'Dunk City' Redux: FGCU Will Cover vs. Florida State in West Region

Jason Lake

Tuesday, March 14, 2017 2:43 PM UTC

Tuesday, Mar. 14, 2017 2:43 PM UTC

Sharp bettors are putting “Dunk City” in their college basketball picks for Thursday’s March Madness West Region game between the Florida State Seminoles and the FGCU Eagles.

No. 14 Florida Gulf Coast vs. No. 3 Florida State

West Region, Salt Lake City, Thursday, 9:20 p.m. ET


Is it already too late to add the No. 14 Florida Gulf Coast Eagles to our NCAAB picks? The ink wasn’t even dry on Sunday’s March Madness brackets before the Eagles (26-7 SU, 4-0 ATS) were given the Cinderella treatment in the West Region. But their first-round opponents, the No. 3 Florida State Seminoles (25-8 SU, 17-12-2 ATS) aren’t one of your run-of-the-mill at-large teams at the Big Dance. Maybe this isn’t the 3-14 matchup we’re looking for.

Then again, the early action for Thursday’s matchup (9:20 p.m. ET, TNT) was piling up on Dunk City. FGCU opened as a 12-point puppy on the NCAAB odds board following Selection Sunday; before the night was through, the Eagles were down to +11 at most books. The spread is back up to 12 points as we go to press, even though our consensus numbers still show two-thirds support for the underdogs.

Dipsy-Doo, Dunkeroo

This is a pretty tight line as far as the advanced stats are concerned. FiveThirtyEight has released its March Madness projections and has the Seminoles winning Thursday’s game 88 percent of the time, which translates to roughly -11.5 according to Wizard of Odds. And our old friend Ken Pomeroy has FSU rated almost 18 points better than FGCU over 100 possessions; if they get in two-thirds of those possessions, that’s -12.

Why yes, I do have Dunk City in the Sweet 16. And UNC-Wilmington. Only double digit seeds in 2nd weekend (sure to be wrong)

— Ryan Wing (@RyanWingNBC15) March 13, 2017

Still, it’s going to be a chore for Florida State to cover all those points. The Eagles run a very slow pace, and as their "Dunk City" nickname implies they’re really good at scoring inside: No. 6 in the nation in 2-point accuracy at 57.1 percent. Get up for the downstroke! We’ll follow the early money and recommend FGCU for a small lean here.

NCAAB Free Pick: FGCU +12Best Line Offered: Betmania

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