Saturday, December 13, 2014

College Basketball Picks - December 13

Wichita State -12 @ Detroit
This was a real test for the Shockers, who actually trailed by 10 at one point in the second half.  Juwan Howard Jr. was leading the Titans to the upset before he got locked down and the veteran Wichita team took the game over.  Almost covered too, winning by 9.  0-1.

North Carolina +12 @ Kentucky
Didn't expect this to be such a wild shootout given the way the Cats have just suffocated people to death.  But they led by double digits most of the way and while UNC didn't let themselves get completely blown out, they never seriously threatened either.  0-2.

Green Bay -16.5 v. Drake
Missed by a half point.  Gonna be one of those days, isn't it.  0-3.

Creighton -5.5 v. Saint Mary's
And the 24 game home winning streak is over.  Looking more and more like the Bluejays just aren't very good and the second half against Oklahoma was the outlier.  They escaped in 2OT earlier this week but couldn't win in OT today.  Good road win for the Mary's and now I'll be sufficiently disappointed when Gonzaga takes care of them in both meetings.  0-4.

Arkansas -10 v. Dayton
This is why I like doing gut picks.  Overanalyze a game like this and you get so deep in the forest thinking there's no way there's 10 points between these teams and you miss the trees of Arkansas being almost mystically good at home and the Flyers often struggling away from UD Arena.  Was 40-23 at the half and the Hogs coasted from there.  1-4.

Pittsburgh -8 v. St. Bonaventure
Typical ugly Pitt win.  They can't string together consecutive good performances which isn't too surprising given how young they are.  1-5.

Pepperdine +7 @ Arizona State
Sun Devils trailed by 2 at the half but dropped 52 in the second half for the win and the push.  1-5-1.

Oklahoma -5 @ Tulsa (this is the most off line I think I've ever seen)
Yeah, somebody made a mistake here.  Sooners rolled by 19.  2-5.

Kansas -3.5 v. Utah
Wild game.  Jayhawks fell down 10-4 off the bat, then got up by 21 late in the first half then blew THAT lead late in the second half but regrouped and escaped with a 3 point win.  Considering this was a psuedo home game, that's quite a flaky performance.  Jury may still be out on whether or not they're truly an elite team this year.  As for Utah, gutty comeback and a brilliant performance from Delon Wright but Hertl taking the final 3 wasn't how they drew it up.  They should be Arizona's top competition in the Pac-12 though.  2-6.

Mississippi State +1.5 @ Oregon State (Oregon State.......favored?  Whaaaaat?)
I'm blaming KenPom for making me believe Mississippi State was even somewhat decent and I'm sticking to it.  2-7.

Bowling Green -2.5 v. Cleveland State
Oh hey another disappointing performance from the Vikings.  They led 31-24 at half and lost by 10.  BGSU continues to impress me - it's gonna be a VERY interesting MAC season with the amount of relatively quality teams in that league.  3-7.

Xavier -4.5 @ Missouri
Musketeers messed around for about 30 minutes before blowing the overmatched Tigers away.  I'd be shocked if Missouri's not playing on day 1 of the SEC tournament.  4-7.

Western Kentucky +11 @ Mississippi (I'm picking against Mississippi habitually at this point.  I don't care)
HAHAHAHAHAHA YES.  SPEAKING OF TEAMS WHO WILL BE PLAYING ON DAY 1 OF THE SEC TOURNAMENT!  Mississippi was covering at halftime.  They lost by 10.  How is that possible?  Just let Hugh Freeze coach the basketball team too, he CAN'T be worse than Andy Kennedy.  5-7.

James Madison +3 @ East Carolina
Boy, a lot of teams collapsed in the second half today.  JMU was another.  Led by 3 at the break, lost by 12.  5-8.

Arizona -12.5 v. Michigan
Michigan's another one of those such collapses....except they were down 11 at halftime anyway.  They need to completely regroup before Big Ten play.  On the other side, dominant performance from the best in the West.  6-8.

Oklahoma State +1 @ Memphis
Memphis might be in even worse shape than Michigan.  Very strong performance for the Cowboys though.  7-8.

Oregon +6.5 @ Illinois (in Chicago)
Oregon wants to get in to my next bracket!  Really nice win for them - yet another second half comeback - in essentially a road game.  This will be a nice one in their pocket come March whereas the Illini may end up coming to rue losing this.  8-8.

VCU -6 v. Northern Iowa
Game of the day.  Nip and tuck for 30 minutes, VCU gets a 9 point lead, UNI comes back, VCU gets up 5 again, UNI comes back again to force overtime then hits a tying three to force a SECOND overtime before finally running out of steam and pushing.  Both teams looked good although it remains possible that UNI is still unproven and VCU isn't as good as past VCU teams.  8-8-2

Toledo -16.5 v. Arkansas State
Stop me if you've heard this - Rockets trailed at the half but came back to win.  8-9.

Middle Tennessee State +7.5 @ Akron
Straight up win for the Blue Raiders.  As for Akron, none of them, Kent State and Ohio might be in the MAC top 3 this year.  That's insane.  9-9.

New Mexico -12.5 v. UL Monroe
Ugly 54-46 win.  Is there a pretty 54-46 win?  9-10.

Texas A&M -13 v. Youngstown State
Solid 18 point win for the Aggies.  YSU's 7-5 after this loss, which shocks me.  10-10.

Texas -23 v. Texas State
Texas State scored 9 points in the first half.  That's not good.  Hell, they only scored 18 in the second.  If there was any doubt the Longhorns are a top 5 defensive team in college basketball this year, that's put to rest.  11-10.

Valparaiso -13 v. Ball State
Halftime trailed, second half won, etc.  11-11.

UCF -4 v. Florida Atlantic
Only scoring 15 in the second half is a special kind of collapse.  Nice going UCF.  11-12.

California -11.5 v. Princeton
Maybe it's not fair to say Princeton collapsed since they were literally shooting 70% when they got out to their first half lead and that's unsustainable.  And they still covered anyway.  11-13.

Nebraska -4 v. Cincinnati
56-55 in double overtime?!?!  I don't want to know more.  Huge bounceback win for the Huskers though.  11-14.

Vanderbilt +2 v. Purdue
If Purdue's near the bubble, this loss is going to cripple them.  They were never even in the game.  12-14.

CS Fullerton +5.5 @ Nevada
God, Nevada is atrocious.  Kirk Snyder and Nick Fazekas are NOT walking through that door.  13-14.

Gonzaga -4.5 @ UCLA (seriously?  hahahahaha)
Literally never trailed.  Listless performance from the Bruins who are one of the more disappointing major conference programs so far this term.  14-14.

Cal Poly +4.5 @ Fresno State
Meh.  14-15.

Santa Clara -5 v. Washington State
I'm gonna be disappointed if Washington State wins more than 2 Pac-12 games.  15-15.

UC Irvine -12 v. UT Arlington
Wow, brutal loss for the Anteaters.  Goes to show you how valuable Mamadou Ndiaye is for them.  15-16.

Ohio State -19.5 v. Morehead State
Convincing performance for the Buckeyes, even with no cover.  15-17.

VMI -12 v. Marist
Another hilariously off line given Marist is missing players and already not very good in the first place.  Keydets were up 20 in the first half.  16-17.

Eastern Kentucky -6 @ IUPUI

Indiana State +13 @ Iona
Sycamores actually led this by double digits in the first half but lost by 7.  Iona offense scored 40+ in both halves so it continues to hum.  18-17.

Canisius +10.5 @ Massachusetts
Whoops.  This was over at halftime.  18-18.

South Dakota State -10 v. Idaho
Idaho got out 14-3 but the Jackrabbits fought back to win by a deuce.  18-19.

Colorado -12.5 v. Northern Colorado
Needed dominant performance from the Buffs.  19-19.

Stanford -13.5 v. Denver
Cardinal only scored 17 in the first half but held the Pioneers to 18 in the second half to win ugly.  And by ugly I mean neither team got to 50.  19-20.

SE Missouri State -3 v. Missouri State
Way to let me down, Dickey Nutt.  19-21.

Davidson -17.5 v. Niagara
Niagara's really awful.  20-21.

East Tennessee State -12 v. UNC Greensboro
Oh ETSU.  Oh that's the kind of loss that may not make me believe in you again for years.  20-22.

Saint Louis -10 v. SIU Edwardsville
Jesus, the Billikens can't even cover this?  They really are starting all over from scratch.  20-23.

Northern Illinois -2 @ Eastern Illinois
This was a game where no matter who I picked it was gonna be wrong.  20-24.

Murray State +7.5 @ Evansville (this would've been an unthinkable line in preseason)
Cameron Payne finally got the memo that he and his teammates are supposed to be better than they've been!  He dropped 32 and the Racers got the win.  21-24.

North Dakota +8.5 @ North Dakota State
Why did I do this.  21-25.

UNLV -3 @ South Dakota
At least I wasn't dumb enough to pick both North AND South Dakota.  22-25.

Alabama -17 v. Tennessee Tech
This was too big of a number for a team that plays as deliberately as Bama does, mistake pick.  22-26.

Weber State +9 v. BYU
I gotta stop thinking Weber's any good this year either.  22-27.

Loyola Marymount +4 @ Northern Arizona
Covered by a bucket.  23-27.

Maryland -15 v. South Carolina Upstate
In a day full of stupid picks, this may have been the dumbest.  We were never covering an 11 AM tipoff with this offense still struggling to find itself post Dez Wells injury.  23-28.

Georgetown -14.5 v. Radford
There were also a lot of bad lines today and this may have been the worst.  24-28.

Wisconsin -37 v. Nicholls State
They "only" covered by two possessions!  25-28.

Indiana -18 v. Grand Canyon
This was only slightly better than the Georgetown line.  26-28.

LSU -9 v. Sam Houston State
Yeah but whose football team won today, huh?  26-28-3.

New Mexico State -2.5 v. Oral Roberts
Led by 4 at half....yeah.  26-29-3.

Army +6 @ USC
They can't beat Navy in football but they CAN beat USC in basketball!  A 20-12 overtime period?  Especially one involving USC?  Wow.  Great win for the Black Knights though.  The USC/Washington State game on February 25 is appointment television if you hate yourself.  27-29-3.

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