Bet NC State -5.5 vs.Tennessee for Your NCAA Basketball Picks

Jeff Grant

Wednesday, December 17, 2014 2:38 PM UTC

Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014 2:38 PM UTC

NC State has the perfect blend of players to handle Tennessee, which makes it a top college basketball pick at PNC Arena Wednesday night.

A Major Test
Tennessee will play its first true road game of the Donnie Tyndall era Wednesday, which can’t be ignored when making your NCAA basketball picks, as it comes off back-to-back home wins over Kansas State and Butler.

The Volunteers rank second in the Southeastern Conference and 40th nationally in grabbing 13.7 offensive boards a contest, but the Wolfpack sit behind just 29 teams in terms of defensive rebounding percentage.

Over the last two-plus seasons, the program is 10-16 SU and 15-10-1 ATS as underdogs, with the UNDER going 14-7 in that situation.


Guard Play
NC State has split its last four games after opening up the 2014-15 campaign with a perfect 6-0 SU record, which is important to consider when looking over the NCAA basketball odds, as it looks to bounce back from a disappointing 55-54 setback to Wofford as 10-point home favorites Sunday.

The Wolfpack are led by a trio of guards averaging a combined 41.9 points per game, with Alabama transfer Trevor Lacey being the main player to watch, as he scored 18 last time out after sitting out the previous affair with an ankle injury.

It’s important to point out that the squad is 4-0 SU and 3-1 ATS as home favorites of 3.5 to 6 points in its last four opportunities.


Physical Play
The Volunteers definitely play a physical brand of basketball, which is clearly demonstrated in averaging 24.1 fouls per game—ranking fourth in the country in that statistical category.

Tennessee may go over that total in playing its first true road game, as NC State scores 21.9 percent of its points from the charity stripe—knocking down shots from that area at a 67.8 percent clip.


Send It Back
The Wolfpack will go as far as their guards take them this season, but they also have some key players controlling the paint, as they occupy the top spot in the Atlantic Coast Conference and sit behind just five teams nationally in averaging 6.9 blocked shots per game.

NC State’s BeeJay Anya is the main player to watch defensively, as he established a school record earlier this season with 10 rejections against Jacksonville on Nov. 20.


I’m going to recommend that readers back the Wolfpack as one of their top basketball picks, as they’ve gone 9-1 ATS in their last 10 games after failing to cover the number in their previous contest.

NCAA Basketball Pick:  NC State Wolfpack -5 at Pinnacle

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