Free NCAA Basketball Picks: Pair Of Road Dogs To Crash The Books

Darin Zank

Friday, December 18, 2015 3:34 PM GMT

This handicapper put two teams on upset alert Thursday night, and one fell victim, as a nine-point favorite. We'll take two more teams on alert with our NCAA basketball picks for Friday night.

Bubble Battle in Memphis
It may be a bit early to start talking about the NCAA tournament, but from afar, it seems Ole Miss and Memphis could both find themselves on the bubble come March. That's why the Rebels-Tigers bout Friday night in Memphis holds such appeal.

Ole Miss (8-2 SU, 5-4 ATS) has won five in a row, after putting up 99 points in a victory over Louisiana Tech Tuesday night. The Rebs led by a dozen at the half, shooting lights-out from all over, and never let the Bulldogs back in the game, easily covering at -7 on the NCAA Basketball odds. On the night, Ole Miss shot 57 percent from the floor, 12-for-16 from 3-point land.

During their current run the Rebels also covered at -6 over Georgia State, -9 at Bradley and -2 at UMass. So they're 3-0 SU, 2-1 ATS on the road this season.

Memphis (8-2 SU, 5-4 ATS) has also won five games in a row, including a 72-67 decision over Southern Tuesday night. But that game wasn't even lined. The Tigers only shot 39 percent from the floor, and committed 19 turnovers.

Memphis is holding opponents to just 37 percent shooting this season, but is only shooting 43 percent itself, and just 26 percent from 3-point range. Meanwhile, Ole Miss shoots the ball a little better, holds foes to 41 percent shooting and does a little better job on the boards.

The Rebs are also shooting 74 percent from the free-throw line, which is pretty good for a college team.

This looks like a good match-up, and we can see this game falling either way. Memphis can play the nasty D, but it has a little trouble throwing the ball in the hole. Ole Miss, meanwhile, can play on the road. We like the value with Rebels in this spot for one of our free NCAA Basketball picks.

As of this writing Heritage was giving Ole Miss +4 on the spread, while 5Dimes was giving the Rebs +155 on its college basketball moneyline.

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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Rebels +4; Rebels +155
Best Line Offered: at Heritage

 

Value Down in 'Bama?
Most college basketball bettors probably glaze right past a match-up like Samford-South Alabama, and we might, too. But bettors must sniff out value anywhere they can find it on a college basketball board, and Friday night's Jaguars-Bulldogs might provide some.

Samford (7-3 SU, 6-1 ATS) opened this season with a loss at Louisville, then won five games in a row. Recently, though, the Bulldogs are running hot-and-cold, alternating wins and losses. Twenty days ago they lost at Austin Peay; then they beat Jacksonville State; then they lost to Texas; but last time out, six days ago, they beat Florida A&M 86-67.

USA (3-6 SU, 2-5 ATS), meanwhile, is struggling through the early part of this season, although two of its losses came at North Carolina State and at Louisianan State. Most recently, Monday night, the Jags lost at home to Southern Miss 57-54 as eight-point favorites. South Alabama blew a six-point halftime lead, and on the night shot a miserable 33 percent from the floor.

But a performance like that sometimes sets up a bounce-back plays.

Looking back at some preseason evaluations, the Jags should be better than 3-6, while Samford has probably played a bit above its head so far. Bottom-line, these teams are fairly close in talent/experience. We like the value in this spot with South Alabama for our Friday's NCAA basketball picks.

As of this writing the Jags were getting 6.5 points at Heritage and +255 on the moneyline at 5Dimes.

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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: South Alabama +6.5; South Alabama +255
Best Life Offered: at 5Dimes