College Basketball Picks for Butler vs. Georgetown

Darin Zank

Saturday, February 8, 2014 2:31 PM GMT

New conference rivals Butler and Georgetown hooked up for a pretty good game a month ago in Indianapolis, the Hoyas coming away with a 70-67 victory in overtime.

The Bulldogs will try to reverse that result when the teams meet again Saturday afternoon at the Verizon Center (1 pm ET, CBS).

Georgetown is favored by a couple of points above home-court advantage. How might this Big East battle fall along the pointspread for our college basketball picks?

Bulldogs-Hoyas Betting Line

Most books we sampled opened Georgetown at right around -6 over Butler. Those who think the Bulldogs might win this game outright can get a price of around +220 on the college basketball odds at various shops.

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Bulldogs-Hoyas Game Set-Up

Butler, in its first season since coach Brad Stevens left for the greener pastures of the NBA, comes into this game with a record of 12-10. The Bulldogs started 10-2, with wins over Vandy and Purdue and close losses to Oklahoma State and LSU. But Butler has won just two of its last 10 games. Most recently the Bulldogs lost at Marquette Tuesday 69-62, committing 20 turnovers, making just three of 15 shots from beyond the arc and allowing the Eagles to shoot 49 percent from the floor, all in pushing the spread as seven-point dogs.

Butler led that game by 10 points seven minutes into the second half, before giving way.

On the other side of this match-up Georgetown enters Saturday at 13-9. The Hoyas started 11-4, with wins over Kansas State and VCU, then lost five games in a row. But GU then upset Michigan State at Madison Square Garden last Saturday 64-60, then topped DePaul Monday 71-59. Georgetown shot just 36 percent from the floor Monday, but made 30 of 41 from the FT line on its way to a cover as five-point favorites.

The Hoyas trailed by nine points early Monday night, but eventually pulled away, with help from a 21-7 run midway through the second half. 

So Georgetown sits in a tie for sixth place in the Big East at 4-6, while Butler is mired in ninth place at 2-8.

As mentioned above Georgetown beat Butler a month ago at Hinkle Fieldhouse 70-67 in overtime. The Hoyas led by five points at the half and by nine with seven minutes to go, but the Bulldogs went on a 19-7 run to lead by three in the final minute.

Georgetown senior G Markel Starks then hit a 3-pointer with 12 seconds left to tie the game, and the Hoyas won in OT.

Georgetown pulled out the victory that night minus two starters, as C Josh Smith and F Jabril Trawick both missed the game. In fact, both are still out, Smith suspended for academics, Trawick with a broken jaw.

The Hoyas shot 45 percent from the floor that night, and held Butler to 33 percent shooting, including a 2-for-21 effort from 3-point range. But Georgetown shot just 8-for-16 from the FT line, while the Bulldogs went 25-for-33 from the stripe.

The Hoyas won outright as two-point underdogs, and the game played OVER its total of 131. However, the game was an UNDER after regulation, with the score tied at 60.

NCCA Basketball Betting: Top Unranked Teams Report-Feb. 7.

Butler-Georgetown By the Numbers

On the season the Bulldogs have shot 43 percent from the field, 32 percent from 3-point land and just 66 percent from the FT line. They've also allowed opponents to shoot 45 percent.

The Hoyas have shot 46 percent from the floor this year, 33 percent from long range and 70 percent from the line. They've also held foes to 39.5 percent shooting.

Bulldogs-Hoyas Betting Trends

Butler is 10-9 ATS this season, 4-3-1 ATS as an underdogs but 1-3-1 ATS in conference road games.

Georgetown is 10-11 ATS, 6-7 ATS as a favorite and 2-3 ATS in Big East home games.

Butler is 9-10 on the OVER/UNDERS this season, as Bulldogs games have averaged 138 total points.

Georgetown is 11-10 on the totals this year, as Hoyas games have averaged 137 points.

Georgetown's last four games have all played UNDER the total.

Four of Butler's last five games have played UNDER the total.

Butler has already played six overtime games this season, going 2-4.

According to Sagarin's PREDICTOR ratings at USAToday.com Georgetown should be favored by 7.5 points for Saturday's game.

Free NCAA Basketball Picks for Duke vs. Boston College

Butler-Georgetown Free NCAA Basketball Pick

The Hoyas shoot the ball better than the Bulldogs, both from the floor and the line, play a little better defense and do a little better job on the boards. And they may have regained a little confidence after upsetting the Spartans last weekend. So we'll go with Georgetown, at the -6 points (-106) offered at Pinnacle Sports, for our free college basketball pick for Saturday.