Monday, November 24, 2014

College Basketball Picks - November 24 (Maui)

Already missed picking Weber State -1 v. Nevada at the Paradise Jam.  I would've likely been on Weber but we'll never know.

Quickly getting these 2:30 and 4/4:30 starts out of the way then hopefully I'll have the rest up by sundown.

Kansas State +2 v. Purdue in the first Maui quarter.  Love this spot.  Honestly think K-State's the better team but the Wildcats are getting faded because of a loss at a really tough place to play against a really good low major (the Beach.)  Boilers have had three easy blowouts but this is a big step up in competition.  Also when in doubt, pick against Purdue.
#emaw led pretty much the entire way.  Really nice win for them and now they get their shot at their fellow Wildcats.  Have to say 88-79 was more points than I was expecting too.  1-0.

Evansville -6 v. Fresno State at the Gulf Coast Showcase in Dunk City.  Really don't like taking either team  in this spot so I'll go with the one significantly closer to Florida.
Pushes suck for tabulation purposes alone.  1-0-1.

Clemson +1 v. LSU.  Total public fade - only 11% of the money is on them.  Also I'm operating under the assumption that a turdy ACC team can beat a turdy SEC team.  This ain't football.
Probably a case to be made that LSU's got the most underachieving athletic program in the country.  2-0-1.

Detroit -15 v. Maryland Eastern Shore.  Maryland Eastern Shore.
Ughhhh Detroit TRAILED by a bucket at the half....and then gave up a bucket at the end to swing this.  Definite demerit for Detroit here.  2-1-1.

Georgia State -18 v. Chicago State.  Chicago State.
This was 36-13 at the half.  3-1-1.

Michigan State -15.5 v. Santa Clara.  That's a reallllly long trip to the Izzone.
Yes it is.  This covered by 11 and a half, by the way.  4-1-1.

Florida International +5 @ Georgia Southern.  #neverforget
Missed by a point.  Adrian Diaz for FIU and Jelani Hewitt for GSU both went for 33.  4-2-1.

Iowa -15 v. Pepperdine.  Hawkeyes could definitely be caught sleeping after a disappointing trip to NYC.  But Pepperdine's traveling even further and also they are not good.
Sleptwalked.  4-3-1.

Brown +19 @ Illinois.  Jesus, Illini just keep getting huge spread after huge spread.
Brown led by 4 at the half.  Brown did not cover.  4-4-1.

San Diego -4 v. Western Michigan.  The road dogs actually have almost 60% of the money which is understandable: getting 4 points with a good MAC team is tasty.  But the Slim Gym is still the Slim Gym and traveling across the country is still traveling across the country.
77-70.  5-4-1.

Florida Gulf Coast -12.5 v. Marist.  If they can't beat a paltry Red Foxes team by 13, Georgetown should be retroactively awarded the victory in the 2013 NCAA tournament.
ohhhhhhh they just BARELY get to keep their win.  But the San Diego State one got taken away because this was tied at the half.  6-4-1.

San Francisco -6.5 v. Hawaii.  This too is at FGCU.  Hawaii just beat Pitt and yet they're 6 and a half point dogs to a middling WCC school on a neutral floor.  That tells you how bad they are away from the island.
A 54 point second half allowed the Dons to cruise.  Pitt couldn't even score 40 in a half against the Rainbows.  7-4-1.

Old Dominion -6 v. Gardner-Webb in the Paradise Jam third place.  Would love this a lot more if it was a point or two lower but I still don't think very much of GW, who beats crappy power conference schools from time to time (DePaul a couple years back, Billy Gillespie's Kentucky getting GRAYSON FLITTNER'D back in 07) but never comes up with a very good finished product.  Also I still like my Monarchs.
Didn't need the point or two because ODU doubled it up.  8-4-1.

Seton Hall -3 v. Illinois State in the Paradise Jam final.  Wow what a huge scalp this would be for the Redbirds and for the Missouri Valley in general.  But I'm on the Pirates bandwagon for now.  Could be Kevin Willard's best team yet.
Pirates got out 30-9 but gave up 53 in the second half.....but good thing it wasn't 54 because they won by 4.  8-5-1.

Missouri +15 v. Arizona in Maui quarter # 2.  This may be selective memory but sometimes it takes the favorite to really get rolling on day 1 in this tournament, even if they're playing Chaminade (not the case this year.)  Syracuse got pushed in this exact time spot last year but Minnesota was a lot better than Missouri.  Still, the Tigers should be fired up for this and they'll come out and play hard, especially with nobody giving them a chance and the Cats have been spotty in almost every game this season.  Boy I just wrote too many words for what's gonna be an ass whooping.  Oh well.
lol all that.  Just a bad day for Missouri all around.  8-6-1.

Pittsburgh -16.5 v. Chaminade in Maui quarter # 3.  No more Christope Variedel (the guy who went for 42 against Baylor last year) for the hosts and you know the Panthers won't be messing around after that embarrassing loss to Hawaii.
Alternatively, Pitt's not good enough to beat Chaminade by 17.  8-7-1.

Wisconsin Milwaukee +3.5 v. UL Lafayette in the MGM Grand Main Event in Vegas.  They played Auburn A LOT more competitively.
Yep, straight up win 56-52.  Lafayette scored 14 points in the first half and 38 in the second #variance.  9-7-1.

Oklahoma State -12 v. Oregon State in the second game in Vegas.  The number here feels like an admission that we don't know if the Pokes are any good or not, which is fair, but it seems exceedingly likely to me that they're at least good enough to beat a dreadful Pac-12 team by 13.
Make remarks yesterday about how I'm actually good at this and not just getting lucky with 1 point covers, get lucky with 1 point covers for like every correct pick today.  10-7-1.

Toledo -10.5 v. Bucknell.  Been wrong about the Bison plenty of times already.  They seem pretty bad and this line is small if Toledo's as good as they looked at VCU and Oregon.
Yeah, the Rockets might be.  They just put a whippin on the team who almost beat Villanova (and as we'll get to in a bit, Villanova looks pretty good!)  11-7-1.

Oakland -6.5 v. Western Carolina.  Really do not like this line, especially considering WCU gave fights to Mississippi State and Alabama.  But I do like Oakland's offense.
Maybe the craziest game of the day.  Catamounts led by 12 at the half.  Then Oakland hit a 3 point play to force OT.  Then Oakland hit a 3 pointer to force DOUBLE OT.  And then Oakland scored literally a point per minute in 2OT to lose by 9.  11-8-1.

Maryland -4.5 v. Arizona State in the first CBE semifinal in KC.  The last time we were in this, we got rekt by the Kevin Love UCLA team.  This Pac opponent should be easier.  I'm skeptical about my Terps....but also cautiously optimistic for now.  56% of the money on the underdog Sun Devils shows the public doesn't share my optimism and they are probably right.
ASU went 14/27 from 3 to keep this close throughout but 31 from true freshman point guard Melo Trimble, who I've been looking forward to ever since he signed and he obviously took a great first step in continuing the storied lineage of the Maryland point guard.  We'll see what happens tomorrow night against Iowa State.  12-8-1.

Iowa State -6.5 v. Alabama in the second CBE semifinal in KC.  This is free money.  Bama's going in the right direction but they're about to face a Cyclone side getting people back and that will be in front of a home crowd basically.  This might be close for a while before the psuedo hosts pull away or it could be a WHIPPIN like the two the 2012 Missouri team dished out to Notre Dame and Cal on back to back days.
Boy did the Cyclones mess around here.  But they still found a way to cover and that way was Georges Niang being a beast.  13-8-1.

Villanova -1.5 v. VCU in game 1 of the Legends Classic in Brooklyn.  65% of the money is on the Rams and I'm a little surprised it's not even higher.  Nova's been shaky in two of its three games but I think they step their level up tonight.  They'll definitely have the crowd on their side in Barclays and my man RYAN ARCIDIACONO should be able to handle Havoc.
Uh, yeah.  Nova led by 2 at the half before VCU had a nice start to the second half and went up by 4 at the 18 minute mark before they just got BLITZED.  Final score Villanova 77, VCU 53.  Wow.  77-53 over VCU; that's gonna look pretty on a resume for seeding purposes.  14-8-1.

Michigan -5.5 v. Oregon in game 2 of the Legends Classic.  This too is free money.  This is Oregon's first game on a normal basketball court and they got a bit of a fight from Toledo in their last game, although they had a little less trouble with Detroit than the Wolverines did.  The crowd should favor Michigan and even if it didn't I'd still take them here without a second thought.
Oh but they got a FIGHT though.  Oregon really showed well tonight, hanging in the whole way.  15-8-1.

Indiana State -12 v. Austin Peay.  63% of the money on Peay?  What?
Yeah I'm done with ISUb.  ISUr is where it's at.  15-9-1.

Xavier -10 v. Murray State.  I actually like the Racers here.....but I'm not going against my number one pet love of the season thus far.
Fine, not even I thought they'd look this good thus far.  This was 52-32 at the half.  Against one of the top low majors in the country.  Of course, this has been an IMMENSELY disappointing season thus far for the Racers but it really doesn't matter until conference play.  16-9-1.

Indiana -12 v. Eastern Washington.  Ugh.  Wanna go the other way here but I just feel like the Hoosiers are due for a comprehensive performance.  I dunno.  They're one of the harder teams to figure out thus far this season.
No, they're not.  They suck and I should've jumped on the obvious upset potential.  Good for EWU though.  That was their first EVER win in front of a crowd of more than 10,000.  Think about that.  16-10-1.

Kansas -17.5 v. Rider.  Rider.
Covered by 10.  Yeah, this was way too low.  17-10-1.

Portland State -10 v. SIU Edwardsville.  SIU Edwardsville.
Why have I banished SIU Edwardsville to "their name alone is reason enough for picking against"?  They might be the best SIU!  Even though they lost this by a triple in OT.  17-11-1.

Marquette -20.5 v. NJIT.  NJIT.  (also Golden Eagles are gonna be piiiiiiiiiiiissed)
No, they're slighly better than Indiana.  17-12-1.

Auburn +4.5 v. Tulsa in the third [Vegas game.]  There's Auburn!  And they're getting points!  I like Tulsa too but I like the points.  This just feels like the sort of event where Pearl's gonna get his team way amped up to play.  I probably just think that because it's in Vegas and he's Bruce Pearl but whatever.
I like points more than Bruce Pearl's team does.  They couldn't even get 40 of 'em.  17-13-1.

BYU +3.5 v. San Diego State in Maui quarter # 4 and easily the best of the lot.  I can't wait for this.  Part of me thinks Tyler Haws might just get swallowed up by the SDSU D but this feels like a really tight game.  Crowd should be fantastic for both sides too and this could end up being a massive bubble tilt, especially for the Cougars, who really REALLY need that Pitt game instead of Chaminade tomorrow.  This is great.  Now please don't be like SDSU's last game against a team from Utah.
This lived up to the hype and then some.  What a game this was.  Honestly was probably the highlight of my week.  Except for the part where I missed the pick.  17-14-1.

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