Friday night MAAC conference play tips off and we like another underdog to pull the upset as Canisius meets Fairfield. What do the odds makers placing on offer in this matchup, and where can we find the best value for our NCAA Basketball picks?

NCAA Basketball odds makers made a mistake when posting this line, and the public has already shifted it by more than two points. 

Let’s breakdown this matchup and find out if there is any more value to be found for our NCAA Basketball picks tonight, or has our opportunity already passed.

Record 12-11-1 ATS. On a documented 4-0 run right now. 

Match up 

The early betting lines listed Fairfield as a 6.5 point favorite, but that has fallen all the way down to 4.5 at shops such as 5Dimes. Tip off is scheduled for 7pm EST. No total has been set.

Jim Baron changing the culture at Canisius

Billy BaronThe last time Canisius won a MAAC championship was in 1996, but they have been the laughing stock of the conference ever since. They received a blessing in disguise when Rhode Island decided to depart with head coach Jim Baron (who has brought two different teams to the NCAAS) and the Golden Griffs scooped him up.

Baron has really started to turn this team around, and he has turned this team into an offensive powerhouse. He's got the Griffs out running and gunning, pushing the ball up the court, instead of their very slow half court paced offense, which has them averaging 76 points a game(46th in the nation) on 44% shooting and a 4-1 record to start the year.

There is another Baron making a huge impact 

Not only did Jim Baron come over to coach the team, he brought his son Billy Baron with him. Baron is a skilled ball player, averaging 18 points and 6 assist per game. In his last three games he has scored a combined 49 points to go along with 17 assist. This kid could be a starter for any team in a big time conference, but he chose to play for his father. 

Baron isn't the only one lighting up the scoreboard though. Senior Harold Washington, who paced the team last year at 20 points a game, is doing damage again this year, dropping 17 a game. The inside, outside duo of Washington and Baron is one of the most dangerous 1-2 punches in the conference. 

6”10 forward Jordan Health is also averaging 11 points a game and 5 rebounds.

Shut down Derek Needham, you just shut down Fairfield

Derek Needham is the best PG in the MAAC conference, make no mistake about it, and just like his foe tonight, Billy Baron, he could be a starter in any one of the big conferences in the country. Needham averages 15 points a game on 4 assist, and is the floor general for this squad. He runs the offense to perfection, drawing constant double or even triple teams but has such great court vision, he knows just where the open man is for an easy bucket. He also has a dead eye when it comes to shooting the three ball. 

The thing is that, beyond Needham, there isn't much talent on this Fairfield squad. Aside from him, they do not have one starter that averages in double digits scoring.

Take the Points

Right now you can still grab Canisius at +5.5 at Heritage but get on this quick before you are left with a bad number, beating the closing number is always important! Reason why this line opened so high is because it is Fairfields home opener but betters have quickly dismissed that.

Look for Canisius to come out tonight and make this a statement game. To prove to the MAAC conference they are no longer the laughing stock of the conference and are a force to be reckoned with.

NCAA Basketball Picks: Canisius +5.5 at 5Dimes