NCAA Basketball Pick: Grab West Virginia To Cover ATS vs. Eastern Kentucky

Joe Catalano

Monday, December 21, 2015 4:29 PM GMT

Monday, Dec. 21, 2015 4:29 PM GMT

The Eastern Kentucky Colonels (8-5) will visit #20 West Virginia Mountaineers (9-1) on Monday night.Tip-off is set for 7:00 p.m. EST check our free NCAA basketball pick inside.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: West Virginia -25.5
Best Line Offered: at Heritage

 

The Eastern Kentucky Colonels (8-5) may possess a winning record, but make no mistake about it, they're playing a powerhouse in the #20 West Virginia Mountaineers (9-1). So much, that the Mountaineers are a monstrous 26 point betting favorite on the NCAA basketball odds. I ask that question once again. How many points will WVU win by is more of the subject of this game for the bettor? Here's our opinion.

 

Defense Wins Games
The Mountaineers pride themselves on forcing the opposition to turn the basketball over. They lead the nation in forced turnovers at 22.3 forced turnovers per game. This is a team that makes frequent substitutions to keep the defense fresh while the opposition gets tired and commits careless errors. In all, a total of 9 players play 14 minutes per game and this enables WVU to speed up the pace.

 

Devin Williams
Most teams that play this style of basketball don't have a real go to guy, but forward, Devin Williams, has proved to be a reliable force on the boards and is accurate around the paint.

He's not going to shoot a 3-pointer, but Williams averages a near double-double at 16.2 points and 9.5 rebounds per game while shooting 57.4% from the field. Of course, when most of a players shots come from the inside, his percentage will be great, but this is actually a great leader with experience.

Williams is coming off of a disappointing performance against rival Marshall, in an 86-68 victory, but that's one game and the bottom line is that this team is so deep that it had no trouble in taking care of business regardless if it's top player was having a poor game.

Look for Williams to have a bounce back effort in this game as West Virginia looks to get deeper into the AP Top 25.

 

Jaysean Paige
He's certainly not the best player on the Mountaineers squad, but one player that gets overlooked is guard Jaysean Paige (10.1 points, 3.4).

In a system like this, a player won't get a ton of minutes and they need to make their minutes count. West Virginia is also a poor 3-point shooting team and that's what Paige brings to the table he's a 42.1 % shooter from beyond the arc.

West Virginia can always count on at least a 3-pointer and a steal from Paige each game. He should see a lot of minutes as a blowout is expected.

 

Great Offense and Poor Defense
This is the story of the Eastern Kentucky Colonels as they have no problem putting the rock in the hole, but have difficulties in defending. Their defense will be their downfall in this game despite the offense of Jarelle Reischel (19.8 points, 7.9 rebounds, 3.7 assists, 2.2 steals) and JaVontae Hawkins (17.8 points, 4.8 points . This is a team that averages 86 points per game, but a mere 32 rebounds per contest and not being able to protect the boards and get 2nd chances on the offensive end will also hamper the Colonels. I'm not deceived by these huge offensive numbers. West Virginia is a huge favorite for a reason. Take the Mountaineers as the NCAA basketball pick.

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