7.5-point ‘dogs.

    — Michigan State is No. 30 in the RPI Rankings, going 4-2 against the Top 50 and 6-3 versus the Top 100. The Spartans’ top four wins including home victories over Florida and Louisville, in addition to neutral-court scalps of Kansas and Providence.

    — Maryland is No. 9 in the RPI Rankings, but it is winless in a pair of games against Top-50 opponents. The Terps lost 89-81 at North Carolina and 70-67 at Michigan. They have five Top-100 wins, including a neutral-floor triumph over UConn.

    — The ‘under’ is 11-8 overall for Michigan State, 6-3 in its home games.

    — Totals have been an overall wash for Maryland (9-9), but it has seen the ‘under’ go 3-1 in its four true road assignments. The ‘under’ has cashed at a 6-2 clip for the Terps in their last eight outings.

    — ESPN will have the broadcast at 6:30 p.m. Eastern.

    **Arizona at California**

    — Arizona (16-3 SU, 11-8 ATS) is tied for second place in the Pac-12 with Southern Cal and Oregon, with each team one game back of league-leading Washington. The Wildcats are 4-2 in conference action, while the Golden Bears are 3-3 in league play. As of Friday afternoon, one offshore book had UA favored by two points.

    — Since losing back-to-back games at UCLA and at USC two weeks ago, Sean Miller’s team has won three in a row both SU and ATS. Arizona thumped Stanford 71-57 as a 5.5-point road favorite Thursday night in Palo Alto. Gabe York hit four treys and finished with a game-high 19 points. Ryan Anderson added 18 points and eight rebounds, making all seven of his shots from the floor and 4-of-5 at the charity stripe. The Wildcats destroyed the Cardinal on the glass with a 41-25 rebounding advantage.

    — Anderson is UA’s leading scorer (15.0 PPG) who averages a double-double (10.1 RPG) and is shooting at a 57.1 percent clip from the field. Anderson, a transfer from Boston College, is draining 40.0 percent of his launches from 3-point range.

    — Arizona freshman guard Allonzo Trier is averaging 14.8 PPG, while York is scoring at a 13.7 PPG clip. Senior center Kaleb Tarczewski is averaging 10.5 points and 8.5 rebounds per game.

    — Arizona is the best rebounding team in the Pac-12 and ranks eighth in the country in rebounding margin (11.3).

    — California (13-6 SU, 9-10 ATS) is undefeated in 12 home games with a 7-5 spread record. However, Cuonzo Martin’s squad won’t have its leader in scoring and assists, as Tyrone Wallace (14.5 PPG, 4.5 APG) will miss his second straight game with a broken bone in his hand. Wallace isn’t expected to return until late February at the earliest.

    — Without Wallace for the first time all year, California snapped a three-game losing streak by knocking off Arizona St. 75-70 as a seven-point home favorite Thursday night. Ivan Rabb was the catalyst with 20 points, eight rebounds, six assists and three blocked shots. Jaylen Brown added 17 points despite fouling out and playing only 20 minutes due to foul trouble. Jabari Bird contributed 10 points and eight rebounds, while Sam Singer dished out eight assists and pulled down six boards. Jordan Matthews was also in double figures with 10 points.

    — Martin pulled a monster recruiting class last year, hauling in a pair of consensus Top-10 players in Brown and Rabb. Both have been ‘as advertised’ to date. Brown is averaging 14.9 points and 5.7 rebounds per game, while Rabb is averaging 12.7 points and 8.6 rebounds per game. Rabb, the 6’10” Oakland product from Bishop O’Dowd High School, has a team-best 27 blocked shots and is making 64.6 percent of his shots from the field.

    — Arizona is No. 26 in the RPI Rankings, going 2-3 versus the Top 50 and 6-3 against the Top 100. The Wildcats own road wins at Arizona St., at Stanford and at Gonzaga. They have a pair of wins over a likely NCAA Tournament team in Boise St. and blasted Washington by 32 points at home.

    — Cal is No. 48 in the RPI, compiling a 4-3 record against the Top 50 and a 5-5 mark versus the Top 100. The Golden Bears owns quality victories at home over Saint Mary’s, Davidson, Colorado, Utah and ASU. There was no shame in a 63-62 loss at Virginia and a 68-65 setback at Oregon.

    — Arizona has won four in a row both SU and ATS in this rivalry, including a 73-50 win at Cal on Jan. 24 of last season. The Wildcats beat the Golden Bears three times last year by margins of 23, 39 and 22 points.

    — The ‘over’ is 13-6 overall for the Wildcats after cashing in seven of their last eight contests.

    — The ‘under’ is 10-9 overall for the Golden Bears, 7-5 in their home games. However, they have seen the ‘over’ cash in three straight outings.

    — The ‘over’ has hit at a 20-8 clip in the last 28 head-to-head meetings between these long-time conference rivals.

    — Tip-off in Berkeley is slated for 8:30 p.m. Eastern on ESPN.

    **B.E.’s Bonus Nuggets**

    — Gonzaga is in legit danger of perhaps missing the NCAA Tournament for the first time since Mark Few took over the program in 2000. The Bulldogs dropped a 70-67 decision Thursday night at Saint Mary’s, but they did cover the number as five-point underdogs. Few’s team played its standard non-conference schedule featuring heavyweights like Washington, Arizona, UCLA, Texas A&M, UConn and Tennessee. But the Bulldogs are 0-4 against the RPI Top 50 and lost at home to BYU. We should note that Gonzaga’s five losses have come by just 15 combined points. The ‘Zags lost by one to the Aggies and the Cougars.

    — Since covering the spread in its first 12 games, Saint Mary’s has failed to cover the spread in three consecutive games.

    — If Monmouth (14-5 SU) doesn’t win its conference tournament, it is going to be an interesting case for the selection committee. The Hawks have quality wins galore, including road wins over teams in the Big Ten, Big East and Pac-12. They beat USC and Notre Dame on neutral courts, won by double digits at Georgetown and knocked off UCLA at Pauley Pavilion in the season opener. But Monmouth lost at Manhattan on Thursday night and also has defeats at Canisius and at Army.

    — Texas will be looking to pull a second straight upset on the road Saturday when it goes to Lawrence for a 2:00 p.m. Eastern tip. The Longhorns went into Morgantown on Wednesday night and beat West Virginia by a 56-49 count as 12-point underdogs. They’ll be significant ‘dogs again at Kansas.

    — Fresh off its fourth consecutive victory in Big Ten play, Nebraska will attempt to cover the number for the sixth straight time when it hosts Michigan on ESPN2 at 2:00 p.m. Eastern.

    — Florida has won back-to-back games since losing at heartbreaker at Texas A&M. The Gators will collide with Auburn on Saturday night at 8:00 p.m. Eastern on the SEC Network. Bruce Pearl’s team brings plenty of confidence to the O-Dome after scoring consecutive home wins over Kentucky and Alabama.

    — Ole Miss might be without three starters for Saturday’s game at Mississippi State. Stefan Moody, the SEC’s leading scorer, is ‘questionable’ due to a hamstring strain.

    — If you don’t get the Pac-12 Network (Arizona State at Stanford at 11:00 p.m.), the last televised game on the board will be UNLV at Nevada. This game will tip at 10:00 p.m. Eastern on ESPNU. The Rebels are unbeaten in three games since firing head coach Dave Rice.

    — Can you name the mascot of the nation’s best ATS team? If you can, that’s impressive. If you can’t, it’s the IUPU-Ft. Wayne Mastodons, who are 14-2 versus the number. They host IUPUI at 7:00 p.m. Easter on Saturday night.


    College Basketball

    UConn won three of last four games with Georgetown, losing in double OT in last meeting three years ago. Hoyas won seven of last nine games; they’re 4-2 in true road games, losing by 4 at Maryland, 13 at Creighton. UConn won last two games by 15-18 points; they beat Ohio State by 20, Memphis by 3 in only top 100 home games. Big East teams are 4-0 vs AAC teams this season (3-1 vs spread).

    Oklahoma won five of last seven games with Baylor; Sooners won two of last three visits to Waco. Bears won last five games overall, are 3-0 in Big X home games, winning by 17-28-7ot points. Oklahoma lost two of three Big X road games with only win by hoop at Oklahoma State- they lost in triple OT at Kansas, by 5 at Iowa State. Big X home underdogs are 5-5 vs spread. Sooners are shooting 45.7% on arc, best in US.

    Kansas won 13 of last 16 games with Texas, winning last four here, by 10-26-31-5 points. Jayhawks lost two of last three games, losing by 19 at Oklahoma State last game, when they were outscored 43-29 in second half. Last eight Texas games were decided by 8 or less points; Longhorns won last three, winning last game at West Va. Big X home underdogs of 8+ points are 4-5 vs spread. Texas is 2-2 on road, losses by 1-8 points.

    Duke lost its last three games by total of nine points, could fall out of top 25 with loss in this game, vs NC State team they’ve beaten 14 of last 17 meetings, winning last eight played here, seven by 13+ points. Duek is 2-1 as ACC road favorite. Wolfpack upset Pitt for first ACC win in six tries; they’re 0-2 in ACC home games, losing by 5-7 points. ACC home underdogs of 6 or less points are 6-2 vs spread.

    Nebraska won its last four games after starting 0-3 in Big 14; Huskers are 0-5 vs Michigan in Big 14 play, losing by 1-16 in games played in Lincoln. Michigan split last four games after starting season 12-3; its one Big 14 road win in three tries was by 10 at Illinois. Michigan is shooting 40.2% on arc in league play. Big 14 home teams are 4-9 vs spread in games where spread was 5 or less points.

    UCLA is 3-2 in its last five games with Oregon; Bruins lost two of last three visits here, losing by 18 LY. UCLA won three of last four games after getting swept on Washington trip; Bruins are 2-2 in true road tilts, winning at Gonzaga/Oregon State. Ducks are 3-0 in Pac-12 home games, winning by 3-13-8 points; Oregon is 15-4 against the #22 schedule, so they’ve been tested. Pac-12 home favorites of 5+ points are 7-4.

    Louisville won its last two games by 18-19 points since getting upset at Clemson; Cardinals are 4-1, 2nd in ACC- they’re 1-3 in true road games, with win by 5 at NC State. Georgia Tech lost four of five games after its 10-3 start; Jackets split pair of home games, with two games decided by total of 7 points. Louisville won 52-51 (-5.5) in Atlanta LY, in teams’ first ACC meeting- Cardinals have #3 eFG% defense in country.

    Kentucky is 11-2 in last 13 games with Vanderbilt, winning last seven in Rupp Arena, last four all by 9 or less points. Wildcats are 4-2 in SEC, with four of six on road; they swept Mississippi schools at home by 22-6 points. Vandy scored 78 ppg in winning last three games; they’re 1-4 in true road games, with three losses by five or less points SEC home favorites are 13-9 against the spread.

    Butler-Creighton split first four Big East meetings, going 1-1 in each gym with last three all decided by 5 or less points. Bulldogs’ two wins over Creighton LY were by total of 5 points. Butler is 2-5 vs top 50 teams, losing all four Big East games s top 50 teams- they’re 2-2 in road games, winning at Cincy, DePaul. Creighton lost two of its three Big East home games. Big East home favorites of 5 or less points are 4-3 vs spread.

    Michigan State lost its last three games, but is favored over a Maryland squad that is 11-1 in last 12 games, with only loss by 3 at Michigan. Big 14 home teams are 4-9 vs spread in games where spread was 5 or less points. Spartans are putting foes on foul line most of anyone in league, not getting there much themselves; they miss injured G Nairn. Maryland is 2-2 in true road games, winning at Northwestern, Wisconsin.

    Tex-Arlington won last three games with Ark-Little Rock by 4-7-9, with teams splitting two games played here. Teams are tied in loss column on top of Sun Belt. UTA won its three Sun Belt home games by 15-20-27 points. Trojans are 3-1 on Sun Belt, splitting pair of 3-point decisions in last two games. UALR force turnovers 23.3% of time (#10). Sun Belt home favorites of 8 or less points are 7-5 vs spread.

    Nevada is 3-2 in last five games with UNLV after Rebels had won eight in row over Wolf Pack before that. UNLV won five of six visits to Reno; they’re 3-0 overall since changing coaches, winning at Utah State in last game. Nevada is 3-3 in MW despite playing four of six games on foreign soil; Wolf Pack is 6-1 at home, with only loss by 7 to Boise. Mountain West home underdogs are 4-7 against the spread.

    Belmont/Tennessee State are last two unbeatens in OVC, Bruins won 11 of last 12 games with TSU, winning last six played here, with four of six won by 11+ points. Belmont won its last seven games after a 7-6 start, winning all three OVC home games by 26-8-18 points. State won its two OVC home games by 5-6 points; they lost by 5 at Tennessee in only top 100 game this season. OVC home favorites are 16-11 vs spread.


    StatFox Super Situations™ – FoxSheets

    Play On – A home team (CONNECTICUT) average 3PT shooting team (32-36.5%) against an average 3PT defense (32-36.5%) after 15+ games, after 5 straight games – allowing a shooting pct. of 40% or less
    46-18 since 1997. ( 71.9% | 26.2 units )

    Play Against – A road team vs. the money line (DUKE) off a loss to a conference rival as a favorite of 6 points or more against opponent off an upset win as an underdog
    126-73 since 1997. ( 63.3% | 49.6 units )
    0-3 this year. ( 0.0% | -3.4 units )

    Play Against – Road underdogs of 2 to 3.5 points vs. the first half line (OHIO U) average defensive team (42.5-45%) against a poor defensive team (45-47.5%) after 15+ games, after a game where a team made 50% of their 3 point shots or better
    46-18 since 1997. ( 71.9% | 26.2 units )
    1-0 this year. ( 100.0% | 1.0 units )



    100* Over 153 – Iowa State / TCU

    100* UTEP -6



    NC State +5



    Basketball Crusher
    Georgetown +4
    over Connecticut
    (System Record: 38-1, lost last 3 games)
    Overall Record: 38-45-2

    North Carolina State +4 over Duke

    Bradley +30 over Wichita State

    South Florida +17 over Houston



    Risked 5 units to win 4.55
    Baylor +2 -110 vs Oklahoma U

    Risked 4 units to win 3.64
    NC State +4 -110 vs Duke

    Risked 3 units to win 2.73
    Nebraska -1.5 -110 vs Michigan

    Risked 3 units to win 2.73
    TCU +9.5 -110 vs Iowa State

    Risked 3 units to win 2.73
    Vanderbilt +6 -110 vs Kentucky

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