Free NCAA Basketball Picks: Miami Comes to Win At Georgia Tech

Doug Upstone

Sunday, February 7, 2016 1:13 PM UTC

Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016 1:13 PM UTC

Miami-Fl. has another potentially tricky tilt on their hands. The Hurricanes are at Georgia Tech and for NCAA basketball picks make sure to tread lightly on this ACC encounter.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: Miami-Fl. -4
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes


Just eight days ago of a big win over Duke, Miami went to Raleigh and stumbled at N.C. State, upset decisively 85-69 as five-point favorites. The Hurricanes played with more purpose on Wednesday in beating Notre Dame 79-70 in a game in which they held a 15-point lead most of the way. At 6-3 (4-5 ATS) in conference play and has a more important matchup with Pittsburgh on Tuesday, Miami cannot afford another mediocre performance against a Georgia Tech club this is 2-7 but 6-2-1 ATS in the ACC.

This contest is on ESPNU at 1:00 Eastern and is mind-bending for NCAA basketball picks.


Miami Needs to Push the Peddle
Coach Jim Larranaga has sat in the lead seat for 32 years and will be reminding his squad about being focused after the N.C. State debacle. This is where he will being counting on guard Sheldon McClellan (16.1 PPG) to show leadership. The senior is on multiple awards list and is a dead-eye shooter, posting big man numbers for accuracy at 61.2 percent inside the arc. His running mate is Angel Rodriguez (11.7), who is prone to more ups and downs scoring-wise, but is skilled in finding the open man for assists.

The game-changer is sophomore guard Ja'Quan Newton, who Dick Vitale has been lauding as the country's best sixth-man and he is the Canes second-leading scorer and assist man at 11.9 and 2.7 in just 23 minutes a game. When these three are on the court at the same time, they are a matchup nightmare.


Same Old Story for Georgia Tech
For Georgia Tech (12-10, 12-7-1 ATS) it continues to be more of the same, close but no cigar. Despite a good spread record, anyone would want to consider going against the Yellow Jackets for NCAA basketball odds, because they are 2-5 SU in game decided by four or less points. This has going on for six to seven seasons, where Georgia Tech is right there to snatch a victory but continually fails to accomplish it. Coach Brian Gregory is starting to feel the heat with only 21 ACC wins in his four-plus campaigns in Atlanta.

Senior guard Marcus Georges-Hunt (15.6 PPG) leads a contingent of four double digit scorers, with forward Charles Mitchell a double-double guy, averaging 10.9 points and 10.5 contests a game. Where Georgia Tech turns into a rambling wreck is when they have to go to the bench where minutes are eaten up but production is lean and this plays a part late in games, when Gregory has to utilize his starters more and they don't have the legs at crunch time.


What Bettors Need to Know
Miami (17-4, 12-8 ATS) is pathetic 0-5 ATS in the road with just a couple victories. They are going to have to take care of the ball and not play as timid on the road. Though they stumbled at N.C. State, those instances have been rare and they are 13-3 and 11-5 against the spread off a SU win. The Hurricanes have been good with three or more days between games at 9-3, but are somewhat misleading 5-6 ATS, winning by 9.6 PPG.

Georgia Tech is 9-4 (6-5 ATS) at venerable the Thrillerdome (now Hank McCamish Pavilion). Coming off a SU and spread setback, the Yellow Jackets are 4-2 and 5-0 ATS and could be difficult opponent on lazy early afternoon. Georgia Tech is 1-2 and 2-1 ATS as home dog.


What to Expect and Spread Winner
With Georgia Tech at +4 and total of 144.5, they are like buffaloes wings on Super Bowl Sunday, very tempting. However, my guess is coach Larranaga has drilled in the Hurricanes players heads about not taking anyone lightly. Actually expect this to be a five-point game with five minutes, when Miami pulls ahead at winning time and the Yellow Jackets falter as per usual.

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