Add UCONN To Your NCAA Basketball Picks As They'll Win & Cover Against Temple

Swinging Johnson

Thursday, February 11, 2016 2:59 PM GMT

The American Athletic Conference pits Connecticut travelling to rival Temple. Let’s analyze these teams and determine which side to include in our NCAA basketball picks.

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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: UConn -4
Best Line Offered: at GTBets

 

UConn (17-6 SU, 10-8 ATS)
Those who backed Connecticut in their NCAA basketball picks on Sunday night were looking for a blowout victory by the Huskies over East Carolina. Unfortunately, the blowout was not quite big enough as U Conn drew away to an 85-67 win but narrowly failed to cover the 19 point impost. Five Huskies tallied double digits in the win with Shonn Miller and Rodney Purvis leading the hit parade with 16 points apiece. Six-foot-seven-inch guard Daniel Hamilton hauled down 16 boards in addition to his 12 points. Miller is leading the team in scoring averaging 13.5 points per game while Hamilton ratcheted up his team leading rebounding average to nine boards per contest. UConn currently has four players with double digit scoring averages.

The Huskies defense has been on point recently as evidenced by holding East Carolina to just 37.1 percent shooting and have now held their last 10 opponents to under 40 percent from the floor. Junior center Amida Brimah was welcomed back to the starting lineup after missing 11 games with a strained groin and a broken finger. The seven-foot center played just 10 minutes adding four points, three rebounds and two blocked shots against East Carolina.

 

Temple (14-8 SU, 12-8 ATS)
The NCAA basketball odds makers installed Temple as 3 ½ point road favorites when they traveled to UCF on Saturday and it was just a bit too much as they hung for a 62-60 desperation win over the Knights. Junior forward Mark Williams led the team in scoring as he bucketed a season-high 16 points and it was also a milestone win for head coach Fran Dunphy who now has 517 victories (310 of those were with Penn) which is the most in the history of the Philadelphia’s Big 5 coaches.

Temple has now reeled off six wins over their seven games and has covered the number in four of those contests. Scoring has not been the Owls strong suit averaging just 69.4 PPG which ranks them 269th in the nation but their defense has been the key to their success this season. Temple is holding opponents to just 67.9 points per game which ranks them 87th in the country amongst D-1 schools. Quenton DeCosey is leading the team with 16.5 points per game and averaging 6.1 rebounds. Speaking of rebounds, senior forward Jaylen Bond is leading the team in that category with 7.9 boards per game.

 

Betting Analysis
These AAC rivals met a little over a month ago in Storrs with Temple guard Josh Brown hitting a spinning jumper with just a little over two seconds remaining in the game. When the buzzer sounded, the Owls upset the 10-point home favorites by the score of 55-53. It was their biggest victory of the season, with perhaps the notable exception of their win over Cincinnati as 11½ point road dogs, and an enormous boost to their chances of winning the conference title. But that is still too far down the road to consider as we must contemplate their chances of victory tonight.

Both teams are hot right now as each has won six of their last seven straight up but U Conn is 5-2 ATS over that stretch. Despite the fact that Temple pulled the huge upset over Connecticut just over a month ago, I can’t help but believe that the Huskies scoring punch is now in full swing and simply too much for the Owls to contend with particularly in light of their limited offense. UConn is also playing exceptional defense as of late and has revenge on their mind in this one. Even though the venue favors Temple, the final score will not. We say UConn gets the road win here and the ATS cover in tonight's game.