The NIT gets a chance to be the only men’s college games on for the next couple of days, and tonight, the Hurricanes and Gophers fight for a chance to make it into the final eight teams in the NIT. How can we make some money off of this matchup?
NCAA basketball odds makers first listed the Hurricanes as the -4.5 point home favorite, but early sports betting action has extended the lines, and a spread of 5.5 is now on offer at some NCAA basketball betting shops. Will the 2nd
seed be able to keep their postseason alive, or will the Gophers be able to
steal their thunder?
Lets preview this matchup and decide where us bettors should lay our NCAA Basketball picks.
eventual champions, the Florida State Seminoles, took down Miami in the ACC
tournament. Miami won their first round game against Georgia Tech 54-36, but
did not have enough left in the tank to hang with Florida State down the
stretch, and lost 82-71. Now in the NIT, the Canes won their first round game
against Valpo, 66-50, but will the trend of them losing in the second round
has great balance on offense this season. They average over 71 points per game,
and have four players that average double figures in scoring. They are also
very deep, as they have ten players that average double figures in minutes per
game. In their win over Valpo, the Hurricanes got 18 points from Rion Brown.
Brown got most of these points from shooting 4-7 from beyond the arc.
Gophers not big enough
is still rebuilding a once great program, and they had the unfortunate task of
playing in the country’s best conference this season. The Big Ten was just too
much for the young Gophers to handle this season, as they finished with a conference record
of only 6-12, and after their huge win over Indiana in January; they could not
continue their good play. They did win their first game in the Big Ten
tournament, beating Northwestern 75-68. However, they then lost to second seed
Michigan, 73-69 in the second round.
Gophers are good at what most Tubby Smith teams have been known for; defense,
and a slow down offense. Tubby-ball led the Gophers to an outstanding field goal
percentage and assist numbers this season. The Gophers also have a very
balanced scoring attack, as three players average double figures. Forward
Trevor Mbakwe lead the way, averaging 14 points, 9 rebounds and shooting 60%
from the field. However, Mbakwe is currently recovering from a torn ACL and
quite obviously, will not play in tonight’s game.
The Sharp Pick
have been calling for Tubby Smith’s job in Minnesota, and I think the outcome
of this game will have a lot to do with whether or not Smith gets to stay in
Minnesota. That being said, I like the Hurricanes laying points here. The
Gophers will be without their best player, and Miami owns the only win and
cover between these two teams. In 2009, the Hurricanes beat the Gophers 63-58.
4-1-1 ATS in their last six games, while going 4-2 SU in those games. They are
also 5-0 SU in their last five games at home. Seeing as these first and second
round games are being played at the host team’s court, I like the Hurricanes to
My Pick: Hurricanes -4.5