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College Basketball Betting News and Notes Saturday, March 9

College Basketball Betting News and Notes Saturday, March 9

College Knowledge

-- Georgetown (+7.5) won 57-46 at Syracuse Feb 23; Porter scored 33 for Hoyas, who had 11-game win streak snapped during week- they've won last seven home games, are 5-2 as home favorites. Road team won four of last five series games; Orange won last two visits here, by 4-7 points. Big East home teams are 18-26 when spread is 5 or less points. Syracuse had lost three in row before thashing DePaul in last game.
-- Kentucky is bubble team, going 3-4 in last seven games since Noel got hurt at Florida, where UK (+10.5) lost 69-52 Feb 12, ending 5-game skid in series for Gators, who are 5-3 as SEC road favorite, but lost last two on SEC road, at Mizzou/Tennessee. SEC home underdogs of 6 or less points are 15-9 vs spread. Kentucky won last seven home games since losing home opener to A&M; they're 2-4 as an underdog this season.
-- Saint Louis had 11-game win streak snapped last game at Xavier; last home game for Billiken squad that won/covered its last five home games, and has been thru a lot, including its coach dying. A-16 home favorites of more than 5 points are 25-21 vs spread. LaSalle won seven of last eight games; they're 11-4 in A-16, with losses by 9 or less points. Saint Louis won four of last five series games, winning by 2-3-8-7 points.
-- Kansas State won six in row, 10 of last 11 games; they're 2-2 as road dogs, losing away games by 6-21 points (6-2 SU). Home side won seven of last eight KSU-OSU games, as Wildcats (-3.5) beat OSU 73-67 in Big X opener Jan 5, holding OSU kids other than Smart to 13-38 (34.2%) from floor. Cowboys won 10 of last 12 games, are 3-5 as home favorites. Big X home favorites of 7 or less points are 12-11 vs spread.

-- San Diego State (-9.5) beat Boise State 63-62 Feb 6, after being down 3 with 0:18 left; Aztecs are 4-0 vs Boise in MWC play, winning three games by 3 or less points. Broncos won/covered last five at home, with wins over UNLV/Colorado State. Aztecs lost last four road games, by 3-6-2-10 points. Boise covered seven of its last nine games overall. MWC home favorites of 5 or less points are 11-5 against the spread.
-- First SEC meeting for Mizzou-Tennessee; Tigers are 2-6 on SEC road, winning at Miss State/SCarolina. Vols won seven of eight games since a bad home loss to Georgia, they're 6-2 at home in SEC, winning last three here, by 30-10-6 points (beat Florida). SEC home teams are 15-8 when spread is less than 3 points. Top four SEC teams get double-bye in next week's SEC tourney, so this is big game for both sides regarding that.
-- New Mexico (-11.5) beat Air Force 81-58 Feb 6 (led by 6 with 10:00 left), its 13th straight series win; Lobos won last five visits here, by 17-10-23-14-39 points, but Falcons are 6-1 SU at home in MWC, losing to Colorado State by 3- they're 4-0 as home dogs. MWC home underdogs of 5 or less points are 14-9 vs spread. Lobos won six games (4-1 against spread in last five); they're 2-1 as a Mountain West road favorite.
-- Fading Baylor lost five of last six games; not even sure if this win can get them into NCAAs. Bears lost last two home tilts. Kansas (-10) held Baylor to 23% from floor, waxed the Bears 61-44 Jan 14, its 11th win in last 13 series games; Jayhawks won last five trips here, by 20-26-10-20-14 points. Baylor is Big X home underdogs of 5 or less points are 4-7 vs spread. Kansas won/covered its last seven games (5 of 7 at home).
-- Louisiana Tech had 18-game win streak snapped at New Mexico State Thursday; Tech (-4) beat Denver 68-60 in WAC opener Dec 29, despite Pioneers shooting 63% inside arc. Denver won its last nine games (8-1 vs spread). Tech is dog for first time since 71-59 loss at Texas A&M Nov 9 (+8). Major snow in Denver area could keep crowd down. WAC home favorites of 9 or less points are 10-22 against the spread.

-- Last home game for Coach Thomason after 25 years at Pacific; he was also a player for Tigers, who are 5-3 as home favorites (8-0 SU at home in Big West). Pacific led by 11 early at Long Beach Dec 29, lost 67-64 (+4.5); 49ers shot 58% inside arc. Beach won six of last seven road tilts, are 2-3 as road dog, losing away games by 6-21-3 points. Big West home favorites of 6 or less points are 17-23 against the spread.
-- North Carolina won its last six games, all by 9+ points; they lost first meeting 73-68 (+11) at Duke Feb 11, but haven't lost since, winning last seven home games. ACC home favorites of 4 or less points are 4-12 vs spread. Duke lost two of last three on road, but that was before Kelly came back from foot injury. Blue Devils won six of last eight series tilts, winning two of last three visits here (visitor 6-5 SU in series).
-- Road team won both Drexel-George Mason games this year. Dragons (+5) rallied from down 20 to win 58-54; Mason (+3) won rematch 68-62 after being down 8 in second half. Patriots are 10-5 in this event last six years; they've won first tourney game six of last seven years- they lost last two games, allowing 85-82 points. Drexel is 3-2 last two years, after being 1-6 previous six years- they're 5-6 last 11 games (won last two). .
-- Over last 7+ years, Belmont is 17-2 in conference tourneys; Atlantic Sun is better league than OVC, but Bruins (-4) lost 79-74 in only game with Murray State this year. Racers outscored Belmont 21-9 from foul line, had 13 offensive boards. Murray won this tourney two of last three and four of last nine years; they lost four of last five games, but turned it on vs EKU last night. Belmont allowed 79-80 points in two OVC losses.

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Re: College Basketball Betting News and Notes Saturday, March 9

College Basketball: Streaks, Tips, Notes

Syracuse at Georgetown

Hoyas stunned 67-57 at Villanova halting it's eleven game win streak return to the Verizon Center on Saturday and will host Big East rival Syracuse. Hoyas have won three of the last five meetings, including a 57-46 win at the Carrier Dome last month snapping Oranges' 38-0 home court mark. Plenty of reason to consider Georgetown, the Hoyas and it's stingy defensive holding opponents to 56.7 points/game while limiting opponents to 37.9% from the field are 7-1 (5-2 ATS) at home vs the conference, 9-3 ATS last 12 vs. the Big East, 7-3 ATS off a regular season loss. At the other end, Orange are clearly vulnerable on the road posting a 4-8-1 ATS mark away from the Carrier Dome and currently ridding a 1-4 SU/ATS road skid vs Big East opponents.

Kansas at Baylor

After that puzzling detour in early February when Kansas lost three three straight the Jayhawks have since reeled off seven in-a-row both in the record books and at the betting window winning by a 21.3 points/game margin. Jayhawks lead by Ben McLemore (16.5) netting 75.2 points/game while allowing 60.6 per/contest on a nation best 35.1% shooting aren't about to squander a shot at the Big 12 title. Kansas on a 13-0 (9-4 ATS) stretch vs Baylor including a perfect 6-0 SU/ATS in Waco drop the hammer on Bears ridding a 1-5 SU/ATS conference skid scoring 69.2 PPG while giving up 77.2 per/game.

Duke at North Carolina

Tar Heels peaking at the right time will look to get their revenge when they host Duke Saturday in Chapel Hill. The Tar Heels on a 6-0 SU/ATS stretch since their Feb 13th lost to Duke in Durham are a dangerous group. Lead by James Michael-McAdoo (14.6), Reggie Bullock (14.4) the Heels can keep up with the best of them netting 77.8 points/game while surrendering 68.6 on 41.5% shooting. Duke lead by Mason Plumlee (17.0), Seth Curry (17.0) and now with Ryan Kelly (15.0) back in action are slightly more proficient in the scoring department at 78.2 PPG and have a slight edge on the defensive side allowing 65.2 PPG on 41.8% from the field. Still, UNC are worth a second look. Tar Heels are on a smart 7-1 (5-3 ATS) run in these regular season finales with Duke including 5-1 (4-2 ATS) exacting same season revenge. Keep in mind, Tar Heels are a strong 7-1 (6-2 ATS) at home in conference play, Duke is a break even 4-4 on the road vs the ACC with a cash draining 2-6 mark at the betting window.

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Re: College Basketball Betting News and Notes Saturday, March 9

Saturday Matinees
By Kevin Rogers

The conference tournaments in college basketball have started up in the smaller leagues, as the bigger ones will tip off next week. The Saturday college card is filled with plenty of senior days, while several bubble squads will make their last push for a quality win. We'll start the matinee action with two old rivals possibly meeting for the final time in conference play.

Syracuse at Georgetown

With the Orange heading to the ACC next season, Syracuse and Georgetown hook up for the last time in a Big East regular season contest. The two teams could meet in the conference tournament next week at Madison Square Garden, but this is probably it as the Hoyas knocked off the Orange at the Carrier Dome on February 23 as 7½-point 'dogs, 57-46.

Both clubs didn't shoot well as Georgetown outscored Syracuse in the second half, 36-23, while each shot below 35% from the field. Otto Porter dominated for the Hoyas with 33 points, as not one other Georgetown player scored more than seven points in the win. The loss was the only one by Syracuse at the Carrier Dome this season, while Georgetown won their third of its last four visits to upstate New York.

Jim Boeheim's team has lost three of the past four games overall, as the Orange have failed to cover three times in this stretch. Syracuse has been listed as an underdog twice this season, losing at Pittsburgh and picking up an outright victory at Louisville. Georgetown's 11-game winning streak came to a halt in Wednesday's loss at Villanova, while the Hoyas own an 0-3 ATS mark the last three games.

Florida at Kentucky
The Gators have wrapped up the SEC regular season title, as Florida goes for the sweep of rival Kentucky. The defending champions are on the verge of potentially missing the tournament after losing consecutive road contests at Arkansas and Georgia to drop to 4-7 away from Rupp Arena. Kentucky can make a last-gasp effort at a tournament bid with a victory over Florida and a good showing at the SEC tournament, but the Wildcats were thumped the first time around in Gainesville.

On a night to forget, the 'Cats lost standout freshman Nerlens Noel to a torn ACL on February 12 in a 69-52 defeat at the O'Connell Center as 10-point road underdogs. The Gators snapped a five-game skid to Kentucky that dated back to February 2011, as five Florida players scored in double-figures, while shooting 49% from the field. Since that win by the Gators, Billy Donovan's squad has covered just two of the last six games, which includes a blowout of Vanderbilt on Wednesday.

The Wildcats aren't helping out backers by compiling a 3-7 ATS record the last 10 games overall, but John Calipari's team has won seven straight home conference contests. Kentucky is listed as a home underdog for the first time since January 22, 2008 in a 72-66 victory over Tennessee as 5½-point 'dogs. The 'Cats have drilled the 'over' in three straight home games, while scoring at least 85 points in the last two contests against Missouri and Mississippi State.

Kansas State at Oklahoma State

The Wildcats have an opportunity to grab at least a piece of the Big 12 regular season title with a victory in Stillwater. K-State enters Saturday's action tied atop the conference with rival Kansas at 14-3, while also seeking its seventh straight victory. Oklahoma State is heading to the NCAA Tournament at 22-7, but the Cowboys are playing with revenge after falling at Manhattan in early January.

Travis Ford's team lost the Big 12 opener at Bramlage Coliseum, 73-65 as 4½-point 'dogs, as Rodney McGruder paced K-State with a game-high 28 points. Since losing to top-ranked Gonzaga at home in late December, the Cowboys have won seven of eight games in Stillwater, while three of the last four have gone to overtime. In spite of its good fortune at home, Oklahoma State is just 0-4-1 ATS the previous five contests at Gallagher-Iba Arena.

Kansas State has put together a 6-4 ATS record the last 10 games, but three of those non-covers came as double-digit favorites, including in Tuesday's home win over TCU. Bruce Weber's squad owns a 6-2 conference road record, but the 'Cats have lost in the away underdog role at Kansas and Iowa State. The Wildcats are riding a 6-2 'over' stretch, while scoring at least 71 points six times.

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Re: College Basketball Betting News and Notes Saturday, March 9

Duke at North Carolina
By Brian Edwards

Duke at North Carolina

As of early Friday night, most books had North Carolina (22-8 SU, 19-9 ATS) as a 1.5-point home favorite. One offshore had the total at 152.5.

Since losing at Virginia two Thursdays ago, Duke (26-4 SU, 16-14 ATS) has posted back-to-back home wins. The Blue Devils cooled off Miami last Saturday behind an epic performance from senior power forward Ryan Kelly, who returned to the lineup after missing more than a month with a foot injury. All Kelly did was score a career-high 36 points to lead his team to a 79-76 win over the Hurricanes, who covered the spread as 7.5-point underdogs.

Following a lackluster first half that saw it with just a three-point lead at intermission, Duke exploded in the second half to run Va. Tech out of the gym in an 85-57 triumph as a 19.5-point home favorite. The best wager was the Blue Devils -10.5 for second-half bets as they outscored the Hokies 47-22. Seth Curry scored a team-high 20 points on Senior Night, draining 5-of-9 shots from 3-point range. Kelly finished with 18 points, nine rebounds and five assists compared to only one turnover.

When these bitter ACC adversaries met on Feb. 13, Duke captured a 73-68 home win but the Tar Heels took the cash as 10.5-point underdogs. The 141 combined points stayed ‘under’ the 151.5-point total. Mason Plumlee led the Blue Devils with 18 points and 11 rebounds, while Quinn Cook produced 18 points, six boards and four steals. In the losing effort, P.J. Hairston finished with 23 points, eight rebounds, three assists and a pair of blocked shots.

Although Roy Williams’s team fell short at Cameron Indoor Stadium, UNC’s season turned around for the better that night. Since then, the Tar Heels have won six in a row both SU and ATS, including Wednesday’s 79-68 win at Maryland as one-point road ‘chalk.’ Hairston was the catalyst again with 22 points and eight rebounds, while Reggie Bullock added 19 points and 12 boards.

North Carolina has been money at home in the Dean Dome, winning 14 of its 15 games while compiling a 10-3 spread record. The Tar Heels, who are 4-1 ATS as single-digit home ‘chalk,’ suffered their lone home loss to Miami.

UNC sophomore forward James Michael McAdoo has missed some practice time this week with a disc issue in his back, but he is ‘probable’ and will play. McAdoo averages 14.6 points and 7.8 rebounds per game.

Plumlee has been dynamite during his senior campaign, averaging team-highs in scoring (17.0 PPG), rebounding (10.2 RPG), field-goal percentage (58.5%) and blocked shots (1.6 per game). Curry shares team-high scoring honors with a 17.0 PPG average. The senior guard is making 43.9 percent of his shots from beyond the arc.

Regardless of what Duke does in the ACC Tournament, I think a win over UNC will wrap up a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. The Blue Devils are No. 1 in the RPI Rankings thanks to a 5-1 record against the RPI Top 25 and an 8-2 ledger against the RPI Top 50. They are 13-4 versus RPI Top 100 foes.

UNC has an RPI of 18 despite losing five of its six games against the RPI Top 25. The Tar Heels are 2-6 against the RPI Top 50, 8-7 versus the Top 100.

Duke has only been an underdog twice this season, going 1-1 both SU and ATS. The Blue Devils beat Louisville 76-71 as one-point ‘dogs in the Bahamas back on Nov. 24. They lost a 73-68 decision at Virginia as one-point puppies.

The ‘over’ is 16-13 overall for Duke, 5-3 in its eight true road assignments.

The ‘under’ has cashed in five consecutive UNC games to improve to 16-11 overall, 7-6 in its home games.

The ‘under’ is 7-2 in the last nine head-to-head meetings between these schools.

Tip-off is scheduled for 9:00 p.m. Eastern on ESPN.

B.E.’s Bonus Nuggets

Akron’s at-large hopes and its chances of winning the MAC Tournament took a huge hit Thursday with the indefinite suspension of starting point guard Alex Abreu, who was arrested along with another man after accepting a package with five pounds of marijuana from undercover officers. Abreu is facing multiple third-degree felony charges. He was averaging 10.3 points and 6.0 assists per game. has Florida installed as a -140 favorite to win next week’s SEC Tournament in Nashville.

Sportsbook has Indiana as the 5/1 ‘chalk’ to win the NCAA Tournament, followed by Duke (6/1), Florida (7/1), Louisville (7/1), Michigan (8/1), Miami (8/1), Georgetown (10/1), Gonzaga (10/1) and Kansas (10/1).

Georgia owns an 11-1 spread record in its last 12 games. On the quick turnaround after beating Kentucky at home Thursday night, the Bulldogs are seven-point underdogs Saturday at Alabama.

Like UGA, Saint Louis is 11-1 ATS in its last 12 games. The Billikens had won 11 in a row both SU and ATS until losing in overtime at Xavier on Wednesday. They host LaSalle on Saturday as seven-point favorites.

Georgetown saw its 11-game winning streak snapped this week at Villanova. The Hoyas will be in bounce-back mode Saturday when they host Syracuse as 1.5-point home favorites.

Sportsbook has Michigan sophomore point guard listed as the -140 favorite to win National Player of the Year honors. The website has two other players – Indiana’s Victor Oladipo (+220) and Georgetown’s Otto Porter Jr. (+300) – on the board and has the ‘field’ bet at 3/1.

UNC’s future number at Sportsbook is 40/1.

Boise St. owns an 8-1 spread record in its last nine games. The Broncos, who lost a 63-62 decision at San Diego St. earlier this season, are two-point home favorites Saturday versus the Aztecs.

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Re: College Basketball Betting News and Notes Saturday, March 9

Which NCAAB Finales Carry The Most Weight?

It’s the 11th hour for plenty of college basketball teams as the schedule heads into its final weekend.

Those programs with a weak NCAA resume are out for one more convincing win while others are jockeying for position before the conference tournament begins. Here’s a look at which weekend matchup carry the most weight:

Atlantic 10

La Salle Explorers at Saint Louis Billikens – The Explorers are on the tournament bubble and win over No. 15 SLU might do the trick. La Salle is also hoping to hold on to the No. 3 seed in the A-10.

UMass Minutemen at Rhode Island Rams – Massachusetts is another A-10 team on the fence and a win over the lowly Rams won’t do much to change that. The Minutemen are trying to stay among the top 8 in the conference.

VCU Rams at Temple Owls – Temple can boost its NCAA hopes with a victory over No. 19 VCU. The Owls are also in the hunt for the top 4 seed in the A-10 tournament and a first-round bye.


Clemson Tigers at Miami Hurricanes – Miami missed out on a chance at clinching its first outright ACC season crown vs. Georgia Tech Wednesday, losing its second straight game. Can the Canes avoid a late-season collapse versus Clemson?

Duke Blue Devils at North Carolina Tar Heels – This is a big game for both Tobacco Road rivals. Duke is trying to steal a share of the ACC title from Miami while UNC desperately needs a win over a ranked opponent to get off the bubble.

Maryland Terrapins at Virginia Cavaliers – Virginia can feel safe better about its NCAA destiny with a win over Maryland, which may have had its bubble burst in a loss to UNC Wednesday.

Big Ten

Nebraska Cornhuskers at Iowa Hawkeyes – Iowa has won five of its last seven and has a foot in the door when it comes to the NCAA conversation. A loss to Nebraska would likely slam the door on that foot.

Illinois Fighting Illini at Ohio State Buckeyes – The battle for No. 2 – or even a four-team logjam atop the standings – starts in Columbus Sunday. Ohio State need some help from rivals Michigan.

Indiana Hoosiers at Michigan Wolverines – The Hoosiers can win the Big Ten season title – and possibly a No. 1 NCAA seed - Sunday or Michigan can spread the love over four different teams, barring outside upsets.

Northwestern Wildcats at Michigan State Spartans – MSU came up big with a win over Wisconsin and can win a share of the Big Ten title with a victory over Northwestern and some help from the Wolverines.

Big East

Syracuse Orange at Georgetown Hoyas - With a win, the Hoyas earn a share of the Big East season crown. This is the final regular season game between these two bitter rivals, with SU moving to the ACC next season.

Marquette Golden Eagles at St. John’s Red Storm – Marquette can at least win a share of the Big East title with a victory over the Johnnies.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Louisville Cardinals – Louisville is also in the hunt for a piece of the Big East pie. The Cardinals will get a share of the conference crown if they win, and could win outright if GT and MU go down.

Providence Friars at UConn Huskies – The Friars have quietly become the hottest team in the Big East, winning seven of their last eight and propping themselves on the NCAA bubble heading into the weekend.

Big 12

Kansas State Wildcats at Oklahoma State Cowboys – KSU is currently tied with KU for first in the conference and will win at least a share of the conference crown with a win.

Iowa State Cyclones at West Virginia Mountaineers – ISU may have moved off the bubble with a huge win over OSU Wednesday. However, a letdown loss to WVU could erase that momentum.

Kansas Jayhawks at Baylor Bears – Kansas it trying to hang on to a share of the Big 12 title while Baylor has one last chance to impress the selection committee with a marquee win over KU.

Oklahoma Sooners at TCU Horned Frogs – The Sooners are another bubble team with everything to lose if they come out flat versus TCU. OU is holding on to No. 4 in the Big 12 heading into the weekend.


Central Florida Knights at Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles – Southern Miss is on the bubble heading into the final game of the season. Tuesday’s loss to Marshall may have been the nail in the coffin though.


Fresno State Bulldogs at UNLV Runnin’ Rebels – UNLV is trying to hold on to the No. 2 spot in the MWC and win its sixth in a row.

San Diego State Aztecs at Boise State Broncos – San Diego State is clutching to a No. 4 seed and a first-round bye while Boise State is on the NCAA bubble, needing another convincing MWC win.

Nevada Wolf Pack at Colorado State Rams – CSU is knotted with UNLV for the second spot in the conference and needs a win over Nevada to avoid sliding back.


Oregon Ducks at Utah Utes – Oregon crumbled under the pressure with a chance to clinch the Pac-12 title in Colorado and now must win out to at least get a share of the conference crown.

UCLA Bruins at Washington Huskies – Thanks to Oregon’s loss, UCLA is alive in the Pac-12 hunt and needs to win in Washington in order to stake a claim of the conference crown.

Arizona State Sun Devils at Arizona Wildcats – The Wildcats are trying to stay among the top 4 seeds in the conference while the Sun Devils are gasping for their NCAA lives. A win over No. 18 Arizona would give them a chance.


Florida Gators at Kentucky Wildcats – This is UK’s last chance to dance. After a loss at UGA Thursday, the defending champs need a win over UF and hope the selection committee takes pity on them.

Mississippi Rebels at LSU Tigers – Ole Miss is on the NCAA bubble while also locked in a four-team battle for No. 2 in the SEC.

Georgia Bulldogs at Alabama Crimson Tide – Bama is very bubbly heading into the season finale with a dangerous UGA team. The Tide are one of those four programs jammed into the No. 2 spot right now.

Missouri Tigers at Tennessee Volunteers – The Vols need another marquee win to secure a spot in the field of 68 while the Tigers are trying to break away from the pack and grab the No. 2 seed in the SEC tournament.

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Re: College Basketball Betting News and Notes Saturday, March 9

Saturday's Top 25 NCAAB Betting Notes

Check out our quick-hitting betting notes for all of Saturday’s ranked college basketball games:

(9) Florida at Kentucky (+6, 131)

Florida visits Kentucky on Saturday having clinching the No. 1 seed in the SEC tournament with a 66-40 win over Vanderbilt on Wednesday. The Gators earned their fourth outright league title and second in the last three years, finishing a perfect 15-0 at home this season. Fourteen of their SEC victories came by double-digits, including a 69-52 rout of the Wildcats on Feb. 12. Kentucky is coming off back-to-back losses after falling to Georgia 72-62 on Thursday, but the Gators are only 1-4 ATS in their last five games overall.

UAB at (20) Memphis (-15.5, 143)

Memphis is chasing history as it heads into its regular-season finale Saturday afternoon against UAB. The Tigers are one win away from becoming the fifth Conference USA team to go undefeated in conference play, and the fourth Memphis team to post a perfect league record. A win guarantees UAB the No. 5 seed in the C-USA tournament, and would end a 12-game losing streak against the Tigers. Memphis is 5-0 ATS in its last five Saturday games.

(16) Syracuse at (5) Georgetown (-1, 121)

The Hoyas lost a chance to clinch at least a share of the league title when they fell at Villanova on Wednesday, snapping an 11-game winning streak and falling into a tie with Louisville and Marquette, both of whom will play later Saturday. At the same time, Syracuse was in the process of ending its three-game slide with a 78-57 win over DePaul. During its three-game skid, all against ranked opponents, the Orange shot 39.5 percent from the floor and had more turnovers than assists. The Hoyas are 6-1 ATS in their last seven home games.

La Salle at (15) Saint Louis (-7.5, 131)

The Explorers could still garner a share of the A-10 title and the No. 1 tourney seed with a win over the Billikens and a VCU loss at Temple on Sunday, which would create a three-way tie for first place. Saint Louis comes in off a 77-66 overtime loss at Xavier on Wednesday, which snapped the Billikens' 11-game win and ATS streak. The road team is 7-0-1 ATS in the last eight meetings.

(10) Kansas State at (14) Oklahoma State (-6, 133)

A loss at Iowa State on Wednesday ended Oklahoma State's chance of capturing a piece of the Big 12 regular-season title. Now, locked into third place, the Cowboys look to play spoiler when they host Kansas State. Kansas State is tied with rival Kansas for the conference lead. The Wildcats have won six straight and will clinch at least a share of their first conference title since 1977 with a win at Gallagher-Iba Arena. The Cowboys are 0-4-1 ATS in their last five home games.

(17) Marquette at St. John’s (+5.5, 127)

Marquette can claim at least a share of the Big East regular-season title for the first time when it visits sliding St. John's. Marquette had already secured the coveted double-bye for the upcoming Big East tournament before it knocked off Rutgers 60-54 on Tuesday. At the same time, the Red Storm were bottoming out with a 26-point loss to the Fighting Irish that featured a late fight involving swingman Sir'Dominic Pointer. The sophomore, who leads St. John's in assists and steals, is suspended for the finale. The Red Storm have lost three straight and five of six.

(22) Pittsburgh at DePaul (+12, 135)

Pittsburgh routed DePaul 93-55 in their first matchup Jan. 26. The Blue Demons have won only one game in the last two months. Since that victory, a 75-69 result over Rutgers on Feb. 16, DePaul has logged five losses by an average of 17.6 points. Most recently, the Blue Demons dropped a 78-57 contest to the Orange on Wednesday. The Blue Demons haven’t held an opponent under 69 points since Dec. 22 and are 0-5 ATS in their last five games overall.

Clemson at (7) Miami-Florida (-13, 113)

The Hurricanes must beat visiting Clemson on Saturday to clinch the ACC regular-season title for the first time since joining the conference for the 2004-05 season. Miami has lost three of its last four games, including two straight, after a 14-game win streak and is coming off a 71-69 loss at home to Georgia Tech on Wednesday. Miami has taken the last two meetings, including 45-43 at Clemson on Feb. 17. The Tigers are 0-4 ATS in their last four games overall.

(25) Oregon at Utah (+4, 125)

The Ducks get another chance to wrap up their first regular-season title since 2002 with a victory at Utah on Saturday. Oregon, UCLA and California entered the final week of the regular season with a chance to claim the title, but only the Ducks continue to control their own destiny. If they stumble, UCLA wins the title with a victory at Washington on Saturday. The Utes are No. 1 in the Pac-12 in scoring defense at 62.9 points while the Ducks are second at 63.3. Utah is 4-0 ATS in its last four home games.

(24) Notre Dame at (6) Louisville (-11.5, 122)

These teams engaged in the longest game in Big East regular-season history on Feb. 9 – a 104-101 five-overtime thriller in which Notre Dame overcame an eight-point deficit in the final 44 seconds of regulation and rallied in three of the first four overtime periods before prevailing. Eight of the last 13 meetings have been decided in overtime, including the last three. The over is 8-1 in the last nine meetings.

Arizona State at (18) Arizona (-12, 134)

The Wildcats have won 29 of the last 37 meetings, including 71-54 on Jan. 19 in Tempe. Arizona State, which is 4-5 on the road and sixth in the Pac-12, looks to snap a three-game losing streak. The last five meetings at McKale Center have been decided by an average of 8.6 points and the Sun Devils are 4-1 ATS in their last five games overall.

(3) Kansas at Baylor (+4.5, 142)

Kansas will know before it tips off at Baylor on Saturday whether it has a chance to win the Big 12 Conference title outright. The Jayhawks enter the weekend tied with Kansas State and their in-state rivals play at Oklahoma State earlier Saturday afternoon. Baylor has lost five of six to cripple its NCAA Tournament hopes but a win against Kansas and some wins at the conference tournament could help fix its resume. Kansas has held 18 opponents, including nine Big 12 opponents, to 60 points or fewer. The Jayhawks are 7-0 ATS in their last seven games overall.

(11) New Mexico at Air Force (+3, 128)

New Mexico is on pace to shoot its lowest field-goal percentage in 51 years. The Lobos are hitting on 41.8 percent of their shots this season, making half their attempts or better in five games. They’ve excelled on defense, however, and have done an exceptional job avoiding turnovers, especially lately. During its current six-game winning streak, New Mexico is allowing an average of 57.3 points, while limiting the opposition to 37.3 percent from the floor. The Falcons are 8-0 ATS in their last eight home games.

(4) Duke at North Carolina (-1.5, 153)

Duke needs a win and Miami to also lose to Clemson on Saturday to grab a share of its 23rd regular-season title. The Blue Devils have won six of the last eight meetings, including their 73-68 victory in February. North Carolina has won each of its last seven home games by double figures and is 7-0 ATS in its last seven overall.

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Re: College Basketball Betting News and Notes Saturday, March 9

Syracuse at Georgetown: What Bettors Need to Know

Syracuse Orange at Georgetown Hoyas (-1, 121)

With all the turmoil surrounding Big East basketball, it seems fitting there is a regular-season finale between Syracuse and Georgetown with a title on the line. The fifth-ranked Hoyas can clinch at least a share of the crown and a possible No. 1 seed in the conference tournament when they host the 16th-ranked Orange on Saturday in the 89th meeting between the rivals, their last before Syracuse joins the ACC and Georgetown helps establish the new Big East with the rest of the Catholic 7.

The Hoyas lost a chance to clinch at least a share of the league title when they fell at Villanova on Wednesday, snapping an 11-game winning streak and falling into a tie with Louisville and Marquette, both of whom will play later Saturday. At the same time, Syracuse was in the process of ending its three-game slide with a 78-57 win over DePaul. The Orange enter in a three-way tie for fourth with Notre Dame and Pittsburgh, only one of which will earn the coveted two-day bye at the conference tournament in Madison Square Garden.

ABOUT SYRACUSE (23-7, 11-6 Big East): During their three-game skid, all against ranked opponents, the Orange shot 39.5 percent from the floor and had more turnovers than assists. In bouncing back against the last-place Blue Demons, some of the offensive numbers remained ugly, or even worse. However, Syracuse's defense stepped up, forcing 18 turnovers, recording 12 blocks and posting a 47-38 advantage on the glass. James Southerland made all 11 of his free throws en route to 22 points, C.J. Fair added 16 and Brandon Triche chipped in 15.

ABOUT GEORGETOWN (23-5, 13-4): Star forward Otto Porter Jr. led the Hoyas with 17 points in the loss to Villanova. However, he was just 2-for-9 from 3-point range and contributed to the sloppy performance from Georgetown, which had a season-high 22 turnovers. Even more glaring was the massive discrepancy at the free-throw line, where the Hoyas had 34 fewer attempts (42-8) than the Wildcats. Head coach John Thompson III indicated his team was not lacking in motivation. "We needed this game, also," he told reporters. "We're playing for a championship. That's something just as important. We were desperate coming into this game, also."


* Orange are 1-4 ATS in their last five road games.
* Hoyas are 6-1 ATS in their last seven home games.
* Under is 4-0 in Orange’s last four vs. a team with a winning S.U. record.
* Road team is 6-0 ATS in the last six meetings.


1. According to Elias, the last time a top-5 team took at least 30 fewer free throws than its opponent was March 1, 2008, when Texas Tech took 43 foul shots, compared to 13 for No. 5 Texas.

2. Due to two wire-to-wire efforts and a double-overtime game, Porter is averaging 42 minutes over his last four games. He had 33 of Georgetown's 57 points in a win at Syracuse on Feb. 23.

3. Triche has missed 12 straight 3-pointers.

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Re: College Basketball Betting News and Notes Saturday, March 9

Duke at UNC: What Bettors Need to Know

Duke Blue Devils at North Carolina Tar Heels (-1.5, 153)

Ryan Kelly was still rehabbing a foot injury while P.J. Hairston was making his debut as a starter the last time North Carolina played Duke on Feb. 13. When these bitter rivals meet again in Chapel Hill to close out the regular season Saturday, Kelly and Hairston will likely square off against each other in a game that still might have ACC regular-season title implications for the fourth-ranked Blue Devils.

While Duke needs a win and Miami to also lose to Clemson on Saturday to grab a share of its 23rd regular-season title, one of the main reasons the Blue Devils are even in a position to contend is because of Kelly’s dramatic return against the Hurricanes one week ago. The Tar Heels are 6-1 – with the only loss coming against Duke – since Hairston became a regular starter prior to the first showdown with Duke. The Blue Devils have won six of the last eight meetings, including their 73-68 victory in February.

ABOUT DUKE (26-4, 13-4 ACC): Seth Curry scored 20 points in Tuesday’s home win over Virginia Tech, extending the Blue Devils’ streak of at least one player scoring at least 20 to six games. Four different players have eclipsed the 20-point mark over that stretch, with Curry doing so four times. With 18 more points, he will reach 2,000 for his career. Mason Plumlee, the only starter not to reach the 20-point threshold over the last six games, is five blocks away from becoming the third Duke player (joining Shelden Williams and Mike Gminski) to top 1,000 points, 1,000 rebounds and 200 blocks in a career.

ABOUT NORTH CAROLINA (22-8, 12-5): The insertion of Hairston (13.6 points) into the starting lineup has led a slight increase in field goal percentage during conference play (plus-3.9), but the biggest change has come beyond the arc. The Tar Heels are shooting 42.3 percent from 3-point range since his promotion, a seven-percent increase from the team’s first 10 ACC games. Hairston is also averaging 17.5 points over that span, but the biggest beneficiary may be Reggie Bullock (14.4 points, 6.4 rebounds). The 6-7 junior has recorded three double-doubles in that time – matching the same number he managed over his first 90 career games.


* Tar Heels are 7-0 ATS in their last seven games overall.
* Under is 5-0 in Tar Heels’ last five overall.
* Road team is 4-0 ATS in the last four meetings.
* Blue Devils are 5-1 ATS in their last six trips to UNC.


1. Neither team has won both regular-season meetings in the same season since North Carolina swept in the 2008-09 season.

2. Duke is 17-0 with Kelly in the lineup this season and has won 89.2 percent of its games when he plays – the third-highest winning percentage for a player in school history.

3. North Carolina has won each of its last seven home games by double figures.

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Re: College Basketball Betting News and Notes Saturday, March 9

Saturday 3-Pack


Two long-time rivals meet for the final time in the regular season as Big East foes when No. 17 Syracuse visits the Verizon Center looking to give No. 5 Georgetown its second consecutive loss.

Before losing to Villanova this week, the Hoyas had won 11 in a row SU (9-1-1 ATS). That included a 57-46 drubbing against the Orange, in which Syracuse was favored by eight points at the Carrier Dome. Syracuse is coming off a thumping of DePaul, winning SU and ATS, snapping a three-game skid of ATS and SU losses. Although Georgetown is 4-1 ATS in its past five meetings against Syracuse, the Orange have a knack for winning in the nation's capital, where they are 3-1 ATS in their past four trips. But the Hoyas are 15-1 SU (6-6 ATS) at home this season and 13-4 SU (12-4-1 ATS) in Big East play. Syracuse is just 5-4 SU (4-5 ATS) on the road, but appeared to get their groove back in their last game against DePaul and are 11-8 ATS coming off an SU win this season.

The Orange shot a pitiful 17-of-50 (34%) against the Hoyas in their first meeting. PG Michael Carter-Williams (12.4 PPG, 7.8 APG) went just 2-of-6 from the field in that game, scoring just seven points and adding five dimes. SF C.J. Fair (14.6 PPG, 7.3 RPG) led the Orange with 13 points against the Hoyas and has been hot lately, averaging 18.3 PPG in his past three contests. PF James Southerland (14.1 PPG), Jim Boeheim's super-sub, added 13 points in the game and is coming off a 22-point, 10-rebound performance against DePaul. He is also a dangerous shooter, hitting 2.4 threes per game. SG Brandon Triche (14.3 PPG) is Syracuse's other top scorer, though he must improve off his 4-of-13 performance when Georgetown lost to the Orange.

Otto Porter (16.6 PPG, 7.4 RPG), a National Player of the Year hopeful, carried the Hoyas past Syracuse, dropping 33 points on 12-of-19 shooting, including 5-of-10 from deep. He also added eight boards and five steals and was the only Hoyas player to make it into double-digits for the game. He has continued to be red-hot, averaging 25.0 PPG in his past four contests. The 6-foot-8 forward is hitting 44.4% of his threes this year and 50.3% of his field goals. The other key Georgetown player to watch out for is guard Markel Starks (12.2 PPG, 2.8 APG), who is also a threat to stretch the Syracuse 2-3 zone, hitting 41% threes this year. He and PF Nate Lubick (7.6 PPG, 5.5 RPG, 3.0 APG) lead Georgetown's ball distribution. Lubick went just 2-of-7 from the field in that first meeting but has been efficient since then, hitting 8-of-11 FG in the past three games.


Slumping Kentucky is in need of a big win, and has a great opportunity to get one on Saturday afternoon when No. 11 Florida pays a visit.
The Gators are 14-3 SU (10-7 ATS) in conference play this season, but have lost two straight road games at Missouri and Tennessee. They have also been a terrible wager since the start of February, going 3-7 ATS in those 10 games. Kentucky has started March with two straight double-digit losses, falling 73-60 at Arkansas and 72-62 at Georgia. The Wildcats also lost big at Florida on Feb. 12, dropping a 69-52 decision and seeing their best player, C Nerlens Noel, go down with a torn ACL that night. Despite the recent struggles, Kentucky is 12-2 SU (8-5-1 ATS) in the past 14 home meetings with Florida, pounding them 78-58 last season.

Florida scores 72.5 PPG for the season, but has just 62.7 PPG over the past three games and 59.0 PPG in the past two road tilts. However, the Gators defense remains one of the stingiest in the land, giving up a paltry 53.0 PPG, including limiting its two March opponents to 46.0 PPG (wins versus Alabama and Vanderbilt). The Gators are 7-4 (SU and ATS) on the road this season, and have been a great wager after an ATS win at 10-3 ATS (77%). The dangerous thing about this team is their great depth, as eight players log at least 16 MPG and all eight of those players score at least 5.6 PPG. Guards Kenny Boynton (12.6 PPG, 3.0 APG) and Mike Rosario (12.6 PPG) lead the team in scoring and both are nearly automatic from the foul line at 83% FT and 85% FT, respectively. Six-foot-10 PF Erik Murphy (12.3 PPG, 5.0 RPG) also shoots well from the charity stripe (82% FT), but his greatest value is that he knocks down 47% of his threes. C Patric Young (10.5 PPG, 6.3 RPG, 1.8 BPG) controls the paint and takes high-percentage shots at 62% FG. And the offense flows very well through PG Scottie Wilbekin (9.1 PPG, 5.2 APG), who is an excellent floor general with a robust 2.52 Ast/TO ratio. All five of these players scored at least nine points in the win over Kentucky, with Young grabbing 11 boards and Wilbekin dishing out eight assists. Top reserve, swingman Casey Prather (6.6 PPG, 3.6 RPG), also played well against Kentucky with 12 points on 6-of-8 shooting.

Kentucky's offense is even more potent than Florida's, scoring 74.3 PPG, but the team has been held to 61.0 PPG on 41.0% FG and 9-of-40 threes (22.5%) during its two-game losing skid. The defense holds teams to 64.9 PPG this season, but has allowed 70+ points in five of the six games since Noel got hurt. Like Florida, the Wildcats have great offensive balance with six players tallying at least 9.4 PPG. SG Archie Goodwin (14.0 PPG, 4.5 RPG) leads the team in scoring, but makes just 44% FG and 28% threes. PF Alex Poythress (11.7 PPG, 6.0 RPG) is much more accurate from the field (59% FG), and also leads the club with a 43.3% clip from three-point range. SF Kyle Wiltjer (10.8 PPG, 4.3 RPG) provides accurate long-range shooting (38.2% threes) despite his 43% FG mark. PG Ryan Harrow (10.2 PPG, 3.0 APG) runs the point with a decent 1.93 Ast/TO ratio. SG Julius Mays (9.4 PPG) is the top reserve, while C Willie Cauley-Stein (8.5 PPG, 6.1 RPG) has been getting more minutes since Noel went down, averaging an excellent 12.4 PPG and 9.2 RPG in his past five contests. Cauley-Stein and Mays were the only Wildcats to score in double-figures in Gainesville last month, with each of them scoring exactly 10 points. Goodwin scored eight points with four turnovers, Poythress scored five points on a horrible 1-of-9 shooting, Wiltjer had seven points in 23 minutes, and Harrow was held scoreless (0-for-3 FG) in 19 minutes in the loss to Florida.


Tobacco Road rivals No. 3 Duke and North Carolina will finish the regular season against each other at the Dean Dome in Chapel Hill Saturday night.

Since Duke beat the Tar Heels 73-68 at Cameron Indoor Stadium on Feb. 13, North Carolina has gone 6-0 SU and ATS. One of the key changes began in that game against the Blue Devils, going with a smaller lineup and starting P.J. Hairston, who is averaging 17.6 PPG in the past seven games since getting inserted into the starting lineup. Duke, however, is also improved from the first meeting with PF Ryan Kelly back in the fold after missing a 12-game stretch, including the win against the Tar Heels. Kelly has 27.0 PPG and 8.0 RPG in two games since returning from his injury. When these two teams met at the Dean Dome last year, the Blue Devils won on a last-second 3-pointer from the hands of Austin Rivers. Duke is 6-2 SU (4-4 ATS) in the past eight meetings between these rivals, but this year's Blue Devils have really struggled on the road (4-4 SU, 2-6 ATS) and have yet to beat a team in the top-half of the ACC on the road. The Tar Heels meanwhile have dominated in the Dean Dome this year, going 14-1 SU and 10-3 ATS.

Senior PF Mason Plumlee (17.0 PPG, 10.2 RPG) led the Blue Devils past the Tar Heels at Cameron, finishing with 18 points and 11 boards. Plumlee, who is hitting 59% of his field goals this season, has struggled lately, averaging just 12.0 PPG and 5.7 RPG over his past three contests. The other star of that game for Duke was sophomore PG Quinn Cook (12.6 PPG, 5.3 APG), who added 18 points and four steals. SG Seth Curry (17.0 PPG), struggled, however, with just 11 points on 3-of-10 shooting, getting frustrated by North Carolina's great size with their wing players. The one player who really needs to step up his play for Duke is freshman SG Rasheed Sulaimon (11.7 PPG), who is averaging just 5.3 PPG over his past three games. The biggest difference on this team though, between the first meeting is the return of PF Ryan Kelly (15.0 PPG, 5.7 RPG) who has been one of the best 3-point shooters in the nation, making two treys per game at a 53.1% clip. He also adds 1.6 BPG and should challenge the Tar Heels defensively with his size.

Hairston broke out in that first game against Duke, starting his second game of the season, going for 23 points and was one of three Tar Heels to add eight boards. North Carolina owned the offensive glass (18 offensive rebounds) against Duke, something that will be harder to replicate with Kelly back in action. PF James Michael McAdoo (14.6 PPG, 7.8 RPG) was one of the players to grab eight rebounds in that game, but scored just nine points. McAdoo has 15.6 PPG in his past five games. He and Reggie Bullock (14.4 PPG, 6.4 RPG) lead the Tar Heels offense. Bullock is averaging 18.3 PPG and 11.0 RPG in his past four games, incredible rebounding stats for a 6-foot-7 wing player. In the backcourt, UNC has two guards who have put the Tar Heels second in the nation in assists at 17.6 APG. SG Dexter Strickland (7.9 PPG, 4.1 APG) leads the ACC in assist-to-turnover ratio (3.39), coughing it up just 1.2 times per game. Freshman PG Marcus Paige (7.8 PPG, 4.5 APG) is also good at distributing the ball (1.85 Ast/TO ratio) and has come into his own with this new lineup. But he committed eight turnovers in Wednesday win at Maryland, something he can ill-afford to do Saturday against the No. 3 team in the country.

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Re: College Basketball Betting News and Notes Saturday, March 9

Weekend Lean Sheet
David Banks

La Salle at Saint Louis

Saint Louis is coming off of an upset loss in overtime at Xavier which snapped an 11-game winning streak, making this a big regular season finale with the Billikens now tied with VCU atop the Atlantic 10 standings at 12-3 and La Salle only one game out at 11-4. During that 11-game winning streak, the Billikens went 5-0 here at home while winning by an average of +19.0 points, with those wins including a 17-point rout of Butler and a 14-point romp over VCU! La Salle has probably already earned an at-large berth in the NCAA Tournament, but given that Saint Louis has been playing out of its mind at home, the Explorers' 261st national ranking in two-point defense is a major concern here. Saint Louis is 11-4 ATS in its last 15 games when coming off of an upset loss. LEAN: Saint Louis

Marquette at St. John's

Marquette is still in the hunt for at least a share of the regular season Big East title as it owns a 13-4 conference mark, and although the Golden Eagles failed to cover the spread by one-half point in a 60-54 win at Rutgers on Tuesday, they did win for the fifth time in six games. They rank 15th in the country in offensive efficiency, and St. John's should have trouble keeping up now that leading scorer D'Angelo Harrison has been suspended for the season for disciplinary reasons. Even with Harrison for most of the year, the Red Storm are only 197th in offensive efficiency and 298th in effective field goal percentage. Marquette is 15-8-1 ATS in its last 24 road games following an ATS loss. LEAN: Marquette

Nebraska at Iowa

Iowa has been inconsistent this season, but it is currently on a three-game ATS winning streak that began after an upset loss to these Cornhuskers in Lincoln, and the 19-11 Hawkeyes now have a chance for a 20-win season while seeking revenge on senior night. Iowa has been playing good defense while holding its last four home opponents below 60 points, lowering its points against at home for the season to 57.9 points per game with the 'under' going 8-4-1 in those contests. Nebraska combines ranking 291st in the country with a pace rating of 63.1 possessions per game with ranking 289th in effective field goal percentage, a combination resulting in just 58.7 points per game, which is 332nd in the nation. The 'under' is 12-4 in the last 16 Iowa games following three ATS wins. LEAN: UNDER

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