NCAA Basketball Picks: Give The Points In Fresno St. & San Diego St. Defensive Battle

Zack Jones

Tuesday, January 19, 2016 12:19 PM UTC

Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2016 12:19 PM UTC

For Tuesday basketball we head to the Mountain West where the Fresno State Bulldogs visit the San Diego State Aztecs. Who should be a part of our NCAA basketball picks?

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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Fresno State +8
Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker


NCAA Basketball Odds Overview
Right now, NCAA basketball odds boards have Fresno State at a +8.5 underdog like at Heritage -110. The line has already moved with money come in on San Diego State which makes sense considering they are 5-0 in conference play and are one of the best defensive teams in the country. Nevertheless, for my NCAA pick for today, I will grab the points with a talented FSU team that plays well on both ends of the floor.


Fresno State Bulldogs
Fresno State is averaging 74.4 points per game while shooting 43.8% from the field, and allowing 71.2 points per game on 42.2% per game. On the year overall FSU is 6-7 against the spread and 3-3 on the road. Offensively, the Bulldogs have one of the best player in the league in Marvelle Harris and they lead the Mountain West in turnover margin and offensive rebounds. For the most part they are a sufficient offensive team with some good veterans at the guard spot and they hit the boards well averaging 39.1 rebound per game. They also rank better on this side of the ball than San Diego State across the board. Defensively, they are better than average and defend the perimeter very well allowing 31.2% in opponent shooting from distance. This is arguably the best team that head coach Rodney Terry has had in his tenure at FSU and they have been improving their conference record every year in his last five years. While they have been the same league the last few seasons the Bulldogs have not had much success traveling to San Diego losing all three years. Still, they battled their two years ago losing by eight and then by only 11 last year. The good news for FSU fans is this is, as mentioned, probably the best team they have had in a while and they should go into San Diego with the confidence they can pull the upset. Although that is unlikely I think there is value with the points they are getting tonight.


San Diego State Aztecs
San Diego State is averaging 65 points per game while shooting 40.8% from the field, and allowing 60.4 points per game on 36.2% shooting from the field. On the season San Diego State is 6-5-3 against the spread and only 2-3-1 at home. They don't be teams on the offensive end but rely on their defense to carry them to victories which has served them well as they are on a five-game winning streak. Offensively, their statistics are way out of proportion to their overall record of 12-6 on the season because they rank as one of the worst offensive teams in the country. San Diego State ranks in the very bottom part of NCAA basketball in shooting percentage, shooting efficiency, field goals made per game, and assist per game. For what they lack on the offensive end they more than make up for it on the defensive side of the ball. Completely opposite of their offense, San Diego State ranks as one of the best defensive teams not just in their conference but in the whole country. They rank second in opponent shooting percentage, allowing just 30.2% from beyond the arc, fifth in opponent assist per game and field goals made per game, and finally they rank sixth and seventh in opponent effective field-goal percentage and shooting efficiency respectively.

I like the matchups in this contest, and although San Diego State is a superior defensive team I like for a talented Fresno State team to hang with them tonight. For one of your NCAA basketball picks, I recommend backing the Bulldogs plus the points to keep this game a lot closer than people anticipate. San Diego State's lack of offensive scoring should help keep this game relatively close.

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