Villanova  Kansas 

Event Date: 03/31/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

I firmly feel the surging Jayhawks (12-1 SU last 13) clearly possess the requisite team speed, firepower, three-point marksmen (10 triples pg at 40.3%), passing skills (16.9 apg), transition offense & smart shot selection to trade all the way with the Big East juggernaut, which is facing its most combustible arsenal thus far in the Big Dance after defeating over matched Radford, youthful, erratic Alabama, a defense-oriented “Press Virginia” & Texas Tech. Bill Self—who’s arguably done his best-ever coaching job—is a mastermind in devising an ultra-efficient halfcourt “O,” while the stiffening KU defense permitted a combined 13 of 49 from deep in the semi-finals & finals of the Midwest region. In a wild tourney featuring a plethora of buzzer-beaters, I envision this heavyweight battle to be decided in the final moments in San Antonio. Hey, Jay hawks profitable 12-5 as an underdog since 2014-15.

Pick: Kansas +5


Result: Loss
 
Michigan   Loyola Chicago 

Event Date: 03/31/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Meanwhile, after a wild bobsled ride into the Elite 8 with three wins by four points total, Loyola dispatched Big 12 Kansas State with relative ease last Saturday in Atlanta to reach the Final Four. Certainly, after beating ACC Miami and SEC Tennessee at the wire, plus hot Nevada in the Sweet 16, the Ramblers have proven their Missouri Valley membership is no hindrance against the major conference teams. The Ramblers’ lock down defense (62 ppg ranks fifth nationally) and shrewd shot selection (51% FGs & 40% triples) have served it well in March and a current 14-game SU win streak that extends to narrow Jan. 31 loss at Bradley. If Loyola bears more than slight resemblance to past Rick Majerus teams at Utah and (especially) Saint Louis, it's no coincidence, as HC Porter Moser is a Majerus disciple who worked for the "big man" with the Billikens, and whose Ramblers remind more than a bit of the best Majerus teams. Loyola has plenty of balance with five DD scorers, a functional big in rugged 6-9, 260-lb. frosh PF Cameron Krutwig, and plenty of size on the wings to shoot over the Michigan defense on the perimeter. In the end, as in the first three rounds, another close Loyola game can be expected. We think Beilein can manufacture enough offense for Michigan to advance, but it won't be easy. The oddsmakers, however, have made it a bit easier for me by providing enough cushion to justify a Rambler recommendation while I sit back and watch what happens in the final seconds.

Pick: Loyloa +5.5


Result: Loss
 
Kansas  Duke 

Event Date: 03/25/2018
Event Time: 5 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

At a short price, favor the Duke side, which owns the more potent, steadier inside-outside attack, featuring Bagley, Carter & Allen. The Blue Devils have a host of rangy Gs to extend their zone and keep the pressure on KU’s lethal marksmen of Graham, Newman & Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk. Coach K’s squad has been a steady money-maker, going 22-11 vs. the spread, including an 11-3 mark as a single-digit chalk. Duke will welcome KU’s fast-paced attack, and the Blue Devils are much better equipped for 2nd chance points, as they out-rebound foes by 9.1 caroms pg (4th nationally). And the Blue Devils have made the extra pass in the Big Dance, dishing out a whopping 44 assists in the first two rounds. In a battle between two tradition-rich programs who rank 2nd & 4th in all-time victories, Duke has won 7 of 9 meetings.

Pick: Duke -3


Result: Loss
 
Texas Tech  Villanova 

Event Date: 03/25/2018
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Don’t want to completely dismiss Texas Tech, which has dealt with a lot of diverse weapons and shooters this season (such as Oklahoma’s gunslinger deluxe Trae Young) and might have the defense to slow down Jay Wright’s nation’s-best 87 ppg offense. But there’s so much diversity on the Villanova offense that Chris Beard is going to have to devise a way to keep an eye on various shooters who are all comfy enough to float beyond the arc and who will stretch the Red Raider defense. Although the play making Keenan Evans seemed to be close to 100% last weekend when spearheading Red Raider wins over Stephen F Austin and Florida, neither of those sides has the diversity of Villanova. And while we think Texas Tech is beyond its late-season slump, it’s worth noting that the Red Raiders had not covered a spread in eight straight games before barely surviving that Saturday war vs. the Gators.

Pick: Villanova -6


Result: Won
 
Michigan   Florida State 

Event Date: 03/24/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Even with FSU springing a minor upset over Gonzaga, I will still lay short price with streaking Michigan, riding a 12-game win skein. The Wolverines are more tenacious on the stop end, And the most unique weapon on the court is 6-11 Moritz Wagner, who can attack the rim, smartly dish to an open man, or nail the 3-ball (40% from the arc). HC Beilein is adept at making half-time adjustments, and super-steady PG Abdur-Rahkman should be able to find seams in a ‘Nole defense ranked a lowly 211th in points allowed. Plus, Wolverines frosh Jordan Poole made a quantum leap in the confidence department by nailing UM’s amazing game-winning shot vs. Houston!

Pick: Michigan -4


Result: Tie
 
Kansas State  Loyola Chicago 

Event Date: 03/24/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

It can be argued with some conviction that to get this far, Loyola has faced tougher challenges (Miami-Fla, Tennessee, Nevada) than it will in the Elite Eight vs. Kansas State. A replay of the Wildcats’ root canal vs. UMBC might be in order; although that game was not played at an appreciably slow pace, K-State was decidedly sloppy (18 TOs) vs. the Retrievers. The latter is not something that afflicted Loyola in its sub regionals vs. the Canes and Vols when guilty of only an acceptable 10 TOs vs. each. Another nail-biter is almost assured in games involving the Ramblers, who have shown a knack for pulling out the close ones.

Pick: Loyola Chicago +1


Result: Won
 
Kansas  Clemson 

Event Date: 03/23/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Tiger defense will have its toughest test in the tourney, by far, vs. KU’s well-balanced (5 players avg. DDs) 4-G offense, which can attack the rim with zest or pop from deep, hitting 10 triples pg at a sizzling 40.3% (11th nationally). In fact, the Jay Hawks will welcome G-oriented CU, since the Tigers have nobody who can dominate in the paint like the Pirates’ double-double machine 6-10 Angel Delgado. Additionally, KU’s torrid-shooting 6-3 soph G Malik Newman (13.4 ppg for the season; 25 ppg last 5 games) has been in a steady groove down the stretch, while unheralded 6-5 jr. wing Lagerald Vick (12.1 ppg; 4.8 rpg) is a dangerous option as well, canning 10 of 16 from the floor (5 of 9 from distance) in the first two rounds. Note that the Tigers are only 4-5 their last 9 as a single-digit dog. So, I am compelled to lay a handful of points with KU, which has covered in this round of the tourney the last two campaigns, with comfy spread covers vs. Purdue (98-66 last year) & Maryland (79-63 in 2016).

Pick: Kansas -4.5


Result: Loss
 
Purdue  Texas Tech 

Event Date: 03/23/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 3 Units

Texas Tech has had some injury problems of its own in the past month, with key G Keenan Evans (17.8 ppg) having to fight his way thru a painful turf toe, and injury-prone C Zach Smith having trouble staying on the court for extended minutes. But the mid season form of the Red Raiders seemed to resurface in Dallas, as a healthier Evans (45 points in the two games in Big D) and frosh F Zhaire Smith (18 points in the second-round win over the Gators) highlighted Beard’s collection of diverse play makers. And the active Red Raider defense continued to be able to deliver key stops, as it has done for much of the season. Although the key to any advancement remains the continued health of the electric Evans, who was touch-and-go in his first few games following the toe injury before looking more like himself last weekend (Evans said he felt “about 85 percent” after the Florida win). Defense, however, travels in March. And that combination with a healthier Evans gives Texas Tech a chance to get to the Elite Eight. Besides, I'm more than a bit reluctant to recommend an investment on Purdue, considering the Boilermakers’ recent and considerable point spread shortcomings.

Gold Pick: Texas Tech +2


Result: Won
 
Villanova  West Virginia 

Event Date: 03/23/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 4 Unit Sweet 16 Game of the Week

I have thought that for much of the season, Nova was the best team in the country on the most nights. Though the Wildcats are hardly immune, having been dumped by Butler, St. John’s, and Providence along the way. Those losses, however, might be a valuable tool for a Nova bunch that, while still owning a couple of pieces from its dramatic title run in 2016, also has components that recall last year’s early sub-regional exit courtesy of Wisconsin, as well as those three losses this season, which Wright will make sure erase any overconfidence on his veteran squad.

Gold Pick: Villanova -5


Result: Won
 
Duke  Syracuse 

Event Date: 03/23/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

After all, the Orange are now getting increasing contributions on both ends of the floor from burgeoning 6-9 frosh Marek Dolezaj (5.6 ppg, 4.9 rpg), who contributed 17 points in his team’s 57-52 win over high-scoring TCU in the Round of 64. And, with Syracuse rim protector 7-2 jr. Paschal Chukwu (91 blocks) patrolling the paint area, the young Duke bigs figure to have face a tougher challenge in the rematch on a neutral site, where they won’t get the favorable whistle (in 1st meeting, the Orange attempted 10 fewer foul shots). Also, keep in mind that Boeheim’s bunch knocked off trendy Michigan State with the aforementioned Frank Howard on the bench for the final 6 minutes after fouling out! Note that the Orange are 7-2 their last 9 as an underdog.

Pick: Syracuse +11


Result: Won
 
Michigan  Texas A&M 

Event Date: 03/22/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

A&M is playing in its third Sweet 16 since the field was expanded to 64 teams in 1985. The Aggies are certainly oozing with confidence following their highly-impressive 86-65 romp over defending champ North Carolina. The Tar Heels, who were able to camouflage their lack of height with accurate outside shooting throughout the season, were fully exposed in the paint by A&M’s active, physical frontline tandem of 6-10 soph Robert Williams, a projected lottery pick, and 6-9, 270-pound jr. Tyler Davis, who poured in 18 points & collected 13 rebounds vs. UNC. And the Aggies have benefited from terrific backcourt play provided by blossoming 6-4 frosh G T.J. Starks, who’s amassed 36 points & 13 assists in the first two rounds. Plus, A&M mentor, Billy Kennedy praised the performance of 6-9 jr. F DJ Hogg, who chipped in 14 points vs. Roy Williams’s overwhelmed squad. And A&M would love to advance to the Final Four with a trip to San Antonio, just three hours from its campus in College Station. However, at a price of less than 2 hoops, prefer Michigan, even though the Wolverines’ season was saved in its thrilling 64-63 victory over tough Houston, thanks to reserve 6-4 frosh Jordan Poole, who nailed a deep buzzer-beater from tripleville. The Aggies figure to have some difficulty finding rhythm on the attack end vs. UM’s stingy defense (63.8 ppg; 8th nationally; 42.5% FGs), anchored by relentless 6-10 jr. F Moritz Wagner & emerging 7-1 soph C Jon Teske. Moreover, have to believe the well-designed Wolverine attack, expertly directed by 6-4 sr. PG Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman (12.6 ppg, 3.3 apg), will shoot more accurately from deep after combining for a wretched 13 of 46 from downtown in the first two rounds.

Pick: Michigan -2.5


Result: Won
Gonzaga  Florida State  

Event Date: 03/22/2018
Event Time: 0 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units Pick: Florida State +6


Result: Won
Nevada  Loyola Chicago 

Event Date: 03/22/2018
Event Time: 0 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units Pick: Loyola +1.5


Result: Won
Kentucky  Kansas State 

Event Date: 03/22/2018
Event Time: 0 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 3 Units Pick: Kentucky +5.5


Result: Loss
Utah  St Marys 

Event Date: 03/21/2018
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Utes and Gaels haven't met since 2013-14, but the two teams participated in a closed scrimmage prior to the season. "I haven't watched them all year but we played them early on and know their personnel,'' Gaels head coach Randy Bennett told reporters. "I'm familiar with their program and they are tough, physical and well coached.” St. Mary's appears to have gotten over the disappointment of being left of the Big Dance and has a chance here of earning a third chance at playing in the semifinals at Madison Square Garden with a win, after falling one game short in 2009 and 2016. Utah, the 1947 NIT champion and 1974 runner-up, is bidding for its first trip to the semifinals since 1992 with first-round exits in 2001, 2014 and 2017.The Gaels are 18-1 SU at McKean Pavilion (losing to only Gonzaga), where they've outscored opponents on average, 78.7-to-60.9 PPG but No. 1 seeds in this tourney are just 3-5 ATS. Take the points with Utah.

Pick: Utah +6.5


Result: Won
San Diego  Northern Colorado 

Event Date: 03/21/2018
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

San Diego has survived a couple of tests in the CIT, first gifted a travel-weary Hartford side that had made the cross-country journey on short notice last Monday, then facing a depleted Portland State and surviving a nail biter on Saturday. But these are distracting times nonetheless at Jenny Craig Pavilion in the wake of HC Lamont Smith’s recent controversial resignation, with asst. Sam Scholl filling in on an interim basis while a search for a new leader commences. UNC has more the appearance of a team that could bring home the CIT trophy, especially as it has fared well all season on the road, winning at South Dakota, Southern Miss, and Wyoming in pre-league play and surviving the vagaries of Big Sky travel. The Bears are seeking redemption from their gut wrenching Big Sky semis loss to Montana, when sr. F Tanner Morgan missed two FTs with less than a second to play in regulation time when making just one would have won the game. But a motivated Morgan bounced back to score 19 in Sunday’s win over Drake. And Arizona State transfer G Andre Spight (21.9 ppg) has been a season-long revelation and is closing his college career with a rush (25.5 ppg last eight).

Pick: Northern Colorado +2


Result: Won
 
Utah  LSU 

Event Date: 03/19/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Guard Justin Bibbins scored 15 of his game-high 21 points in the second half against UC Davis to help the Runnin’ Utes rally from an 11-point first-half deficit. Forwards Donnie Tillman and Tyler Rawson added 11 points apiece, but Utah will need more from senior forward David Collette, the team’s second-leading scorer (12.7) and rebounder (4.6), who finished with only six points and two boards, respectively, Wednesday night. The Utes’ defensive intensity, though, is a reliable constant as they allow an average of 68.4 points per outing and a 41.7 percent opposing field-goal percentage. Utah has won three of the four games against LSU

Pick: Utah -4.5


Result: Won
 
North Carolina  Texas A&M 

Event Date: 03/18/2018
Event Time: 5 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The defending national champion Tar Heels will counter with better team speed and perimeter shooting skills, assets they didn't rely on much during their 84-66 first-round win against Lipscomb on Friday. Luke Maye is one of the 6-8 starters for North Carolina, and he's also one of the most versatile players in college basketball, averaging 17 points and 10.1 rebounds while also converting 43.8 percent of his 3-point tries. North Carolina is 34-1 in NCAA Tournament games played in its home state. The only loss was in 1979 and have won two of three all-time against Texas A&M. Their lone loss came in the second round of the NCAA Tournament in 1980.

Pick: North Carolina -6.5


Result: Loss
 
Cincinnati  Nevada 

Event Date: 03/18/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Senior Gary Clark did his part in the first round with 11 points and 13 rebounds and is trying to lead his team in his final chance at NCAA Tournament success. "In this game, we had to adjust," Clark told reporters. "In every game, that's how it's going to be. You've got to adjust to how the team's doing. Our adversity allows us to do that well. Being my fourth year, tell young guys to just enjoy it, live in the moment and not get too riled up about the crowd and all that. Just do what we've been doing all year." One of those young guys is sophomore guard Jarron Cumberland, who exploded for 27 points and 11 boards.

Pick: Cincinnati -8.5


Result: Loss
 
Auburn  Clemson 

Event Date: 03/18/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Tigers won the SEC regular-season title but stumbled a bit down the stretch, losing three of their last five going into the conference tournament, where they fell to Alabama in their first game. Their offensive struggles continued against the Cougars, as they shot below 40 percent for the fourth straight contest. Leading scorer Mustapha Heron (16.6 points, 5.5 rebounds) scored 16 points and Desean Murray (10.4, 6.8) recorded a characteristic 11 along with seven boards, but Bryce Brown (16 points) struggled to find his stroke, going 3-for-10 from 3-point range.

Pick: Auburn -121 ML


Result: Loss
 
Purdue  Butler 

Event Date: 03/18/2018
Event Time: 12 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 3 Units

The Boilermakers held Butler, which averages 8.3 triples, to just one 3-pointer in the first 28 minutes in their December victory while building a 26-point lead. Sophomore guard Carsen Edwards, who leads the team in scoring (18.4 points), had a team-high 18 points in the first meeting with the Bulldogs, while senior forward Vincent Edwards, who is third on the team in scoring (14.5), finished with 15 points, including 4-of-5 3-pointers. Senior guard Dakota Mathias is also averaging in double figures (12.3) and has connected on 92-of-199 3-pointers. The Boilermakers are 21-0 this year when shooting 48 percent or better from the field.

Pick: Purdue -3


Result: Tie
 
Gonzaga  Ohio State 

Event Date: 03/17/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating; 2 Units

The Bulldogs also benefited from an individual double-double Thursday as senior forward Johnathan Williams notched his fourth straight with 19 points and 13 rebounds on 8-of-12 shooting. Perkins (16 points) and Norvell (15) also scored in double figures against UNC Greensboro, helping Gonzaga overcome poor shooting outings from 3-point range (5-of-23) and the free-throw stripe (13-of-25). The Bulldogs’ 68 points matched their lowest total in a game this season, and they rank 12th nationally with 84.0 points per outing with six players averaging at least 9.4, led by Williams (13.7), forward Killian Tillie (13.1) and Perkins (12.5). This will be the third meeting between the programs, and the second came earlier this season when Gonzaga cruised to an 86-59 win at the PK80 Invitational in Portland on Nov. 23.

Pick: Gonzaga -3.5


Result: Won
 
Michigan   Houston 

Event Date: 03/17/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Third-seeded Michigan looks to shut down No. 6 seed Houston in the second round of the West Regional on Saturday in Wichita, Kan. The Wolverines allowed the third-fewest points in their NCAA Tournament history in the 61-47 win over No. 14 seed Montana on Thursday and hope to reach 30 wins for the first time since 2012-13 by putting the defensive clamps on the Cougars, who have scored at least 80 points in five of their last nine outings. Michigan has won 10 straight games overall and have advanced to the Sweet 16 in three of their previous four tournament appearances.

Pick: Michigan -3


Result: Loss
 
Texas Tech  Florida 

Event Date: 03/17/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Sixth-seeded Florida will need another strong defensive performance in the NCAA Tournament when it faces third-seeded Texas Tech on Saturday in the second round of the East Region in Dallas. The Red Raiders will have plenty of offense, a tough defense and a home atmosphere as they play just five hours from their campus. The Red Raiders have scored at least 70 points in 13 of their last 15 games after rallying past Stephen F. Austin 70-60 in their Tournament opener.

Pick: Texas Tech -120


Result: Won
 
Villanova  Alabama 

Event Date: 03/17/2018
Event Time: 12 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Crimson Tide overcame 17 turnovers and nine missed foul shots while shooting 60 percent from the floor in Thursday's 86-83 triumph over the Hokies. John Petty helped Sexton by draining 6-of-8 from 3-point range - he's 11-of-17 from behind the arc over the last two games - while Donta Hall was 5-of-5 from the field in Thursday's win. Sexton averages 19.2 points overall and has surpassed that average in five straight games with all of those performances coming against teams that are seeded eighth or better in the NCAA Tournament.

Pick: Alabala +11.5


Result: Loss
 
Kentucky  Buffalo 

Event Date: 03/17/2018
Event Time: 5 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Two days after recording its biggest win in program history, No. 13 seed Buffalo looks to upset another perennial power Saturday when the Bulls face No. 5 seed Kentucky in the second round of the NCAA Tournament South Regional in Boise, Idaho. Buffalo stunned fourth-seeded Arizona 89-68 on Thursday while Kentucky advanced with a 78-73 victory over 12th-seeded Davidson. Buffalo hardly looked overwhelmed against national player of the year candidate freshman Deandre Ayton and Arizona, which had a huge size advantage but was out rebounded by one and failed to contain the Bulls’ perimeter game. Senior guard Wes Clark scored a team-high 25 points to lead the Bulls, who made 15-of-30 three-point shots and shot 54.8 percent overall.

Pick: Buffalo +6


Result: Loss
 
Clemson  New Mexico State 

Event Date: 03/16/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Tigers have relied on a stellar defense that is ranked 35th in the nation in opposing field-goal percentage (41 percent) and 29th in the country in blocked shots per contest (4.8 per game) entering Sunday's action. Clemson overcame the season-ending injury to Donte Grantham as junior guard Marcquise Reed finished 10th in the ACC in scoring at 15.9 points per game and ranked fifth in steals at steals per contest (1.7). Led by first-year head coach Chris Jans, the Aggies won the West Coast Conference for the fifth consecutive season and tied the program record for most wins in a season. Following a two-game losing streak, New Mexico State won its final six games entering the NCAAs.

Pick: New Mexico State +5


Result: Loss
 
Auburn  College of Charleston 

Event Date: 03/16/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

In tonight's game there's no doubt that the loss of sophomore forward Anfernee McLemore is particularly significant for Auburn. He was injured on February 17, after playing just 13 minutes in a loss at South Carolina. Since the injury the Tigers have lost four of six games (including the loss to the Gamecocks). Two of the last three times these teams have played each other, the game was decided by four points. The Cougars are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up win and 5-2-1 ATS in their last 8 games versus teams with a winning up record. While the Tigers are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games overall.

Pick: College of Charleston +9.5


Result: Won
 
Nevada  Texas 

Event Date: 03/16/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating; 2 Units

The Longhorns' up-and-down season included playing without Andrew Jones (diagnosed with leukemia in January) and consistent bench contributor Eric Davis Jr. (withheld during investigation since Feb. 23). The young Texas team - which played four freshmen in its seven-man rotation in Thursday's loss to Texas Tech in the Big 12 quarterfinals - got 6-11 freshman forward Mohamed Bamba back after he missed three games with a toe injury.

Pick: Texas +1


Result: Loss
 
Arkansas  Butler 

Event Date: 03/16/2018
Event Time: 3 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Bulldogs have had a see-saw campaign, going 4-6 since the start of February, but were never in doubt to make the field, particularly after reaching the semifinals of the Big East Tournament, where they lost to Villanova. The Razorbacks and coach Mike Anderson, who has guided his team to three tournament bids in seven seasons, advanced to the semifinals in the SEC Tournament before bowing to runner-up Tennessee. Jaylen Barford and Daryl Macon have averaged 18 and 16.9 points, respectively, this season for the Razorbacks, who have won eight of their last 11 games.

Pick: Arkansas +1.5


Result: Loss
 
Florida  St. Bonaventure 

Event Date: 03/15/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Sixth-seeded Florida hopes to find the best version of itself when it begins play in the NCAA Tournament against No. 11 seed St. Bonaventure in the first round of the East Region today in Dallas. The Gators owns impressive victories over Gonzaga, Cincinnati, Kentucky (two) and Auburn, but dropped five of their last eight games against non-NCAA teams before falling in the SEC Tournament quarterfinals against Arkansas. St. Bonaventure will create quite a challenge after the Bonnies knocked off UCLA 65-58 on Tuesday in the First Four at Dayton, Ohio, for its school-record 26th win and first NCAA Tournament victory since 1970. St. Bonaventure advanced without big nights from its leading scorers - senior guards Jaylen Adams (19.4) and Matt Mobley (18.4), who finished with 22 points combined against the Bruins.

Pick: St. Bonaventure +5.5


Result: Loss
 
Virginia Tech  Alabama 

Event Date: 03/15/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

A pair of high-scoring teams will do battle in the NCAA Tournament's East Region first round when No. 8 seed Virginia Tech takes on No. 9 Alabama on Thursday in Pittsburgh. The Hokies average 79.7 points and have five double-figure scorers, while the Crimson Tide averages 72.4 with both teams allowing at least 70 points a contest. Alabama is powered by one of the top freshmen in the country, guard Collin Sexton, who leads the team in scoring (19 points) and assists (3.5) and is able to take games over, as he did with 21 second-half points in a quarterfinal win over Auburn in the SEC tournament. Coach Avery Johnson will need to get more offense from the rest of the lineup as the Hokies will certainly focus on stopping Sexton and forcing other Alabama players to beat them. Guard Justin Robinson paces the high-powered Hokies attack, averaging 13.8 points and 5.6 assists, both team-highs. Four different players -- Robinson, Justin Bibbs, Ahmed Hill and Nickeil Alexander-Walker -- have hit at least 50 3-pointers this season, which will stretch the Alabama defense.

Pick: Virginia Tech  ML-127


Result: Loss
 
Seton Hall  NC State 

Event Date: 03/15/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Pirates are a veteran team that features four senior starters, including Carrington and leading scorer Desi Rodriguez who averages 17.8 points and 4.9 rebounds. And then there's senior center Angel Delgado, the Big East's all-time leader in rebounds and just the second player in history to lead the Big East in rebounding in three different seasons. But don't sleep on sophomore guard Myles Powell who was named the Big East Most Improved Player after averaging 15.4 points per game -- second-most on the team -- and is shot 38.5 percent from behind the 3-point arc this season.

Pick: Seton Hall  ML-135


Result: Won
 
Ohio State  South Dakota State 

Event Date: 03/15/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Ohio State owns the higher seed and the more recognizable name, but South Dakota State has more recent NCAA Tournament experience on its ledger entering their first-round West Regional matchup Thursday. That’s the challenge awaiting the fifth-seeded Buckeyes as they take on the 12th-seeded Jackrabbits in Boise, Idaho. A No. 12 seed has beaten a No. 5 seed in nine of the last 10 NCAA Tournaments, and 12s have won 11 of the last 24 such first-round matchups overall. The Buckeyes, who earned an at-large bid out of the Big Ten, are making their 28th Big Dance appearance overall but their first since 2015 under former coach Thad Matta. South Dakota State, meanwhile, captured an automatic NCAA bid by winning the Summit League championship and also finished first in the conference with a 13-1 league record during the regular season. It will be the third straight NCAA Tournament appearance for the Jackrabbits and fifth in the last seven seasons for the program which moved up to the Division I level in 2005.

Pick: South Dakota State +8


Result: Tie
 
Rhode Island  Oklahoma 

Event Date: 03/15/2018
Event Time: 12 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The fact that they play in a major conference that sent seven teams to the tournament and have Freshman of the Year candidate Trae Young certainly helped the Sooners, who were the only team in the field, including First Four teams, to make it with fewer than 19 victories. Young led the nation in scoring (27.4 points per game) and assists (8.8) while grabbing 3.9 rebounds for coach Lon Kruger. The 6-2 guard helped his team to a 12-1 start, including three wins over ranked teams, but things started to go south in mid-January. The Rams, who were unable to capture a second straight Atlantic 10 Tournament title, got a tough draw, including a possible second-round game with No. 2 seed Duke, for a team that won 25 games, including its first 13 in the Atlantic 10.

Pick: Oklahoma +2


Result: Loss
 
Mississippi State  Nebraska 

Event Date: 03/14/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Pick: Nebraska +5


Result: Tie
 
Tennessee  Kentucky 

Event Date: 03/11/2018
Event Time: 12 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

No. 4 seed Kentucky is playing some of its best basketball of the season at the right time and looks to record a fourth consecutive SEC Tournament Championship when it takes on second-seeded Tennessee today in St. Louis. The Wildcats allowed 49 points in the quarterfinals and scored an 86-63 triumph against Alabama in the semifinals Saturday for their sixth victory in the last seven games after losing four straight.

Pick: Kentucky +1


Result: Won
 
Cincinnati  Houston 

Event Date: 03/11/2018
Event Time: 3 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Bearcats have defeated SMU (61-51) and Memphis (70-60) in their first two games of this event as Gary Clark has averaged 14.5 points and 11.5 rebounds. Jarron Cumberland added 18 points versus Memphis after going scoreless against SMU, giving Houston one more weapon to worry about in the championship game. The Cougars rode Rob Gray's 33 points to a 77-74 win over Wichita State on Saturday, earning a trip to the AAC title game for the first time. Houston knows it can beat Cincinnati, as it did as recently as Feb. 15 when it snapped the Bearcats' national-best winning streak at 16 games.

Pick: Houston +4


Result: Won
 
Arizona  USC 

Event Date: 03/10/2018
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Arizona will try for its third Pac-12 tournament title in the past four years when the top-seeded Wildcats meet second-seeded USC at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas tonight. Arizona outscored fourth-seeded UCLA 11-0 in overtime to win the first semifinal 78-67 and the Trojans routed No. 6 seed Oregon 74-54 in the second to reach their first tournament championship since 2009. Deandre Ayton was back to being a force against UCLA after a rocky performance in the quarterfinal victory against Colorado, totaling a season-high 32 points on 13-for-16 shooting and grabbing 14 rebounds against the Bruins. There's few college players in the country who can match up with the 7-1 freshman forward. Arizona has won four in a row against USC since a quadruple-overtime loss Jan. 9, 2016.

Pick: Arizona -3.5


Result: Won
 
Kansas  West Virginia 

Event Date: 03/10/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Malik Newman was a top-10 recruit for Mississippi State back in spring of 2015, but it is Kansas who is reaping the rewards of his talent nearly three years later. The 6-3 sophomore attempts to put the finishing touches on his brilliant offensive display at the Big 12 Tournament today when the ninth-ranked and top-seeded Jayhawks face No. 18 West Virginia in the championship game at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo. Kansas has won the conference tournament seven times in 15 years under coach Bill Self and is 10-2 all-time in the Big 12 championship game.

Pick: Kansas +1.5


Result: Won
 
Kentucky  Alabama 

Event Date: 03/10/2018
Event Time: 1 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Fourth-seeded Kentucky looks to stay on track for its fourth consecutive SEC Tournament title when it faces No. 9 seed Alabama in the semifinals today in St. Louis. The Wildcats cruised past Georgia 62-49 on Friday to notch their 11th consecutive win against the Bulldogs and hope to beat the Crimson Tide for the 10th straight time while ousting them in the semifinals for the second straight year following a 79-74 victory on March 11, 2017. Kentucky has won 12 of its last 13 SEC Tournament games and 16 of the last 18 meetings with Alabama.

Pick: Kentucky -4.5


Result: Won
 
Virginia  North Carolina 

Event Date: 03/10/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Ball movement was key for North Carolina in the win against Duke as it was able to dismantle a 2-3 zone defense by recording 24 team assists on 28 made field goals, with Pinson (seven assists) and Kenny Williams (six) leading the way. Luke Maye had a bounce-back performance, leading the Tar Heels with 17 points, 10 rebounds and four assists a day after he scored just two points on 1-of-15 shooting against Miami in the quarterfinals. Four other players reached double digits in points for North Carolina, with Joel Berry II scoring 13 and Cameron Johnson, Garrison Brooks and Williams each adding 10. Virginia is in the conference title game for the ninth time in school history but has won only two championships (1976 and 2014) and lost to North Carolina in 2016. North Carolina is looking to win its 19th ACC championship and pull within one of Duke for most all-time.

Pick: North Carolina +4


Result: Loss
 
Cincinnati  SMU 

Event Date: 03/09/2018
Event Time: 12 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With team scoring leader Shake Milton on the sidelines - likely for the entire AAC Tournament - with a hand injury, SMU leaned on a trio of scorers to build a big lead against the Huskies, then hold on for dear life after UConn closed to within four late. Ben Emelogu II had a team-best 23 points in the 80-73 victory, while Akoy Agau added a career-best 21 and Jahmal McMurray chipped in 19. Those three will have to be just as good - or better - Thursday as the Bearcats come in having allowed 57.3 points per game during the regular season, second only to Virginia (52.8) and well ahead of third-place Central Florida (61.3). Cincinnati also dominated the two-game series with the Mustangs, winning both games by a combined 41 points.

Pick: Cincinnati -16


Result: Loss
New Mexico State  Utah State 

Event Date: 03/09/2018
Event Time: 11 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Seattle is 3-7 ATS in their last 10 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 Friday games, 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games following a straight up win, and 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games following a ATS win. While New Mexico St. is 6-1 ATS in their last 7 games following a straight up win of more than 20 points, 5-1-2 ATS in their last 8 games overall, 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games after scoring more than 90 points in their previous game, and 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up win.

Pick New Mexico State -11.5


Result: Loss
 
Villanova  Butler 

Event Date: 03/09/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

In the first meeting between the teams this season on Dec. 30, Butler knocked off Villanova 101-93 - easily the most points scored against the Wildcats this season. Villanova got its revenge in the second meeting on Feb. 10, notching an 86-75 victory as Donte DiVincenzo scored a career-high 30 points and Jalen Brunson, the potential National Player of the Year, added 27. The third meeting came to fruition late Thursday night, when Butler advanced past Seton Hall on a late tip-in by Tyler Wideman. Villanova had advanced earlier in the evening with a 94-70 victory against Marquette. Villanova averages 87.4 points - tops in the nation - and has scored at least 90 in four of the last six games.

Pick: Villanova -8


Result: Won
 
Florida  Arkansas 

Event Date: 03/09/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Florida is en route to the NCAA Tournament, but the No. 23 Gators would like to improve their resume when they open SEC Tournament play against Arkansas in today's quarterfinals at St. Louis. Third-seeded Florida was sharp while winning its final three regular-season games by an average of 13 points, while the Razorbacks posted a 69-64 over South Carolina in Thursday's second round. The Gators battled issues through a large portion of the season, but coach Mike White is feeling good about his team as March arrives. The sixth-seeded Razorbacks are a hot squad with seven victories in their past nine games, but they have dropped their last eight meetings with the Gators.

Pick: Florida -4


Result: Loss
Davidson  St. Louis 

Event Date: 03/09/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

St. Louis is 2-6 ATS in their last 8 Friday games and 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games vs a team with a winning straight up record. While Davidson is 11-4-1 ATS in their L16 games overall, 11-4-1 in their last 16 vs the Atlantic 10, and 8-3-1 ATS in their last 12 games following a straight up win.

Pick: Davidson -8


Result: Won
 
St. Joseph  George Mason 

Event Date: 03/09/2018
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

St. Joseph is 5-1-1 ATS in their last 7 games overall, 5-1-1 ATS in their last 7 vs. Atlantic 10, and 23-8-1 ATS in their last 32 Friday games.

Pick: St. Joseph -6.5


Result: Won
 
Buffalo  Kent State 

Event Date: 03/09/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Kent State is 0-2-2 ATS in their last 4 Friday games. While Buffalo is 5-1-2 ATS in their last 8 games following a ATS win, 10-3-1 ATS in their last 14 neutral site games. Bulls are 7-3-2 ATS in their last 12 Friday games, and 7-3-2 ATS in their last 12 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.

Pick: Buffalo -11


Result: Won
 
Virginia  Clemson 

Event Date: 03/09/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Sophomore guard Kyle Guy looked just fine after an injury scare last Saturday and hopes to follow up a strong performance in No. 1 Virginia’s ACC Tournament opener as the top-seeded Cavaliers take on fourth seed Clemson in the semifinals today at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. Guy, who played with a brace on his injured left knee, scored a game-high 19 and drained four 3-pointers in Virginia’s 75-58 win over Louisville on Thursday. The Cavaliers lead the nation in scoring defense and gave up the least points all season to No. 20 Clemson as Virginia held the Tigers to 31.9 percent shooting while forcing 19 turnovers in a 61-36 triumph on Jan. 23.

Pick: Virginia -7.5


Result: Loss
 
Tennessee  Mississippi State 

Event Date: 03/09/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

No. 12 Tennessee is entrenched in the NCAA Tournament field, but the second-seeded team wouldn't mind adding the SEC Tournament title to its list of accomplishments. The Volunteers begin their pursuit of the conference crown on today, when they face seventh-seeded Mississippi State in the quarterfinals at St. Louis. Tennessee finished the regular season with four consecutive victories while enjoying a winning campaign for the first time in the three-year tenure of Rick Barnes, who was named SEC Coach of the Year. Tennessee obliterated Mississippi State 76-54 on Feb. 27, when Admiral Schofield scored 24 points as the team shot 56.3 percent from the field.

Pick: Tennessee -6


Result: Loss
 
Virginia  Louisville 

Event Date: 03/08/2018
Event Time: 12 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Ninth-seeded Louisville needed to make a statement in the ACC Tournament and they did just that Wednesday, surviving a second-half comeback from No. 8 seed Florida State in the second round at the Barclays Center to defeat the Seminoles 82-74 and fortify its NCAA Tournament resume. Now the Cardinals get another crack at upending top-seeded Virginia, who earned a double bye into the quarterfinals after capturing the regular-season ACC championship, with the winner moving on to the tourney semifinals to face either No. 4 seed Clemson or No. 12 seed Boston College.

Pick: Louisville +6.5


Result: Loss
 
Texas A&M  Alabama 

Event Date: 03/08/2018
Event Time: 1 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Eighth-seeded Texas A&M looks to beat No. 9 Alabama for the second time in five days when they meet in the second round of the SEC Tournament on Thursday in St. Louis, Mo. The Aggies, who have won seven of their last 10 games, edged the Crimson Tide 68-66 on Saturday to wrap up the regular season with 20 wins and hope to ride the momentum to their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2015-16. The Crimson Tide seemed poised to end their five-year NCAA Tournament drought, but dropped their last five games of the regular season to fall on the bubble. Alabama, who finished with a losing record in SEC play for the fourth time in five seasons, has lost three games by 10 or more points during its skid and hopes to make a run in the conference tournament to punch its ticket to March Madness.

Pick: Texas A&M -2


Result: Loss
 
Arizona   Colorado 

Event Date: 03/08/2018
Event Time: 3 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The possible top pick in the next NBA draft, Ayton averaged 23 points and 5.5 rebounds while shooting 55.6 percent from the field in two regular-season meetings against Colorado. The Buffaloes will also need to focus on stopping Trier, who was named last season’s Pac-12 Tournament MVP and received All-Pac-12 first-team honors this week after averaging 18.9 points on 52.3 percent shooting. Sophomore guard Rawle Alkins finished the regular season by scoring in double figures in five of his last six games and appears fully healthy after battling a foot injury early in the year.

Pick: Arizona -10


Result: Won
UC Davis  UC Riverside 

Event Date: 03/08/2018
Event Time: 3 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

UC Riverside is 9-20-1 ATS in their last 30 games following a ATS loss, and 1-3-1 ATS in their last 5 neutral site games. While UC Davis is 12-3 ATS in their last 15 games vs. a team with a losing straight up record, 4-1 ATS in their last 5 vs. Big West, and 9-3 ATS in their last 12 games vs. a team with a winning % below .400.

Pick: UC Davis -7


Result: Loss
 
Kansas State  TCU 

Event Date: 03/08/2018
Event Time: 12 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

TCU will end its 20-year NCAA Tournament drought next week but first the Horned Frogs would like to tack on some victories in the Big 12 Championship in Kansas City. Fifth-seeded TCU faces fourth-seeded Kansas State in Thursday's quarterfinals and has won four of its last five games entering the conference tournament. enior guard Kenrich Williams has recorded 12 double-doubles and the second-team All-Big 12 selection averages 12.9 points and a team-leading 9.3 rebounds and 53 steals. Senior forward Vladimir Brodziansky, a third-team All-Big 12 choice, shoots 57.7 percent from the field while leading the squad in scoring (15.2) and blocked shots (50), while sophomore Desmond Bane (13.1) drained a team-best 57 3-pointers. The Horned Frogs rank second in the Big 12 in scoring (83.6) and lead the league in field-goal percentage (50) and 3-point percentage (40).

Pick: TCU -2


Result: Loss
Hampton  Florida A&M 

Event Date: 03/07/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Florida A&M is 6-14 ATS in their last 20 games overall, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up win, and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record. While Hampton is 10-4 ATS in their last 14 vs. Mid-Eastern Athletic, and 9-4 ATS in their last 13 neutral site games.

Pick: Hampton -10


Result: Loss
LaSalle  UMass 

Event Date: 03/07/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

UMass is 16-35-1 ATS in their last 52 Wednesday games, 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games vs. a team with a losing straight up record, and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS win. While the favorite (LaSalle) is 5-1 ATS in the last 6 meetings between these two teams.

Pick: LaSalle -5.5


Result: Loss
 
Troy  South Alabama 

Event Date: 03/07/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

South Alabama is 5-12 ATS in their last 17 Wednesday games, 1-3-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS loss, and 0-3-1 ATS in their last 4 vs. Sun Belt. While Troy is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games following a ATS loss, and 17-7 ATS in their last 24 games following a straight up loss. In addition South Alabama is 1-4 ATS in the last 5 meetings versus Troy.

Pick: Troy -5


Result: Won
 
South Carolina  Mississippi 

Event Date: 03/07/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

South Carolina enters as the No. 11 seed, having won three of its last five following a six-game skid. The 14th-seeded Rebels lost their final three games of the regular season and 10 of the last 11, and they’re 1-3 in four games since Tony Madlock took over as acting head coach following longtime coach Andy Kennedy’s resignation.

Pick: South Carolina -2.5


Result: Loss
 
UAB  Florida Atlantic 

Event Date: 03/07/2018
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Florida Atlantic is 4-9 ATS in their last 13 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600, 4-13 ATS in their last 17 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record, 1-5 ATS in their last 6 neutral site games, and 1-10 ATS in their last 11 Wednesday games.

Pick: UAB -10


Result: Won
Texas Southern  Alabama State 

Event Date: 03/06/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Alabama State is 5-11-1 ATS in their last 17 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600, 2-5-1 ATS in their last 8 road games, 5-13-1 ATS in their last 19 road games vs. a team with a winning home record, 3-8 ATS in their last 11 games vs. a team with a losing straight up record, and 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games vs. a team with a winning % below .400.

Pick: Texas Southern -12.5


Result: Won
Prairie View  Alcorn State 

Event Date: 03/06/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Prairie View is 5-2 ATS in their last 7 home games, 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games vs. a team with a winning % below .400, and 9-4 ATS in their last 13 games following a straight up win.

Pick: Prairie View -9.5


Result: Won
Vermont  Stony Brook 

Event Date: 03/06/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Stony Brook is 2-5-1 ATS in their last 8 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600., 2-5-2 ATS in their last 9 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record, 3-8-3 ATS in their last 14 games overall, and 1-4-2 ATS in their last 7 vs. America East.

Pick: Vermont -13


Result: Won
 
UConn  Houston 

Event Date: 03/04/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With NCAA Tourney at-large “lock” Houston looking to roll into the American Tourney on a high note, must lay the lumber with under performing UConn, which hasn’t covered back-to-back games since January 13th. Cougars highly-successful 4th-year mentor Kelvin Sampson, who has led three other teams (Wazzu, Indiana & Oklahoma) to the NCAA Tourney, is thrilled with his front line depth. Plus, UH’s torrid-shooting 6-3 soph G Armoni Brooks (nailed 15 of 26 triples over last 3 games) giving nifty support to terrific sr. PG Rob Gray Jr.(17.7 ppg, 4.7 apg), who’ll be jazzed-up for Senior Night. Be sure, Cougs have circled this date after capturing both reg.-season meetings LY before painful upset loss in the conference tourney.

Pick: Houston -14.5


Result: Loss
 
Memphis  East Carolina 

Event Date: 03/04/2018
Event Time: 3 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Recent Memphis form suggests Tigers could be a bit of a handful in next week’s American Tourney in Orlando, as Tubby Smith’s bunch seems to be peaking, winning and covering last four into March including a rousing home upset win over ranked Houston on Feb. 22. Moreover, there’s a revenge factor here as Tigers look to atone for one of their low moments of the campaign when losing at bottom-rung ECU on Feb. 3. Most impressive is that Tubby’s team seems to have overcome recent loss of top scorer G Jermeiah Martin (ankle), with 6-4 frosh Jamal Johnson looking up the challenge after scoring 18 in recent win at UConn, and rugged 6-9 juco FF Mike Parks, Jr. picking up some or the scoring slack (also scoring 18 vs. UConn). Not sure woebegone Pirates want to show up after their last American road game went rather badly (and how...trailed Houston 62-13 at half last Sunday..)

Pick: Memphis -12.5


Result: Won
 
USC  UCLA 

Event Date: 03/03/2018
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Both of these Pac-12 entries seem destined to ride on the bubble into Selection Sunday, but a bit more might be on the line at Galen Center for UCLA, badly in need of a late-season boost after getting swept in the Pac-12 “altitude trip” to Utah and Colorado last week. Steve Alford has now beaten Andy Enfield three in a row after earlier 82-79 win at Pauley Pavilion on Feb. 3 when Bruin PG Aaron Holiday badly outplayed Trojan counterpart Jordan McLaughlin, outscoring him 23-5. SC in trouble if it can’t win that matchup, and Holiday’s recent form (scored 20 or more in 7 of last 9 games!) suggests Trojans will have issues again on perimeter. 

Pick: UCLA +6


Result: Won
 
Miami  Virginia Tech 

Event Date: 03/03/2018
Event Time: 12 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Virginia Tech is 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600., 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record, and 28-13-1 ATS in their last 42 games following a ATS win. While Miami is 8-20 ATS in their last 28 games following a ATS win, 3-8 ATS in their last 11 vs. Atlantic Coast, and 7-21 ATS in their last 28 home games.

Pick: Virginia Tech +2.5


Result: Won
 
Seton Hall  Butler 

Event Date: 03/03/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Sure, SH hung tough with Villanova despite absence of injured top scorer 6-6 sr. F Desi Rodriquez (out last 2 tilts with ankle) in 69-68 OT loss in Philly. Would still, however, strongly recommend taking a handful of points with Big Dance-hopeful Butler (RPI of 41; currently a 7th seed according to TGS bracketology),which is geeked for rematch after squandering an 11-point lead in painful 90-87 home loss on Jan. 6. Bulldogs’ normally-productive, DD-scoring duo of 6-1 soph G Kamar Baldwin & 6-7 sr. Kelan Martin figure to display more typical marksmenship after combining for a season-worst 10 of 37 from the field in their team’s 75-68 OT loss at St. John’s on the same day. Hey, the Pirates no bargain as home chalk, logging a 5-9 spread mark at the Pru Center TY.

Pick: Butler +1.5


Result: Loss
 
Oklahoma State  Kansas 

Event Date: 03/03/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Kansas is 10-4 ATS in their last 14 road games, 10-4 ATS in their last 14 road games vs. a team with a winning home record, and 9-4 ATS in their last 13 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600. While Oklahoma State is 2-6 ATS in their last 8 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of greater than .600, 3-10 ATS in their last 13 home games, and 2-9 ATS in their last 11 games following a straight up win.

Pick: Kansas -5


Result: Loss
 
North Texas  UTEP 

Event Date: 03/03/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

North Texas is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 home games, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS win, 1-5 ATS in their last 6 Saturday games, and 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games vs. a team with a winning % below .400. While UTEP is 5-1 ATS in the last 6 meetings vs North Texas.

Pick: UTEP +6


Result: Won
 
Utah  Colorado 

Event Date: 03/03/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 3 Unit NCAAB Play of the Day

Utah is 38-13-2 ATS in their last 53 home games vs. a team with a losing road record, 40-14-2 ATS in their last 56 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400, and 35-17-1 ATS in their last 53 Saturday games. While Colorado is 18-38-1 ATS in their last 57 road games, 17-36-1 ATS in their last 54 road games vs. a team with a winning home record, and 7-18-1 ATS in their last 26 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600. While Colorado is 3-10 ATS in the last 13 meetings with Utah.

Gold Pick: Utah -9


Result: Won
 
Middle Tennessee State  Marshall 

Event Date: 03/03/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 3 Unit NCAAB Mismatch of the Day

Middle Tennessee State is 19-7 ATS in their last 26 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600, 40-15-1 ATS in their last 56 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400, 48-18-2 ATS in their last 68 home games vs. a team with a losing road record, and 37-16 ATS in their last 53 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record. While Marshall is 1-5 ATS in the last 6 meetings vs Middle Tennessee State and 0-6 ATS in the last 6 meetings at Middle Tennessee St..

Gold Pick: Middle Tennessee State -11.5


Result: Loss
 
Virginia  Notre Dame 

Event Date: 03/03/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

UVa likely hits the ACC Tourney on top of the polls if it can get this one. But not sure it’s going to be easy for Cavs, as Notre Dame has regained services of PF Bonzie Colson (scored 12 in 21 minutes of return game vs. Pitt at midweek) and the attention of the NCAA Selection Committee that is going to take a look at the full-strength Irish if Mike Brey’s team finishes fast. Note ND form has already been improving (5-2 SU last 7) since return to active duty of G Matt Farrell (18 ppg last 8) in early February. Remember, Domers won the Maui Classic when all hands were on deck back in November. 

Pick: Notre Dame -10


Result: Won
 
DePaul  Xavier 

Event Date: 03/03/2018
Event Time: 12 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With Big East leader X-Men shooting for a top four seed in the Big Dance, don’t mind laying single digits with the ultra explosive, good-shooting Musketeers (85.2; 49.8% from the floor), primed to win & cover their sixth consecutive on the conference trail. Count on a more formful offensive showing from Xavier’s rangy 6-5 sr. J.P. Macura (12. 4 ppg), who scored only 6 points before fouling out in his team’s 84-74 home victory over pesky Providence in mid-week. Defensively-lax DePaul (74.2 ppg)—which has yielded 82 ppg or more 3 of the last 4 games—will eventually succumb to the mighty Musketeers, who won’t take the Blue Demons lightly after needing to overcome a 16-point deficit in their 77-72 home win back on Dec. 30th, when they nailed a season-worst 4 of 22 from deep.

Pick: Xavier -7


Result: Loss
 
Northern Illinois  Ball State 

Event Date: 03/02/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With postseason tourney seeking BSU seeking its 20th win of the season, willing to lay short price with road-proven Cards, who’ve notched victories at Ohio, Toledo & Akron in MAC action. Expect BSU’s top-scorer 6-3 jr. G Taylor Persons (14.6 ppg)to bounce back after hitting only 3 of 14 from the field in his team’s head-burying 75-51 setback at Central Michigan on Tuesday. Defensively-soft MAC West doormat NIU (76 ppg; 46.5% from the floor; 291st nationally)—licking its wounds from 97-67 home blowout administered by Toledo on the same day, lacks much quick strike ability, converting a paltry 5.2 triples (lowly 340th) pg at 32.6%. Watch for the Cards’ powerful 6-9, 245-pound jr. C Trey Moses to lead his team to the “promised land” again after scoring 23 along with 12 caroms & 3 blocks in his team’s 77-68 series win on Feb. 20th.

Pick: Ball State -3.5


Result: Loss
 
Philadelphia  Charlotte 

Event Date: 03/02/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Philly’s “Process” appears to be progressing swimmingly, as the Sixers are 17-8 SU since just after Christmas, and the team is courting LeBron James as the missing link to a title. Philadelphia played last night in Cleveland and the Sixers have a 2-7 spread mark when unrested this season, a record linked in part to resting C Joel Embiid in those games in first half of the season. Now Embiid has been playing without rest, and Philly is 19-9 vs. the points at the Wells Fargo Center. Hornets on uptick (5-1 SU L6; covered 4 of L5) as G Kemba Walker has been hot (55% L5; 25 ppg), but trust the process facing Hornet side that’s just 6-14 as a road dog.

Pick:  Philadlephia -3


Result: Won
 
Tulane  Cincinnati 

Event Date: 03/01/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Cincinnati bounced back from its Feb. 18 home loss to Wichita State with victories over Connecticut and Tulsa and would love to get back to its defensive roots after surrendering 70 or more points in two of its previous three games. Facing the nation's second-ranked defense will be a tall task for the Green Wave, who halted a six-game losing skid with a 79-68 win at South Florida last time out. It's the third game against a ranked opponent this season for Tulane, which fell to North Carolina and Wichita State by an average of 15.5 points.

Pick: Cincinnati -13


Result: Won
 
Louisville  Virginia 

Event Date: 03/01/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Cavaliers held Pittsburgh to seven points in the first half and 23.9 percent shooting overall en route to a 66-37 triumph Saturday to clinch the ACC title and first seed in the tournament. Sophomore guard Ty Jerome has averaged 15.5 points the last two games and freshman backcourt mate De’Andre Hunter poured in 14.8 per contest over his last four outings. Sophomore guard Kyle Guy, who leads the team in scoring (14.5), was limited to 11 points combined in the last two games while senior guard Devon Hall (11.8) is averaging just 5.7 the past three.

Pick: Virginia -4


Result: Loss
 
Georgia Tech  NC State 

Event Date: 03/01/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Georgia Tech looks to snap a seven-game losing streak in its penultimate home game of the season as the Yellow Jackets host streaking North Carolina State today in an ACC contest The Wolfpack are getting hot at the right time of year and are winners of four in a row, including a 20-point home win over Florida State on Sunday. The Yellow Jackets, on the other hand, have just one win in their last 12, including a 75-67 loss to No. 18 Clemson on Saturday where they missed 13 layups.

Pick: NC State -2


Result: Loss
 
UCF  Wichita State 

Event Date: 03/01/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Wichita State continues its pursuit of an American Athletic Conference title when it tries for its seventh straight victory today at Central Florida. The No. 11 Shockers are coming off an 84-78 win over SMU on Saturday and are second in the AAC, trailing No. 10 Cincinnati by one game with two to play as a showdown against the Bearcats looms Sunday. Wichita State senior forward Shaquille Morris is in the twilight of a career that has seen him record 14.0 points and 5.3 rebounds per game this season, but his averages of 20.5 points and 8.8 rebounds over the last four contests serve notice that he could be tougher to deal with down the stretch

Pick: Wichita State -10


Result: Loss
 
Penn State  Northwestern 

Event Date: 03/01/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Penn State cruised past the Wildcats 78-63 in the first meeting of the season before suffering a 70-61 setback on Jan. 20 and strive to advance to the quarterfinals for the first time since 2015. Northwestern has dropped six consecutive games, including a 77-70 loss to Iowa on Sunday to end a disappointing regular season. The Wildcats, who returned most of their core players from the team that earned the first NCAA Tournament berth in program history last year, struggled under the weight of expectations and hope to avoid their first losing season since 2014-15.

Pick: Penn State -5.5


Result: Won
 
SMU  Houston 

Event Date: 02/28/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Leading scorer Shake Milton has been out for that entire stretch - which includes a 67-58 loss at Houston earlier this month - with a fractured hand and is doubtful for Wednesday. The Mustangs will honor seniors Ben Emelogu II and Akoy Agau, whose final seasons have been derailed by their own injuries and injuries to teammates that have left SMU with seven or fewer scholarship players during the past seven games. SMU has won seven of the past nine meetings with Houston but will need a big defensive effort to slow the Cougars. Houston scored a conference-record 109 points in Sunday's win against East Carolina and tied its own record with 18 3-pointers in the win.

Pick: Houston -5.5


Result: Won
 
Colorado State  New Mexico  

Event Date: 02/28/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

While distracted and dispirited CSU might be better-advised to simply forfeit if putting forth non-efforts at home like last Wednesday’s 33-point loss to Boise, New Mexico looking like it’s having a bit of fun as it runs and guns for first-year HC Paul Weir, who led downstate New Mexico State into the Big Dance last March. Lobos just cranked out 119 points in win at Wyo, bombardier G Anthony Mathis continuing to hit nearly 50% beyond arc, and UNM has not been bothered on MW road, where it has already won SU three times.

Pick: New Mexico -5


Result: Won
 
UNLV  Nevada 

Event Date: 02/28/2018
Event Time: 11 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Nevada cut down the nets after Sunday's home win over Colorado State which garnered the 21st-ranked Wolf Pack at least a share of a second consecutive Mountain West regular season championship as well as the No. 1 seed for next week's conference tourney in Las Vegas. But even though his team has just seven players on scholarship including two that are battling injuries, Nevada coach Eric Musselman scoffed at the notion of resting some players for Wednesday night's game at UNLV.

Pick: Nevada -1.5


Result: Won
 
St. Johns  Butler 

Event Date: 02/28/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Butler may have clinched an NCAA Tournament bid in its last two games with impressive victories, but can add some insurance when it pays a visit to dangerous St. John’s today for a Big East contest. The Bulldogs knocked off Providence on Feb. 17 and routed No. 24 Creighton 93-70 three days later before getting a much-needed rest as they prepare to end the regular season with two road games. The Red Storm have been a much better team the last month with shocking wins over Duke and Villanova, although they lost their last two contests against Marquette and Seton Hall to sit at the bottom of the league standings.

Pick: Butler -1.5


Result: Loss
 
Seton Hall  Villinova 

Event Date: 02/28/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

No. 5 Villanova is still in good shape to earn a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, but its margin for error is getting thin. With an uncharacteristic 3-3 record in their last six games, the Wildcats look to return to form today at Seton Hall. The Wildcats beat the Pirates 92-76 earlier this month, but they lost to unranked St. John's in their next contest and have since fallen on the road to two more unranked teams - Providence and Creighton in the last two weeks. In Saturday's overtime loss at Creighton, Villanova received double-digit points from all five starters but got virtually nothing from its bench. Seton Hall is in a four-way tie for third place in the Big East entering Tuesday's action and can effectively clinch its NCAA Tournament spot by beating the Wildcats.

Pick: Seton Hall +6.5


Result: Won
 
Illinois Chicago  Wright State 

Event Date: 02/25/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Illinois Chicago is 11-4 ATS in their last 15 games overall and 11-4 ATS in their last 15 vs. Horizon League. While Wright State is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games overall and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 vs. Horizon League. In addition, Wright State is 3-11 ATS in the last 14 meetings including 0-4 ATS in the last 4 meetings in Illinois-Chicago.

Pick: Illinois Chicago -1


Result: Loss
 
Philadelphia  Orlando 

Event Date: 02/24/2018
Event Time: 5 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Philadelphia is enjoying its longest winning streak since a six-game run during the 2011-2012 season and is focused on moving up the standings in the Eastern Conference, with the third-place Cleveland Cavaliers only 2 1/2 games ahead entering play on Friday.  The Magic are not in the playoff chase and are just trying to stay off the bottom of the East after a 120-113 home setback to the New York Knicks on Thursday dropped them 22 games under .500. The loss was the fourth straight for Orlando, which is 7-23 on the road and kicks off a stretch with seven of 10 away from home today.

Pick: Philadelphia -9


Result: Won
 
Stanford  Washington State 

Event Date: 02/24/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Stanford is 10-4 ATS in their last 14 games overall, 10-4 ATS in their last 14 vs. Pacific-12, and 15-7 ATS in their last 22 games after scoring more than 90 points in their previous game. While Washington State is 1-9 ATS in their last 10 road games, 0-8 ATS in their last 8 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600, and 0-8 ATS in their last 8 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. In addition, Washington State is 5-16-2 ATS in the last 23 meetings versus Stanford.

Pick: Stanford -11.5


Result: Loss
 
Oregon  Arizona 

Event Date: 02/24/2018
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 3 Unit NCAAB Play of the Day

The Wildcats struggled without Trier on Thursday at 10th-place Oregon State, needing two free throws by Rawle Alkins with 14 seconds left in regulation to push the game to overtime, where they finally pulled away for a 75-65 victory. Oregon got a much-needed win against No. 25 Arizona State on Thursday, and that should give the Ducks added confidence against the Wildcats, who beat Oregon 90-83 behind 25 points from Trier on Jan. 13. The Ducks enter the weekend tied for sixth in the conference with Washington, and they can leapfrog a few more teams with a strong finish against Arizona and at Washington State and Washington next week. The Ducks haven't finished lower than third in the Pac-12 since finishing seventh in 2010-11, when it was still the Pac-10.

Gold Pick: Oregon -2


Result: Won
 
Georgia  LSU 

Event Date: 02/24/2018
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Though both squads need to make deep runs in the SEC tourney to have any shot at a Big Dance at-large-bid, still strongly recommend “taking” 2+ hoops with revenge-minded LSU, which is primed to nab its 3rd straight league win for the first time this season. Tigers’ gifted 5-11 frosh PG Tremont Waters (15 ppg, 5.9 apg) has “vaulted’ the “freshman wall” after scoring 28 points & dishing out 9 assists in his team’s 88-78 home victory over Vanderbilt on Tuesday. Moreover, LSU can surely afford to “double-team” Georgia’s top weapon 6-8 sr. F Yantee Maten since the Dawgs nail only six 3-pointers pg at a rim-clanging 32.1% (317th). Will Wade’s Tigers still seething after blowing 34-24 halftime lead in last-second 61-60 home loss in mid January, when aforementioned Waters (then battling a virus) contributed only 6 points.

Pick: LSU +3.5


Result: Loss
 
Duquesne  Davidson 

Event Date: 02/24/2018
Event Time: 12 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Surging Davidson (6-1 SU last 7; 5-2 vs. the line) desiring to stay tied with St. Bonaventure for 2nd place in the A-10. Hence, we have no qualms laying short price with the ultra-disciplined & error free Wildcats, who lead the nation in critical assist-to-TO ratio. Davidson’s dynamic 1-2 punch of explosive 6-7 sr. F Petyon Aldridge (20.1 ppg) & prized, sharp-shooting 6-5 frosh G Kellan Grady (16.7 ppg; team-high 57 triples) will continue to shine in Pittsburgh, while erratic-gunning, scatter-passing Duquesne (42.2% from the field; 301st; 11.7 apg; 305th) ill-equipped to play catch-up. Note, Dukes have lost by 7 points or more in 9 of 12 setbacks TY.

Pick: Davidson -7


Result: Won
 
San Jose State  San Diego State 

Event Date: 02/24/2018
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Whereas the lonely surroundings of the Event Center have often lulled San Jose State foes to sleep the past few seasons, surging SDSU eager to get on any court to continue recent uptick that’s seen Aztecs impressively win three in a row, an ascent that has coincided with return to active duty of sr. G Trey Kell, a steadying influence and leader on the floor. Aztecs now working on three double-digit wins and covers in a row after comfy midweek win at Air Force, while Spartans still wearing the big doughnut (0-15 SU!) In MW play. SJSU already proved vulnerable to an Aztec KO blow after getting hammered 85-49 at Viejas Arena back on Jan. 9.

Pick: San Diego State -13.5


Result: Loss
 
SMU  Wichita State 

Event Date: 02/24/2018
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With NCAA Tourney-bound WSU (currently projected as a 3rd seed) likely to have top-scoring 6-4 soph Landry Shamet (missed Tulane on Wednesday due to illness) back in the lineup, suggest laying single-digits with angry Shockers itching to avenge 83-78 home upset loss in mid-January, which halted their protracted 27-game win streak at Charles Koch Arena. Anticipate a ferocious defensive effort from WSU after the Mustangs hit a sizzling 64% from the field, and had 33 points from now-sidelined 6-6 jr. G Shake Milton. Shorthanded SMU a bankroll-depleting 3-9-1 last 13 vs. the spread. 

Pick: Wichita State -6.5


Result: Loss
 
Rhode Island  Dayton 

Event Date: 02/23/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

After barely surviving in 95-93 OT win at LaSalle on Tuesday, expect defense-minded, Big Dance-bound RI (currently a projected 5-seed; 67.8 ppg) to dig in on the stop end after permitting a season-high point allowance vs. the Explorers. Moreover, watch for extra effort performances from RI’s terrific senior backcourt triumvirate of 6-5 E.C. Matthews (13 ppg), key reserve 6-0 Jarvis Garrett (6.3 ppg, 58 assists) & 6-3 Jared Terrell (18 ppg, 40 steals) on Senior Night. Mediocre, defensively-soft Dayton (73 ppg; 46.2% from the floor; 289th) is a poor 1-8-1 last 10 vs. the spread. Note, that the Flyers nailed a blistering 63% from the field and still failed to cover in 88-74 home loss on Jan. 20th.

Pick: Rhode Island -10.5


Result: Won
 
Memphis  Houston 

Event Date: 02/22/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

We’re convinced about Houston’s capabilities after watching Cougs keep rugged Cincy off balance, which makes us believe Kelvin Sampson’s crew might be able to land on the safe side of the Big Dance cut line. The ability of UH bombers Corey Davis and Armoni Brooks (both better than 43% beyond arc) to hit from deep gives Houston a dimension that Memphis (only 29.6% triples) lacks. Need more evidence than recent win over fading SMU that Tubby Smith’s Tigers (only 2-5 SU and vs. line last seven into last Saturday vs. Tulane) can step up vs. a real quality foe.

Pick: Houston -7


Result: Loss
 
UNLV  Fresno State 

Event Date: 02/21/2018
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Fresno has owned this series lately vs. UNLV, and continued recent mastery with 69-63 win at Save-Mart Center on Jan. 23, holding go-go Rebs to their lowest scoring output of season. Bulldogs have since picked up the pace and won their first three February games in romping fashion, with former Colorado transfer G Jaron Hopkins (only 5 points in first meeting) having tapped a rich vein of form, tallying 19 ppg last three into Saturday’s game vs. CSU. Overvalued Rebs not providing a lot of Golden Knights-like value in Vegas, where they’ve dropped 7 of last 9 vs. line.

Pick: Fresno State +2.5


Result: Won
 
Valparaiso  Northern Iowa 

Event Date: 02/20/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Valparaiso Crusaders are 8-3 at home this season, and 5-11 against 9-4 opponents. At home the Crusaders are averaging 69.0 scoring, and holding teams to 66.0 points scored on defense. The Northern Iowa Panthers are 0-9 while on the road this season, 5-11 against conference opponents, and 8-4 against non-conference opponents. On the road, the Panthers are averaging 59.1 scoring, and holding teams to 70.0 points scored on defense.

Pick: Valparaiso -4


Result: Loss
 
Bowling Green  Akron 

Event Date: 02/20/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

After averaging a lofty 23-win campaign over the previous six campaigns, Akron’s 1st-year HC John Groce has clearly been unable to reload at all on a zipless Zip squad (11-14) fighting to stay out of the MAC East dungeon. On the contrary, postseason-seeking BG (16-10) has won 4 of its last 5 tilts SU (5-0 vs. spread) prior to tough trip to Buffalo, including back-to-back home upsets over Eastern Michigan & Western Michigan. Well balanced Falcons (5 avg. between 9 & 15 ppg) have greatly benefited by one of the loop’s top newcomers, 6-4 RS frosh Justin Turner (15.4 ppg, team-high 36 steals), who has been a positive force on both ends of the floor. Payback works for BG following stinging 80-78 loss in “The Rubber City” in mid-January, when the Falcons missed 14 foul shots & lost on a 3-pointer with 3 ticks left!

Pick: Bowling Green -7


Result: Loss
 
Baylor  West Virginia 

Event Date: 02/20/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 3 Unit NCAAB Play of the Day

Since defeating Baylor in early January, West Virginia has been on a steady downhill spiral. The 21st-ranked Mountaineers aim to stop the bleeding today when they visit the Bears in Big 12 action. West Virginia nipped Baylor 57-54 on Jan. 9 as senior guard Jevon Carter, the heart and soul of the team, knocked down the decisive 3-pointer in the final minute. Carter is enjoying a terrific senior season, but his team still has lost seven of 11 since the win over the Bears. Baylor has followed a four-game losing streak by winning its last five, including massive victories against Kansas and Texas Tech in the last 10 days.

Gold Pick: Baylor -1


Result: Loss
 
Cincinnati  Wichita State 

Event Date: 02/18/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

There’s some history between these two that dates to the early 60s, and the night in ‘63 when Wichita ended a long Cincinnati win streak (when Bearcats were the defending national champs) at the old Roundhouse as Dave Stallworth poured in 46 points, an effort regarded by oldtimers alongside Elvin Hayes’ 39 points vs. Lew Alcindor in the Houston/UCLA “Game of the Century” at the Astrodome in 1968. But this is 2018, not 1963, and though Shockers have started to resemble their recent Valley form with 3s starting to fall in recent games, doing so against snarling Cincinnati defense (55.9 ppg; behind only Virginia nationally) a different matter. Note Mick Cronin’s bunch has been handling point spread premiums in American play, covering 9 of first 12 vs. loop foes into Thursday’s game vs. Houston. In addition, Wichita State is just 1-4 ATS in its last five road games against teams with a home winning percentage of greater than 60 percent, while Cincinnati is 7-1 ATS in its last eight against teams with a winning SU record and 5-1 ATS in its last six at home.

Pick: Cincinnati -6


Result: Loss
 
Illinois  Nebraska 

Event Date: 02/18/2018
Event Time: 3 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Big Dance seeking & streaking Nebraska (RPI of 51; six straight wins/covers!) strongly desiring to finish in 4th place in the Big Ten standings and gain a coveted double-bye in the upcoming conference tourney in the Big Apple. Therefore, have no hesitation in laying short price with struggling, offensively-choppy Illinois, which is a sorry 2-4 SU at home in the Big Ten. Huskers’ emerging 6-8 soph F Isaiah Roby has become an integral part of the increasingly-lethal attack, featuring legit Big Ten Player of the Year candidate, 6-6 jr. G James Palmer, Jr. (17.9 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 3 apg). NU seriously improves on its rim-clanging 5 of 23 shooting performance from deep in taut 64-63 home win in mid-January vs. Illini bunch, permitting 46.8% from the field (305th nationally).

Pick: Nebraska -1.5


Result: Loss
 
California  Stanford 

Event Date: 02/18/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Payback for Stanford after bitter 77-74 loss in Berkeley on Dec. 30. Not much has gone right for Golden Bears since, who’ve subsequently won SU just once (at Haas Pavilion vs. Oregon State), while Cardinal has steadied itself and could be in line for some sort of postseason bid. Key Stanford G Dorian Pickens (14.1 ppg) was a bit rusty in what was his return-to-action game in first meeting, hitting just 3 of 13 from floor, while front liners Reid Travis and Michael Humphrey were hampered by fouls, and Tree could only hit 17 of 33 from FT line. No wonder Stanford lost! Repeat unlikely at Maples Pavilion, where recent home-oriented trend in the Bay Area rivalry (host has won and covered last six) should continue.

Pick: Stanford -6


Result: Loss
 
Washington State  Utah 

Event Date: 02/17/2018
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Now that Utah has moved itself into threatening position on the Big Dance bubble, have no problem continuing to fade Wazzu, whose season peaked at the Wooden Classic during Thanksgiving week and has been in a steep descent since, with SU and spread losses in 11 of 12 in Pac-12 play into Thursday’s game vs. Colorado. Recent Cougar scorelines not competitive either (six straight DD losses into game vs. Buffs), heightening speculation that beleaguered HC Ernie Kent about to walk the plank, especially with a new AD in Pullman. Excellent Ute interior “D” will force WSU to fling from long range, while Long Beach transfer G Justin Bibbins (team-best 14 ppg) continues to provide Utah with a real spark.

Pick Utah -7.5


Result: Loss
 
Illinois State  Northern Iowa 

Event Date: 02/17/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Illinois State is 12-4-1 ATS in their last 17 games following a straight up loss, and 9-4-1 ATS in their last 14 games following a ATS loss. While Northern Iowa is 16-33-2 ATS in their last 51 games overall, 10-25-1 ATS in their last 36 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record, and 7-19-1 ATS in their last 27 games after scoring less than 50 points in their previous game.

Pick: Illinois State +1


Result: Won
 
Vanderbilt  Florida 

Event Date: 02/17/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Though UF is currently an NCAA-at-large invite and Vanderbilt needs to win the SEC tourney for a Big Dance bid, would still give a nod to the hard-trying Commodores, who’ve won 4 straight in oddly configured Memorial Gymnasium. Note, Vanderbilt nailed 14 of 27 from downtown in thrilling, last-second 81-80 home win over dangerous Mississippi State in mid-week, while erratic-shooting UF canned only 38% from the floor in stunning 72-69 home OT loss to previously-reeling Georgia on the same day. Also, expect a “friendlier whistle” in Nashville after the Gators attempted 16 more foul shots in 81-74 home win back on Dec. 30th

Pick: Vanderbilt +3


Result: Won
 
Cal-Poly SLO  Cal Ivrine 

Event Date: 02/17/2018
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Cal Irvine is 4-0-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning % below .400, 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS loss, and 6-0-1 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a losing straight up record. While Cal-Poly Slo is  7-19 ATS in their last 26 home games, 7-20 ATS in their last 27 home games vs. a team with a losing road record, and 4-13 ATS in their last 17 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400.

Pick: Cal Ivrine -4.5


Result: Won
 
Iowa  Indiana 

Event Date: 02/17/2018
Event Time: 1 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Under savvy 1st-year mentor Archie Miller, surging Indiana (3 straight wins; 4 consecutive covers) playing its best ball of the season and seeking to build momentum for the upcoming Big Ten tourney in Madison Square Garden. Therefore, will gladly grab any available points vs. disappointing, defensively-soft Iowa (78.3 ppg; 311th nationally), which is only 2-4 SU last 6 at once-feared Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Big Ten sources tell us that the Hoosiers’ hot-shooting 6-8 jr. F Juwan Morgan (16.8 ppg, 7.4 rpg; 8 double doubles TY) has taken on the personality of the coach on the court, while 6-3 sr. G Robert Johnson (13.4 ppg; 70 assists) is determined to end his career with a bang. Plus, the IU bench chipped in a whopping 38 points in 78-68 home victory over Illinois on Wednesday. 

Pick: Indiana +1


Result: Won
 
UCLA  Oregon State 

Event Date: 02/15/2018
Event Time: 11 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With UCLA desperately looking to move to the safe side of the Big Dance cut line, inclined to “lay it” vs. sliding OSU, which has dropped 4 straight (SU & vs. the line) ever since its 69-63 home upset over the Bruins on Jan. 18th. UCLA’s highly-effective duo of 7-0 sr. C Thomas Welsh & 6-1 jr. G Aaron Holiday especially juiced-up for rematch after combining for 8 of 23 from the field in the earlier tilt in Corvallis. Moreover, seriously doubt OSU can successfully slow the pace vs. the go-go Bruins, who’ve erupted for 82 points or more in 3 of the past 4 outings.

Pick: UCLA -8.5


Result: Loss
San Francisco  St. Marys 

Event Date: 02/15/2018
Event Time: 11 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

In this old rivalry between Bay Area Catholic entries, dynamics not working lately for smallish USF, which hasn’t been within single digits vs. SMC since last season and was bludgeoned at Moraga by 36 on Feb. 1. Two weeks ago, USF had no answer for Gaels’ rampaging 6-11 Aussie C Jock Landale, who battered for 26 points in the paint, as SMC dominated glass by 44-29 count. Landale since scored 34 (vs. USD), and not even venue switch to the Hilltop can help host Dons overcome this fundamental mismatch on blocks.

Pick: St. Marys -9.5


Result: Loss
 
Houston  Cincinnati 

Event Date: 02/15/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Though UH is fighting for 2nd place in the AAC, must still lend support to defensively-suffocating league front runner Cincinnati (56.1 ppg; 36.7% from the field; 2nd nationally in both categories) riding a 15-game win skein (prior to SMU on Feb. 11). Bearcats (RPI of 8) who have a real shot at a top 4 seed in the Big Dance—will continue to hound the Cougars’ primary weapon 6-2 sr. G Rob Gray Jr.(18.3 ppg), who knocked down only 4 of 15 from the field in his team’s come-from-ahead 80-70 setback at Cincy on Jan. 31st, when the Cougs blew an 18-point lead. So, have faith Mick Cronin’s nicely balanced Bearcats (5 average between 8 & 14 ppg) notch their 4th straight win/cover in series. 

Pick: Cincinnati -3.5


Result: Loss
UC Irvine  Hawaii 

Event Date: 02/15/2018
Event Time: 11 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Hawaii’s challenge in the Big West fizzled on recent mainland trip when Rainbow Warriors lost at UCSB & Cal Poly, with the malaise carrying over to subsequent home loss to subpar UC Riverside. Offense short-circuited in losses to Mustangs and Highlanders, failing to hit 40% from floor vs. either. Not sure things get much better vs. defense-tough UCI, which looks to be ramping up for fast-approaching Big West Tourney in nearby Anaheim with wins and covers in four straight into last Saturday vs. UCR. Remember, Anteaters bludgeoned Hawaii on both occasions last season, and HC Russell Turner finding some offense in recent weeks from emerging soph G Evan Leonard, scoring 20 ppg in recent three-game stretch.

Pick: UC Irvine -8


Result: Loss
 
Bradley  Illinois State 

Event Date: 02/14/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Improved, postseason-seeking Bradley in chippy mood after its 12-game home win skein was snapped in 78-68 upset loss to Drake on Feb. 3. So, not adverse to laying single digits vs. ISU squad out to settle a score following 70-57 setback in Normal on in mid-January. Braves, who’re a noteworthy 10-1 vs. the spread at energizing Carver Arena, should extend that mark vs. a Redbird contingent, which is only 1-4 vs. spread on the MVC trail prior to trip to Valpo on Feb. 11. Bradley figures to shoot straighter from downtown after converting a season-worst 5 of 28 from deep in the earlier tilt. In addition, ISU’s instrumental 6-0 jr. G Keyshawn Evans (15.6 ppg, 3.4 apg) is sidelined 1-3 weeks with a knee injury.

Pick: Bradley -8


Result: Won
Southern Illinois  Missouri State 

Event Date: 02/14/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With SIU trying to keep within reach of MVC leader Loyola-Chicago, don’t mind laying a handful of points with surging Salukis, who’ve won 5 straight (4-0-1 vs. the number) through Feb. 7. SIU’s ever-improving 6-10 juco C Kavion Pippin (nephew of former Bull star Scottie Pippen; 12.2 ppg; 5.8 rpg; 33 blocks) will greatly neutralize MSU’s top gun 6-9 sr. Alize Johnson in the paint area. Meanwhile, the Salukis do everything 6-4 jr. G Armon Fletcher (14.3 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 30 steals; is the most versatile performer on this hardwood, so chances are the Bears drop to 1-6 last 7 vs. the spread on the MVC trail.

Pick: Southern Illinois -3

 


Result: Loss
 
Loyola Chicago  Valparaiso 

Event Date: 02/14/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The move from the Horizon to the Missouri Valley has proven a bit much for Valparaiso, which has yet to win SU in first seven on the road in its new league. Unlike days in the Horizon, Crusaders have been getting hammered mercilessly off glass in their new, tougher neighborhood, as MVC-leading Loyola proved in 70-54 road win on Jan. 21. Lack of reliable bench contributions (only three points in first meeting) another ongoing concern for Valparaiso, while Ramblers moving into possible Big Dance at large discussions with wins and covers in 9 of 10 into last Saturday vs. Indiana State.

Pick: Loyola Chicago -11


Result: Loss
 
Texas Tech  Oklahoma 

Event Date: 02/13/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Sixth-ranked Texas Tech is experiencing a magical season and looks to retain its lead in the Big 12 when it hosts No. 23 Oklahoma today. The Red Raiders are 15-0 at home this season and hold a one-game edge over Kansas in the conference race as they look to avenge last month's road loss to the Sooners. Texas Tech's 21-4 start matches the second best in school history and the program is thriving in Chris Beard's second season at the helm. Oklahoma is sliding in the wrong direction with three consecutive setbacks and is coming off Saturday's 88-80 loss to last-place Iowa State.

Pick: Texas Tech -7


Result: Won
 
Nebraska  Maryland 

Event Date: 02/13/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With a five-point loss at Ohio State on Jan. 22 serving as its only blemish in over a month, Nebraska has won seven of its last eight to rise to fourth place in the Big Ten. The Cornhuskers improved to 13-1 at Pinnacle Bank Arena - 6-0 in conference action - following Saturday's 67-55 victory over Rutgers, putting them on the verge of their first 20-win regular season since 1992-93. Since its only signature victory of the season came in a 72-52 home rout of No. 20 Michigan on Jan. 18 and with no other resume-building opportunities remaining in the regular season, Nebraska would be well-served to win out to stay on the right side of the NCAA Tournament bubble. The Terrapins are coming off a 73-57 triumph over Northwestern on Saturday but have dropped six in a row on the road and are 1-7 away from home this season.

Pick: Nebraska -1


Result: Won
 
West Virginia  TCU 

Event Date: 02/12/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

TCU looking like it could be victimized by ruggedness of the Big 12 as it inexorably slips closer and closer to the Big Dance bubble. Absence of key G Jaylen Fisher (knee) didn’t hurt Frogs in earlier 82-73 win over WVU at Fort Worth, but without their best assist man, Jamie Dixon’s offense has been less efficient in recent weeks. Recent panic in Morgantown after 1-5 Mountie skid in January now in rear-view mirror after impressive back-to-back wins over K-State and Oklahoma.

Pick: West Virginia -5.5


Result: Won
 
SMU  Cincinnati 

Event Date: 02/11/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Recalling a pair of defeats last year vs. SMU, Cincinnati (which hasn’t lost SU since Dec. 9 vs. Florida) made sure to take care of business vs. Mustangs in 76-56 romp at temporary home of NKU’s BB&T Arena in nearby Highland Heights on Jan. 7. With only two spread Ls last nine, Mick Cronin’s Bearcats mostly handling heavy imposts in American play. Meanwhile, even with a neutral-floor win over Arizona and a success at Wichita State, SMU’s Big Dance at-large case has been damaged by recent losses to UConn and Tulsa, as Mustangs having trouble getting above .500 in AAC. Note that snarling Cincinnati “D” has held American foes to 56 points or fewer in 8 of first 10 loop games.

Pick: Cincinnati -7.5


Result: Won
 
Southern Illinois  Bradley 

Event Date: 02/11/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Missouri Valley has been a home-oriented loop this season; ask Bradley, just 1-5 SU and vs. line on Valley trail after last Wednesday’s loss at Northern Iowa. Meanwhile, surging SIU has just one spread L in last eight thru Feb. 7, including spread push vs. Braves at Peoria back on Jan. 9. Catalyst in recent Saluki uprising has been 6-10 juco Kavion Pippen (Scottie’s nephew), scoring 17.3 ppg last three into last Thursday vs. Illinois State, and providing vet HC Barry Hinson with a Valley rarity...a true back-to-the-basket threat in the post.

Pick: Southern Illinois -3.5


Result: Won
 
Pittsburgh  Louisville 

Event Date: 02/11/2018
Event Time: 1 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

When these two teams met back on Jan. 2 in Louisville, the Panthers were 8-6 on the season and had gone 7-2 in their previous nine games. But Louisville, led by Quentin Snider's 19 points, routed Pitt 77-51 and the Panthers haven't won since, putting them in the midst of the longest losing streak in school history. That win kicked off Louisville's 6-2 start to conference play. Louisville is on an 11-game win streak against Pitt and leads the all-time series 15-5.

Pick: Louisville -11


Result: Won
 
Georgia  Auburn 

Event Date: 02/10/2018
Event Time: 3 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Since offensively-stodgy & erratic-gunning UGa (68.7 ppg; 42.7% from the floor) unable to gain any real traction in SEC play, believe SEC leader Auburn can sweep series after being swept by the Dawgs in 2016-17. Tigers, who still have a shot at a top four seed in the Big Dance despite 81-80 home loss to surging Texas A&M on Wednesday, figure to crash the boards with more ferocity after being out-rebounded by the Aggies 33-22 in the 1-pt. setback. And AU can afford to double-team UGa’s premier weapon F Yante Mateen if necessary, since the Dawgs convert only 5.9 triples pg (309th) at a rim-clanking 32% (310th). Plus, you can expect an inspired effort from the Tigers’ dangerous 6-3 jr. G Bryce Brown (16.6 ppg; poured in 28 in 1st meeting), who hails from Stone Mountain, Georgia

Pick: Auburn -4


Result: Won
 
UNLV  Wyoming 

Event Date: 02/10/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

UNLV probably feeling a bit cocky after midweek upset win at Nevada when Wolf Pack missed injury Mountain West MVP contender wing Caleb Martin. But crisp-executing Wyoming the sort of team to exploit Rebels’ lack of discipline, as big Cowboy wings 6-7 Justin James (18.7 ppg) & 6-8 Hayden Dalton (17.4 ppg) can cause some matchup problems on perimeter for UNLV HC Marvin Menzies. Note that before that Wednesday upset in Reno, money-burning Rebs had covered the number in just one of previous twelve games!

Pick: Wyoming +6.5


Result: Loss
Illinois Chicago  Cleveland State 

Event Date: 02/10/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Cleveland State is 6-15 ATS in their last 21 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600, 10-25-2 ATS in their last 37 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record, and 8-20-1 ATS in their last 29 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. While Illinois Chicago is 13-3 ATS in their last 16 games overall, 20-6 ATS in their last 26 games vs. a team with a losing straight up record, and 21-7 ATS in their last 28 games vs. a team with a winning % below .400.

Pick: Illinois Chicago -11


Result: Loss
 
Nebraska  Rutgers 

Event Date: 02/10/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With injury-plagued, offensively-inept Rutgers (65.8 ppg; 327th) needing a GPS device to locate the basket these days, must lay the lumber with hot Nebraska, which has a real shot at Big Dance at-large bid with a strong finish in Big Ten play. Huskers—who’ve found a reliable fourth scoring option in emerging 6-8 sophomore F Isaiah Roby—are a highly-profitable 10-1 vs. the spread in conference play, including 60-54 victory at Rutgers in late January. And Scarlet Knights unable to quickly make up an expected deficit in Lincoln, canning a meager 4.5 treys pg (350th) at 30.2% (340th). 

Pick: Nebraska -9


Result: Won
 
Indiana State   Loyola Chicago 

Event Date: 02/10/2018
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Loyola Chicago is 23-7 ATS in their last 30 games following a straight up win, 30-12-1 ATS in their last 43 road games vs. a team with a winning home record, and 40-17 ATS in their last 57 games following a ATS win. While Indiana State is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games overall, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 vs. Missouri Valley, and 0-5 ATS in their last 5 games following a double-digit loss at home.

Pick: Loyola Chicago -3.5


Result: Won
 
Loyola Marymount  Pepperdine 

Event Date: 02/10/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

In this battle between LA-area WCC rivals, it’s looking a lot like last season when LMU avenged a bitter 1-point loss at Malibu with a 21-point home romp past Pepperdine. Well, Waves scored another win by the same score as last year (71-70) over the Lions on Jan. 25 at Firestone Field House when Pep frosh G Trae Berhow nailed a long 3-pointer in the last second, but that was also Waves’ only SU win since Dec. 5 as the walls begin to close in around beleaguered HC Marty Wilson. LMU not doing much better the past month, but did recently knock off BYU at Gersten Pavilion and has been competitive on more nights than Pepperdine. Lions HC Mike Dunlap still getting good production from juco PG James Batemon (17.4 ppg).

Pick: Loyola Marymount -4.5


Result: Won
Yale  Columbia 

Event Date: 02/09/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Yale is 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning % below .400. While the favorite 9-3 ATS in the last 12 meetings. In addition, Columbia is 4-14 ATS in the last 18 meetings and 2-7 ATS in the last 9 meetings in Yale.

Pick: Yale -4.5


Result: Loss
 
Indiana  Minnesota 

Event Date: 02/09/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Shorthanded Minnesota is possibly down three starters with the most recent injury to 6-5 jr. G Dupree McBrayer (leg; check status). So, must “lay it” with the profitable Hoosiers (7-2 vs. spread last 9 in Big Ten play) eager to get back to .500 in Big Ten play. Once again, the laboring Gophers will have no answer for IU’s dynamic duo of 6-8 jr. F Juwan Morgan (16.8 ppg, 7.3 rpg) & 6-3 sr. G Robert Johnson (13.4 ppg, 4.5 rpg), who combined for 48 points in their 75-71 upset win in Minneapolis in early January. “Costly” & defensively-lax Minnesota, which is a lowly 2-7 vs. the spread last 9 in league play, has yielded a whopping 76 points or more in 8 of L9 in the Big Ten!

Pick: Indiana -6.5


Result: Won
Wright State  Green Bay 

Event Date: 02/08/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Wright St. Raiders are 11-1 at home this season, and 10-2 against 8-5 opponents. At home the Raiders are averaging 66.9 scoring, and holding teams to 56.7 points scored on defense. While the Green Bay Phoenix are 0-11 while on the road this season, 5-8 against conference opponents, and 5-8 against non-conference opponents. On the road, the Phoenix are averaging 68.5 scoring, and holding teams to 82.4 points scored on defense. In addition, the favorite is 7-1 ATS in the last 8 meetings.

Pick: Wright State -13.5


Result: Loss
 
Evansville  Valparaiso 

Event Date: 02/07/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The move to the Missouri Valley has not been an easy one for Valparaiso, which was able to physically wear down opponents in the lesser Horizon. That recipe, however, isn’t working in the rougher Valley, as the Crusaders have been getting hammered consistently off the glass, something that rarely happened in their old neighborhood and hampered Valparaiso in home loss to Evansville (which won board battle 42-34) on Jan. 24. Purple Aces will be glad to get physical again vs. Crusaders, who also will have problems containing host’s on-fire G Ryan Taylor (20.4 ppg), who had scored 22 or more in three straight (all E’ville wins, including 22 in first meeting) into last Saturday vs. Illinois State. Valparaiso win less SU (0-5) on Valley trail into last Saturday at SIU.

Pick: Evansville -3.5


Result: Won
 
Virginia Tech  NC State 

Event Date: 02/07/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

North Carolina State looks for its fourth straight win as it visits Virginia Tech in an important matchup tonight. The Wolfpack are tied for fifth and hold a one-game lead over the Hokies in the crowded ACC standings as both teams need all the wins they can get down the stretch to improve their NCAA Tournament resumes. N.C. State is playing its best basketball of the season and is fresh off a dominant 76-58 victory over Notre Dame where the Wolfpack shot 50 percent and allowed their second-fewest points against this season.

Pick: NC State +6


Result: Loss
 
Seton Hall  Marquette 

Event Date: 02/07/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Life in the Big East with a young team is proving difficult for Marquette, which plays a conference game at Seton Hall. The Golden Eagles have lost four straight games including the last three at home and face an uphill battle the rest of the way with five of their final seven contests on the road starting with the Pirates, whom they beat by 20 points last month. In their most recent loss to Providence, the Golden Eagles were 0-of-8 from beyond the arc in the second half and received only seven points from Andrew Rowsey, who was coming off his first scoreless game of the season.

Pick: Seton Hall -6


Result: Loss
 
Miami  Wake Forest 

Event Date: 02/07/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With back-to-back victories over Pittsburgh and Virginia Tech, Miami played its way back into the Coaches Poll at No. 25. Now the Hurricanes, who have won four of their last five, have to work hard to remain there, beginning with Wednesday's visit from Wake Forest, which has lost seven straight in the state of Florida. Wake has yet to beat a ranked team this season and is winless in its last 20 road matchups with ranked opponents. That doesn't bode well against the Hurricanes, who have made their home court a real advantage with 35 wins in their last 38 games, including an 8-1 mark at the Watsco Center this year thanks to outscoring its opponents by an average of 16.2 points per game. Miami is set up for a strong stretch run to the postseason with five of its final eight games at home.

Pick: Miami -8.5


Result: Loss
 
Davidson  St. Joseph 

Event Date: 02/06/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Davidson is 6-1-1 ATS in their last 8 games overall, 6-1-1 ATS in their last 8 vs. Atlantic 10, 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 games vs. a team with a losing straight up record, and 22-7-1 ATS in their last 30 Tuesday games. In addition, Davidson is 4-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings at home.

Pick: Davidson -10.5


Result: Won
 
Oklahoma State  Baylor 

Event Date: 02/06/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Oklahoma State is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record, 40-17-2 ATS in their last 59 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400, and 44-21-3 ATS in their last 68 home games vs. a team with a losing road record. In addition, Oklahoma State, is 15-6-2 ATS in the last 23 meetings at home.

Pick: Oklahoma State -2


Result: Loss
 
Kent State  Eastern Michigan 

Event Date: 02/06/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Kent State is 5-0-1 ATS in their last 6 home games, 5-1-1 ATS in their last 7 games overall, and 5-1-1 ATS in their last 7 vs. Mid-American. While Eastern Michigan is 7-19 ATS in their last 26 vs. Mid-American and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600. Eastern Michigan is also 4-9 ATS in the last 13 meetings overall and 1-5 ATS in the last 6 meetings in Kent St.

Pick: Kent -3.5


Result: Loss
 
Minnesota  Nebraska 

Event Date: 02/06/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Nebraska is 10-1 ATS in their last 11 games following a ATS win, 10-1 ATS in their last 11 vs. Big Ten, 13-3 ATS in their last 16 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record, and 17-5 ATS in their last 22 games overall. While Minnesota is 2-5 ATS in their last 7 home games vs. a team with a losing road record, 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record, and 2-7 ATS in their last 9 games following a straight up loss.

Pick: Nebraska +1.5


Result: Won
 
Tuland  Temple 

Event Date: 02/04/2018
Event Time: 3 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Temple off upset of Wichita State on Thursday following its well-played 85-67 romp over UConn. Hence, would “invest” on the revenge-minded Owls, who hit a season-worst 4 of 21 from deep in their 85-75 home upset loss to Tulane in the AAC opener on Dec. 28th. Owls, who subsequently covered at Houston and pulled off big upset at SMU, should even the series vs. an erratic Tulane contingent, which barely escaped in 71-69 OT win at also-ran East Carolina on Wednesday. Watch for a high-impact showing from Temple’s usually-steady 6-10 sr. F Obi Enechionyia, who canned a season-worst 1 of 9 from the field in the first clash

Pick: Temple -2.5


Result: Won
 
Maryland  Wisconsin 

Event Date: 02/04/2018
Event Time: 1 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Maryland is 6-0 ATS in their last 6 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400, 6-0-1 ATS in their last 7 home games, and 7-0 ATS in their last 7 home games vs. a team with a losing road record. While the home team is 7-2 ATS in the last 9 meetings.

Pick: Maryland -8.5


Result: Loss
 
East Carolina  Memphis 

Event Date: 02/03/2018
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Memphis, which is in the hunt for a top four finish in the AAC (and first-round bye in at the upcoming conference tourney), is placing extra importance in this winnable game with juggernaut Wichita State on deck. So, more than willing to lay a short price vs. offensively challenged & often-careless ECU (65.4 ppg; ranked 331st; 311 in TO margin), which lacks much come-back ability, nailing a paltry 5.1 triples pg at a horrific 27.3% (351st). Tubby Smith’s Tigers—who’ve covered 4 straight as chalk—owns one the league’s most improved players in the AAC in sizzling 6-3 jr. G Jeremiah Martin (18.3 ppg TY; 10.3 LY), who’s surpassed the 20-point plateau in 4 of his last 5 outings. Additionally, UM’s productive 6-8 jr. F Kryon Davenport (12.7 ppg, 6.5 rpg) quickly establishes his post game vs. Pirates’ vulnerable forecourt, missing shelved 6-10 sr. F Jabari Craig (out for year with foot injury).

Pick: Memphis -7.5


Result: Loss
 
Wake Forest  Clemson 

Event Date: 02/03/2018
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Clemson clearly demonstrated it can win a marquee game sans the services of injured 6-8 sr. F Donte Grantham in its headline-grabbing 82-78 home upset victory over North Carolina on Tuesday. And don’t expect the Tigers to suffer from any letdown after Wake Forest pulled off a 76-72 upset win over Florida State on Wednesday. But seriously doubt the Deacons can knock off nationally-ranked, defensively-stout Clemson (65.8 ppg; 41.2% from the floor; 5.6 bpg),which had seven different players nail a 3-ball vs. the Tar Heels. Look for Tigers’ clutch 6-3 jr. G Macquise Reed to take over the game in crunch time as he did for Roy Williams’ troops vs. a WF contingent, which is only 2-4 SU last 6 in Lawrence Joel Coliseum.

Pick: Clemson -2


Result: Won
 
Auburn  Vanderbilt 

Event Date: 02/03/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Auburn has won four in a row following its only setback in conference play, a five-point loss at Alabama on Jan. 17, and opened a two-game lead in the SEC with its 79-70 win at Mississippi on Tuesday, coupled with Florida's loss to Georgia. Bryce Brown is averaging a team-high 16.6 points per game for Auburn and will look to string together back-to-back 20-point games for the first time this season. The 6-3 junior shooting guard scored 23 against Mississippi on 9-for-16 shooting from the floor.

Pick: Auburn -11.5


Result: Won
 
Colorado State  Nevada 

Event Date: 02/03/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The slope could be a bit slippery for MW leader Nevada at Moby Arena, where CSU us usually capable of plotting a trap. But not sure Rams up to it now after all-out effort fell short in OT at midweek vs. border rival Wyo. Moreover, CSU has been down its top two scorers (G Nixon with ankle, G Paige with hand) in recent games, and distractions mounting in Fort Collins with HC Larry Eustachy apparently being fitted with a noose by administrators. Would rather not touch Rams at moment, and much prefer percolating Wolf Pack, off of back-to-back 100-point eruptions (though double OT helped in recent trip to Wyoming), and all starters scoring 16 or more in Wednesday’s explosive 102-92 win over dangerous Fresno.

Pick: Nevada -11.5


Result: Loss
Loyola Chicago  Missouri State 

Event Date: 02/03/2018
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Unable to develop reliable secondary scoring options beyond do-everything 6-9 sr. F Alize Johnson (15.3 ppg & 11.5 rpg; only DD scorer on team), Missouri State’s fortunes have taken a dip since New Year’s, winning just twice SU and failing to cover a number in last eight games. Before Bears season turned south, they did win a close verdict vs. Valley front runner Loyola before Xmas. But Porter Moser’s revenge-fueled Ramblers have made much better progress since, recently on a 7-game SU win streak, and having developed admirable balance with five DD scorers, led by on-fire former Iowa State transfer G Clayton Custer (scored 20+ in last two games)

Pick: Loyola Chicago -8


Result: Won
UMass  URI 

Event Date: 01/30/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating; 2 Units

URI is 7-2-1 ATS in their last 10 road games vs. a team with a winning home record, 21-7-1 ATS in their last 29 games following a straight up win, and 19-7-1 ATS in their last 27 games overall. While UMASS is 17-35-2 ATS in their last 54 vs. Atlantic 10, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up loss, and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 Tuesday games.

Pick: URI -10.5


Result: Loss
 
Oklahoma State  TCU 

Event Date: 01/30/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Oklahoma State is 40-16-2 ATS in their last 58 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400, 44-20-3 ATS in their last 67 home games vs. a team with a losing road record, and 15-7-1 ATS in their last 23 Tuesday games. While TCU is 1-4 ATS in the last 5 meetings and 0-4 ATS in the last 4 meetings in Oklahoma State.

Pick: Oklahoma State +1.5


Result: Loss
 
Central Michigan  Northern Illinois 

Event Date: 01/30/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Central Michigan is 9-3 ATS in their last 12 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400. While Northern Illinois is 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games following a ATS win, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 road games vs. a team with a winning home record, 1-5 ATS in their last 6 road games, and 0-4 ATS in their last 4 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600.

Pick: Central Michigan -5


Result: Won
 
Bowling Green  Ohio 

Event Date: 01/30/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Ohio is 2-5-1 ATS in their last 8 road games, 1-3-2 ATS in their last 6 games overall, 2-6-2 ATS in their last 10 vs. Mid-American, and 3-12-1 ATS in their last 16 Tuesday games. In addition, Ohio is 3-8 ATS in the last 11 meetings in Bowling Green.

Pick: Bowling Green - Pickem


Result: Won
 
Missouri State  Illinois State 

Event Date: 01/30/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Illinois State is 5-17 ATS in their last 22 games following a straight up win, 0-8 ATS in their last 8 games following a ATS win, and 0-3-1 ATS in their last 4 road games. In addition the home team is 4-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings while Illinois State is 3-7 ATS in the last 10 meetings, and 1-5 ATS in the last 6 meetings in Missouri St.

Pick: Missouri State -8


Result: Loss
South Dakota State  Omaha 

Event Date: 01/30/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

South Dakota State is 11-3 ATS in their last 14 home games, 7-2 ATS in their last 9 home games vs. a team with a losing road record, 6-2 ATS in their last 8 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400, 13-5 ATS in their last 18 vs. Summit, and 21-9 ATS in their last 30 games overall.

Pick: South Dakota State -14.5


Result: Won
 
Mississippi  Auburn 

Event Date: 01/30/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Mississippi is 7-2 ATS in their last 9 home games vs. a team with a winning road record, 36-13-2 ATS in their last 51 games following a straight up loss, and 9-4 ATS in their last 13 Tuesday games. While Auburn is 1-4 ATS in the last 5 meetings in Mississippi and 1-5 ATS in the last 6 meetings overall.

Pick: Ole Miss +4.5


Result: Loss
 
Kentucky  Vanderbilt 

Event Date: 01/30/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Kentucky is 10-4 ATS in their last 14 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400, and 12-5 ATS in their last 17 home games vs. a team with a losing road record. While Vanderbilt is 5-16 ATS in their last 21 games overall, 4-13 ATS in their last 17 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600, and 4-14 ATS in their last 18 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.

Pick: Kentucky -11.5


Result: Loss
 
Citadel  East Tennessee 

Event Date: 01/29/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Bulldogs are 9-2 ATS in their last 11 home games vs. a team with a winning road record, 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 games following a ATS win, and 9-3 ATS in their last 12 Monday games. While the Buccaneers are 2-5 ATS in the last 7 meetings and the underdog is 5-2 ATS in the last 7 meetings.

Pick: Citadel +18


Result: Won
Holy Cross  Lehigh 

Event Date: 01/29/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Crusaders are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 vs. Patriot League, 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games following a straight up win, and 5-2 ATS in their last 7 Monday games. While the Mountain Hawks are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games overall, 1-6 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a losing straight up record, and 0-4 ATS in their last 4 Monday games.

Pick: Holy Cross -2


Result: Loss
Rider  Monmouth 

Event Date: 01/29/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Rider is 9-3-1 ATS in their last 13 games following a straight up win, 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning % below .400, and 7-3-1 ATS in their last 11 games overall. While Monmouth is 2-5 ATS in their last 7 road games, 2-6 ATS in their last 8 Monday games, and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.

Pick: Rider -5


Result: Won
 
Duke  Notre Dame 

Event Date: 01/29/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Blue Devils are 5-1-1 ATS in their last 7 games following a ATS loss and 17-8-1 ATS in their last 26 games overall. While the Fighting Irish are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games overall, and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 vs. Atlantic Coast.

Pick: Duke -14


Result: Won
 
Wichita State  Tulsa 

Event Date: 01/28/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Shamet averages team bests of 15.0 points and 5.2 assists despite totaling only 11 points and nine assists in his last two games. Morris (12.5 points, 4.6 rebounds) is averaging 16 points over his last three games after recording 19 versus UCF as the Shockers improved to 8-0 this season when he scores 18 or more points. Senior forward Rashard Kelly (5.8 points, team-high 7.5 rebounds) will play his 127th game Sunday, moving him into 10th on the school's all-time list.The Shockers have won nine of the last 10 meetings, including a 72-69 victory on Jan. 13 behind 16 points apiece from sophomore guard Landry Shamet and senior guard Conner Frankamp.

Pick: Wichita State -17


Result: Won
 
Texas  Mississippi 

Event Date: 01/27/2018
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

In this SEC-Big 12 Challenge clash, must side with dangerous Ole Miss. Though UT has done a commendable job compensating for the loss of star G Andrew Jones (leukemia), believe his absence will be exploited by a G-heavy Ole Miss squad, which has covered 3 straight as an underdog, including outright upsets over Florida and Arkansas. Rebels’ smooth 6-2 sr. G Deandre Burnett (15 ppg; 38 triples at 41%) ending his career with a bang, while emerging soph G Breein Tyree (10 ppg) has greatly improved his marksmanship, nailing 39% from the arc after only 29% from distance in SEC games a year ago. Longhorns, nailing a poor 30.5% from deep (331st), only 12-14 as home chalk since 2015-16.

Pick: Mississippi +6


Result: Loss
 
Vanderbilt  TCU 

Event Date: 01/27/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

TCU (lofty RPI of 16) seeking to avoid any bad losses and secure a good seeding in the Big Dance. So, would favor the happening Horned Frogs, benefiting from ego-boosting 82-73 home upset win over West Virginia on Monday. Vanderbilt lives and dies from the 3-point line, but the Commodores won’t outgun high-octane, good-passing TCU (87.3 ppg; 6th nationally; 20 apg; 2nd), which cans 9.2 triples pg at a solid 40.6%. Vanderbilt's perimeter game took a hit with loss of key 6-5 wing Matthew Fisher-Davis out for the season with a shoulder injury. Plus, the Commodores ill-equipped to slow down the Horned Frogs’ highly-effective 6-11 sr. F Vladimir Brodziansky (15.4 ppg, 80% from foul line), while 6-7 sr. G Kenrich Williams (14.4 ppg; 42% from the 3-point line) is a matchup nightmare.

Pick: TCU -3.5


Result: Loss
 
UNLV  San Diego State 

Event Date: 01/27/2018
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

It’s not like the old days for SDSU, whose new HC Brian Dutcher has junked Steve Fisher’s patient offense and has the Aztecs (scoring nearly 80 ppg!) running these days, reflected again in 97-point explosion at midweek vs. CSU. Better news is that recent minor injury to key G Trey Kell didn’t keep him out of Wednesday’s win over Rams, when Kell played 26 minutes. Meanwhile, UNLV not similarly progressing under cool guy HC Marvin Menzies, who has watched Rebs fail to cover a staggering ten straight games (0-9-1).

Pick: San DIego State -Pickem


Result: Loss
 
Nebraska  Iowa 

Event Date: 01/27/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With coming Nebraska (RPI in low 60s) seeking to be in the conversation of the NCAA Tourney Selection Committee, willing to lay single digits vs. defensively-lax Iowa (76.4 ppg, 44.7% from the field), which hasn’t strung together back-to-back quality efforts in the Big Ten so far. Hawkeyes, who were able to efficiently run their half court attack vs. struggling, slowish Wisconsin on Tuesday, will be afforded few uncontested looks vs. defensively-sticky Huskers (68.5 ppg; 41.5% from the floor). Moreover, anticipate more formful shooting from NU’s terrific back court tandem of 6-6 jr. James Palmer Jr. & Glynn Watson Jr., who combined for 11 of 29 from the floor in their grinding 60-54 victory at improved Rutgers. Hustling Huskers 10-1-1 last 12 vs. the spread.

Pick: Nebraska -3.5


Result: Won
 
Duke  Virginia 

Event Date: 01/27/2018
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Something has to give here as the irresistible force (Duke’s nation’s leading scoring offense at 91.7 ppg) meets the immovable object (Virginia’s nation’s best 51.6 ppg scoring defense). Measured vote for the ‘Hoos, as Tony Bennett’s patient style and smothering defense has routinely jammed the gearbox on the Blue Devil attack in recent years, with several lower scoring match ups. Bennett getting reliable offense from emerging soph G Kyle Guy, scoring better than 15 ppg (very good for a Bennett offense) and canning 43% beyond arc. Points should work with UVa.

Pick: Virginia +3.5


Result: Won
 
Iowa State  Tennessee 

Event Date: 01/27/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Tennessee raced out to a 17-point halftime lead and held on for a 67-62 win against the Commodores. Bowden scored 19 points and tied a career high with five 3-pointers after entering the night shooting 25 percent in conference games. However, Tennessee can’t take Iowa State lightly, as the Cyclones enter having won their last five games against top-25 non-conference teams at Hilton Coliseum.

Pick: Iowa State +2.5


Result: Loss
 
Mississippi State  Missouri 

Event Date: 01/27/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

For the NCAA Tournament hopefuls in the crowded middle of the SEC pack, head-to-head results likely will loom large in March. One of those potentially critical match ups comes today, when Mississippi State hosts Missouri. Missouri looked like a solid contender to return to the NCAA Tournament a few weeks ago, but it has lost two straight contests and three of its last four. The Tigers' offensive output dropped off in a 60-49 loss at Texas A&M last Saturday, and they melted down in the final 10 minutes of a 93-71 home setback against Auburn four days later. The Bulldogs have won four straight meetings with the Tigers.

Pick: Mississippi State -120 ML


Result: Won
 
Utah State  Air Force 

Event Date: 01/24/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Credit Air Force HC Dave Pilipovich for scheming the Falcons into several recent competitive efforts, including a shock win at CSU last Wednesday. But maybe we shouldn’t be surprised, as the Force took a 5-game cover streak into last Saturday vs. Fresno, as Falcons getting big efforts from a variety of sources (G Trevor Lyons scored 22 in upset at Fort Collins; soph F Ryan Swan 19 in recent win at San Jose; soph F Lavelle Scottie scored 26 in near-miss vs. UNLV on Jan. 10). Meanwhile, Utah State appears headed in opposite direction, with defensive deficiencies exposed in recent 3-game MW losing streak. 

Pick: Air Force +9


Result: Loss
 
Cincinnati  Temple 

Event Date: 01/24/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Bearcats built upon the longest active home winning streak in the country with an emphatic 86-60 triumph over East Carolina, and look very much like a team that isn't ready to see that run come to an end. It hasn't even mattered that Cincinnati has had to play its home games at Northern Kentucky University's BB&T Arena while Fifth Third Arena undergoes extensive renovations; the Bearcats have won all 10 games played there so far this season, and have won their first three American Athletic Conference home games by an average of 26.7 points. They'll look to continue that red-hot run against an Owls team that has won two straight games, and nearly pulled off an upset in a 55-53 loss to Cincinnati back on Jan. 4.

Pick: Temple +14


Result: Loss
 
San Diego State  Colorado State 

Event Date: 01/24/2018
Event Time: 11 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Rams are 12-3-1 ATS in their last 16 games following a straight up loss. While Rams are 3-1-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings. In addition, the underdog is 3-1-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings and the road team is 4-1-1 ATS in the last 6 meetings.

Pick: Colorado State +14


Result: Loss
 
Baylor  Kansas State 

Event Date: 01/22/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

It would have been easy for Bruce Weber's Wildcats, who lost starting point guard Kamau Stokes indefinitely to a foot injury, to fold up after the 73-72 loss to the No. 10 Jayhawks which ended with junior guard Barry Brown missing a potential game-winning 3-pointer at the buzzer. But Kansas State bounced back three nights later with a 87-69 blowout of No. 6 Oklahoma and then followed that up Saturday with a 73-68 victory over 25th-ranked TCU. The Wildcats now must avoid a letdown when they travel to Waco to face a Baylor squad that is smarting and tied for the Big 12 cellar after blowing a six-point lead in the final 2:50 of a 70-67 loss at first-place Kansas on Saturday night.

Pick: Kansas State +5


Result: Won
 
Illinois  Michigan State 

Event Date: 01/22/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Fighting Illini are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 Monday games and 3-0-1 ATS in their last 4 games following a ATS loss. While the Spartans are 3-8-1 ATS in the last 12 meetings versus the Illini.

Pick: Illinois +12


Result: Loss
 
Dayton  Rhode Island 

Event Date: 01/20/2018
Event Time: 1 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With streaking RI gunning for its 13th straight victory, must lay short price with A-10 front runner, double-revenger Rams, who played their best defensive game of the year in 73-51 home romp over previously-surging UMass on Wednesday. Disciplined & careful RI (+5.2 TO margin; 6th nationally) smoothly directed by blossoming 6-3 soph PG Jeff Dowtin, who has collected 91 assists & only 21 TOs. Meanwhile, Rams’ sharpshooting back court mates 6-3 sr. Jared Terrell (18 ppg; 42% from the arc) and E.C. Matthews (13.6 ppg) will exploit a sagging Dayton defense, which has allowed 80 ppg over the last 3 outings. Flyers, who’ve already suffered home defeats administered by UMass & Penn this term, will eventually succumb to a hot & profitable Ram contingent, 6-0-1 vs. spread last 7 tilts.

Pick: Rhode Island -3.5


Result: Won
 
Vanderbilt  LSU 

Event Date: 01/20/2018
Event Time: 1 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Since uptempo, good-shooting LSU (79.8 ppg; 49.4% FGs) has actually played better on the SEC trail than in Baton Rouge, have no qualms endorsing the Bayou Bengals seeking their fourth straight road win, including upset victories at Texas A&M & Arkansas. LSU’s gifted 5-11 frosh PG Tremont Waters (16.3 ppg; 40% from distance; 102 assists) is a prime candidate for SEC Newcomer of the Year, while undervalued 6-11 sr. F Duop Reath (12.4 ppg, 5.2 rpg) will do plenty of biz in the post area vs. undersized Vanderbilt, being forced to use shortish 6-6 sr. F Jeff Roberson at the center spot. Additionally, the Bayou Bengals can afford to pack it in on the stop end, since the Commodores are only canning 32.2% from trey land (296th). Underperforming Vanderbilt is a bankroll-evaporating 1-14 vs. the spread TY! 

Pick: LSU +2


Result: Loss
 
Nevada  Boise State 

Event Date: 01/20/2018
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Mountain West showdown between teams both on course for Big Dance (recent RPI had Nevada at 16 and Boise at 29, well within at-large range). Last season, however, a similar looking Broncos team was outclassed twice by Wolf Pack, and regional insiders believe this is a better Nevada edition, especially on stop end. Pack has more length on perimeter than any other MW entry, and can effectively tie up top Boise scorer wing Chandler Hutchison (19.6 ppg), who recently dropped 44 on San Diego State. Eric Musselman now getting consistent big efforts from 6-7 Purdue grad transfer wing Kendall Stephens, scoring 19 ppg last four after the NC State transfer Martin twins had stolen many of the early-season headlines.

Pick: Nevada -5.5


Result: Won
 
Santa Clara  Gonzaga 

Event Date: 01/20/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Herb Sendek doesn’t have the weapons on hand as he did a year ago, when inheriting bombs-away G Jared Brownridge from predecessor Kerry Keating, as well as a useful frontline scrapper in Nate Kratch. Broncos badly missing those weapons this season, and Sendek was helpless to watch on Dec. 30 at Spokane, when Zags viciously dismembered SC 101-52. Mark Few might display a bit more compassion in rematch, but Gonzaga still scoring 90 ppg, and hard to make a case for Broncos, only 3-13 vs. spread entering weekend.

Pick: Gonzaga -19.5


Result: Loss
 
Wisconsin  Illinois 

Event Date: 01/19/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Though Illinois still seeking its first Big Ten victory, strongly recommend “taking” with a highly-combative Illini squad, which has lost 8 of its 9 games by 7 points or fewer, including three OT setbacks. Expect Illinois to shoot straighter after nailing only 3 of 18 from deep in taut 64-63 loss at improved Nebraska on Monday. Wisconsin still too overly-dependent on do-everything 6-10 jr. F Ethan Happ, who won’t outclass the Illini’s mettle tested, good-shooting 6-10 jr. F Michael Finke, who scored 16 points and hauled in 10 caroms vs. the Huskers. Plus, Illinois’ industrious 6-7 jr. F Leron Black (14.3 ppg, 5.6 rpg) will be tough matchup for the Badgers, who’re ranked a lowly 289th in FG% defense (46.2%).

Pick: Illinois +5


Result: Loss
 
Western Michigan  Buffalo 

Event Date: 01/19/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

To this point, Buffalo looking the clear class of the MAC, which some regional sources suggested once Mizzou transfer G Wes Clark (15.4 ppg) became eligible in mid-December. That gave Bulls a third heavy-duty scoring wheel behind smooth-stroking jr. G CJ Massinburg (186 ppg’40% triples) and emerging 6-8 jr. PF Nick Perkins (16 ppg), who scored 26 in recent Jan. 16 blowout of NIU. No MAC foe yet within single digits of Bulls, and WMU hard-pressed to break that trend unless sr. G Thomas Wilder (17.6 ppg) begins to get a bit more scoring help (no other Bronco scoring better than 10 ppg).

Pick: Buffalo -3.5


Result: Won
 
Purdue  Wisconsin 

Event Date: 01/16/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Wisconsin’s drop-off is now officially confirmed after early Big Ten road losses at Rutgers and Nebraska, the sorts of teams the Badgers used to chew up in the Bo Ryan and early Greg Gard eras. Not this year, however, as Gard’s offense still not providing much support for 6-10 F Ethan Happ (17 ppg), who seems to be fighting opponents alone on many nights. Big and physical Purdue a tough matchup for Happ, and will force Wisconsin's other thus-far unreliable scorers to contribute. Badgers won’t keep pace with 85 ppg Boilermakers, who also shoot better than 50% from floor as soph wing Carsen Edwards (17 ppg) now one of four “teens” scorers (13 ppg or more) for Matt Painter, whose team is also a dangerous 42% beyond arc.

Pick: Purdue -15.5


Result: Won
 
North Carolina  Clemson 

Event Date: 01/16/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Is this the year? Clemson might finally have a legit chance to end its 0-for-forever slump at Chapel Hill (55 losses in a row and counting!), as this looks like Brad Brownell’s best Tiger version. Older and solid in every area, balanced with five DD scorers, and augmented by inside presence of former Texas A&M transfer 6-9 PF Elijah Thomas, who is now providing needed rim protection, Clemson for once not out-manned as usually the case vs. Roy Williams’ still-evolving collection of young bigs. Until the newcomers become a bit more reliable, sr. PG Joel Berry II carrying an awfully big scoring and leadership role for Heels, especially as Pitt transfer wing Cameron Johnson (career-low 33% beyond arc) not yet providing a consistent spark to offense since return to active duty in late December.

Pick: Clemson +6

 


Result: Loss
 
Eastern Michigan  Akron 

Event Date: 01/16/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Akron’s 1st-year HC John Groce having a rough debut in the “Rubber City” with a frosh-laden squad, which had six players transfer when former mentor Keith Dambrot left for Duquesne after LY’s successful 27-9 campaign. Therefore, must “invest” in triple revenger EMU, which should totally dominate the interior with arguably the MAC’s premier inside duo of double-double machine, 6-10 jr. C James Thompson IV (15.8 ppg, 11.7 rpg)& burgeoning 6-9 jr. Elijah Minnie (Robert Morris transfer; 17.5 ppg, 6 rpg), who poured in 25 in his team’s 79-74 home win over rival Central Michigan on Tuesday. Zipless Zips rank a lowly 270th or worse in TO margin (-1.8 pg), FG% defense (45.7%) & foul shooting (66.5%).

Pick: Eastern Michigan -8


Result: Won
 
Kansas State  Oklahoma 

Event Date: 01/16/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Lon Kruger returns to his old stomping grounds in Manhattan, where he was a star PG over four decades ago for Jack Hartman and once coached the Mitch Richmond-led Cats into the Elite Eight back in ‘88 (where did the time go?). Now he brings his “Jason Kidd meets Steph Curry” star frosh G Trae Young, still leading the nation in scoring AND assists, and top ten Sooners had also covered five of last six into last Saturday at TCU. Note that a lesser, pre-Trae OU covered both vs. K-State last season, including a 30-point romp at Lloyd Noble Center, as Kruger usually gets solid efforts from his charges vs. his alma mater.

Pick: Oklahoma -3


Result: Loss
 
Indiana  Northwestern 

Event Date: 01/14/2018
Event Time: 1 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Since NW playing with the passion and sense of urgency that characterized LY’s Big Dance squad, would recommend the veteran Wildcats, eager to avenge LY’s taut 63-62 loss in Bloomington. IU’s somewhat-vulnerable defense (44.2% FGs; 209th) will be dissected by NW’s multi-talented 6-3 sr. floor general Bryant McIntosh (13.4 ppg; 102 assists), who collected a school-record 16 dimes in his team’s resounding 83-60 home romp over Minnesota in mid-week. Plus, look for the Wildcats’ formidable 6-8 jr. C Derek Pardon (13.4 ppg; 7 rpg; 32 blocks) to fully exploit a shorthanded Hoosier forecourt sorely missing the services of sidelined 6-10 jr. De’Ron Davis (9.6 ppg; 4.3 rpg; 22 blocks; out for year with leg injury).

Pick: Northwestern +2.5


Result: Loss
 
Vanderbilt  Kentucky 

Event Date: 01/13/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

John Calipari knows his Kentucky basketball team remains a work in progress, but entering Saturday’s trip to Vanderbilt the coach also recognizes he is seeing signs of progress. The No. 20 Wildcats showed moxie in rallying from six points down in Tuesday’s 74-73 home victory over Texas A&M, a game in which Calipari played just eight players and relied on PJ Washington’s four points and critical steal in the final 2:28 to hold off the Aggies. While Kentucky has found a way to win three times in conference play -- albeit by a combined total of nine points -- the Commodores could not hold a 10-point lead in the second half to fall 92-84 at home to No. 23 Tennessee on Tuesday. Vanderbilt struggled at the 3-point line (3-of-11 in the second half).

Pick: Kentucky -2


Result: Won
 
William & Mary  Towson 

Event Date: 01/13/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The William & Mary Tribe are 7-0 at home this season, and 5-0 against 7-4 opponents.
At home the Tribe are averaging 91.0 scoring, and holding teams to 85.2 points scored on defense. The Towson Tigers are 1-5 while on the road this season, 2-3 against conference opponents, and 10-3 against non-conference opponents. Tribe are 9-2-1 ATS in their last 12 home games and 8-2 ATS in their last 10 games following a straight up win.

Pick: William & Mary -2


Result: Loss
 
Wyoming  Colorado State 

Event Date: 01/13/2018
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

This intense border rivalry has had several down-to-the-wire games throughout the years. Expect more of the same for this one at Laramie, where recent upgrades by CSU make the Rams an intriguing dog. Larry Eustachy has needed half of the season to figure out the proper fits to replace his graduated core from LY’s 24-win side, but midweek win at Utah State and other improved recent efforts suggest Eustachy has found the recipe, with jr. G Prentiss Nixon (24 ppg last two) emerging as one of MW’s top scoring threats, while development of 6-11 soph C Nico Carvacho (DD scoring in four of last five) is helping to better space the floor as he now provides a legit post scoring threat. Wyoming beginning to lean awfully heavily upon wings Justin James and Hayden Dalton, as offensive flow almost solely from perimeter in recent games.

Pick: Colorado State +7


Result: Won
 
San Francisco  Gonzaga 

Event Date: 01/13/2018
Event Time: 0 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Silas Melson just delivered the top scoring game of his career and the senior guard looks to post another strong outing when No. 14 Gonzaga visits San Francisco today in West Coast Conference play. Melson established career highs of 23 points and seven 3-pointers as the Bulldogs steamrolled Portland 103-57 on Thursday. The Bulldogs are rolling through the WCC and have won their first five league games by an average of 35.4 points with four of the victories coming by 30 or more points. San Francisco is coming off a 67-65 road loss to Loyola Marymount, a contest in which the Dons committed 17 turnovers.

Pick: Gonzaga -13


Result: Loss
 
SMU  Temple 

Event Date: 01/10/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Uints

SMU has lost two games in a row and aims to snap that mini-skid against another scuffling team when it hosts Temple on Wednesday. The Owls have lost five in a row, including their first four games in American Athletic Conference action. SMU's non-conference slate included big victories against Arizona and USC, but the AAC season has gotten off to a disappointing start with two wins followed by a close loss to Tulane and a blowout at the hands of Cincinnati. SMU won last season's two meetings by a combined 30 points.

Pick: SMU -10.5


Result: Loss
 
Valparaiso  Drake 

Event Date: 01/10/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Welcome to the big, er, bigger, leagues, Valpo! Regional scouts suggesting that the step up from the Horizon to the Missouri Valley proving a bit much for Valpo, which has continued to struggle in its new environment even after return of top scorer G Tevonn Walker, who missed a few weeks in December with mono. Crusaders not dominating on the glass any longer at this higher level and are now getting routinely overpowered, such as when out-boarded 45-30 in last Wednesday’s loss at Bradley, dropping Valpo to 0-3 SU in new league. Meanwhile, upgraded Drake broke 3-0 in the Valley behind four-year starting G Reed Timmer, now up to a career-high 19.4 ppg.

Pick: Drake +5.5


Result: Loss
 
Auburn  Mississippi 

Event Date: 01/09/2018
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

High-octane AU (87.3 ppg), which notched an impressive 94-84 upset win at talented Tennessee last Tuesday, is off to its best start since 1999-2000. Hence, must lay around 5 hoops with the defensively-tenacious Tigers (6.6 bpg 5th nationally), benefiting from heralded, fast-blossoming & versatile 6-8 frosh F Chuma Okeke, who collected 11 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists & 2 steals vs. the Vols. Defensively-inviting, weak boarding Ole Miss (75.6 ppg; 240th in rebound margin) likely to drop its 6th straight as visiting underdog in the reg.-season vs. a balanced AU squad (six players avg. 8 ppt or more), which nails a solid 77.9% from the charity stripe. Double revenge works for Bruce Pearl’s platoon.

Pick: Auburn -9.5


Result: Won
 
Nebraska  Wisconsin 

Event Date: 01/09/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Progressing NU (only one win away from equaling last year’s total victories!) has circled this date following last year’s painful 70-69 OT home loss, when Wisconsin hit a 3-pointer with 0.3 on clock in regulation to send the game to overtime. Better-balanced Huskers have a strong 1-2-3 punch in 6-0 jr. G Glynn Watson Jr. (12.4 ppg; 55 assists) 6-6 jr. G James Palmer Jr. (15.2 ppg) & 6-9 jr. F Isaac Copeland (12.1 ppg, 6.8 rpg), who’ll greatly neutralize the Badgers’ premier weapon 6-0 jr. F Ethan Happ. Note, shot-swatting NU (6.3 bpg; 12th) 8-1 SU at friendly Pinnacle Banke Arena, with the only defeat coming in taut 73-72 loss to mighty Kansas in mid-December.

Pick: Nebraska -2.5


Result: Won
 
Oklahoma  Texas Tech 

Event Date: 01/09/2018
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

No nights off in the Big 12 this season, partly because of the rise of Chris Beard’s Texas Tech, good enough to go into Kansas on Jan. 2 and beat the Jayhawks. But slowing down Lon Kruger’s go-go OU (96 ppg!) and Steph Curry-like frosh G Trae Young (leading nation in scoring AND assists!) looks a tall order. Young also now getting fellow frosh 6-9 F Barry Manek (scored 20 or more three times in last five game thru Jan. 5; 28 vs. Oklahoma State on Jan. 3) involved on the attack end. Sooners had covered four in a row and were “over” 11-1 into last Saturday vs. West Virginia.

Pick: Oklahoma -3.5


Result: Won
 
Miami  Florida State 

Event Date: 01/07/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Florida State looks to finish a stretch of three straight ranked teams to start the ACC season with a winning record when it travels south to take on No. 17 Miami (Fla.) tonight. The Seminoles gave No. 2 Duke all it could handle in a 100-93 road loss to open the league campaign before holding on for an 81-80 victory over 11th-ranked North Carolina at home last Wednesday. The Seminoles will test their productive offense (85.4) against Miami, which is allowing 58.9 points per game and 36.9 percent shooting overall - both in the top five in the nation. The Hurricanes were off to their best start since 2007-08 at 10-0 before dropping two of the last four, including a 64-54 loss at Georgia Tech on Wednesday, and will play their first home game since Dec. 5. Miami needs to take care of the ball better after coughing it up 15 times in a victory over Pittsburgh last Saturday and recording a season-high 18 turnovers against Georgia Tech.

Pick: Florida State +2.5


Result: Loss
Detroit  Northern Kentucky 

Event Date: 01/07/2018
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With Horizon League contender NKU off possible loss at Oakland on Friday, highly recommend laying fair price with the undervalued Norse, which is 9-2 vs. the spread prior to clash with Grizzlies. High-powered, unselfish NK (81.4 ppg; 18.2 apg) should light scoreboard vs. defensively-weak UD (90 ppg; 350th), in the midst of a 9-game losing skein prior to Wright State on Friday. Norse’s bruising 6-7, 250-pound C Drew McDonald (17.7 ppg, 8.1 rpg) should easily collect his 5th double-double vs. poor-boarding Titans, ranked a lowly 302nd in rebounding margin.

Pick: Northern Kentucky -12.5


Result: Loss
 
UT Arlington  South Alabama 

Event Date: 01/06/2018
Event Time: 5 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The South Alabama Jaguars are ranked 289 for offensive field goal percentage shooting 41.2% while attempting 54.4 shots per game. The Jaguars shooting percentages include 68.0% for free throw percentage and 35.1% for three point percentage so far this season. On the road, the Jaguars are averaging 64.6 scoring, and holding teams to 73.9 points scored on defense. South Alabama is 8-0 ATS in their last 8 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600, 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS win, and 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.

Pick: South Alabama +12.5


Result: Loss
 
Wyoming  Boise State 

Event Date: 01/06/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Board-crashing MW challenger BSU (+9.1 rpg; 12th nationally) has proven its “roadability” with upset victories at Oregon & UNLV in the month of December. With the Broncos’ future NBA draftee 6-7 sr. F Chandler Hutchison (17.4 ppg, 8.5 rpg; 51 assists) continuing to show why he’s a prime candidate for the league’s Player of the Year, have faith surging BSU rises to 10-1 SU last 11 (only loss at powerhouse SMU in mid-December) in Laramie, where it won handily by 15 LY. Defensively-penetrable Wyo (76 ppg; 260th)won’t get many second-chance opportunities, ranked a lowly 284th in rebound margin (-2.7).

Pick: Boise State -1


Result: Loss
 
NC State  Duke 

Event Date: 01/06/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Duke has the engines revved for this Tobacco Road clash vs. a wobbly NC State side that will nonetheless have Coach K’s full attention after Pack’s upset win at Cameron Indoor last season. Pack looking like it is going to be the doormat in a loaded ACC as new HC Kevin Keatts does not have the depth to keep pace with the league’s power teams, as early lopsided losses vs. Clemson and Notre Dame suggest. Blue Devils might not pump the brakes until this one is well under control, as their 95 ppg offense and do-everything 6-11 frosh Marvin Bagley III (22 ppg) gleefully extend the margin vs. bitter local foe

Pick: Duke -12.5


Result: Loss
 
Georgia  Mississippi 

Event Date: 01/03/2018
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

UGa is coming off a loss at Kentucky. Hence, a good spot to lay a fair price with the resilient Dawgs, who were 2-0 vs. spread following a pair of setbacks vs. the Wildcats a year ago, by springing upset wins at South Carolina & Alabama! So, must buck defensively vulnerable Ole Miss (76.6 ppg), which won’t get many 2nd-chance opportunities, ranked a lowly 216th in rebound margin. Moreover, ill-prepared Rebels— who’ve only played one game as visitor TY (77-58 blowout loss at Middle Tennessee State in early December), lack a post scorer who can trade blows with UGa’s future NBA draftee, 6-8 sr. F Yante Maten (20.1 ppg, 9.3 rpg), while deep-shooting 6-4 jr. PG William Jackson II (12.1 ppg; 43 of 92 from distance; 45 assists) can hit the J or find the open man with regularity.

Pick: Georgia -5.5


Result: Won
 
Dayton  St. Bonaventure 

Event Date: 01/03/2018
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

A-10 sources alerted early to potential downgrade at Dayton after loss of HC Archie Miller to Indiana and departure of almost all of LY’s key cogs, creating a daunting task for new HC Anthony Grant. Flyers played only .500 ball thru pre-league slate as Grant looks for reliable scoring options beyond returnees G Darrell Davis & F Josh Cunningham (both better than 16 ppg). Bona will never have a better chance to avenge recent series losses vs. better Dayton teams, and Mark Schmidt’s side hasn’t lost SU since high-scoring sr. G Jaylen Adams (18.2 ppg) returned from injury at the start of December.

Pick: St. Bonaventure -2.5


Result: Loss
 
South Alabama  Georgia Southern 

Event Date: 12/31/2017
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Georgia Southern is 2-5-1 ATS in their last 8 games following a straight up win, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 Sunday games, and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record. While South Alabama is 7-0 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600, 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record, and 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games overall.

Pick: South Alabama +4.5


Result: Won
 
Kentucky  Georgia 

Event Date: 12/31/2017
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

A better-rounded UK team didn’t lose in three meetings vs. a lesser Georgia last season, but still couldn’t cover the number in any of those vs. the Dawgs. Mark Fox now has a veteran roster better suited to perhaps stealing one from John Calipari as U Georgia almost did in OT loss at Lexington last season, with bullish 6-8 sr. PF Yante Maten (20.2 ppg & 9.3 rpg) potentially able to neutralize Cats in paint. Fox also getting nice production from emerging soph G William Jackson (12 ppg, also a most-welcome 44% beyond arc). Note six straight “overs” for UK into Friday’s game vs. the ‘Ville.

Pick: Georgia +11


Result: Won
Northern Kentucky  Illinois-Chicago 

Event Date: 12/30/2017
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

The Northern Kentucky Norse are 6-0 at home this season, and 1-0 against 7-5 opponents. At home the Norse are averaging 83.8 scoring, and holding teams to 58.5 points scored on defense. The Illinois-Chicago Flames are 0-6 while on the road this season, 0-1 against conference opponents, and 5-8 against non-conference opponents. On the road, the Flames are averaging 65.7 scoring, and holding teams to 80.7 points scored on defense.

Pick: Northern Kentucky -14


Result: Won
 
Marshall  Louisiana Tech 

Event Date: 12/30/2017
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Sure, La Tech seeking to avenge 93-77 loss to MU in LY’s C-USA tourney. But, still not dissuaded from wholeheartedly endorsing frenetic-paced Herd, which nearly upset highly ranked Xavier in 81-77 defeat in the Cintas Center on Dec. 19th. G-oriented Bulldogs ill-equipped to counter-attack in the paint area vs. UM’s ultra productive 6-9 jr. F Ajdin Penava (19 ppg; 9.9 rpg; nation-leading 64 blocks), who’s transformed into a major force on both ends. Additionally, LT will be hard pressed to contain the Herds’ scorching 6-3 jr. G Jon Elmore (24 ppg), who has knack of getting to the foul line, canning a nation-best 107 of 130 FTs TY. Payback doesn’t work.

Pick: Marshall -2


Result: Won
 
Clemson  NC State 

Event Date: 12/30/2017
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With NC State’s starting soph PG Markell Johnson (8.7 ppg; 6.6 apg) suspended on assault charges, must “lay it” with dangerous & profitable Clemson (11-1 SU; 7-2 vs. the spread), looking to make a statement in its ACC home opener. The Tigers’ aggressive, mixing defenses (62.5 ppg; 39.5%) will be perplexing for the Wolfpacks’ true frosh backup PG Braxton Beverly as his backcourt mate 6-3 sr. G Al Freeman (15 ppg) will be constantly hounded by CU’s deep stable of Gs. Moreover, the Tigers’ much-improved 6-8 sr. F Donte Grantham (7.3 ppg LY; 14.8 ppg TY; 38% from the arc) can score in a variety of ways, while skillful scorer/distributor 6-3 jr. Shelton Mitchell (13 ppg; 54 assists) does his thing with impunity

Pick: Clemson -10


Result: Won
 
Costal Carolina  UT Arlinfton 

Event Date: 12/29/2017
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Undoubtedly, Sun Belt contender UT Arlington’s demanding pre-conference road slate has prepared the Movin’ Mavericks well for the conference trail. So, with UTA’s impressive covers at BYU (upset Cougs 89-84!), Alabama, Northern Iowa & Creigton under its belt, won’t hesitate to lay short price vs. Coastal Carolina still learning how to “finish” close games, enduring its last five losses by a combined 16 points. UTA’s NBA prospect 6-9 sr. F Kevin Hervey (23 ppg) even more effective TY thanks to 7-0 sr. C Johnny Hamilton (Virginia Tech grad transfer; 11 ppg, 8 rpg), who should hurt the shorter Chanticleers in the paint are.

Pick: UT Arlington -4.5


Result: Loss
 
Wyoming  San Diego State 

Event Date: 12/27/2017
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Wyoming has hit a couple of speed bumps, but remains a “tough out” in Laramie, where Cowboys had won their first 8 SU this term before running into a hot and very underrated Northern Colorado side on Dec. 19. But lengthy Wyo lineup presents a lot of problems for SDSU side that is once again having problems beyond the arc (down to just 30% triples into Gonzaga game last Thursday) for new HC Brian Dutcher as was the case the past couple of years for Dutcher’s mentor Steve Fisher. Cowboys’ 6-7 jr. wing Justin James (16.6 ppg) really heating up, scoring 20 or more in five of last six games.

Pick: Wyoming +3.5


Result: Won
 
Marquette  Xavier 

Event Date: 12/27/2017
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Big East sources tell us 9th-ranked Xavier has made a checklist of all revenge games this year, with the Musketeers a perfect 3-0 SU & vs. the line in those highly-anticipated contests so far TY. So, won’t hesitate to lay a handful with the turbo-charged, potent-shooting X-Men (87.8 ppg,52.2% from the field; 4th) still seething from a rare sweep by Marquette a year ago. Without a dependable post game, offensively-oriented Eagles are overly-dependent on the G-tandem of Andrew Rowsey & Markus Howard for point production. Plus, MU will have major issues slowing the Musketeer’s future NBA high-round draftee 6-6 sr. G Trevon Bluiett (20.4 ppg; 38 triples converted at 44%), while much-improved soph distributor Quentin Goodin (7.6 ppg; 6 apg) breaks down the Eagle halfcourt “D” with regularity.

Pick: Xavier -2.5


Result: Won
 
Clemson  UL-Lafayette 

Event Date: 12/22/2017
Event Time: 3 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With offense-minded ULL off six straight emotionally-engaged games vs. teams from the Bayou State, suggest “laying it” with defensively-sticky Clemson (62.9 ppg; 40.5% from the floor) gunning for its seventh consecutive victory before commencing ACC play on Dec. 30th. The tenacious Tigers limited SEC power South Carolina to 2 of 16 from downtown in their resounding 64-46 home victory on Tuesday. And doubt Ragin’ Cajuns can cool off CU’s hot-shooting 6-3 jr. wing Marcquise Reed (16 ppg; 40% from tripleville), who poured in 25 points vs. defense-hounding Gamecocks.

Pick: Clemson -11.5


Result: Won
 
TCU  William & Mary 

Event Date: 12/22/2017
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Big 12 sources report unbeaten TCU not likely to lose steam once into conference play. Until then, might as well continue to ride the rampant Frogs and their smothering defense, which should completely wreck a W&M side not built to compete at this level and obliterated by 35 at Ohio State on Dec. 9. Jaime Dixon’s well-coordinated offense can also stretch floor effectively with its 42% accuracy beyond arc, not to mention all five Frog starters scoring in DDs. Note how TCU shares the ball (20 assists pg!), with heady soph PG Jaylen Fisher (6.3 apg) providing much of the top-notch service

Pick: TCU -20.5


Result: Loss
 
Nevada  Southern Illinois 

Event Date: 12/22/2017
Event Time: 11 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With lots of alums in Clark County, Nevada usually gets good support for its near-annual pre-league visits to tourneys in the Las Vegas area (as is this one at the Orleans Arena). And local Wolf Pack grads and other backers have been waiting to get a look at Eric Musselman’s latest edition that has only stumbled narrowly away from Reno vs. ranked Big 12 contenders Texas Tech and TCU. SIU not in that category, and moreover the Salukis are not inclined to slow the pace, which invites disaster vs. go-go Nevada side scoring 83 ppg and hitting nearly 50% from floor (and almost 41% beyond arc). Musselman’s most-recent batch of transfers (the Martin twins from NC State, and ex-Purdue wing Kendall Stephens) all scoring in DDs alongside high-energy F Jordan Caroline (18.3 ppg & 10 rpg).

Pick: Nevada -12.5


Result: Won
 
Washington State  Kansas State 

Event Date: 12/20/2017
Event Time: 11 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Wazzu’s early success at the Wooden Legacy at Fullerton during Thanksgiving week must seem like a dream to those in the Palouse, as the Cougs lost their three subsequent games, not coming close vs. UC Davis, Idaho, and a UTEP team that saw HC Tim Floyd retire a week or so before. Coug becoming a big 3-point crazy in recent slump, hoisting more than 30 triples pg while hitting barely 30% beyond arc. Ernie Kent’s bunch also having troubles on stop end, and figures to have its problems vs. Bruce Weber’s well-balanced K-State with its four DD scorers. Cats can balance the floor with front line scoring force in 6-10 PF Dean Wade, hitting 56% of his FG attempts.

Pick: Kansas State -8.5


Result: Loss
 
Creighton  UT Arlington 

Event Date: 12/18/2017
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Fast-moving UT Arlington fully should love a frenetic-paced track meet with go-go Creighton (90.6 ppg) exerting less energy on the stop end, allowing 75.6 ppg. Hence, must give ringing endorsement to the road-proven Mavericks, a highly-profitable 29-12 as a visiting underdog since 2013-14, including 3-0 mark TY, with spread covers at BYU, Alabama & Northern Iowa. Anticipate a redemptive performance from UTA’s star 6-9 sr. F Kevin Hervey, who had an uncharacteristic six TOs in his team’s 85-78 home upset loss in early December to Florida Gulf Coast, projected to win the Atlantic Sun Conference TY. Upset possible, even in Omaha

Pick: UT Arlington +9.5


Result: Won
 
Arizona State  Vanderbilt 

Event Date: 12/17/2017
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Arizona State is off to its best start since 1974-75 and has climbed to its highest ranking since 1981 following a 95-85 win at then-No. 2 Kansas last Sunday. The Sun Devils have scored at least 90 points in seven of their nine games. Arizona State will be the fourth top-25 opponent this season for Vanderbilt, marking the most ranked foes the Commodores have faced in non-conference play since 1988. Vanderbilt is 0-3 in its previous matchups with ranked teams.

Pick: Arizona State -10.5


Result: Won
 
George Mason  Penn State 

Event Date: 12/17/2017
Event Time: 4 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

A-10 scouts worried that this could get ugly for GMU, whose roster limitations were laid bare last Tuesday by Sun Belt Georgia Southern, which rolled to 23-point win in Fairfax. Match-ups look even worse vs. Penn State, which owns much more size and athleticism than Patriots. Nittany Lions equipped to extend margin with their five DD scorers led by 6-5 soph G Tony Carr (20 ppg), who has emerged as one of Big Ten’s premier weapons, while stifling “D” has helped result in 7-2 “under” mark to date. Nittany Lions also almost guaranteed to be fully focused after overlooking Mason a year ago in shocking 19-point loss (!) at Happy Valley

Pick: Penn State -11.5


Result: Won
 
Florida State  Oklahoma State 

Event Date: 12/16/2017
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Since quick-reloading, nationally ranked, explosive FSU (87.1 ppg) is a perfect 7-0 vs. the spread TY, must buck depth-shy OSU, now that 1st-year HC Mike Boyton recently dismissed two contributing players, 6-5 jr. wing Davon Dillard & highly-regarded 6-3 frosh G Zack Dawson. Cowboys won’t be afforded many open looks vs. defensively sticky Seminoles, permitting only 37.5% from the field, while collecting more than six bpg (15th). Additionally, FSU’s respected HC Leonard Hamilton thrilled with the dramatic evolvement of late-blooming 6-6 sr. G Brian Angola-Rodas, who has bumped his scoring avg. from 4.6 ppg LY to 12.7 TY

Pick: Florida State -6


Result: Loss
 
New Mexico  Arizona 

Event Date: 12/16/2017
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

After a couple of early encouraging efforts vs. lesser opposition, New Mexico has looked very much like the rebuilding situation it was supposed to be this season for new HC Paul Weir. Now the assignments becomes more challenging for the Lobos as top scorer sr. G Sam Logwood (15 ppg) has taken a leave of absence from the team. All bad news vs. an Arizona side finally back at full strength with return of soph G Rawle Alkins, who saw 22 minutes of floor time in return game last Saturday vs. Alabama. Meanwhile, ballyhooed 7-1 frosh Deandre Ayton (21 ppg & 12 rpg) more than living up to the hype. This one looks like a complete mismatch at the Pit.

Pick: Arizona -15


Result: Won
 
DePaul  Northwestern 

Event Date: 12/16/2017
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With NW needing every pre-conference win to bolster its Big Dance portfolio, strongly recommend veteran Wildcats, who’ve regained their grittiness following a sluggish start to the 2017 campaign. DePaul will have trouble coping with NW’s balanced attack (four players avg. in DDs), smartly directed by unflappable sr. floor leader Bryant McIntosh (14 ppg, 5.8 apg). Erratic-shooting Blue Demons have difficulty playing catch-up, canning only 6.2 triples pg at 31.2%. Plus, Chris Collins’ Cats will have plenty of crowd support in Chicago land, with loyal NW fans gladly making the short 14-mile drive from Evanston. 

Pick: Northwestern -4.5


Result: Loss
 
UMass  Georgia 

Event Date: 12/16/2017
Event Time: 3 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

UMass still in an adjustment phase under 1st-year HC Matt McCall (former Chattanooga HC). So, must give full support to seasoned UGa (4 starters back), which has already notched a signature road win in 73-66 upset victory at Marquette in early December. Minutemen’s over-eager 6-11, 300-pound C Rashaan Holloway (disqualified twice already) likely to find himself in early foul trouble vs. the Dawgs’ solid forecourt, featuring NBA prospect 6-8 sr. F Yante Maten (18.5 ppg, 9.4 rpg). Meanwhile, UGa’s deep-shooting 6-4 jr. PG William Jackson II (13 ppg; 32 of 70 from distance; 46%) can stretch out the UMass “D’ with his deadly 3-point marksmanship. Unbalanced UMass overly-dependent on 5-11 soph G Lawane Pipkins (19 ppg), who is the sole Minuteman averaging DD-scoring

Pick: Georgia -3.5


Result: Loss
 
Nevada  TCU 

Event Date: 12/08/2017
Event Time: 11 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Nevada’s unbeaten start to the season ended painfully on Tuesday at Lubbock when Wolf Pack blew late lead at Texas Tech and lost in OT. That prevented this one from becoming a battle of the unbeatens, as TCU brings 9-0 SU mark into Staples. And though Frogs have some impressive wins in past two weeks, they now face a foe that won’t at all mind playing at the faster pace that Jamie Dixon prefers. Nevada also has the size on perimeter to deal with TCU wings 6-5 Desmond Bane & 6-7 Kenrich Williams, both scoring at 14 ppg. Match-up problem for Frogs will be Pack’s high-energy 6-7 post threat Jordan Caroline (17 ppg), who should be hellbent to atone for season-low 6-point output in bitter midweek loss vs. Red Raiders.

Pick: Nevada +2


Result: Loss
 
Oregon  Colorado State 

Event Date: 12/08/2017
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

U of O in a very chippy mood after its long-standing 46-home win streak was snapped in 73-70 setback to surging Boise State last Friday. So, with 6 days to stew over that painful loss, look for determined Ducks to quickly get back on track vs. defensively-soft CSU, allowing 76.4 ppg (257th). Aggressive U of O defense should help fuel transition game vs. mistake-prone Rams, ranked a lowly 303rd in TO margin. Foresee a huge performance from Ducks’ skillful sr. G Elijah Brown (New Mexico transfer; 13 ppg), who hit only 6 of 15 from the field vs. Broncos. Rams likely fall to 0-3 as a visiting underdog after this anticipated double digit loss.

Pick: Oregon -14.5


Result: Won
 
Arizona State  St. Johns 

Event Date: 12/08/2017
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

This is Chris Mullin’s best team at St. John’s, but the Red Storm is still far from a finished product. Its offensive sets are often breaking down into Gs Shamorie Ponds (20.2 ppg, but only 23% triples) and Marcus LoVett (15 ppg) going rogue, with the latter’s status ? due to twisted ankle that has kept him out of last two games. More shine to the undefeated ASU ornament at moment, as go-go Sun Devils (also six straight covers) scoring at 93 ppg clip while shooting better than 53% from floor. Bobby Hurley now has some real front line scoring threats in 6-8 RS frosh OF Romello White (16 ppg & 69% from floor) & 6’10 juco De’Quon Lake (11 ppg and 79% Fgs!) to complement holdover hotshot Gs Tra Holder (22 ppg) & Shannon Evans (19 ppg). 

Pick: Arizona State -5.5


Result: Won
 
Michigan State  Notre Dame 

Event Date: 11/30/2017
Event Time: 7 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Maybe Mike Brey brings Coley O’Brien and Rocky Bleier along for moral support in East Lansing. But Brey’s “small-ball” working just fine in the early going, as LSU found out in Maui when the Fighting Irish burned the nets at 52% and drubbed the Tigers by 39. ND’s mobile 6-6 sr. PF Bonzie Colson (20.3 ppg in early going) could prove awkward for MSU bigs, especially touted 6-11 frosh Jaren Jackson, jr., who is having a devil of a time staying out of foul trouble (4 or 5 whistles in first three games) in November. Tom Izzo justifiably worried about protecting the glass (Duke 25 offensive caroms in recent Blue Devil win at Chicago) and with sloppiness (Spartans 17 TOs pg first three), not to mention recent twisted ankle suffered by star 6-7 soph wing Miles Bridges.

Pick: Notre Dame +6


Result: Loss
 
Nevada  Illinois State 

Event Date: 11/29/2017
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

MW sources adamant the Nevada has improved from LY’s conference winner and Big Dance qualifier. Eric Musselman’s bevy of transfers all contributing, especially the 6-7 Martin twins (Cody & Caleb) from NC State, combining for 34 ppg in 5-0 start. Moreover, they provide disruptive length on the perimeter, while turbo-charged Pack “O” scoring 88 ppg and connecting on better than 50% from floor in first two weeks also thanks to high-energy 6-7 F Jordan Caroline (18 & 10 first five). That Nevada size on perimeter has already bothered potent Rhode Island and Davidson at Lawlor Center, and not sure if ISU’s high-scorer G Keyshawn Evans (23.8 ppg), all 6-feet of him, is going to be able to get his normal looks against all of that Wolf Pack length

Pick: Nevada -13.5


Result: Loss
 
Xavier  Baylor 

Event Date: 11/28/2017
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Big East challenger, high-powered & deadly gunning Xavier (94.5 ppg; 56.8% FGs) has been pining for rematch ever since stinging 76-61 setback in Waco last year, when defensively-stingy Musketeers (63.5 ppg) uncharacteristically suffered a nearly nine-minute drought without a FG. Therefore, have no qualms at all laying short price vs. BU bunch on the road for the first time facing loaded, veteran X-Men, spearheaded by future NBA draftee 6-6 sr. G Trevon Bluiett (25 ppg & 55% from arc; 6.8 rpg). Watch for a crowd pleasing, redemptive performance from Bluieitt’s complementary back court mate 6-5 sr. J.P. Macura, who hit a career-worst 2 of 16 from the field vs. the Bears. Payback is sweet at the Cintas Center.

Pick: Xavier -4.5


Result: Won
 
Wake Forest  Illinois 

Event Date: 11/28/2017
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Slow start at Wake, as the early departure to NBA of do-everything 6-10 John Collins has changed the Deacon dynamics. Yet to pick up the baton has been expected new go-to guy G Bryant Crawford, who’s taking the most shots of his career while shooting the lowest field goal percentage (34.9) in his three years. Danny Manning’s troops dropped 4 of their first 5, with two losses coming against a pair of teams (Liberty & Drake) ranked outside the top 150 on KenPom.com, (Liberty, Drake). Manning must stop this slide soon as Wake was playing its way out of the NCAA tournament pool before Thanksgiving. Meanwhile, new HC Brad Underwood already working some of his magic with the Fighting Illini, 4-0 out of the chute with handy wins over capable DePaul & Marshall, while tallying 88 ppg with five DD scorers led by emerging 6-7 jr. F Leron Black (15.5 ppg).

Pick: Illinois +3


Result: Loss
 
USC  Texas A&M 

Event Date: 11/26/2017
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

In a match-up we might see again in March, A&M seeking revenge for late blown lead last November at College Station. And while Ags have done absolutely nothing wrong while surging into the national rankings after their 4-0 break from the gate, match-ups are a bit tricky vs. SC, which has the size and mobility along the front line with NBA bound 6-10 Bennie Boatwright & 6-11 Chimezie Metu to cause uncommon angst for A&M 6-10 bigs Robert Williams & Tyler Davis, who usually aren’t looking at their opponents at eye level. Trojans in midst of making a fortress out of home Galen Center and have already shown they can come out of the crucible with a W, as recent rally from 10 down to win in OT at Vandy suggests.

Pick: USC -2


Result: Loss
 
UCLA  Cal-Irvine 

Event Date: 11/26/2017
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

If semi-rebuilding UC Irvine was unable to slow down Arizona State in 99-78 setback in Tempe last Sunday, doubt the Anteaters will impede a loaded, fast-paced UCLA quintet, buoyed by come-from-behind 72-70 upset win over Big Ten juggernaut Wisconsin in Kansas City on Tuesday. Bruins, who had five DD-scorers vs. Badgers, showing more toughness on the stop end, allowing a meager 5 of 22 from the arc vs Wisconsin. UCI will have no holiday defending UCLA’s dynamic 6-1 jr. G Aaron Holiday (17 ppg, nearly 6 apg),while highly-touted 6-3 G Jaylen Hands (12 ppg; 54% from 3-point line) displaying a deadly shooting eye.

Pick: UCLA -14.5


Result: Won
 
Richmond  Georgetown 

Event Date: 11/25/2017
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With Georgetown players quickly adapting to well-liked 1st-year HC Patrick Ewing (former Hoya A-A served as a 14-year NBA assistant), strongly recommend athletic, quick-jelling Hoyas, who should dominate glass vs. weak-boarding UR (-10.5 rpg; 330th). G’Town’s formidable 6-10, 270-pound jr. C Jessie Govan (21 ppg, 14.3 rpg) is clearly the premier “big” in this tilt. And good-shooting Hoyas (51% FGs, featuring marksman 6-7 jr. F Marcus Derrickson (14.3 ppg; 45% from arc), finds plenty of open looks vs. Spiders’ slow-rotating zone defense, permitting 51% from the field (ranked 333rd).

Pick: Georgetown -3


Result: Won
 
Rutgers  East Carolina 

Event Date: 11/24/2017
Event Time: 1 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Undefeated RU really digging in on the stop end, allowing a nation-low 47.2 points per game (32.3% FGs;4th)!. And with the Scarlet Knights’ star 6-2 jr. G Corey Sanders (13 ppg) positively responding to HC Steve Pikiell’s criticism of his poor practice habits, eager to lay single digits vs. erratic-shooting ECU, nailing a rim-clanging 28.8% (285th) from downtown. Be sure, Pikiell will demand a razor-sharp effort vs. Pirates with high profile clash at home vs. Florida State next up on Tuesday. Plus, opportunistic RU taking good care of ball, ranking a lofty 22nd in TO margin (+6.6 pg). Pirates No. 1 weapon G B.J. Tyson (17 ppg) is constantly hounded by deeeep Knight backcourt

Pick: Rutgers -11.5


Result: Won
 
Seton Hall  URI 

Event Date: 11/23/2017
Event Time: 6 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

With RI’s terrific but injury-prone 6-5 sr. G E.C. Matthews sidelined with a wrist injury, don’t mind laying a handful of points with veteran Seton Hall, which is the only Div. 1 team with three 1,000-pt. scorers—6-4 sr. G Khadeem Carrington, 6-6 sr. F Desi Rodriquez & 6-10 sr. C Angel Delgado, who’ll be a major headache for the Rams’ rebuilding front line that graduated the highly-effective duo of 6-7 F Hassan Martin & 6-9 F Kuran Iverson. Plus, Pirates’ slimmed-down 6-2 soph G Myles Powell now more adept at driving the lane after settling too often for the 3-pointer a year ago.

Pick: Seton Hall -3.5


Result: Loss
 
Pittsburgh  Penn State 

Event Date: 11/20/2017
Event Time: 9 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Big Ten sources keeping an eye on potentially-upgraded Penn State side with almost everyone back from last season and off to quick 3-0 break from gate in new term. Solid outside-inside combo of potent 6-5 G Tony Carr (20 ppg) & 6-7 F Lamar Stevens (15 ppg) intact from last season. That’s much more than can be said for Pitt, already with losses to Navy and Montana, as Kevin Stallings tries to pick up the pieces from a massively disappointing debut season and with a nation-tying 11 newcomers as a result of 4 seniors graduating & 5 players transferring out.

Pick: Penn State -9.5


Result: Won
 
Vanderbilt  USC 

Event Date: 11/19/2017
Event Time: 8 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

After opening-night rout of local big West entry CS Fullerton, SC might have been guilty of reading too many of its glowing press clippings as it couldn’t put away Summit rep North Dakota State until the final minutes three night later. That close shave vs. the Bison should make it easier for Andy Enfield to get his squad’s attention for this trip into SEC country vs. Bryce Drew’s Vandy side that is suddenly asking a lot of questions after losing to crosstown Belmont last Monday. The Commodores are not hitting their triples (only 27% in first two), and Drew is scrambling to departed 7-footer Luke Kornet, who did a bit of everything for Vandy the past couple of years. Kornet’s defense could have also come in handy vs. Trojans’ NBA bound front liners Bennie Boatwright & Chimezie Metu, scoring 37 points per game between them in early going.

Pick: USC -3.5


Result: Won
 
Northwestern  LaSalle 

Event Date: 11/18/2017
Event Time: 2 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Northwestern mentor Chris Collins was highly displeased with his team’s poor defensive effort in 92-88 home loss to Creighton on Wednesday. So, with the Wildcats surely digging in on the stop end, willing to lay single digits vs. LaSalle squad in its toughest test to date. NW’s star 6-7 jr. F Vic Law, who poured in 30 points. vs. Blue Jays, should have another field day vs. the Explorers’ still-shaky interior defense, while marvelous 6-3 sr. G Bryant McIntosh controls the flow from the perimeter. Resilient Wildcats 7-1 vs. spread last 8 following a SU loss.

Pick: Northwestern -7.5


Result: Won
 
Pacific  Nevada 

Event Date: 11/18/2017
Event Time: 10 PM est
Pick: 

Rating: 2 Units

Sources report that shrewd Nevada HC Eric Musselman has made a seamless transition after the departures of the top scorers from last years loop winner and Big Dance qualifier. Musselman’s latest batch of transfers are already making a huge impact, specifically ex-NC State twins and 6-7 wings Cody and Caleb Martin, tallying almost 35 points per game between them as the Pack (90 points per game) is off to a winging 3-0 SU and spread start. Meanwhile, Iowa State transfer G Hallice Cooke keeping defenses loose while canning a cool 70% beyond arc in early going, and opponents (including A-10 heavyweight Rhode Island) having big problems coping with Nevada’s non-stop 6-7 PF Jordan Carolina (averaging 21 & 10 the first week). Asking a bit much of Damon Stoudemire’s completely-rebuilt UOP to stay within earshot, especially noting how fellow WCC member Santa Clara was buried at home by 30 at midweek by the rampaging Pack

Pick: Nevada -10.5


Result: Won

Win:116 Losses:113 Tie:4

 

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