Alabama and Minnesota Keep Final Just Shy Of The Over

Willie Bee

Saturday, November 25, 2017 3:42 PM UTC

Saturday, Nov. 25, 2017 3:42 PM UTC

One unbeaten record has to give this afternoon when the Alabama meets Minnesota, and we have a free NCAA basketball pick in advance of the lines being released.

Alabama Crimson Tide vs Minnesota Golden Gophers

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Free NCAAB Pick: Under 149.5Best Line Offered: at Heritage

It might not be a true bracket tournament like the Legends Classic we saw earlier this week or the PK80 event going on right now, but the Barclays Center Classic certainly played out that way on Friday as the two highest-ranked teams and top favorites won their first round contests.

The result gives college basketball fans the only Saturday matchup that pits ranked teams as the Alabama Crimson Tide take on the Minnesota Golden Gophers in a 5 PM (ET) tip that will be streamed live from Brooklyn on facebook. SBR’s top sports books have yet to release numbers for the game, but the spread should be a fairly close gap once it does come out with the total likely sitting in the upper-130s or low-140s.

’Bama 11th In Country Blocking Shots

Minnesota started the event with a 69-51 decision over Massachusetts, the final margin enough to cover a -14½ to -15 line on the Golden Gophers. Ranked 14-15 in the latest polls, Richard Pitino’s squad bolted to an early lead and never looked back in maintaining a perfect record and moving to 4-1 against the spread on the season. Paced by Jordan Murphy’s double-double (16 pts, 11 reb), the Gophers denied UMass trying to drive the rim in a matchup that was relatively whistle free with the two teams combining for just 19 free throw attempts.

That was roughly half of the 37 free throws Alabama and BYU tried in Friday’s second game on the tournament card, the Crimson Tide easily covering the 8-8½ point closing spread on the NCAA basketball odds. Avery Johnson’s group started the day ranked No. 25 in the AP and sitting just outside the coaches poll, and four ‘Bama ballers scored in double figures led by John Petty’s 16. The Tide pressured the Cougars most of the game and blocked six more shots giving them 33 rejections in the first five games.

Tide Eyes 5th-Straight Win Vs. Gophers

Today’s clash is the fifth meeting between the schools, and first in almost exactly 13 years. Alabama has won the four previous meetings against Minnesota, their 2004 encounter coming in the semifinals of the Great Alaska Shootout where the Crimson Tide recorded a 78-72 victory. That was only half the margin of a -12 spread on Alabama, marking the second straight time the underdogs covered in the rivalry.

Both games on Friday, which were played at the Steinberg Wellness Center gym at Long Island University due to an NBA scheduling conflict, fell short of the totals. Assuming my guesstimate on today’s scoreboard hurdle is correct, I’m looking for the same outcome with my free college basketball pick.

Season: 6-5 (+0.75)

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