Louisville To Slow Pace On Saturday Against Up Tempo Indiana

Louisville Cardinals Player

Saturday, December 31, 2016 2:31 PM GMT

Handicapping professional Ross Benjamin breaks down an intriguing non-conference game on Saturday between Louisville and Indiana. In what appears to be a highly competitive contest, Ross’ betting preview eases the burden in making this game one of your college basketball picks.

Saturday 12/31 College Basketball Odds: Louisville vs. Indiana

#6 Louisville and #16 Indiana will square off on Saturday afternoon at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. An opening tip time of 12:30 PM ET is scheduled, and the game will be televised nationally by CBS. These schools last met on the hardwood in 2014, and Louisville defeated Indiana by a score of 94-74.

At the time of this writing (12/30), college basketball betting odds at Bookmaker indicates that Louisville is a 2.5-point favorite, and there's a posted total of 144.5. Be sure to check out the generous bonuses being offered at Bookmaker.

College Basketball Betting Algorithm

Indiana is coming off an 87-83 upset loss to Nebraska in their previous game. That defeat dropped the Hoosiers record to 10-3. Despite their 3 defeats, Indiana possesses a sizable +20.8 point per game differential on the season. Louisville will enter this game with a stellar 11-2 record, and they own a substantial +15.8 point per game differential thus far. The combination of this data points us to an extremely profitable betting algorithm which is illustrated below.

Any team (Indiana) with a total of 140.0 to 149.5, possessing a +8.0 or better point per game differential for the season, and they allowed 85 points or more in their previous game, versus an opponent (Louisville) with a +8.0 or more point per game differential, resulted in those games going 44-13 (77.2%) under the total since 1997. The average total in those 57 contests was 145.1, and there was a combined 135.5 points scored per game.

Final Analysis and Pick

Louisville is one of the best defensive teams in the country this season, and that's been a consistent theme throughout Rick Pitino's tenure as head coach. The Cardinals are allowing just 60.3 points per game, holding their opponents to paltry 37.1% shooting, and that includes a dismal 28.5% conversion rate from three-point territory. Louisville has gone 10-1 under the total in lined games this season, and that includes 7-0 under during its last 7 when there's a posted total.

Indiana has been a high scoring team during the past 2 seasons. However, despite allowing 87 points in their previous game, the Hoosiers are a vastly underrated defensive club. They've allowed their opponents this season to shoot a poor 38.8%, and limited them to converting on only 28.5% of their 3-point attempts.

I don't see Louisville willing to get into a faster-paced game like Indiana prefers. Rick Pitino is a master of getting his teams to control tempo if need be, and this seemingly appears as precisely one of those situations. Relative to the current total, I like this game to be a lower scoring affair, and one of my Saturday college basketball picks concurs with that prediction.

Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Under 144.5

Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker

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