Free Picks: George Washington & Valparaiso -2 Collide In NIT Final

Charles Stark

Thursday, March 31, 2016 12:36 PM UTC

Thursday, Mar. 31, 2016 12:36 PM UTC

The NIT championship should be a hard fought contest with Valparaiso taking on George Washington. This game should be a great showdown, but who will be our NCAA basketball pick & win the NIT?

Odds makers have made Valparaiso a -2.5 favorite like at Bookmaker -115. For my NCAA basketball pick tonight I will back the Crusaders minus the points to win this game by more five. GW has been playing very well but I like some of the matchups for Valpo tonight.


George Washington
GW averages 75.6 points per game and ranks 24th in the country shooting 75% from the free throw line. Across the board statistically there is nothing to shout about with the Colonials but they played extremely well the other night against San Diego State. I had the Aztecs in that game and that was honestly the worst I have seen them play this year. As well, San Diego State at times this year has been extremely stagnant on offense which was really evident Tuesday night.

Valpo presents some tough challenges for the Colonials defensively both inside and out as well as being the better rebounding team. George Washington does a bit of a better job taking care of the basketball but defensively they will be challenged a lot more against a team that score a lot better than what they saw from SDSU. Although GW has played well the past couple weeks in my opinion Valparaiso is the better team and the odds makers have it right.


Valparaiso Crusaders
Valparaiso averages 75.1 points per game and rank second in the country allowing opponents to shoot 41.4% on their two point shots. Of course this team comes from the lesser Horizon conference but this is a really well coached basketball team despite how BYU came back against them on Tuesday. Defensively they rank sixth, seventh, and eighth in opponent effective field goal percentage, opponent overall shooting percentage, and opponent shooting efficiency.

I thought they showed some resilience against a BYU team that made a nice run at them as they were able to come up with a couple clutch plays. Offensively, much like the Colonials, there is not a ton to brag about when it comes to the Crusaders offense but they do shoot the three well averaging 36.8% from distance and they rebound extremely well ranking sixth in the country at 41.4 NCAA basketball odds boards per game. This game should be pretty tight most of the way but in the end I like for the Crusaders to come out of this with a solid win.

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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Valparaiso -2.5 (-105)
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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