Morehead State ATS is the NCAA Basketball Pick vs. Nevada in CBI Finals Game 2

LT Profits Sports Group

Wednesday, March 30, 2016 3:50 PM UTC

Wednesday, Mar. 30, 2016 3:50 PM UTC

Game 1 of the CBI Championship was close between Nevada and Morehead St. It could be a similarly tight game in Game 2 in Reno, so take the points with the Eagles as your NCAA basketball pick.


If Game 1 of the CBI Championship Series was any indication, the underdog points could be worth taking in Game 2 Wednesday night when those Morehead State Eagles (23-12, 19-13-1 ATS) this time pay a visit to the Nevada Wolf Pack (22-14, 19-15 ATS) at the Lawlor Events Center in Reno, NV at 9:00 ET in a game televised nationally on ESPNU, with Morehead State leading the best-of-three series 1-0. The point spread at Heritage Sports has Morehead State as a moderate road underdog for this contest with the current line at +4½ on the NCAA basketball odds boards at odds of -105.


Can Morehead State Finish Sweep?
Morehead State has a chance to complete a sweep on the road tonight after drawing first blood back home in Morehead in Game 1 on Monday, but it was the Wolf Pack of Nevada that were the winning NCAA basketball picks against the point spread that night, with the Eagles prevailing just 86-83 as 5½-point favorites. That marked the 11th straight up win in 12 games for Morehead State, with the only loss coming in the Ohio Valley Tournament to Tennessee-Martin.

Nevada lost for only the second time in six games, although the Wolf Pack battled hard in what was an exciting, close game throughout. Now the shoe is on the other foot with Nevada being the moderate favorite at home, and while we gladly cashed our tickets with the underdog Wolf Pack in Game 1, we feel Game 2 has the potential to be just as close so we are switching our allegiance this time to the underdogs from Morehead State with the points.


Monsters on Offensive Glass
Morehead State may not shoot a particularly high percentage as the Eagles stand at just 43.3 percent overall this season, but they make up for that by getting a ton of second chances off of offensive rebounds, and that was a major key to the narrow Game 1 victory despite barely winning the overall rebounding battle just 33-32.

That is because 17 of those rebounds were offensive, which is nothing new for a Morehead team that is an amazing seventh in the entire country in offensive rebounding percentage at 39.0 percent vs. a national average of 29.8 percent. In fact, the Eagles even slightly out-performed their already great percentage by grabbing 39.5 percent of their own missed shots in Game 1, and there is no reason to believe they cannot dominate the offensive boards again tonight.

Morehead State also forced Nevada into 11 turnovers on Monday while committing only five themselves, and winning the turnover battle has also been par for the course for the Eagles this season with their aggressive defense ranking 19th in the nation in defensive turnover percentage at 21.4 percent vs. a national average of 18.1 percent.


Black Eye for Mountain West?
Now, one reason we backed Nevada in Game 1 was because we felt that they had a bit of a class edge coming out of the Mountain West Conference, but that conference received a black eye last night in the NIT semifinals with a terrible performance by the regular season champs from San Diego State in a 65-46 loss to George Washington, so apparently the selection committee for the NCAA Tournament was wise in making the Mountain a one-bid league.

Also disconcerting was the play of the Nevada interior defense in Game 1, as the Wolf Pack allowed the Eagles to make 27 of their 48 two-point attempts for 56.2 percent while also simply losing the physicality battle on the glass all game long, and we are not sure if Nevada can do anything to correct that here, especially since the Wolf Pack are only 190th nationally in defensive rebounding percentage.


Eagles Flying High on the Road
Finally, besides winning 11 of their last 12 games straight up, the Eagles of Morehead are also a spiffy 11-3-1 ATS in their last 15 games overall and they have not minded travelling one bit, going 6-1-1 ATS in their last eight true road games. The Eagles are also 13-5-1 ATS in their last 19 games following an ATS loss.

The popular perception seems to be that Nevada will bounce back at home and even up this series after covering the point spread on the road while losing Game 1, and while they may or may not do so, we do feel that this will be an equally close game with underdog Morehead State doing its best to try and complete the sweep, so take the points with the Eagles in Game 2 from Reno Wednesday.

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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Morehead State +4 (-102) (Game 2)
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes


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