NCAA Basketball Pick: Clemson vs. Florida State

LT Profits Sports Group

Saturday, February 1, 2014 5:00 AM GMT

The Florida State Seminoles, who are 4-4 inside the ACC, return home as they try to stop a two-game losing streak when they host the 4-3 Clemson Tigers on Saturday.

Returning home could make all the difference for one of the better defenses in the country on Saturday when the Clemson Tigers (13-6, 2-4 away) pay a visit to those Florida State Seminoles (13-7, 7-1 home) at the Donald L. Tucker Center in Tallahassee, FL at 3:00 ET in a game televised nationally on ESPN2.

The point spread at Bet365 has Florida State as a decided home favorite for this contest with the current line at -8 with odds of -110.

Florida State has lost two straight games and three of its last four, but all three losses came on the road to Virginia, Duke and NC State, so there was not a bad loss in the bunch. The Seminoles now return home where they are 7-1 losing only to Virginia (again), and they have outscored their opponents in this building by an average of +17.7 points while holding them to a mere 37.4 percent shooting.

Clemson has also lost two straight on the road, and they already lost to Florida State back home in Clemson 56-41 while shooting just 30.0 percent in a dismal home effort. That does not bode well for this road rematch as the Tigers are getting outscored by -8.5 points while shooting just 37.5 percent in all true road games.

Now may be the best time to back the Noles while they could be undervalued following those two losses, as this they still have one if the best defenses in the country, ranking 17th in the land in defensive efficiency, sixth in effective field goal percentage allowed and third in two-point defense.

If Florida State has a slight Achilles Heel, it is ranking a still respectable 66th in three-point defense, but that may not come into play vs. a Tigers’ offense ranked 269th in three-point shooting. Speaking of three-point shooting, the Seminoles lead the ACC from beyond the arc offensively during conference play at 42.1 percent.

Now Clemson also grades out well defensively ranking 15th in defensive efficiency, but the Tigers have a greater home vs. away disparity, in fact allowing 80 and 76 points respectively in their last two road contests. While Clemson is holding opponents to 38.1 percent shooting overall, that percentage shoots all the way up to 47.2 percent in true road games.

The Tigers allowed Pittsburgh to shoot 56.3 percent and North Carolina to shoot 55.4 percent in those last two road losses, and it did not help that leading scorer K.J. McDaniels shot just 8-for-23 from the floor in those games.

Add all this up and look for Florida State to get back on track with a double-digit home win on Saturday.

[gameodds]14/256440/?r-1=43-238-92-349-192/us[/gameodds]

NCAA Basketball Pick: Florida State -8 (-110)