Expect NCAA Basketball Blowout in Arizona vs. Washington: Back Double Digit Favorite

Joe Gavazzi

Friday, February 13, 2015 5:14 PM UTC

Friday, Feb. 13, 2015 5:14 PM UTC

Our expert handicapper explores tonight's matchup between Arizona and Washington. In this article you will find his pick and reasoning behind it, so come on in and check it out!

Arizona (-10) vs. Washington 9:00 ET ESPN
On Friday night, Arizona travels to Washington as double digit favorite on the posted NCAA basketball odds for a 9:00 tip off on ESPN TV. A fading Washington team catches Arizona, the best team in the league, at the wrong time. These are the situations from which blowouts are born!  

Following the 52-50 victory at Colorado on January 22nd, Washington had a 14-4 SU mark with one of the best defenses in the nation. Much of the credit for that went to the nation’s leader in blocks by Fresno St. transfer, Upshaw, who was patrolling the paint and swatting away over 4 opposing shots per game. Since that time, Upshaw has been dismissed from the team for his failure to abide by team rules. In his absence, starting with a 77-56 loss at Utah, the Huskies have gone 0-5 SU, 1-4 ATS with 3 double digit losses as a result of a defense that has allowed 78.6 PPG.  Interior force, Kemp, cannot man the interior alone, while veteran guards, Andrews and Williams-Goss, are helpless without interior help. In short, the Huskies’ season is on the brink of disaster and 13th year HC Lorenzo Romar is feeling the pressure with his team on the brink of missing the 2015 NCAA Tournament for the 4th consecutive season. Tonight, they meet league leader Arizona at the wrong time.

Arizona was cruising through Pac 12 play at 8-1 SU ATS with their only loss, a head-scratching defeat, at non-athletic Oregon St. on the Beavers’ undefeated home court. Along the way was a 5-0 ATS mark as home chalk with every victory by 14 or more points. More impressively was a 3-0 ATS record as road chalk with wins of 18 at Oregon, 7 at Stanford and 23 at California.  The Wildcats were led by a defense that had held 8 of their first 9 PAC 12 foes to 62 or less points.  They are still a Defensive Dandy, and Top 10 team, with a defense that allows just 59 PPG, 40% from the field, 33% from the arc with a +7.4 rebound margin and positive assist/TO ratio and TO margin. All those victories, however, translate into over confidence when they visited  Pac-12 Conference rival, Arizona St., last Saturday.  The resulting 81-78 loss lost them respect in both the conference and the national polls. Needless to say, practice at the McKale Center under hard-driving 4th year HC Sean Miller has not been fun.   

Expect a consummate defensive effort by the Wildcats tonight, who held Arizona St. to 49 points and Colorado to 54 points after the only 2 previous Arizona losses this year, against a Washington team who has lost their way and their defensive presence. The result could be very ugly. For your free college basketball picks, lay it with the Wildcats who have only a game on Sunday against outmanned Washington St. as a look-ahead. 

NCAA Basketball Pick: Arizona Wildcats -10 at 5Dimes
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